NFL Predictions Week 2: Which Top RBs Will Grossly Disappoint?

Cian FaheyFeatured ColumnistSeptember 15, 2011

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 11:  Running back Ray Rice #27 of the Baltimore Ravens celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the season opener at M&T Bank Stadium on September 11, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

On paper, the NFL is a simple thing to predict. It's easy to say that week in and week out Adrian Peterson will dominate his opposition on his way to 200 yards.

Yet for some reason, Peterson doesn't finish each season with 3,200 yards rushing.

There are quite a few things that are not factored into paper, but the most crucial element tends to be consistency. Any player in the NFL can put in a Jim Brown performance one week and follow that up with a Steve Slaton fumbling spectacular the next.

Heading into the second week of the NFL season, here are a few backs that could be setting their fans up for disappointment.


Jamaal Charles

Jamaal Charles averaged 5.6 yards per rushing against the Buffalo Bills in a losing effort last week. The biggest issue was that he only had 10 carries throughout the whole game. He should receive more touches this week, but it will be equally as difficult for the Chiefs' offense as a whole to get going.

With Ndamukong Suh, Stephen Tulloch and Cliff Avril in the front seven, the Lions should be swarming to the football this week. If the Chiefs cannot get the Lions' blitzers to respect the passing game, then Charles will have very little success.

The Lions' defensive line will be out for blood after only notching one sack in Tampa Bay last week through Kyle Vanden Bosch—Stephen Tulloch got the second.


Maurice Jones-Drew

Even before the Jacksonville Jaguars released David Garrard, Maurice Jones-Drew had little help offensively. Jones-Drew is not only the focal point of the offense, he essentially has to carry it completely now.

Garrard was much more of a threat than Luke McCown is despite his solid showing last week. By just being mobile enough to hold the weakside defender for a split second, Garrard offered more support to Jones-Drew than McCown does.

This will be highlighted this week as the team will struggle mightily against the Jets' defense. The possibility of turnovers will be high for the Jets' secondary. If McCown throws them into a hole early, then Jones-Drew won't be able to have those 30-plus carries that he will need to be effective. 


Ray Rice

The Ravens' true test now will come this week. It may sound crazy to say that, but it was easy for the team to get motivated to play against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1. Now that they must focus once more on the Tennessee Titans, the potential for them to overlook the AFC South side is higher than you would expect.

Rice had a huge day against the Steelers, but the Titans aren't a terrible team. Losing to Jacksonville was obviously a major problem. However, Maurice Jones-Drew was relatively kept in check with four yards per carry while the passing offense did nothing noteworthy.

Despite giving up an early 21-yard rush for a touchdown to Jones-Drew, the Titans' defense stiffened and only allowed three field goals after. The Ravens may look to put the ball in Joe Flacco's hands in order to win this one.