While everyone debates whether Justin Forsett deserves a spot on the roster, I’ve moved well beyond that. I look at a kid who is our toughest YAC (yards after contact) runner, among the quickest to the edge, a plus blocker and decent receiver. Mo Morris is the likely starter because of his time in the system and his ability to catch the ball, but I don’t have to deal with pesky things like loyalty.

Morris is a solid contributor, but there is no way anyone can convince me he is an above average starting NFL back. He can’t break tackles, he is a willing but limited blocker, and has a durability issues. He also has been known to put the ball on the turf from time to time.

Answer me this, would you rather have Forsett or Morris on 3rd and G from the 2?

Let’s look at our options:

Julius Jones
He’s the only player on the roster with a 1000 yard season on his resume. Coaches appreciate established players. Unless you have established that you are a good-to-great starter, I don’t much care about a 1000 yard season. Jones has shown he can be a good blocker and decent runner. He has not shown speed to the corners, or ability to break tackles. He also has a history of fumbling. I see literally nothing he adds to the team that Mo Morris doesn’t.
Starter? Over my dead body

Mo Morris
Best receiver of the bunch. Knows the system inside and out. Teammates trust him. Average blocker. Can turn the corner and bust a move now and again. Not a workhorse, and not a guy that will break tackles (despite high effort). I think he is a solid, but not great, backup RB.
Starter? Likely, but would not be my choice.

TJ Duckett
No speed. Pushes people forward more than breaks tackles. Not a receiver. Good blocker. Can be a useful back in a pro set paired with a speedy and dangerous halfback. A poor man’s Leonard Weaver.
Starter? Uh….no (and should not make the roster)

Leonard Weaver
Good straight line runner. Very limited ability to reach the corner. Good-to-great blocker. Can break tackles, but lost some confidence using his stiff-arm (The Baptism) last year due to fumbling problems. Great receiver within the first 15 yards. Could be interesting if paired with Owen Schmidt at FB. Prototypical pro set back that can block, catch and run.
Starter? We’re probably best with him starting at FB

Justin Forsett
Possibly the strongest player at the position, benching over 500 lbs. Speedy, but not really a home run threat. Runs hard each play. Consistently breaks the first tackle. Does not get arm-tackled. Can reach the corner or run inside. Can convert on short yardage downs. Unproven receiver, but has shown fine hands thus far. Above average blocker. Young.
Starter? Yes

Don’t forget that the best running backs in the league tend to establish themselves in the first season. It’s not a position that requires years of learning to have an impact. Forsett gives us the best combination of attributes, and that’s what a starter should do. Specialists should come off the bench for special situations. That’s how they become specialists.

I am not going to cry if Morris starts, but Forsett gives us more than Duckett or Jones without question. And yes, I can say that after watching just two pre-season games.

4 Responses

  1. Duckster

    Well, to answer your question Blawk Hogger I would take Mo Morris all day on 3rd and Goal from the 2 over Forsett. Forsett is a talent and has been a great surprise but let’s not elect him to the pro-bowl just yet. I think the Hawks have a nice stable of RB’s and they will all see some good action this year. The days of teams needing 2 + running backs to split the load are upon us my friend.
    The funny thing is though this is the second year in a row that the Oregon Ducks have had a better backfield than the Sea Chickens…if you don’t believe me it will be on display vs the other pathetic team from Seattle (Huskies) at Autzen stadium a week from tomorrow…And yes the Seahawks should have spent their time and energy in keeping Jonathan Stewart in the NW.

  2. hawkblogger

    Well, you got one thing right, we should have found a way to get Stewart.

    I’m sitting here in Black Butte after a decent round at Big Meadow (87), and saw one of your buddies rolling off the course.

    I also met a girl here who got thrown out of Oregon State for partying to much, and is now enrolled at UO to walk a straighter line. What has the world come to?

    The Ducks may have some quality players, but they should…Phil Knight pays them more than most guys in the NFL.

  3. hawkblogger

    Oh, and that hybrid 2 you gave me is money! With nice merchandise like that, it’s no wonder Knight can buy players for the Ducks.

  4. Duckster

    87, very solid…even if you were playing with Marci from the ladies tee’s! Jealous that you are in black butte. Waiting for results from an MRI but rumor is that our starting QB (costa) could be out for the season…ouch! That hybrid 2 is so nice and easy to hit…I love it.
    Very common to see a girl get tied up with alcohol abuse and depression at OSU. I’m just glad that the U of O was there to give her a second chance and I’m sure she will go on to live a very meaningful life!
    I have my fantasy draft next week…any seahawk sleepeers I should keep my eye on?