I was contemplating doing an individual post for both of our Chiefs here, but I was worried about the FanPost/FanShot police and decided to merge them.
What to think of Jackie Battle... Jamaal got hurt and our once prominent and formidable rushing attack. We all knew that Thomas Jones was passed his prime, no one thought McCluster had what it took to play RB, and preseason, almost everyone had called for Jackie Battle to be released. But out of the bottom of the depth chart came Jackie, running in a rage that no defense was going to stop before 3 or so yards. I first noticed him in the Minnesota game. He converted a few crucial thrid downs late in the game when there appeared to be no holes, but beefore the announcers could say "It'll be a 1-yard gain for Jackie Battle" he would explode out the other end of the pile with a linebacker or two on his back. Then he had 117 yards in the Colts game, which made me think he could be the RB of the future, only for him to have a mediocre season from there on out.
But I can't say that was Battle's fault. Our rotation of RB's was working against him. He'd get 3 carries, and right when he's getting in the groove, Jones or McCluster would go in for him. He could never get into the running "mood" because as soon as he was ready he'd go out. It was counter-productive and just didn't work well.
I believe that Jackie has all the potential to be a great RB in the NFL. He's a big 240 pounds runner who probably is the most physical in the league. And in the shadow of the Nigerian Nightmare, he started out his career at fullback around 265 pounds (however, he could run a 4.4, maybe still can), only to jump around between the two positions. Their running styles are very similar, too. No side-to-side movement whatsoever, just get all that weight up to speed and punish defenders. He's also just everything that a Chiefs fan wants. A linebacker running the ball, who is about as humble as it gets and rarely celebrates or even talks.
Do to his age (28 years old) and perception of his lack of skill, many think he will be a backup next year to a free-agent brusier or maybe even get cut. What do you think about Jackie's future as a Chief?
And our next Chief...
When we picked up Le'Ron, I was psyched out of my mind. I have had a bit of a man-crush on him since his college days at Alabama and it intensified when he led the Ravens in the rushing in 2008, and when he came to KC I just about died. He was a fullback who could run like a halfback, and was a great blocker and receiver. It made me love Pioli when we got him.
Many on AP think he was a disappointment. But I never lost faith in McClain. He makes some sick blocks that really can spring our runners, and for being a leading rusher in 2008 barely got any carries. He has made some great catches, but has also dropped some.
When Romeo became head coach, the offense changed. Le'Ron got a lot more carries. He was crucial in the Green Bay game, both blocking wise and running wise. Late in the game he got one of a few carries that game and bowled over A.J Hawk for a first down that we really needed, and on the next play drove Charles Woodson 15 yards downfield on Jackie Battle's 15 yard run that sealed the game. He had a few 10+ yard runs on the 10 or so carries he got this season, and I think he needs an opportunity to get more carries. If Jackie leaves KC, I want Le'Ron to get a lot more carries opposite Jamaal.
And it's not just his play on the field. He's a guy who Chiefs players and coaches say is a locker room leader and who gets along with everyone. He tweets about his teammates and the team constantly (I mean CONSTANTLY), and really seems like a team first guy. I'd hate to see him go.
People say they can't run in this system because of their styles and our personnel.
But why not? Sure, we were the smallest line in the league this year, but with hopeful draft choice David DeCastro and young center Rodney Hudson, we'll bulk up on the line and maybe finally be able to convert a 3rd and 1 for once! Who the hell wouldn't want to actually score on the GODDAMN GOALLINE FOR ONCE!!!?????