Anoop Kathrani

CJ Spiller: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

Created on Aug. 17, 2013 1:43 PM EST

There is no doubt that CJ Spiller is one of the most dynamic running backs in the league, but with all of the fantasy hype he’s getting this season, the expectations are unrealistic.

The Good

We know that Spiller is the Buffalo Bills’ 2010 first-round pick, and know he was tied for first out of all running backs in the league in yards per rushing attempt.

Head Coach Doug Marrone has stated “my philosophy has always been, if someone starts off and they're running well, just keep feeding them the ball." Since Marrone won’t have any set limitations on carries, Spiller may have an opportunity to get more rushing attempts than he has in past seasons.

The Bad

If Jackson can stay healthy all season, Spiller’s rush attempts will be more limited than they have been for the past two seasons. Spiller had less rushing attempts for the past two seasons than Arian Foster, Adrian Peterson, Alfred Morris, Doug Martin, and Marshawn Lynch each had last season alone.  Even when Jackson was injured in 2011 and 2012, Spiller has only had two games with more than 20 rushing attempts.

The Ugly

We still don’t understand how Spiller and Jackson will be utilized in Head Coach Doug Marrone’s offense. What we do understand about Marrone is that he is going to run a K-Gun offense and has drafted players to influence the passing game without drafting much needed linemen to improve the running game.

Marrone’s focus will be evolving the passing game in Buffalo. The Bills still don’t know who their week one starter will be this season at quarterback, so you may see a lot more experimenting going on under center. Although there are some question marks, we do know for a fact that the Bills will play a running game with two primary backs and that will soften the anticipated impact that most NFL fans are expecting from CJ Spiller.

The Conclusion

I’m a CJ Spiller fan and think the Bills should just become a run heavy team with the duel-threat they have.  Unfortunately, Doug Marrone has a different offensive scheme and it might place Spiller to play second fiddle if EJ Manuel and Fred Jackson are lighting it up this season.

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