Coming into the 2009 Fantasy Football season, Maurice Jones-Drew is usually the second player taken off of the board in drafts. I’m going to tell you why he shouldn’t be drafted with the second pick.
Even though he was a split-carry back, MJD was still highly coveted in fantasy drafts. He's just 5'6 but he possesses speed, power, and the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield and while lining up at receiver.
So now that he's the guy in Jacksonville, he should be one of the top two off the board right?
See, MJD has never been the main guy in Jacksonville. His highest amount of carries in a season is 197. Not exactly a lot of carries. So that means that he should be fresh for 2009 much like Michael Turner was for Atlanta in 2008, right? To an extent.
Running back is the NFL's most volatile position. They get hit and tackled more times in one game than any two positions combined. It takes a toll on their bodies and wears them down over the course of a 16 game season.
That having been said, MJD has never proven that he can take the abuse of being the every down back that you expect him to be with the second overall pick. After all, MJD has carried the ball 20 or more occasions just five times in his career with his peak being 25.
Will MJD be able to make it to the 250-300 carry range without getting hurt or seeing a decline in performance?
When I select a running back at the No. 2 spot, I want a back I know will be able to carry the load of being the go-to guy on that offense.
Do I think MJD should still go top five? Absolutely. But I put him behind Matt Forte and Michael Turner.
At the mention of Michael Turner, you're probably thinking "Turner never proved he could carry the load and look how he did!"
Was Turner taken top two? No.
When I pick top three, I want the "sure thing" player. And yes, it is true that the "sure thing" players don't live up to the hype. By sure thing, I mean that there is a great chance that they'll put up the stats you expect them to.
With all of this being said, I just want to clarify that I think Maurice Jones-Drew is a top five selection in fantasy drafts this season. I just don’t think he should be the second back selected.