Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

27 Nov 2011

ESPN: Darren Sproles' Value to the Saints

The pocket-sized running back has been what New Orleans drafted Reggie Bush to be. Is he the best receiving back in the NFL?

Posted by: Danny Tuccitto on 27 Nov 2011

4 comments, Last at 01 Dec 2011, 6:32pm by Gangstallectual

Comments

1
by Kal :: Mon, 11/28/2011 - 3:19pm

It's a bit more than disingenuous to say that Sproles is ranked #2 behind Ray Rice and not comment on the actual value that he has compared to what Bush had. Using rankings between seasons is fairly misleading.

2
by BJR :: Mon, 11/28/2011 - 7:15pm

Disclaimer: not an Insider.

Darren Sproles is obviously a good player and has positive value to the Saints, but it isn't as if that offence has only exploded since he arrived. It has been great for at least 4 years now and a plethora of players have put up big numbers in it. If it wasn't Sproles it would be someone else taking advantage of Drew Brees executing Sean Payton's scheme, behind that offensive line.

Bush was a good player for the Saints but had some bad injuries, and never lived up to his ridiculous draft billing.

3
by JonC :: Wed, 11/30/2011 - 7:03am

I'll see BJR's "not an Insider," and raise with "I almost never watch the Saints." :)

In Sproles' last couple of years in SD, his RB carry and receiving production declined; but he became just amazing at blitz pickup. Is he doing the same in NO?

4
by Gangstallectual (not verified) :: Thu, 12/01/2011 - 6:32pm

I watch ALL the Saints games!

Sproles actually is pretty good at blitz pick-up. I don't have the charts and numbers to back me up like this site has, but from just watching the games I've noticed he does a good job of recognizing the blitz and taking the legs out from under the blitzer (linebacker usually).

I'm pleasantly surprised considering his diminutive size.