Fournette v. Ronald Jones (Rewatch Week 1)
Because it is so critical going into Week 2, and with many FFM’ers holding Fournette, and with me sounding an alarm on Fournette and praising Jones in my Three Things/Five Players Week 1 recap Monday midday…I wanted to go watch these two (especially Fournette) in isolated tape after the fact to see if my mind was deceiving me on a live watch or whatever could be found. So, I just went and watched ONLY the carries/catches of Fournette and Jones.
After doing so, here is my scouting take:
Fournette = Not as bad as I first thought. The Saints defense was a part of the story…Fournette’s first official carry was -4 yards, and on the play he barely got started before he was blown up. Prior to that -4 yarder, Fournette’s real first touch was a solid six yard run, but called back due to penalty. On that run, he looked speedy, strong/normal.
Also, on his first play (called back)…Brady had to stop (pre-snap) and get him straight on the play with talk in the backfield. Some of Fournette’s issues might have been some confusion on the plays still…maybe. But mostly I would summarize my rewatch as – Fournette looks fine/normal running straight. He looks less than fine going east-west/trying to go side-to-side. He slows down a lot going outside…either hesitant, not a 100%, or carrying extra weight (as guesses). Fournette is best as a between the guards/tackles straight ahead runner right now.
On the live watch, I thought Fournette looked terrible/concerning…but that view was based off of limited touches and thus I wanted to rewatch before jumping off a cliff. It’s not as bad as I feared.
Ron Jones = Looked as great as I remembered. If all I had to go by was the Week 1 tape, I would take Jones over Fournette for my NFL team. Jones is not going anywhere in this battle. They may end up a 1-2 power punch, but my thoughts of Fournette pushed as the main man in 2-3 weeks – I didn’t see that from watching Week 1. Fournette may be fine, but Jones looks better…faster, much more ‘bouncy’ agile, much more ‘high energy’, and he caught the ball really well.
Jones is not drying up and going away or falling to a secondary role here. This looks like 1a-1b at best, and one of them can get sprung if the other gets hurt. If you want in on them for FF, I’d hold both for protection/see how it goes…or I buy Jones real cheap today (with people wanting to write him off because he didn’t score 10 TDs and TB lost). I’d not try to go buy Fournette cheap because people will be holding, hoping for an eventual ascension/crowning (that’s not coming easy…or at all, I don’t believe).
The Roto-blurbs are assuming Fournette ascends now, after a loss…so, there will be hope for Fournette by the masses right now. Possibly a good time to trade high if you can get it.
Highest priority of all for me here: Alerting you that there is a worry here for Fournette as ‘main guy’. If you are waiting on Fournette to get sprung on your FF roster and provide an RB1 hopeful…don’t get too comfortable or hopeful, there is work to do if you think Leonard is saving your backfield soon. Only a RoJo injury would do that.
Where I own Fournette, I’m trying to see if I can buy Jones cheap (using the TB loss, the lowish RoJo FF numbers Wk1, and the general ‘Fournette is better than Jones’ mood to do so).