Put some respect on Phillip Lindsay's name!
So says former Pro Bowl running back Maurice Jones-Drew, who was inspired enough by Lindsay's performance against the Chargers to feature the third-year back in his weekly RB-focused column for NFL.com.
"Lindsay's been a hugely impactful playmaker since he entered the NFL in 2018, but it seems like people often don't put a lot of weight behind his accomplishments, in part because he went undrafted," Jones-Drew writes. "In fact, I believe he's the most disrespected running back in the NFL today."
Though Lindsay (and Melvin Gordon III, too) received few carries against the Chargers since the Broncos fell behind quickly, he made the most of those that he received. His 55-yard sprint for a touchdown sparked Denver's momentous comeback.
"[H]e's extremely explosive and has good vision," Jones-Drew writes. "He's able to find creases and take it the distance. People seem to expect Lindsay to flash here and there before fading with the seasons. He's done anything but in his two-plus years in the league, posting back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing performances and a career average of 5.1 yards per carry."
With his yards-per-carry average and his status as unheralded player entering the NFL, Jones-Drew says Lindsay is in very rare company so far in his career.
"Lindsay's in an exclusive club, joining Aaron Jones, Jamaal Charles and Bo Jackson as the only players since 1970 who were either undrafted or selected outside the first two rounds before going on to record 2,000-plus rush yards and an average of 5.0-plus yards per carry in their first three seasons," Jones-Drew writes.
Lindsay may not have made Jones-Drew's ranking of the top 10 running backs of the 2020 season thus far, but it seems like just a matter of time, based on these thoughts.
Below the Fold
Much like the Broncos, the Falcons have recovered from an early skid to start the season and are 2-1 in their last three games. They cannot be overlooked, of course, in the Broncos' chase to reach .500 and rejoin the wild-card race. In The Denver Post's matchup preview, Kyle Newman says that one key factor will be containing running back Todd Gurley. "The Falcons running back is fourth in the NFL with 531 rushing yards, although he only has one 100-yard game so far," Newman writes. "The Broncos need to keep it that way to limit the Falcons from becoming two-dimensional, especially considering the secondary already has its hands full with a potent Atlanta passing attack that ranks second with 292.4 passing yards per game."
Could the Broncos' offense be heading for bigger things after its breakout performance vs. the Chargers? Denver7's Troy Renck tries to answer that question after we heard from Drew Lock and Offensive Coordinator Pat Shurmur on Thursday. "For Lock to develop, he must let down his hair and go to the air," Renck writes.