2013 DRAFT GUIDE
Jaguars turn to Owens to handle running workload

By MARK LONG - AP Sports Writer
    2012-12-05 16:37

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - The Jacksonville Jaguars are so banged up at running back that they're turning things over to a special teams ace.

With Maurice Jones-Drew, Jalen Parmele and Rashad Jennings all injured, the Jaguars (2-10) are planning to give former fullback and fourth-team running back Montell Owens the start Sunday against the New York Jets (5-7).

Owens is a two-time Pro Bowler, earning both trips with his special teams play. He has a franchise record 118 tackles on special team. His offensive resume is much less stellar. He ran seven times for 29 yards last week at Buffalo, giving him 21 carries for 112 yards in his seven-year career.

Nonetheless, he is welcoming a bigger role Sunday.

``It's just a chance to showcase yourself in a way that you haven't been accustomed to,'' Owens said Wednesday.

Owens knows his limitations: He's not the fastest guy on the field, doesn't have the best hands, isn't the most skilled blocker. But he has become a mainstay in Jacksonville because of his versatility and durability.

Owens missed just seven games, has played fullback and running back, and lined up all over the field on just about every special teams unit.

``I just enjoy playing the game,'' he said. ``It doesn't matter where I am. I'm not one of those guys that's concerned with where I'm playing or how much I'm playing. Some guys, they've been waiting to play the position that they had in high school or college. I'm just grateful for the opportunity, grateful to be part of this organization.

``Wherever that is, I'm going to put a winning effort out there.''

Jacksonville hasn't gotten many winning efforts from its running game this season. The Jaguars rank last in the NFL in rushing, averaging just 78.8 yards a game and 3.5 yards a carry. Coach Mike Mularkey's team is on pace to become the worst rushing team in franchise history.

The Jags finished with 1,600 yards on the ground in 2001.

They could be end up more than 300 yards short of that this season.

Jones-Drew's foot injury is the biggest problem. MJD injured his left foot on the first play at Oakland on Sept. 21. He stayed in for another play, but then left the game for good. He has been inactive for the last six games, and Mularkey called him ``very questionable'' to play against the Jets.

Jacksonville figured it would be fine with Jennings, a seventh-round draft pick in 2009 who looked good in the offseason and the preseason.

But Jennings was a huge disappointment, failing to find holes and dropping a number of passes thrown his way. Jennings averaged just 2.8 yards a carry in place of Jones-Drew and was benched three weeks ago in favor of Parmele, a journeyman who started the season as the team's primary kickoff returner.

Making his second career start against Tennessee, Parmele suffered a significant groin injury that landed him on injured reserve. That put Jennings back in the starting role, but he sustained a concussion against the Bills and has not been cleared to practice or play.

So now it's Owens' turn.

``It's not the ideal situation, but I think you've got to make an attempt to try to keep it balanced,'' Mularkey said. ``I trust Montell Owens. I think he's done well for the number of times he's had a chance to run the ball. All I heard about Montell, even when I wasn't here, was what kind of special teams player he was. And he is. He is everything I heard and maybe more.

``When he had chances to carry the ball, I thought `Wow, this guy. I knew he was a good football player, but this guy is a decent back.'''

The Jaguars promoted Richard Murphy from the practice squad and signed Jordan Todman off Minnesota's practice squad. But Owens will get most of the work Sunday - his first chance in seven seasons.

``Montell did a great job last week stepping in,'' quarterback Chad Henne said. ``Ran hard, guys open up some holes for him to get some opportunities. But with a full week of practice, he's going to get most of the reps. He's going to get the flow of understanding what the defense is trying to accomplish and what we're trying to do. So it's only going to benefit him.''

---

Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Aldon SmithApr 17 09:32p

The San Francisco 49ers do not plan on releasing LB Aldon Smith this offseason. Smith is expected to be suspended at the beginning of the season, but the length [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 17 08:52p

New York Jets RB Chris Johnson (knee) said he expects to receive medical clearance to resume football activities in the near future. He underwent knee surgery in January but [ More ]

Sebastian VollmerApr 17 08:42p

New England Patriots OG Logan Mankins said OT Sebastian Vollmer (leg) has looked good this offseason while he recovers from the broken leg he suffered during the 2013 season.

Chris SneeApr 17 07:32p

New York Giants OG Chris Snee (hip, elbow) is expected to participate when offseason workouts begin next week even though he is not 100 percent.

Rolando McClainApr 17 06:02p

The Baltimore Ravens reinstated LB Rolando McClain from the reserve/retired list Thursday, April 17.

Russell AllenApr 17 05:02p

The Jacksonville Jaguars released LB Russell Allen, WR Jabin Sambrano and DEs Will Pericak and D'Aundre Reed Thursday, April 17.

