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Saints 2019 Year in Review: Latavius Murray

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A look at Murray’s first year in New Orleans.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Jacksonville Jaguars Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Latavius Murray signed a four-year $14.4 million contract this past offseason to help fill the role of departing fan favorite Mark Ingram. While no one expected Murray to replace Ingram, his inconsistent usage left many fans frustrated and wanting to see more.

The numbers:

  • Approximate Value: 7
  • Pro Football Focus Rank: 18 out of 58
  • Overall Grade: 74.2
  • Rushing Grade: 73.9
  • Total Offensive Snaps: 449

It seemed to take awhile for Murray to find his footing in the running game as he only averaged 5.3 carries per game through the first six games. It wasn’t until week 7 when Alvin Kamara was forced to miss the game against the Chicago Bears that we finally saw the former Minnesota Viking be a focal point of the offense. Against the stout Bears’ defense, Murray rushed 27 times for 119 yards and two touchdowns while adding five receptions for 31 yards.

Kamara would miss the next game as well against the Arizona Cardinals and once again Murray had an impressive day rushing for 102 yards on 21 rushes and scoring one touchdown. This was also the first game back for Drew Brees who targeted the running back 12 times, completing 9 passes for 55 yards and one touchdown which would be Murray’s first receiving score of his career.

Once Kamara returned however, Murray was back to his light duty charting only one game with double digit carries (10 against Tampa Bay) until week 17 in a blowout win over the Carolina Panthers. .

For the season Murray’s stats were:

L MURRAY 2019 STATS

Year Age G Rush Yds TD Y/A Y/G Tgt Rec Yds Y/R TD Ctch% Y/Tgt
Year Age G Rush Yds TD Y/A Y/G Tgt Rec Yds Y/R TD Ctch% Y/Tgt
2019 29 16 146 637 5 4.4 39.8 43 34 235 6.9 1 79.10% 5.5

The season may have seemed a disappointment when compared to the numbers the Saints’ running backs have put up in previous years, yet the offense was still able to finish in the top ten and average 108.6 rushing yards per game (16th in the league). Murray proved to be a back that can be integral to a gameplan like in weeks 7 and 8, even if he didn’t get the touches many fans believed he should have throughout the season.