Texans Pro Bowl RB Named ‘Ideal Trade Target’ for the Bills

Mark Ingram Texans

Getty Houston Texans RB Mark Ingram during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

For the fourth straight season, the Buffalo Bills have a split backfield. They have no “workhorse” running back, no every-down back and from week-to-week, fantasy football managers and Bills Mafia alike are stuck waiting to see which player will get the carries when the ball is in the red zone.

It’s true, the Bills have a (somewhat) unique situation in their backfield because they have one of the best rushing quarterbacks in the game with Josh Allen, but when he’s not escaping pressure and taking off for chunk gains, it’s anybody’s guess whether it’ll be Devin Singletary or Zack Moss getting the rock.

It just so happens that in each of the last three seasons, the Bills have improved their record under now fourth-year head coach Sean McDermott, so perhaps there’s something to having a mobile signal-caller and a pair of running backs who split the totes, and the success shouldn’t be messed with.

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Still, there are few other NFL teams that currently share the ball between two backs like the Bills do with Singletary and Moss – the former has averaged 10.0 rushing attempts per game over six contests thus far, while the latter has posted 10.8 carries per outing in his five contests.

In 2020, Singletary had the slight edge in rushing attempts per game over the then-rookie by a tally of 9.8 to 8.6, while in 2019, it was Singletary as a rookie who was out-carrying veteran back Frank Gore with 12.6 attempts to 10.4.

In 2018, pre-Singletary, even the recently retired LeSean McCoy had a relatively slim edge over Chris Ivory by an 11.5 to 8.8 count.


Analyst: Mark Ingram an ‘Ideal Trade Target’ for Buffalo

Mark-Ingram2

GettyHouston Texans running back Mark Ingram during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on September 12, 2021.

With the November 2 NFL trade deadline approaching, Bleacher Report’s Brent Sobleski listed one “Ideal Trade Target” for every NFL team.

For the Bills, it was one that could further muddy the Buffalo backfield: 31-year-old running back Mark Ingram.

Technically, the Bills rank sixth in rushing offense, but Allen is the squad’s second-leading rusher with 211 yards. Meanwhile, Devin Singletary and Zack Moss have been serviceable but nothing special. Mark Ingram may be 31 years old and currently averaging 3.3 yards per carry in the Houston Texans’ woeful offense, but he’s a hammer. He’s a tone-setter. The 11-year veteran brings a different attitude when he runs the ball.

The Bleacher Report analyst labels the Bills as Super Bowl contenders while noting that adding a “solid veteran” like Ingram could be the move to put Buffalo over the top.

Ingram isn’t what he used to be with his career-low 3.3 yards per carry and just one touchdown on the season, but he did gain 1,018 rushing yards and scored 10 times on the ground in 2019 with the Baltimore Ravens. Ingram earned his third career Pro Bowl nod in 2019, and that certainly isn’t ancient history.

The former Alabama back would bring loads of playoff experience to the team, plus Ingram is plenty used to sharing a backfield. During his run from 2011 to 2018 with the New Orleans Saints, Ingram split carries with the likes of Darren Sproles, Pierre Thomas and Alvin Kamara, and over the last two seasons with Baltimore, the Hackensack, New Jersey native was playing with Gus Edwards, J.K. Dobbins and of course, Lamar Jackson.


Where Could Ingram Fit Into the Bills Rushing Attack?

Mark-Ingram-Tyrod-Taylor

GettyMark Ingram and Tyrod Taylor of the Houston Texans during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on September 12, 2021.

As the sixth-best rushing team in the league, there may be other areas the Bills should focus on leading up to the trade deadline. If Ingram or another running back were to join the squad though, how would that impact the rotation?

Since Moss’ surprising healthy scratch from week one, his and Singletary’s snaps on offense have been somewhat based on the situation and area of the field. While Singletary has started five games to Moss’ none, it’s been the second-year back primarily getting the carries inside the red zone.

Singletary’s usually been the main guy “between the 20s” and although Moss has done significantly more with his targets (10 receptions, 109 receiving yards, one touchdown), Singletary has the narrow edge in targets and receptions at 18 and 13 respectively.

It’s hard to picture just how Ingram would fit in with the Singletary/Moss combination, but as long as it wouldn’t mean that one of those two aren’t phased out altogether, it would probably result in a near-equal three-way battle for carries, while Moss would retain the edge on passing downs.

The Bills have their bye in week seven and then host the Miami Dolphins at 1:00 p.m. ET on October 31, just two days before the deadline.

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