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Melvin Gordon: I have to be a more 'decisive' runner

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First-round rookie Melvin Gordon was outplayed by Danny Woodhead and Branden Oliver in the San Diego Chargers' preseason opener, managing just 11 yards on six carries.

Although the offensive line failed to open wide lanes, Gordon still showed a disturbing penchant for stutter-stepping at the line of scrimmage -- as you can see in the video above -- rather than making one cut and pushing forward.

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The former Wisconsin star acknowledged Tuesday that he has work to do in that area.

"It's just being decisive with my runs," Gordon said, via the San Diego Union-Tribune. "Just being sharp and clean. ... You've got to calm down and keep telling yourself, 'It'll come to you.' I think that's what a lot of players and probably a lot of rookies have to learn. You want to be great so fast. Sometimes, it just doesn't happen that way. It's a process."

Confronting the problem is half the battle, but this hesitation has been ingrained in his running style for several years.

"One of the big questions I had about Gordon coming out of Wisconsin was just his ability in traffic," NFL draft analyst Fran Duffy said on the Russ Tucker Football Podcast this week. "There were times when I thought he would look a little bit tentative when things got cloudy. And I saw a little bit more of that this week against the Dallas Cowboys. That will just be something to watch going forward. I'm not ready to hit the panic button just yet."

NFL Media draft analyst Lance Zierlein had similar concerns leading up to the 2015 NFL Draft, noting that Gordon "must develop more feel between the tackles."

Gordon might have to wait until next week before he can showcase his skills again. The 22-year-old has a minor ankle injury and he might not play against the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday, a source close to the situation told NFL Media's Rand Getlin.

Gordon is a gifted runner oozing big-play potential, but camp reports and his preseason debut strongly suggest he remains an incomplete back with boom-or-bust tendencies.

If he can't consistently move the chains, the Chargers will have to shift a portion of his responsibilities to Oliver, Woodhead and Donald Brown.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast continues with its fantasy extravaganza and takes you behind the scenes in Cleveland with Marc Sessler.

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