I guess I am just angry. I like Julius Jones. I think he's helped this team and he's much above average. But, at this point in his career I don't consider him A WEAPON. He carried the ball 15 times and had 6 receptions. He was targeted in pass plays 9 times. What is up with that?
With all the weapons we have- Bush, Colston, Meachem, Shockey, Moore, Henderson, heck I'll even throw in Dave Thomas and De Shawn Wynn as candidates to gain more than 4 yards per play on the ground and outside of 1 play in the air- about 5 or 6 yards, it just doesn't seem prudent. The game should not have hinged on Julius Jones and it did. Don't get me wrong, Jones had a pretty good game. But, he's not one of our weapons and he wasn't put on the roster to carry our team and he's not really capable of doing so. He's a complimentary back. And we tried to win the game by riding him and it was a stupid move and it didn't work. Would we have expected victory doing the same with Ladelle Betts if Jones was on IR and Betts was playing? Should our playoff hopes revolved around the expectation of the kind of game Jones had? Would next week's opponent worry about the Saints chances based on Jones's abilities? Outside of Drew Brees, this guy touched the ball the most of any offensive player (ok maybe Jon Goodwin) and that just wasn't wise.
To put the ball in his hands 21 times and expect a victory- well that just seemed stupid. Maybe it's just me. But I think if you asked the average fan or any analyst, or any NFL player before the game if a stategy of getting the ball 21 times to Julius Jones in this game was a recipe for this team's victory, I think every one would have said no, don't do it. Try something else- there are other strategies more likely to work.
It was a half- hearted attempt at having a running game and it was a strategy that either wasn't thought out or it was a "wing it" approach. I would have been even more comfortable if they gave Jones 25 carries. At least that was an attempt at a commitment. But 15 rushes to a back that was there as a replacement - it showed a lack of committment and a lack of judgement.