A Heisman winning running back, Mark Ingram was drafted by the Saints with high hopes and expectations... going into the 2014 season (the last of his rookie contract), Ingram had failed to reach the heights that most had thought he would. However, Ingram seemed to put it together and had himself a nice little 2014 season... but how nice was it?
What We Like: He has good ball security; in 226 rushing attempts in 2014, he fumbled only once (he also fumbled two times after catches, losing only one of the three overall). He ran hard and fought for yards, which seemed to be lacking at times in the past. The field vision he showed in college finally translated over in the pro game. He has solid hands for a running back of his nature.
What We Dislike: While not a liability in the blocking game, he could still stand to improve in that area. Yet again, he missed a few games due to injury, a possibly worrisome theme throughout his young career. He's not a burner, he can get good gains, but lacks home run speed. He doesn't break as many tackles (not for want of effort) as you'd like for a guy his size and can be a bit inconsistent.
Pros: Ingram showed better vision this season and ran w/a purpose. Picked up blocks better and when running btwn tackles he surprised many when you thought he’d get his "Ingram 2(yds)" he’d actually kept pumping those legs to get 5-7 yds extra. Almost like he realized "hey I might NOT get resigned!"
Cons: still could’ve chosen lanes better & could do a better job breaking tackles.
Ingram DEFINITELY did a much better job and has the potential to be a thousand yards runner for consecutive seasons to come. If it wasn’t for our avg OLine he could’ve broken 1K easily. Still waiting for the beast in him to come out and hopefully running behind Unger will give him the "mental" boost he needs to be our beastmode!
Coming off of his best season as an NFL player, can Mark Ingram ride the momentum and continue his growth to become a top-tier runningback in 2015? This Saints fan is cautiously optimistic.