Bruce Arians sees some Darren Sproles in Andre Ellington

AP

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians thinks rookie running back Andre Ellington can do some of the same things in Arizona’s offense that Darren Sproles does in New Orleans.

Arians said on ESPN today that his vision for Ellington is less of a workhorse back and more of a player who can make plays all over the field as a runner and a receiver.

“I hate to compare players, but I think Andre’s role is more like Darren Sproles,” Arians said. “He’s a very unique player. Could he carry the load? Probably, 15-20 carries a game. But you want a lot of his touches to be out in space because he is so dynamic.”

The 5-foot-9, 199-pound Ellington is bigger than Sproles, but like Sproles he’s more of a big-play threat than a guy who consistently chews up yardage. In Sunday’s win over the Falcons, Ellington had 15 carries for 154 yards, including an 80-yard touchdown, a 22-yard run and a 19-yard run. But he also got stuffed several times. That’s why, even though Rashard Mendenhall has been a disappointment so far in Arizona, Arians would like to see Mendenhall carry the load in the running game, and Ellington as a change of pace — the way Sproles is in New Orleans.

11 responses to “Bruce Arians sees some Darren Sproles in Andre Ellington

  1. So let the guy who can’t do jack (Mendenhall) carry the load while the back who’s playing like a starter stays on the back burner? Makes sense

  2. Stepfan Taylor seemed to show at Stanford that he can be that lead back who consistently gains yardage, especially in a running back tandem that includes a dynamic threat like Ellington. Give the guy a shot! He can’t be worse than Mendenhall.

  3. I watch this young man play while at Clemson. He can move, don’t let him get a step on you because you won’t catch him. Compact speedy guys should be used for their talent (flanker or motion out of the backfield) not to get beat up at the line of scrimmage. He will never stay healthy and seems like you have a back like Mendenhall who was never healthy with Pittsburgh. Good Luck with that one…

  4. This is coming from the same guy who doesn’t see the dominance of the Seahawks and Niners and insisted that Levi Brown was an elite tackle.

    I’ll take what he says with a grain of salt. That being said, Ellington is clearly a far more dangerous RB than Mendenhall.

  5. Nobody else on the roster at RB has shown anything on game days except for Ellington. Frankly, I’d like to see Ryan Williams get another shot as Ellington’s complement. Mendenhall has been atrocious.

  6. Besides the Miami game, I haven’t seen Sproles all season. I have no idea why the Saints have completely taken him out of their offense. Maybe it’s just me…

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