Ugly Projection For Josh Jacobs

April 19th, 2019

Gloomy forecast.

Talk to most NFL draft observers and they will suggest Josh Jacobs of Alabama is likely the lone running back to be drafted next week in the first round.

The crowd at believes Jacobs very likely will be a big-time bust.

Nathan Forster of uses a formula to determine this about Jacobs that has been around a while. It is based on a whole bunch of stuff that is detailed here.

Per this formula referred to as “BackCAST,” Jacobs is graded as the one of the lowest ranked running backs since the inception of FootballOutsiders and their use of this formula. Forster then lists some of the lowest graded running backs using BackCAST and Jacobs is lumped into a group that includes Ameer Abdullah, Kenny Irons and Chris Perry.

In other words, Forster writes, stay far away from Jacobs.

To top it off, Jacobs appears to be rather slow. Jacobs did not run at the combine, but reports from his pro day suggest that he, at the fastest, ran the 40-yard dash in 4.60 seconds. That is not a time that will doom a running back to failure, but slow college running backs who succeed at the NFL level typically have more college production than Jacobs. Unfortunately for Jacobs, his BackCAST numbers are simply poor overall.

In his press conference yesterday, former NFL scout and current NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah believes Jacobs, at the earliest, will be drafted at No. 20 but could still be on the board as the first round nears an end.

Jeremiah noted that the Bucs have a need at running back. Would Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht be hungry enough to trade back into the first round if Jacobs were still around at No. 27?

Per the Football Outsiders crowd, that would be a big-time gamble.

34 Responses to “Ugly Projection For Josh Jacobs”

  1. Bruceletdadogsloose Says:

    Why would our dumb gm do that when we can get a highly productive guy with good feet , vision , burst , pass catching abilities , power , home run speed , and a overall love for the game In Henderson out of mephis in the 3rd round ! He will be our version of c Mac and kamara ! Book it !

  2. Joe Says:

    Henderson out of mephis

    Oddly enough, that same BackCAST has Henderson as the highest-rated back in the draft.

  3. Rod Munch Says:

    Said last year don’t waste a pick on a RB, Barber is fine and you have Chris Conte starting at safety.

    The Bucs finished with the #3 offense in the NFL, and the #31 defense.

    Anywho if the Bucs do the same thing again this year, ignore their defensive backfield when it’s actually worse since Grimes isn’t here, then look forward to another 30+ defensive finish.

  4. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    “Why would our dumb gm do that when we can get a highly productive guy with good feet , vision , burst , pass catching abilities , power , home run speed , and a overall love for the game ”

    You just asked and answered your own question there. What a Jason Licht thing this would be to do.

    Henderson, Sanders, and Montgomery would be my top 3 backs to look for in the third. I would also take a late round flier on Bryce Love or Rodney Anderson. No way in hell I’d take a RB in the first 2 rounds with all of our needs elsewhere.

  5. Alaskan Abdominal Snowman Says:

    Rod we may have the number 3 in yards and number one in garbage time yards but where are the points? The lack of a run game in the redzone is why we struggle in that area.
    I will say it again, the longest rush TD by a RB is 5 yards over the last two years! TWO YEARS, 5 YARDS!! Inexcusable and embarrassing.

  6. Tom S. Says:

    I have never been less interested in a Bucs draft in my life with this incompetent GM who should have been fired last year still throwing darts at prospects without the slightest clue on how to build a roster or prioritize a position of need.

    Literally anyone can look at a few NFL Draft websites and can pull names out of a hat with marginal success. I would be willing to bet more often than not the random top prospects that JoeBucsFan would’ve pulled would have had more success than the RoJo, Aguayo, Spence, VHIII, ASJ, Charles Sim’s of the world that this Doofus of a GM brought this franchise over 5 years at the helm. A Doofus that managed to do even worse in free agency! Hey Glazers, give that guy an extension. Licht clearly knows, by his history of averaging 5-11 records over 5 years, what he’s doing.

