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Jimmy Morris
Titans Blogger

Jimmy Morris

The chief editor and writer of the SB Nation Tennessee Titans' blog, Music City Miracles, since 2006.

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While I don't believe that the feature back is completely dead, it does seem these days that most teams have started to employ the two back system. The reason more teams are heading this way is because of the beating that running backs take in the NFL. All of the players are bigger, faster and stronger than they were even 5 years ago, and putting all of the carries on one guy severely shortens his NFL lifespan.

You do not have to look an further than the Tennessee Titans to see the prime example of this. Eddie George was the Oilers/Titans feature back from 1996-2003. In that time he never had less than 312 carries in a season. His biggest workload came in 2000 when he carried the ball an astonishing 403 times. You could see the toll that took on his body because in 2001, the season when he carried the ball 312 times, he was battling injuries all season and only averaged 3.0 yards per carry. He would not average more than 3.4 yards per carry for the remaining three years of his career when his previous low had been 3.7 per carry.

The Titans have learned their lesson. Last season they were careful with the number of carries given to rookie sensation Chris Johnson. He ended the season wit 251, which is still a high number, but they gave a lot of the carries in "junk time" to LenDale White.

Most teams have seen the damage the high carries does to backs. They want to get the most out of the guys they have on their team for the longest amount of time possible, and history has shown with running backs the best way to do that is through the two back system.

By Jimmy Morris  |  August 17, 2009; 11:16 AM ET  | Category:  Coaching , Concussions , Medical , Michael Turner , Running Backs , Tennessee Titans Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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