Welcome back to another edition of the Turn On The Jets 12 Pack. Make sure to check out our store at The Loyalist! and to subscribe to the TOJ podcast (hit us with a rating!) and to hit the best sportsbooks before the 2019 season gets here…
Last week, we did a reel on the best player on the New York Jets defense. This week, we are going to focus on their best player on offense, Le’Veon Bell. Here is a quick look at all the ways he will impact the Jets…
1 – The Split End
It is well known that Bell’s value is substantially increased by his ability to impact the passing game. Yet, he is talented and athletic enough to have that impact go beyond being sure handed on screens, check downs and other commonly targeted routes for running backs. Bell can line up as the outside receiver on a slant/flat route combination and win against outside the numbers coverage, giving a team’s offense tons of personnel flexibility and versatility.
2 – The Slot Receiver
With his size, short area quickness and speed, Bell can easily slide into the slot from the backfield without the offense missing a beat. On the play below, he runs a wheel route from the slot on third and long and similar to his slant route in the first play, wins against outside coverage and scores a touchdown.
3 – The Screen Game
Easy completions are something Sam Darnold did not have much of during his rookie year. At his best, nobody is more effective in the screen game than Bell who has the necessary patience, vision and burst to turn plays like this into a huge gain, while keeping life easy as possible for his quarterback.
4 – The Check Down
Even when Bell is not designated as the primary or secondary target on a passing play, he can make something out of nothing as a check down option. This is a drop or 1 yard gain for many backs in the NFL, not a 10+ yard gain and a first down.
5 – The Short Yardage
It is discussed as frequently as the other parts of his game but Bell has shown an ability to be a highly effective short yardage runner. This isn’t a situation where the Jets need to “go big” on third and short with a different back with more size. They can just roll with Bell and get results like below…
6 – The Vision/Patience
Bell has one of the more distinct running styles in the NFL due to his ability to set blocks up, demonstrate patience and then attack the right seam downhill. The Jets offensive line is not going to be as good as Pittsburgh’s offensive line but Bell has a style that will maximize yards and not leave any on the table.
7 – The Home Run
Outside of Robby Anderson, the Jets have not had a player on offense who could regularly pick up chunks of yards. Every drive, every point has been like pulling teeth for this offense. With Bell in the fold as a runner/receiver, the volume of big plays are naturally going to increase.
8 – The Pass Pro
Bell’s value in the passing game will go beyond his ability to catch the football. He is going to be a key part of protecting Sam Darnold and a big upgrade from Isaiah Crowell and Elijah McGuire as a blocker. With a questionable offensive line, having a reliable back who will not make mental errors on protections is critical.
9 – The X-Factor
The Jets have been short on transformational talent, particularly on offense for most of the this century. Bell will be the best skill position player they have had since the brief flash of Brandon Marshall in 2015 and Curtis Martin in his prime.
10 – The Upgrade
The bulk of last season at running back for the Jets was Isiah Crowell, who outside of an outlier game against Denver, was wildly ineffective and Elijah McGuire who was overmatched as a starter and was a net negative as a runner. By the end of last season, the Jets had one of the worst, if not the worst, running backs group in the NFL. They now have Bell, Ty Montgomery and potentially a healthy Bilal Powell rounding out top three on the depth chart.
11 – The career Stat Line
- 1,229 carries, 5,336 yards, 4.3 YPC
- 397 targets, 312 receptions, 2,660 yards
- 35 rushing touchdowns, 7 receiving touchdowns
12 – The 2017 Stat Line
- 321 carries, 1,291 yards, 4.0 YPC
- 106 targets, 85 receptions, 655 yards
- 9 rushing touchdowns, 2 receiving touchdowns