Maurice Jones Drew Career Stats
As you can see, overall, Ryan Mathews is ahead of Jones-Drew, but it's close and not unanimous. So when your draft position comes in somewhere between four and nine, what do you do? Well, if you want a running back, (and with the dearth of running backs this season, I do), you might be choosing between MJD and Mathews. Who do you choose?
Last season Maurice Jones-Drew led the NFL in rushing yards and finished as the third-best fantasy running back and even though his knees were a concern going into the season, he played every game and carried the Jaguars on his back.
On the other side of the country, Ryan Mathews finished 11th in rushing yards and seventh in fantasy points for running backs. He missed two games due to injury and split time with Mike Tolbert.
Let's take a look-see at their career numbers so far:
MJD and Ryan Mathews Career Stats
It's almost hard to believe that Maurice Jones-Drew is still only 27 years old, while Ryan Mathews is already 25. Both ages should put them at the prime of their careers. But of course the wear and tear on each, over their careers so far, is quite different. Mathews has touched the ball 452 times compared to Jones-Drew's 1, 762, with a career-high 386 touches last season.
But you can't have a conversation about injury risk between these two without pointing out that Mathews has missed six of his first 32 games as a pro and has had nagging injuries in many games he has played. And he's missing a "T" in his last name, which is always suspect.
There is no easy way to calculate injury risk. If a player is coming of an MCL tear, you have good reason to be wary, but each season is different. After offseason surgery it looked very likely that Jones-Drew would be an injury risk in 2011 and would even see less carries because of that, but then he saw the ball more than any other running back in the league!
On the other hand, Mathews was also an injury risk, but still managed to finish as the seventh-best fantasy back, even though he wasn't getting goal-line carries.
I'm going to call the injury factor a wash. Jones-Drew has a lot of worn tread on his tires and Mathews has injury history. They both have "risk" attached to them, probably more than most of the running backs who were injured last season. We just don't know.
You might also like
2013 Topps Football Complete 30 Card "Legends in the Making" Insert Set Including Adrian Peterson, Aaron Rodgers, Calvin Johnson Jr. Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, and Many More! (Football Cards)
Chase Capsules: Jimmie Johnson — NBCSports.com
Regular Season Recap: The regular season for JJ? Your typical “He hasn't won yet!” through the first 11 races angst, followed by “Were we really just talking about the 48 being winless?” after three wins in the next four races, and capped off with “It ..