Weekly Falcons Experts Roundtable

5 of 5

Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

What are you expecting out of the running backs next year?

Ben Sullivan: Unfortunately, not very much. Steven Jackson is only getting worse, not better. Older running backs with a ton of carries under their belts fall off the cliff fast. Jacquizz Rodgers still intrigues me, but apparently Mike Smith has no interest in trying to use his skill set in the right way. It all starts with the offensive line, which of course makes me feel even less confident.

Jake Bennett: I expect them to do better, but not by much.  Last years run game was atrocious, and improving upon that won’t be too hard of a task.  Steven Jackson is a good back, but the Falcons need some fresh legs to pound the rock for the future.  Hopefully, Dimitroff drafts someone like Lache Seastrunk or Andre Williams in this year’s draft.

Ben Grazebrook: In 2014 I expect a much better showing from all the Falcons running backs. Looking back at the 2013 season Steven Jackson actually played pretty well, he made a lot of yards considering a lot of times he was getting hit at the line of scrimmage. If the offensive line can open some holes for Jackson in 2014 then good things will happen. Jacquizz Rodgers is a nice skat back who is at his best in the open field when he can make people miss, he is also an extremely sure catcher of the ball and is a nice dump off option for Matt Ryan. One of the few bright spots last season was the sudden emergence e of Antone Smith. Smith showed his electric speed on more than one occasion and as a result he actually received some snaps on offence. In 2014 I hope to see Smith get between 5-10 touches a game, hopefully on plays when Koetter can put his blistering speed to good use. With the retirement of Jason Snelling I do except the Falcons to draft a running back in the draft, hopefully a bigger back who will eventually replace Steven Jackson as the starter.