Falcons running back Michael Turner has either led the NFL or ranked second in rushing attempts in three of his four seasons with Atlanta. He’s been a workhorse and his final stat lines from each year look pretty good. So you might not think the Falcons would even consider taking away some of Turner’s carries.
They’re doing just that.
Citing comments made by coach Mike Smith, the Falcons’ website wrote Wednesday that Atlanta’s running game will be distributed “on a more by-committee basis.”
Smith hinted at the revised running-game approach in February, and it’s no secret that the Falcons want second-year tailback Jacquizz Rodgers more involved. Jason Snelling gives the club a third legitimate option with plus size, smooth hands out of the backfield, and pass protection skills.
In an interview with Mark Bradley of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, new Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter explained that Turner’s workload will be scaled back because he’s worn down late in recent seasons.
“Mike has been a very consistent player since he’s been here. Back-to-back 1,300-yard seasons,” Koetter said. “We need to keep Mike healthy so that he’s as good at the end of the season as he is in the front of the season. The way this roster has been built, we have some other backs that are very capable.”
This might be a backfield to avoid in fantasy football.