Saints: Running back depth chart after injury to Tony Jones Jr.
With Tony Jones Jr. landing on IR, the New Orleans Saints are now looking at a new running back depth chart. It doesn’t affect the top, as Alvin Kamara is fortunately good to go, but some new faces have joined the team this week.
As of now, the active roster consists of Kamara, Dwayne Washington, and newly-signed Devine Ozigbo along with fullback Alex Armah.
We all know Kamara and what he can do but what about the rest of the Saints running backs?
Washington has been with the team since 2018 and currently looks to fill the backup role with Jones on the shelf. Washington’s best season in NOLA was in 2018 when he had 27 carries for 154 yards. He’s yet to score a touchdown while donning a Saints uniform.
Ozigbo was just claimed off the Jaguars’ practice squad earlier this week and probably won’t get much attention in the offense unless something happens to Kamara and NOLA doesn’t bring in another option.
Ozigbo, who played college ball at Nebraska, spent time with New Orleans in 2019 before getting picked up by Jacksonville and playing there for the rest of 2019 and all of 2020. He had 10 carries for 24 yards and 12 receptions for 65 yards during his time in Jacksonville.
Now he’s back with the team that initially scooped him up following the 2019 NFL Draft and while it’ll be a small role, he’s a depth piece.
The practice squad consists of Ryquell Armstead, who NOLA also added this week. He too played for the Jaguars and had a rough go with COVID-19 last year that eliminated him being a factor in that offense during the 2020 season. Armstead had 35 carries for 109 yards during his rookie season in 2019.
Adam Prentice is also on the practice squad, giving the Saints some depth at fullback. They initially waived Armah during roster cuts while claiming Prentice off of waivers but Armah has gotten all of the fullback work in the offense to this point. It’s nice to see some teams still utilizing fullbacks.
Getting back to the depth chart — With Jones out, the Saints will continue to lean on Kamara heavily while occasionally getting some reps in for Washington. Ozigbo is mostly there in case of an emergency but third-string running backs know that drill all too well.
This is so sad for Jones, who worked incredibly hard to make the roster in the first place. Hopefully he heals up quickly and can help the offense when he returns.