Vereen will serve as the team's passing down back, putting a sizable dent in the upside of Rashad Jennings, who averaged 3.2 catches (and 23 receiving yards) in the nine games in which he played significant snaps. With Andre Williams also in the mix for early down work, this situation appears to be devolving into a true committee.
"They said they want me back, for sure," he said. "I was their draft pick, so they said they definitely want me to come back."
The market for free agent running backs has dried up considerably in recent years, but Ingram should be able to garner the $3 million per year (or so) that Toby Gerhart and Rashad Jennings received last year. Ingram would hold RB2-type value if he returns to New Orleans since a healthy Khiry Robinson would likely cap Ingram's workload. Robinson's injuries played a big role in Ingram getting the 19.6 touches per game that he saw in 2014.
Especially catching the football. He worked hard in that department, getting maximum use out of the Jugs machine, but now it’s a mental game.
“I feel like I have a different set of hands,’’ Williams said of his 18 receptions, good for 130 yards after not catching a pass his senior year at Boston College. “I feel like I have a better grasp on how the catching mechanism is supposed to work.’’
Now comes Step 2.
“It’s not really anything physical, it’s mental,’’ Williams said. “You come into the league and it’s like, ‘I was catching passes from college quarterbacks, but now this is Eli Manning, a two-time Super Bowl MVP, who is throwing balls to Odell Beckham who has something crazy going on with his hands. He can catch them with one hand and I couldn’t even begin to think of how to accomplish that. It’s definitely a mental game, just having confidence that you are capable of it. Once you have that then you can really start working on actually catching the ball.’’
The story added that Williams is an intelligent player and is going to pick the brains of veteran running backs like Frank Gore and LeSean McCoy this offseason, along with his continuing dialogue with Giants’ veteran back Rashad Jennings. Any improvement in the pass-catching game could give Williams the edge to a more significant role next year. Jennings is approaching old age in terms of RBs (will be 30 in March) and was banged up in 2014.
Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm
Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle, probable) took limited practice reps all week and is probable for Week 17. Jennings is expected to rejoin the lineup in Week 17. His return kills any daily fantasy appeal for Andre Williams.
Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm
Giants RB Andre Williams (shoulder, questionable) took limited practice reps all week and is questionable for Week 17. Rashad Jennings is probable, so Williams has already lost his Sneaky Start appeal.
Sunday, December 21, 2014, 2:33pm
Andre Williams draws the start and will carry the load at RB.
Friday, December 19, 2014, 6:02pm
Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 16. Jennings has been ruled out. Andre Williams will be a decent start against St. Louis, though he’s only averaging 2.88 YPC against all teams not based in Tennessee. He’s a workload play, not a matchup/production play.
Thursday, December 18, 2014, 6:14pm
Wednesday, December 17, 2014, 5:57pm
Giants running back Rashad Jennings received the first snap of the Giants' opening drive on offense, carrying the ball for three yards, and did not play a single snap after that. Jennings originally hurt his ankle two weeks ago against the Jacksonville Jaguars, and was expected to split carries for the second straight week with backup running back Andre Williams.
Williams replaced Jennings against Washington and figures to get a bulk of the workload going forward if Jennings has to miss more time. At this point, with the season lost, it seems like there's a good chance the Giants will take it easy with Jennings to see more of what they have with the rookie Williams at RB.
Giants Beat: RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) not on injury report, to 'carry more of a full load' in Week 15Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 1:28pm
Tom Coughlin said RB Rashad Jennings, who is not on the injury report, should be able to carry more of a full load this week.
We're not exactly sure what "more of a full load" means, but the fact that Jennings isn't even on the injury report means that he should be able to resume his role as lead back. However, Andre Williams played very well against the Titans, so he should see at least 8-10 carries if the Giants are able to run the ball against Washington.
Friday, December 5, 2014, 6:38pm
Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle, questionable) returned to take limited reps Friday after missing practice earlier in the week and is questionable for Week 14. HC Tom Coughlin wants to see how Jennings responds to the limited practice. Jennings said that he’s not close to 100 percent, so he may be in a timeshare even if he does play. If he can’t go, Andre Williams will be a Sneaky Start against one of the league’s worst rush defenses. The Giants play early on Sunday.
Rookie Andre Williams is expected to start against the Titans if Rashad Jennings can't play. Fellow rookie Orleans Darkwa would also get some snaps. It sure sounded Thursday as if Darkwa (6-0, 215) was part of the plan. The Tulane product was signed off the Miami Dolphins practice squad last month.
"He is working his way into it, he has been here a little while, he is smart, conscientious, we trust him," offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo said. "He has a little different flavor back there for us. Next man up."
"He is a shiftier type guy and we like him … stay tuned. We will leave it at that," McAdoo said.
McAdoo noted that Darkwa does have "a good set of hands." With that not being Williams' strength, there is a good chance Darkwa is utilized in passing situations.
It sounds as if Williams may not have the backfield to himself if Jennings can't play. He split reps with Peyton Hillis when Jennings was out, and now it sounds as if Darkwa might fill the passing down role if Jennings can't play. Williams has not shown good hands this season after not catching a single pass as a senior at Boston College.
Thursday, December 4, 2014, 5:59pm
Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) missed practice again Thursday. The Giants are hopeful that Jennings will be able to practice on Thursday. If he can’t play, Andre Williams will be a Sneaky Start against one of the league’s worst rush defenses.
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