Jaguars running back Travis Etienne‘s rookie season was wiped out by a Lisfranc injury he suffered last August, so he had a long wait to get back into a game.
That wait ended against the Browns on Friday night when Etienne took the field with fellow 2021 first-round pick and former Clemson teammate Trevor Lawrence. It’s a pairing that elicited high hopes when they arrived in Jacksonville and Etienne said after the game that teaming up with Lawrence again was a familiar feeling.
“It felt good to be back there, period. . . . I felt like we were just back in the old days,” Etienne said, via Gene Frenette of the Florida Times-Union.
Etienne ran nine times for 23 yards before leaving the game. Head coach Doug Pederson noted some good and some bad about Etienne’s return to action.
“He stayed disciplined in his path, in his track, and I thought maybe sometimes he got a little antsy and tried to make some moves that probably weren’t there,” Pederson said. “But that just comes with time, as you know, and he hasn’t had the time. These are valuable reps for him. He’s going to get better.”
When Etienne was drafted, former Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer talked a lot about using him as a receiver in addition to his backfield duties. During his press conference, Pederson was asked if that remains the plan. He answered “maybe” while smiling and plenty of people will be waiting to see how a healthy Etienne impacts the Jaguars offense.