Skip to main content

Around the League

Presented By

Shonn Greene: Is he the New York Jets' answer at RB?

Though Rex Ryan has toned down his bluster considerably in recent months, the coach has been vocal in his wish to restore the New York Jets' "ground and pound" attack of yesteryear.

Basing your offense on the run and ball control is all well and good, but whether the Jets have the personnel to pull it off remains to be seen.

NFL Films tape guru Greg Cosell questions whether running back Shonn Greene is dynamic enough to carry the load.

"I think that he's a little bit of a one-speed runner," Cosell explained recently, via Rotoworld, "and I think that's caught up to him a little bit. I think that he's a strong kid. I think he can run downhill. I think he can move the pile because he's got natural strength. But I don't think there's much burst to him. I think he's pretty much of a one-speed runner. And I think those guys eventually struggle."

Jones: Rex's recommitment

Rex Ryan has shed 90 pounds, but that isn't the only thing different about the Jets coach. Kimberly Jones explains. **More ...**

Greene showed serious promise as a rookie in 2009, exemplified by his game-clinching 53-yard touchdown run against the San Diego Chargers in the divisional playoffs.

But Greene was unable to beat out LaDainian Tomlinson for the starting job in 2010. Despite recording his first 1,000-yard season in 2011, he was missing the explosion that marked his rookie campaign.

"I think there's no way you can be an elite back or a top-level back if you can't make unblocked defenders miss," Cosell went on. "Because in the run game, there's always going to be a defender that can't be blocked. That's what teams do, defensively. You must be able to make unblocked defenders miss. He's not gonna do that."

Ideally, the Jets will have a second runner -- third-year back Joe McKnight, perhaps -- who can turn Greene into a change-of-pace entity. Ultimately, Greene might be a player in the Brandon Jacobs mold -- capable of being effective, but best in limited doses.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content