Over the last two years we've had a front row seat to the Jamaal Charles phenomenon as the Kansas City Chiefs 2008 third round pick has busted out as one of the top running backs in the NFL. He just turned 24 years old a few months ago so he's young and, throughout the last season and a half, has been very productive.
But apparently not everyone agrees that he's a top five running back in the NFL. Pat Kirwan of NFL.com recently grouped the league's running backs into groups ranging from A to I.
I saw the list of A's which included Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson, Jacksonville Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew, Tennessee Titans RB Chris Johnson, Houston Texans RB Arian Foster and Atlanta Falcons RB Michael Turner.
Obviously the name missing from that group is Charles. So I'm wondering: Is there a legitimate reason to keep Charles off the list of top five running backs?
He's very young and doesn't have the wear and tear on his body that the rest of these backs, outside of Foster, do. He hasn't proven (yet) that he can be a true feature back but, in today's NFL, he may not have to.
These other players have done more in the NFL than Charles has to this point but the NFL is all about potential and that's why I think Charles needs to be on this list.
(H/T kirkismerff and KC Nate)