The Jacksonville Jaguars have not officially announced that Leonard Fournette will play Sunday. But all signs point toward the feature back’s return in the week 10 match up against the Indianapolis Colts. The Jaguars could use a spark to their offense. Since the team’s Week Five loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, the offense has been out of rhythm. Fournette’s performance could be the key to breaking the Jags four-game losing streak.
Leonard Fournette Could Spark the Jacksonville Jaguars Offense Sunday
Fournette Return Imminent
Fournette was reportedly a full participant in the Jaguars practice on Wednesday. That news coupled with rumors that he would return after the bye week are good signs.
— Daniel Popper (@danielrpopper) November 7, 2018
So far this season, Fournette’s absence from the field has been frustrating to fans and fantasy football owners alike. In fact, he only has 20 attempts for 71 yards along with four receptions this season. The team wants the offense to run through Fournette but without him, it has been struggling. Of course, there are many problems. Among those problems are injuries to the offensive line. Fournette’s return does not equal automatic success for the offense because of the slew of injuries and his lack of play time this season.
What Will Fournette Accomplish?
Fournette hasn’t played enough this season to get a feel for how his sophomore campaign will go. The ship has sailed on the possibility of him being in the running for the NFL’s leading rusher this year. But in Sunday’s game against the Colts, we shouldn’t be worried about such lofty aspirations. No, the goal should be for Fournette to help the offense extend drives and perhaps bust a few big plays. If Fournette does play the entire game, the interesting story will be how heavily the team relies on him. In the London game, we witnessed a situation in which the coaches decided to almost abandon the run in the second half. The team was never behind far enough to abandon the run.
Fournette will need to have good vision and speed in order to have success.
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) August 25, 2018
In the above play, Fournette was able to get a 21-yard touchdown against the Atlanta Falcons in Week Three of the preseason. What was great about this run was he started out going right and then made not one, but two cuts to the left to get past defenders and into the end zone. Fournette had good blocking on this play. But he also displayed good vision. He’ll need to rely on that against the Colts to get things going.
According to ESPN statistics, the Colts defense ranks number 13 against the run so far this season. They are allowing an average of 109.9 yards per game along with six touchdowns. It’s anybody’s guess how Fournette will do in what could potentially be his first full game this season. But if his hamstring is good to go the coaches will need to also have a good game plan set. Offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett is sometimes predictable with his run and pass play calling. If it’s is on point and Fournette is fully healthy, he could put on a show and help rescue the Jaguars offense.
The Last Word
Make no mistake, Leonard Fournette cannot single-handedly save the Jaguars season. But his return to the feature back role could provide a spark to the team’s offense. The team from Duval has been looking to get back on track for a while. That should start this week against the Colts.