There is a need for running back depth on the Minnesota Vikings’ roster right now with the departure of Toby Gerhart. There is one free agent that could come in and take over the backup role if it meant a decrease in playing time and money. That player would be Maurice Jones-Drew. Obviously, he would love to find a starting running back job with an NFL team but it appears that more and more teams are going with younger players as backups.
Jones-Drew is going around the league looking for the right fit but why can’t he make that fit in Minnesota? It would take some of the pressure off of Adrian Peterson and on a one-year contract, Jones-Drew could show that he still has something left in the tank. Gerhart was a great compliment to Peterson in the backfield. Jones-Drew could do similar things even if he is smaller and more elusive that Gerhart ever was. The stats for Peterson may go down some but he could be fresher at the end of the season with fewer hits on him.
There are other teams that are going to be going after Jones-Drew and there is no reason why the Vikings can’t jump in on this and potentially bring themselves another running back that could take pressure off whoever the team decides to have at quarterback next season. The stats did go down last season in Jacksonville for Jones-Drew but there are few players that would have been successful there. Jones-Drew needed a change of scenery and that’s why he is still a free agent after leaving Jacksonville.
There are many moves that the Vikings could make that would make the team better next season. The price tag for running backs isn’t very high it appears and there hasn’t been a ton of action with any of the free agent runners out there. Jones-Drew could be brought in as a low-risk option that could really blossom in the right system. Could that system be in Minnesota? It is a long shot but in this day and age, anything is possible. It is something that the Vikings should think about. It could work out well in the end.