Saints fans shouldn’t expect much from new RB Lamar Miller
By Kristen Wong
The New Orleans Saints signed running back Lamar Miller to their practice squad on Tuesday to fill in for Tony Jones Jr., who is currently on injured reserve.
Jones was already playing backup to primary ball-carrier Alvin Kamara, but he suffered an ankle injury against the New York Giants. Will Miller serve as a temporary (but necessary) stand-in for Jones, or could he play a much bigger role in the Saints run offense?
Miller has eight years of pro experience but hasn’t played in a game since Week 10 of the 2020 season, when he was featured in five snaps for the Chicago Bears.
His last full season in the NFL was in 2018 with the Houston Texans, when he coincidentally also earned a Pro Bowl after rushing for 973 yards and five touchdowns and catching 25 passes for 163 yards.
Over his first seven seasons, Miller posted 5,864 rushing yards with two 1,000-yard campaigns and was on track for a solid career. He tore his ACL in the 2019 preseason, though, and has been mostly out of action ever since.
New Orleans Saints new signing Lamar Miller adds depth to RB room, nothing more
Miller seems to have found a temporary home in New Orleans, given Jones’ recent injury, but he’s also joined by RBs Ty Montgomery, Devine Ozigbo and special teamer Dwayne Washington.
The expectations for Saints’ backup RBs is dirt low. Kamara already has been playing 83.2 percent of offensive snaps this season, and the Saints still want to incorporate him more into the passing game.
Touches for Miller will be far and few between, but should his name be called, his job is quite simple. Miller is a power running back likely expected to take on the more brutal runs into stacked defensive boxes to keep Kamara healthy for the entirety of the 17-game season.
He adds quick and easy veteran insurance to New Orleans’ RB room, but that’s about it. Jones beat veteran Latavius Murray for the RB2 spot, and he’ll have no problem beating Miller once he returns to the lineup.
Our verdict is: Miller is another Murray-type who’ll give Kamara a lighter workload, but once Jones comes back, he’ll be knocked right back down the depth chart.
Saints fans shouldn’t expect more than a handful of carries from Miller next week against the Seahawks, if he’s even brought up from the practice squad. If he gains good yardage or even nabs a few scores, good for him.