  7. macabee Says:

    I don’t know what the Bucs will do in the draft about RB. I know what they say about the RBs they have now if they are to be believed. I do know this if it has anything to do with their interest in the RB position. The Bucs had 26 pre-draft visits. Only one was a RB – Darwin Thompson/Utah State. Darwin is projected as a 7th round RB. They did have a visit with Jalen Hurd who used to be a RB at Tennessee, but more recently a WR at Baylor. You decide!

  8. Not there yet Says:

    There are too many running backs in this draft they could pick to be asking that question in a draft heavy on defensive lineman which is what they need the most

  9. macabee Says:

    FWIW, according to WalterFootball, the Bucs attended RB Darrell Henderson’s pro day and had an on-campus workout of RB Miles Sanders/Penn State.

  10. Defense Rules Says:

    Can’t begin to envision even Jason Licht drafting a RB before the 3rd round (at the very earliest) this year, regardless of who’s available. 4th or 5th round is much more likely IMO, unless a ‘Got-to-Have’ is there in the 3rd round.

    Bucs must shore up this defense or we’ll be looking at yet another 5-11 season … at best. The moves we’ve made so far in FA have been uninspiring … at best. We MUST address our NEEDS at MLB & DT BEFORE we even think about drafting anyone for our offense. If we don’t, we’ll get gouged every single game in the middle of our defense.

    After that, still can’t see us drafting a RB BEFORE we fix our RG position. Could risk picking up a RG in the 2nd round IF we felt that either the DT or the MLB we wanted (depending on which was taken first) would still be there in the 3rd round. In any event, RB ends up being our 4th priority IMO. Once GMC’s $13 mil is ‘retrieved’ no reason the Bucs couldn’t afford to ‘buy’ quality starting-caliber veterans to fill our RB AND CB holes.

  11. BigHog Says:

    Since RoJo is so impressive this off/season …Why not take Mr. Anderson with our 4th round pick!

  12. Buc believer Says:

    If he sucks that bad he should be high on Jason Gumps draft board! Look for Gump to be finding ways to draft him.

  13. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    After we have selected our RG…..(hopefully in round 2)…..I don’t care who we pick or if we pick a RB….

  14. Bucsfanman Says:

    The focus early should be on the trenches. It has been a problem for years. We cannot continue to ignore FACTS. It will NOT matter who totes the rock if we don’t address the o-line.
    D-line/O-line. In THAT order!

  15. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Tom S. Says
    “Literally anyone can look at a few NFL Draft websites and can pull names out of a hat with marginal success.” The

    Clearly, you don’t know your NFL draft history.

    Traditionally, teams are lucky to hit on 2 picks. Seems wrong, but that’s how it plays out.

    Occasionally, some teams hit on 3 picks.

    The best GMs hit on 4 picks, even if they occasionally have one bad draft.

    All of that said, Jason Licht can be said to have had one truly horrible draft…but he’s had two drafts with 4 hit picks, and a draft with three. That ranks him among the best GMs in the league during drafts.

    Last year, he hit on 3-4, maybe more. We don’t truly know yet. But consider this: if the roster was as bad as the Licht-haters say, then the Bucs would have cut a bunch of players, freed up $40-$60 million in cap space, and been active in free agency.

    But they didn’t. Why?

    Because the draft picks Jason Licht has made are good ones.

    Fans give up on players quickly in Tampa. Heck, they gave up on Vita Vea before they even saw him play. See how that turned out?

    So don’t count last year’s picks out. Stewart, Jones, and company may just surprise you this year.

    I believe last year will go down as one of the Bucs best drafts ever when looking back later.

  16. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    To back up my point, anyone here who does a full Bucs mock draft every year, please check your previous years picks and see how you did in projecting player success.

    Most do poorly.

  17. Conte Piscatelli Says:

    When this guy is the top running back on stay boards it’s obviously not a good year for running backs. Nothing about this guy is special, or really even very good. He is an average all around back. Who often looked better than he is because he played on the best team in country. Last year he would have been a 3rd rounder at best.

  18. Pryda...Sec 147 Says:

    No way I’ll pass on this guy too

  19. Maze Says:

    Your boy Jeremiah also had Jacobs going to the Bucs at pick five in earlier mocks. He’s nothing like Mayock.

