Remember Jahvid Best? Sure you do. But if you need help remembering, then keep reading.
Like I wrote in my Week Six Running Back Rankings, this has been one of the worst years when it comes to having a full roster of running backs you can count on on a weekly basis. With guys like Chris Johnson making us owners look like idiots and Ryan Mathews getting pushed up and down on the depth chart, we need all the help we can get in order to improve our team. Any little tidbit helps. That’s why I’m bringing up Jahvid Best’s name. I know he’s been out all year so far, but now might be the time to look his way in desperate times.
Best has been great at times and he’s been knocked around like a rag doll. Dealing with multiple concussions in his career, Best is pretty close to having to call it quits. But there could be some good news for those of us in need of running back depth. Best is one week away from the possibility of being taken off the PUP list. And while he will have to be medically cleared just to practice, head coach Jim Schwartz says Best “in the best shape he’s been in since he was a rookie.” That type of news is always encouraging.
Current starter Mikel Leshoure has had one good game against a Titans Defense that hasn’t been able to stop anyone on the ground. And while he did garner 100 yards in his debut, it took him 26 tries (3.8 ypc average). The week after that, Leshoure couldn’t get anything going against the Vikings, rushing 13 times for 26 yards and catching 4 passes.
Now don’t think I’m telling you Leshoure owners to dump him. Far from it. I am sure that the Lions will use Leshoure as much as possible. But with guys like Kevin Smith phased out of the offense and Joique Bell in as backup, the team desperately needs more help should Leshoure either get injured or start to lose steam. If Jahvid Best is medically cleared, he could wind up with PPR value by the time you reach your playoffs.
On the other hand, Best could be shut down for the year. That is a real possibility if doctors don’t think he’s fit to play. But for us owners who are hanging onto guys like Daniel Thomas, Felix Jones and Shonn Greene, picking Best up now and stashing him away could turn into a big payoff down the road.