Chad JohnsonApr 17 02:22p

Free-agent WR Chad Johnson (Patriots) signed with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League Thursday, April 17.

Brian CushingApr 17 01:32p

Houston Texans LB Brian Cushing (knee) was medically cleared Thursday, April 17.

LaMichael JamesApr 17 10:04a

According to a league source, the San Francisco 49ers have been shopping RB LaMichael James. He finds himself behind RBs Frank Gore, Kendall Hunter and perhaps Marcus Lattimore on [ More ]

Mike BrownApr 16 11:33p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Mike Brown signed his exclusive-rights free agent deal Wednesday, April 16.

Eli ManningApr 16 11:33p

Former New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride said in a radio interview this week that it is 'ludicrous' to say QB Eli Manning is declining. 'There's been no [ More ]

Sidney RiceApr 16 08:03p

The Seattle Seahawks are re-signing WR Sidney Rice to an undisclosed one-year deal Wednesday, April 16, according to sources.

Dwayne BoweApr 16 07:03p

Kansas City Chiefs WR Dwayne Bowe pleaded guilty Wednesday, April 16, after being arrested last November for marijuana possession. He pleaded guilty to lesser charges of littering and defective [ More ]

Arian FosterApr 16 04:53p

The Houston Texans may consider selecting a running back during the middle rounds of the 2014 NFL Draft that could become RB Arian Foster's backup in the future.

Chris JohnsonApr 16 04:43p

The New York Jets signed RB Chris Johnson to a two-year deal worth $8 million, with another $1 million in incentives available.

Terrelle PryorApr 16 04:33p

The Oakland Raiders hope to trade QB Terrelle Pryor before the start of the offseason program Monday, April 21.

Clay MatthewsApr 16 04:13p

Green Bay Packers LB Clay Matthews (thumb) said he likely will be limited during offseason workouts because of his surgically repaired thumb.

Chris JohnsonApr 16 03:53p

The New York Jets will use RBs Chris Johnson and Chris Ivory as a tandem this upcoming season and have them split carries. RB Bilal Powell will be the team's No. 3 running back.

Dan SkutaApr 16 03:33p

San Francisco 49ers LB Dan Skuta (foot) is not expected to need surgery on the foot injury that bothered him during the 2013 season. Skuta met with a foot [ More ]

Gus BradleyApr 16 02:53p

Jacksonville Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell and head coach Gus Bradley watched Georgia QB Aaron Murray participate in his pro day Wednesday, April 16.

Reggie BushApr 16 02:13p

Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said RBs Reggie Bush and Joique Bell likely will receive similar workloads this upcoming season than they did during the 2013 season. Bush [ More ]

Cheta OzougwuApr 16 01:53p

The Chicago Bears have waived DE Cheta Ozougwu.

Mike JamesApr 16 12:53p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Mike James (ankle) said he is happy with the progress he has made in his recovery from an ankle injury and that he has been [ More ]

Carson PalmerApr 16 12:43p

Arizona Cardinals QB Carson Palmer said he would understand if the team selects a quarterback during the 2014 NFL Draft, because he knows the team has to think about [ More ]

Josh FreemanApr 16 12:23p

The New York Giants have agreed to terms with free-agent QB Josh Freeman (Vikings). Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Rolando McClainApr 16 12:13p

Updating previous reports, retired LB Rolando McClain failed his conditioning tests during his workout with the Baltimore Ravens. The test consisted of six timed 150-yard runs.

Golden TateApr 16 10:53a

Detroit Lions WR Golden Tate said he thinks he can be a 'more explosive Lance Moore,' referring to the former New Orleans Saints receiver. Moore caught 65 passes for [ More ]

Matt FlynnApr 16 10:01a

Green Bay Packers QB Matt Flynn is expected to compete with QB Scott Tolzien for the backup quarterback job, but head coach Mike McCarthy anticipates keeping three QBs on [ More ]

Rolando McClainApr 16 12:03a

Retired LB Rolando McClain (Ravens) worked out for the Baltimore Ravens Tuesday, April 15, as he attempts a comeback. The workout wasn't a smooth one in terms of conditioning, [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 16 12:03a

The New York Jets are sticking to their budget/value system. While they want free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans), they will not 'overpay' for him. The depressed running back market [ More ]

Aldon SmithApr 16 12:03a

San Francisco 49ers LB Aldon Smith hasn't only lost the benefit of the doubt with the team, but he probably won't play with the team in 2014, according to [ More ]

Malcom FloydApr 15 11:53p

San Diego Chargers WR Malcom Floyd (neck) continues his rehab from a neck injury, but his status is still uncertain. When the team begins voluntary workouts April 22, Floyd [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group