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|Crowell signed a three-year, $12 million deal with the Jets after an uninspiring 2017 season with the Browns. The former Alabama State star rushed for a mere 853 yards on 206 carries, with only two touchdowns on 234 total touches.
Crowell burned fantasy owners last season who bought into the hype of the RB building off a 2016 season in which he nearly reached 1000 rushing yards while scoring seven touchdowns. One narrative for Crowell apologists is the argument that the Browns offensive line was terrible last season with the loss of first ballot hall of fame left tackle Joe Thomas. However, that argument holds little water as the Browns offensive line finished as the No.14 overall unit in run blocking according to FootballOutsiders.com.
As the first and second down running back for the Jets, Crowell will run behind an offensive line that ranked second to last according to ProFootballFocus in 2017. Also, the former Brown will share the backfield with second-year back Elijah McGuire and veteran Bilal Powell, both of whom are more skilled as pass catchers than Crowell.
Despite the negative factors working against Crowell, the amount of volume he will likely garner at the start of the season makes him an attractive draft pick as a flex, or very low-end No. 2 running back. There is always touchdown upside for a bruising RB who will likely get goal line work.
|Isaiah Crowell poised to play big role|
RB has impressed with speed, receiving ability
By: Doug Orth | Thu Aug 2, 9:00 pm
|RB Isaiah Crowell is faster than I expected. He's a better receiver than Bowles expected. He'll be a big factor. (ESPN - Rich Cimini)|
FFToday's Take: Crowell never consistently quite got the workload owners expected (or that HC Hue Jackson promised on a regular basis), but he has a grand opportunity to do so in New York. The Jets have seemingly identified Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire as change-of-pace backs, so there's no reason Crowell can't top 200 carries as the likely only "big back" on the roster.
|Reduced role for Bilal Powell?|
Crowell's missed one game in 4 years
By: Mike Krueger | Wed Jul 11, 6:00 pm
|I expect Bilal Powell’s production to drop dramatically this season, not because of any dropoff by him but because of fewer opportunities. Powell benefited in prior years from Ivory and Forte being injury prone. Crowell does not miss time. That is one of the things that appealed to the Jets about him. (New York Post)|
FFToday's Take: Powell say an increase in carries (+47) but a decrease in receptions (-35) last season and the addition of Isaiah Crowell, who has missed only 1 game in four years, and emergence of Elijah McGuire could eat into Powell's workload in 2018. The Jets currently have three viable running backs making all of them marginal fantasy options unless injury occurs.