Blewett’s Blitz digs into Tevin Coleman’s game film to find out what his 2021 role could be in the New York Jets running backs room.
The full Jet X member-only video is near the bottom of this page and can also be seen on the Blewett's Blitz homepage (if you're a paid member and logged in).
The New York Jets entered the 2021 offseason with a thin running back room, employing only Ty Johnson, La’Mical Perine and Josh Adams.
Joe Douglas knew he needed depth, veteran experience, and even an offensive piece familiar with new offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur’s system. Many available names quickly signed on with other teams, with the likes of Kenyan Drake and Jamaal Williams leading the way. But that shouldn’t have surprised any Jets fan.
It was pretty obvious that the Jets wouldn’t be eager to sign a big-name back, for two primary reasons. First and foremost, the Shanahan system rarely prioritizes running backs, as it usually turns unknowns into stars. Just look at the San Francisco 49ers’ recent history with undrafted players like Matt Breida and Raheem Mostert.
Secondly, considering the Jets had numerous holes to fill at positions of greater importance, Douglas targeting a high-priced back made little sense.
Nevertheless, the Jets still addressed the position in an under-the-radar-type fashion by signing 28-year-old Tevin Coleman to a very affordable one-year, $1.1 million contract.
Coleman was once considered a pretty effective 1B-type running back who was the Robin to Devonte Freeman’s Batman in Atlanta. The new Jets back has posted 2,937 rushing yards on 693 carries (4.2 average) with 24 touchdowns on the ground. Sprinkle in his 117 receptions for 1224 yards and 12 scores through the air, and his six-year NFL career is nothing to sneeze at.
Coleman signed with the Niners two years ago and was pretty effective in his first year. Unfortunately (perhaps fortunately for the Jets), he also battled injuries last season, playing in just eight games while receiving just 28 carries for only 53 yards and no touchdowns.
Was last year an outlier? Should fans expect him to get back to his 2019 form? What does he offer? What will the veteran’s role be in 2021?
Let’s take a look at some plays showcasing Tevin Coleman’s major strengths and weaknesses. Below, you will also find a full list of strengths and weaknesses, plus an episode of Blewett’s Blitz lasting nearly a full hour.
Highlighted strength: Speed (also route-running and receiving)
The 49ers line up in an 11 personnel gun set and Coleman takes the handoff on an outside zone to the boundary side.
As Coleman comes to the mesh point, he is reading the play-side defensive end who sets a hard edge as he becomes uncovered. Coleman’s eyes go inside and he sees the nose tackle fighting to expand on the center.
Coleman makes a good decision to “bend” the run back, where he now sees his left guard blocking Luke Kuechly. Coleman presses towards Kuechly to hold him outside so he doesn’t fight to get back inside on him.
Once he expands Kuechly, he cuts upfield, taking a good angle to avoid the safety. Coleman showcases his speed in the open field and then dives for the touchdown.
Highlighted weakness: Footwork
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