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Steven Jackson says Rams wanted him to take a reduced role

Jackson AP

Running back Steven Jackson has voided the final year of his contract with the Rams, which would have paid him $7 million.  But as he looks for the first time in his career for a new team, he says it’s not about the money.

Of course, that usually means it is.  In Jackson’s case, however, we’re inclined to believe him.

“I’ve been able to have a successful career, especially dealing with some hard times as an individual,” Jackson told SiriusXM NFL Radio.  “But it’s more at this point of my career [I] want to be a part of something, chasing a Lombardi Trophy.  I want to be a part of something special.  And at this point where I’m at, and where the Rams are right now, we had a very open discussion, very heart-to-heart, about what my role would be going forward from now.  And that’s where the disagreement comes in.  It wasn’t about salary.”

In other words, it was about the money for the Rams.  After all, they allowed Jackson to void the final year of his deal, even though he didn’t reach the triggers necessary to make it go away.  If Jackson hadn’t voided the last year of the deal, chances are the Rams wouldn’t have wanted to pay Jackson $7 million for a reduced role.

“It would be more of a running back by committee kind of agreement [with the Rams] going forward,” Jackson said.  “I embrace the fact that I took in Daryl [Richardson] and Isaiah Pead and taught them a lot and hopefully they’ll go on to not only excel, but be very good athletes and good professionals in this league.  But for where I’m at going into year 10, I’m not ready to step back and just become a primary backup or reduced role guy, to be a part of a running back by committee.  I still have a lot left in my tank.  I still have a lot to offer a team.  We’re not talking about someone that is in year 12 or 13.  But I understand.  I understand the business side of it.  I still have a great relationship with the organization and one day I’ll be going back there.”

Moving forward, Jackson hopes to be another team’s primary option at tailback.

“I’ve opted out of my position of being with the team and being comfortable because I want to continue to still be the bell cow,” Jackson said.  “So that’s how I want teams to look at me.  That’s how I’m going to shop myself and we’ll cross that bridge when we get there if that’s not the feedback that we’re receiving.”

Surely, someone will be giving Jackson a shot at being at the top of the depth chart, even if it’s only for a year or two.

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44 Responses to “Steven Jackson says Rams wanted him to take a reduced role”
  1. 1sportsfan89 says: Mar 7, 2013 7:55 PM

    I would like to see him in Green Bay. But since they still have Rodgers, Matthews, and Raji to lock up, Jackson would have to come pretty cheap. It’s wishful thinking, but probably something that will not happen.

  2. radioactivechimp says: Mar 7, 2013 7:56 PM

    From his comments, the Packers, Falcons, and Giants seem like great fits. I would list the Patriots as well, but they tend to stick with a running back by committee approach.

  3. rickyprosnit says: Mar 7, 2013 7:56 PM

    Would love him in Green Bay

  4. docboss says: Mar 7, 2013 7:58 PM

    Class defines SJ39. I hope he gets the title he desires. Go to Denver or GB. STL will always appreciate your years with the worst team/management/coaching in NFL history. Never a complaint, demand or outburst. Unless you go to NE, I will support whatever team you choose.

  5. beavertonsteve says: Mar 7, 2013 8:00 PM

    Jackson deserves to have a chance to play for a Super Bowl contender. The way things seem to always work in the NFL, he’ll sign with an obvious contender and only manage to win 6 games while the Rams finally turn the corner and make the playoffs without him.

  6. barneysbullet says: Mar 7, 2013 8:01 PM

    Make him a Colt Irsay!!!!!

  7. computojon says: Mar 7, 2013 8:04 PM

    Here’s the opinion of a diehard Ram fan, who has watched Steven Jackson closely throughout his entire career. Somehow Jackson’s upcoming 30th birthday is considered by some to be the toll of a midnight bell, turning him into a pumpkin. It’s not. The guy is still in great shape, and he will continue to be an outstanding featured RB, somewhere, for two more years. I wish it would be with the Rams, but it won’t.

    If your team signs him, mark my words, you’ll be very glad they did.

  8. xpensivewinos says: Mar 7, 2013 8:04 PM

    Packers, Falcons or Colts would be perfect fits.

