The Game According to MJD

One of the reasons the Jaguars felt they could release veteran running back Fred Taylor and turn the starting job over to Maurice Jones-Drew was the versatility of the younger back. Find out what MJD thinks...

In 2008, Jones-Drew caught 62 passes, the most by a Jaguars running back in team history and second-most by a NFL running back last year. After just three NFL seasons, he's rushed for 2,533 yards, the third-highest mark in team history with his 941 rushing yards as a rookie in 2006 setting a franchise record.

He's also proven to be a valuable kickoff returner, currently ranked first in team history in career kickoff returns (75), career kickoff return yards (1,952), kickoff return scores (2) and highest average per kickoff return (26.0). He owns four of the franchise's top eight marks for all-purpose yards, including the team record of 303 yards against Indianapolis in his rookie season.

Jones was one of six running backs selected in the first two rounds of the 2006 draft, a group that included Reggie Bush, Laurence Maroney, Joseph Addai and LenDale White among others. Jones-Drew leads the group in several statistical categories including 40 total touchdowns, 3,941 yards from scrimmage and 6,003 total yards.

Maurice Jones-Drew (Getty Images)
With all that versatility, the next question for Jones-Drew is whether he'd like to be featured in the NFL's latest offensive trend, the Wildcat offense. The Jaguars actually practiced the formation in their OTAs. But that offensive look isn't high on Jones-Drew's list of favorite plays.

"I'm old-fashioned. Even though I'm 24 (years old), I like the old I-formation -- two wide receivers, two running backs, tight end type deal," the 5-7, 210-pound former UCLA running back said. "I don't like to trick people. I like to go out there and beat them handily. That's the game of football.

"It's not about tricking. It's about going out there and whipping the man in front of you."

Jones-Drew is more of a proponent of running backs making more catches coming out of the backfield. He's a fan of Eagles' running back Brian Westbrook. The Eagles' featured back has gained 1,872 yards on 221 catches in the past three seasons, NFL bests in both categories. Jones-Drew's 1,408 yards (on 148 catches) ranks No. 5 among running backs during that time, though his 9.5 yards-per-catch average is a full yard ahead of Westbrook and nearly two yards better than the three runners directly in front of him on the list of top pass-catching receivers.

Jones-Drew credits Westbrook for changing the scope of the position.

"He (Westbrook) kind of revolutionized the game where it's not always about carries anymore, it's about touches. And as a running back, it's not the smartest thing to give you 25 carries up the middle and pound your body when they can give you the 25 touches and that can be receiving, returning, or carrying the ball, all types of different ways.

"So I kind of think that might be something we might try to do, but I'm just here and whatever the coaches ask of me, that's what I'm going to do."

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