Unleash the Beast: How To Use NY Giants' Brandon Jacobs To His Full Potential

Hunter Konsens@HunterKonsensCorrespondent IIJanuary 31, 2011

Brandon Jacobs
Brandon JacobsNick Laham/Getty Images

Height: 6'4"

Weight: 270 pounds

40-yard dash: 4.64 seconds

Bench Press: 25 reps at 225 pounds

Vertical: 40 inches

Actually, these are the stats of the widely regarded biggest linebacker in the NFL today, Sean Merriman.

Brandon Jacobs is the same height and only five pounds lighter than "Lights Out." Plus, Jacobs actually ran an impressive 4.56 seconds in the combine, which absolutely dominates Sean Merriman's time at his Pro Day. If Jacobs changed positions today, he would be considered one of the biggest and most athletic linebackers in the NFL. 

Many defensive players fear playing the New York Giants, because it means they have to take on the task of tackling Jacobs. Even Ray Lewis has respect for him, as he called him physical and hard to take down. 

So why has Brandon Jacobs only been running for a mere 4.6 yards per carry since 2008? The answer is Kevin Gilbride.

I know! It may seem like I'm just dogging on the Giant's offensive coordinator, as most G-Men do. But, I actually have a well processed reason on doing so.

Ever since coming into the league, people have been astounded by the size and strength of Brandon Jacobs. Sports Science even did a little segment on Jacobs.

They showed that when Jacobs runs over a tackler at full speed, it generates 5,000 pounds of force. I have never witnessed a back with this much power. 

We have seen many power-backs like Larry Csonka, Jamal Lewis and Jerome Bettis, but nobody even compares to Jacobs. 

However, the rest of the NFL has figured out a trick to "stop" Brandon Jacobs.


This has actually been extremely effective at preventing Jacobs from running over opposing players.

So what can Kevin Gilbride do differently to utilize Jacobs' talents effectively without players receiving clear shots at his knees?


This season Gilbride caught on about this little trick and that is why Jacobs had a resurgence from his 2009 campaign. But, he still runs him way too much to the outside.

The problem with running Jacobs to the outside is that players have open shots at his knees, and since he is not the most elusive player in the NFL, it usually takes hims down. Also, Jacobs likes to "dance" in the backfield. He usually stalls before he hits a hole, and that is what gives the tacklers the time to go after his legs.

Jacobs is a down-field runner, and more runs through the tackles would really benefit his YPC average and his body. It definitely takes a toll on Jacobs when players are constantly going for your knees.

In conclusion, Mr. Gilbride will probably keep running him down the middle, as Jacobs was very successful in his most recent campaign. Running for five and a half yards per carry is quite impressive, and maybe a productive Jacobs will not have the urge to throw any more equipment into the stands.