    Not their style to go out and sign a free agent like this, but I sure can picture him in a Steelers uniform……

  9. robrocker1959 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:11 PM

    Just don’t have him and Mantei Teo on the same team…I guarantee they are both soft in the shoes…

  10. keylimelight says: Mar 7, 2013 8:12 PM

    Green Bay and Detroit are in the market for a RB. Jackson sounds like a decent, level-headed veteran, seems like GB would be a good fit.

  11. lewjr says: Mar 7, 2013 8:14 PM

    Die hard Ram fan threw the good and oh so bad times.
    I wish sj39 noting but the best. he has been a total class act on and off the field even threw the worst of times.
    I hope he catches on and wins that title he deserves.

  12. cav2ya says: Mar 7, 2013 8:15 PM

    I always wished the eagles would have picked him in the draft.. or if he ever became available.. I dont think he can handle all 4 downs anymore.. but id still love to see him in eagles green!

    Between McCoy and jackson in the backfield.. that would be something.. like the days of Thunder and Lightning..

  13. donnymacjack says: Mar 7, 2013 8:19 PM

    Class act. I’ve watched his entire career and even though he’s been a division foe, he’s always been a classy dude. Tip of the hat to SJ and I hope he goes to the AFC. :)

  14. gobuccs1280 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:26 PM

    He really deserves to be on a more relevant football team, before he retires.

  15. tigershark49 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:28 PM

    To give up a guaranteed $7 mill, it aint about the money.

  16. defscottyb says: Mar 7, 2013 8:30 PM

    This guy scares me everytime my Skins have to play the Rams and always has big games against us. Ship him to the afc so we don’t have to deal with him anymore. Or maybe the Skins can pick him up. Speed and power, He’s a beast! Good luck to him, respect due.

  17. InFact says: Mar 7, 2013 8:31 PM

    Green Bay GM Ted Thompson will NOT pay $5-$7 million for Jackson, so there’s zero chance he plays for the Packers next year.

  18. steelerfan9598 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:36 PM

    Steelers. The last ‘washed up’ Ram running back they picked up worked out pretty good.

  19. FlyFromTheInside says: Mar 7, 2013 8:40 PM

    Patriots

  20. glastron1 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:45 PM

    The Packers need to seriously take a look at signing Jackson. It has been a long time since they have had one back that they could rely on game after game. This running back by commitee thing that Ted Thompson seems to want to keep trying is a big failure. They need someone that the defense is going respect to help out Rodgers and open things up more in the passing game . With as many sacks as the Packers allowed this past year, having a reliable back to carry the load would help Rodgers from so many hits and potential season or career ending injury.

  21. boyshole25 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:45 PM

    Class all the way

  22. phinfan527 says: Mar 7, 2013 8:50 PM

    Go to Miami. Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas have proven nothing and Bush is probably gone so go to a team that will be able to pay you what you want and with all that cap money, maybe a playoff spot for a change!! Mike Wallace and Sjax, sweet!!

  23. monkeyhateclean says: Mar 7, 2013 8:56 PM

    I have massive respect for SJ, but he’ll take a “reduced role” on ANY prospective superbowl team that is interested in him.

    Not even the Packers will give him the 25-30 touches a game he was getting when he wasn’t 29 years old.

  24. lambeaufieldwest says: Mar 7, 2013 9:01 PM

    Give Rodgers a running back, please, TT.

  25. Patriot42 says: Mar 7, 2013 9:14 PM

    Every athlete believes he deserves to play for the Lombardi Trophy and they all won’t get the opportunity to do it. Tony Gonzalez decided he should have that shot and bailed out on the Chiefs even though he was a popular player many are glad he didn’t get to play in the Super Bowl.

  26. bradford08 says: Mar 7, 2013 9:16 PM

    Lions have a need for a running back!

  27. reasonableeaglefan says: Mar 7, 2013 9:22 PM

    Sounds like Corey Dillion 2.0 for the Pats

  28. gweetarman says: Mar 7, 2013 9:32 PM

    See you in Denver.

  29. harrisonhits2 says: Mar 7, 2013 9:42 PM

    He’d look awfully good in a Pats uni. Unfortunately I think they need to concentrate more on upgrading the D but you never know……

  30. thetooloftools says: Mar 7, 2013 9:49 PM

    (don’t tell anyone, but he “opted out” because he was going to be cut if he did’t take a pay cut).

  31. tlachaussie says: Mar 7, 2013 10:20 PM

    Packers would be better off grabbing Jake Long before taking a stab at Jackson.

