The New York Jets backfield is the healthiest it has been in a long time.
So much so that the Football Outsiders said it is the “strongest” positional unit on the team and has a chance to be “the best backfield” in the NFL in 2022.
However, you can never be satisfied and some fans were pining for a former fan favorite to come out of retirement.
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Is There a Chance?
Back on April 26 longtime Jets running back Bilal Powell signed a one-day contract to retire after a nine-year career.
However, he asked his fans on Twitter for some “bold predictions” on Friday July 22 for this upcoming season and Powell got some unexpected responses:
One fan named Tim predicted Powell would come back to the Jets and “rush for 800 yards and four touchdowns.” The former Louisville product said that prediction was “a little too bold… I’m happily retired” with multiple laughing crying sideways emojis.
Another fan got even crazier suggesting that the 33-year-old would not only come out of retirement but he would lead the NFL in yards and get the Jets to the playoffs ending their 11-year drought.
Once again Powell said that was “too bold” with some more laughing emojis.
Although a bold prediction that he did like in the responses was the Jets making the playoffs as a wildcard team this year. It would be the first time since the 2010 season that Gang Green made an appearance in the postseason.
Powell was a really good player that became a fan favorite for his grit, toughness, and affinity for making plays.
Some of those same traits can be found in the 2022 version of the Jets backfield.
Hall is among the Vegas favorites for the Offensive Rookie of the Year award. He was also the highest drafted running back by the Jets this century which tells you everything you need to know about how the team feels about him.
The Football Outsiders crew explained why that combination could be lethal next season:
“Last season, Jets fans had plenty of reason for optimism with rookie Michael Carter at the top of their running back depth chart. He led backs with 150 or more touches with a 24% broken tackle rate, according to Sports Info Solution charting. And at just 5-foot-8, his 201 pounds plays bigger than its listing. His 30.6 body mass index is in a range typical among lead backs in the NFL. But now that the team drafted Breece Hall, it should be in the mix for the best backfield in football.”
They even felt bold enough to compare Hall and Indianapolis Colts superstar Jonathan Taylor:
“And unlike Taylor when he entered the league, Hall already demonstrated his pass-catching versatility with 36 catches and 302 yards as a junior for Iowa State. Taylor caught just 42 passes in three seasons at Wisconsin.”
Taylor has quickly established himself in the top-three running backs in the NFL if he isn’t already the top dog. Now Hall has massive expectations heading into 2022 and we’ll see if he can live up to them.
The Jets in a perfect world would love to pound the rock and establish an identity this season. That could be a foundation that the rest of the team can build and feed off of.