Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette is finally back after dominant performance against the Broncos
Prior to the beginning of Week 4, everyone was longing to see the once-dominant version of Leonard Fournette. The Jacksonville Jaguars running back showed that he is finally back after a massive performance against the Denver Broncos.
In the first three weeks of the season, Fournette carried it 43 times for just 179 yards. Even dating back to last season, Fournette averaged nearly 17 attempts for 55 yards per game in 2018.
Furthermore, the bruising rusher had gone 13 straight games without exceeding 100 yards rushing—until Week 4. On Sunday, Fournette showed that he can still be a viable running back in the NFL.
Coming into the game against the Broncos, many believed that Fournette would continue his struggles on the road in Denver. Instead, the former LSU product gashed Vic Fangio’s defense for 225 yards on 29 carries.
Before Fournette arrived in Denver in Week 4, the Broncos defense had yet to allow a 100-yard rusher. Ultimately, their first 100-yard rusher of the season came with Fournette rushing for a career-high on Sunday.
Yes, Fournette didn’t find the end zone for the fourth straight game but he was a deciding factor in Jacksonville winning the game. After going through a long lull, the physical running back found his groove on Sunday.
The one play that showcased that Fournette is back to his former self came near the end of the third quarter. The third-year running back took a handoff to the left and weaved his way for the second-longest run of his career.
Over the past couple of seasons, Fournette has gotten used to playing against seven or eight-man fronts. When Blake Bortles was under center, the former No. 4 pick was incapable of having any running room.
Now, with Gardner Minshew, Fournette seemingly has more breathing room when he’s given the ball. Another positive sign for the ball-carrier is that he is being utilized as a receiving threat more often this season.
Altogether, in Fournette’s first two seasons in the NFL, the Jaguars former first-round pick combined for 58 receptions and 487 yards in the passing game. Just four games into this season, Fournette already has 16 receptions for 114 yards.
With no one taking touches from Fournette, we may be seeing the somewhat reincarnation of the Jaguars running back.
We will see if Fournette can continue his momentum against the Carolina Panthers in Week 5.