  32. tangysizzl says: Mar 7, 2013 10:24 PM

    I know Packers coach Mike McCarthy talked about getting away from the RB commitee approach this offseason so it could be a pretty good fit.

    I think Steven Jackson has averaged around 22 carries a game throughout his career so its very possible he would see at or around 22 “touches” a game even in the pass happy Packers offense.

    I finally see a renewed focus being put on the run game in GB but I think InFact is right, hard to see Thompson spending big bucks on a soon to be 30 yr old RB with a lot of miles on him.

    I think he would help them tremendously for at least 2 seasons and if he wants to know where to get the money for Jackson, look no further than AJ Hawk and his bloated salary.

    From the Packers perspective; Vote thumbs up if you would trade AJ Hawk for Steven Jackson straight up.

  33. wave222 says: Mar 7, 2013 11:50 PM

    A GIANT!!??

  34. lobzila says: Mar 8, 2013 12:35 AM

    I remember him running over my Chargers in the past couple of years. He would be more than welcome to show Ryan Matthews how to hold onto the ball and would be a welcome addition to the team. However he said he wanted to play for a contender and sadly, I think the Chargers are a few years away from that. Good luck where ever you end up Mr Jackson.

  35. bkh405 says: Mar 8, 2013 1:03 AM

    End of an era. Steve is a bad mama jamma, and I’ll miss him like crazy in horns. Got the honor of seeing him pass the 10K yard mark in person. Good luck Jack!

  36. goldrush94 says: Mar 8, 2013 3:52 AM

    Class act and tremendous talent are dime a dozen. Whichever team gets this guy at any price wins in my book.

  37. competitivecompetitioncompeter says: Mar 8, 2013 5:31 AM

    Steven Jackson is the biggest back I can remember since Christian Okoye.

    Well, there was Brandon Jacobs there for a few minutes, but I qualified him away by saying “that I can remember”.

    Perhaps the biggest mark he left on the league is his legacy of awesome commercials. I don’t know if it was talent, luck, or some combination of the two, but he’s in all three of the NFL Apparel spots that ever made me laugh.

    Seriously, though, if he says he’s got another year or two left in the tank, I believe him. We take it for granted that 30 year old RBs lose a step, but he plays in my division and I haven’t seen anything that couldn’t be explained away as merely bad OL play + struggling QB.

    With him, Reggie Bush, Rashard Mendenhal, and Ahmad Bradshaw free agents, and the draft coming up, you have the right to shoot your GM if your team doesn’t have a feature back this season. Compare to last year, where Ced Benson was the belle of the FA ball, and Denver was dangling

  38. competitivecompetitioncompeter says: Mar 8, 2013 5:32 AM

    Knowshawn Moreno for an arm, a leg, and a mid-round pick.

  39. soobster says: Mar 8, 2013 5:47 AM

    Atlanta bound. The most explosive offense with a mediocre RB last year. If they land SJ they’ll probably be the NFC favorite.

  40. mljohns says: Mar 8, 2013 7:50 AM

    I remember his draft year…Dallas was sitting at 26 and he fell right into their laps and best of all, he wanted to come to the Cowboys! Then the brain trust of JJ and the Tuna went to work, traded back and picked up that All-Pro Julius Jones in the second round. *sigh*

  41. bartlettruss says: Mar 8, 2013 9:01 AM

    He would be a huge difference-maker in Denver. Denver needs to fix their secondary, but the RB position needs fixing even more. With his size we wouldn’t see the pocket collapsing on Manning so often.

  42. bribos says: Mar 8, 2013 10:06 AM

    A dark horse destination for SJax: New Orleans. As an above average blocker he would make Brees’ life easier and Payton would love his work ethic. And…unless yer a true Saints fan I bet ya can’t name an rb on the roster without googling…
    Good luck whereever you go Mr Jackson…but I sure wish you would stay in St Louis! Don’t leave before the miracle!!!

  43. steeelfann says: Mar 8, 2013 10:50 AM

    Steelers Naturally.

  44. bribos says: Mar 9, 2013 12:45 PM

    thetooloftools: you got any solid evidence here? a link or something? i was kinda wondering if there wasn’t something more than just him wanting more carries and the team trying to save a few bucks. it just doesn’t seem like either side is being completely forthcoming …at least from where i sit in the cheap seats.

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