  20. humblecrusher Says:

    🙂 Thee…Football Outsiders 🙂

    Where do we start with this article and the legitimacy of their “BackCAST”…? How bout here. When you click on the link @Joe has inserted above, and actually read their supposed criteria, it starts with an interesting prelude reading “every once in a while advanced statistics will break from conventional wisdom”. (Conventional wisdom …being scouting departments and GM’s doing this draft thing for 40-50 years, you know). Their model has existed from 1998-2017. 🙂

    Next…let’s look at #3 of their criteria used for RB’s to supposedly calculate their score; “a RB who represented a large percentage of his college team’s RB opportunities is more likely to succeed”. Lol. Where to start with this one….so given that ridiculous tangential subjective factor, so THIS quotient have been applied to Josh Jacobs, automatically skewing Jacob’s numbers downward in a big-time fashion??! Lol.

    Next…NO where in their entire explanation of criteria used, do THEE Football Outsiders include a factor/quotient for the RB they are studying based on how poor (lackluster/easy) the opposing competition IS that the subject RB is creating those stats that go into their…formula. Nope, nothing for the MAC, WAC, AAC,..versus ya know a real conference like the SEC, Big 10 for instance, to ya know…ACTUALLY get a much more “predictive” accurate indicator of success in the ELEVATED level of competition in the NFL for a living??! Just a thought, to include that. A damn good one.

    Next….they openly state “we do not account for broken tackles in our formula….” because they say blah blah it’s tough to account for. Really??! Just counting them on tape, especially in the SEC is…tough, etc?

    BUTTTT…perhaps the MOST telling and profound fact they offer after reading all of the omniscience created in their lab from 1998 to date (20 whopping years)….IS…

    ” The only RB that we at Football Outsiders have rated lower than Josh Jacobs was…..ALVIN KAMARA”. Alvin f*cking Kamara!?!? How did Kamara’s NFL career work out Buc faithful…hmm?? Gee, wonder why that tidbit wasn’t included in this article?

    @Joes say they can’t stand the PFF tribe, which has a much deeper analytics database than 20 years, but hey….they’re…

    Theee Football Outsiders, that say Alvin Kamara won’t succeed in the NFL, that this year 32 sets of NFL personnel men and extensive resources…like a Gil Brandt and company, that have almost ALL put Jacobs…in the FIRST round…say different. 🙂

    Sure. Re-read above. 🙂

  21. 813bucboi Says:

    d.henderson, d.singletary, b. snell…..pick 1 in the 4th round….


  22. Defense Rules Says:

    @Bonzai … “Jason Licht can be said to have had one truly horrible draft…but he’s had two drafts with 4 hit picks, and a draft with three. That ranks him among the best GMs in the league during drafts.”

    You’re only telling half of the story Bonzai. How about the OTHER HALF that addresses the question … ‘Could those rookie starters have started on other teams?’ And especially on playoff teams. You and I both know the answer to that: Some MIGHT have been rookie starters with teams like the Patriots or Saints let’s say, but most would’ve been depth players … at best. Bucs have started some players in their rookie years out of desperation, not because Jason Licht did such a fabulous job of drafting.

    Reality is that the Bucs have had FOUR losing seasons in the 5 years Licht has been our GM. Do they ALL fall on him? Do they ALL fall on Lovie & Koetter & their coaching staffs? Are the Bucs’ players responsible? My answer to ALL THREE of those questions would be the same Bonzai: they ALL should be held ACCOUNTABLE for the crappy records amassed by the mediocre teams that we’ve fielded because each one of them had some critical responsibilities in the PROCESS that they performed unsatisfactorily.

    I still laugh my arse off at those who claim that our 5-game winning streak in 2016 was a FLUKE because the defense played uncharacteristically good. And yet in the same breath they’ll tout our 9-7 record for that year as being a winning record … but NOT A FLUKE obviously. Can’t have it both ways (if one’s a fluke, the other was too). The Bucs have been bad for quite awhile now, and BAD starts at the top.

  23. catcard202 Says:

    Jacobs is nice & all…But he couldn’t win a starting role at ALA over D.Harris. (that says something right there.)

    If the FO is looking for complementary pieces…No reason to pick a rotational RB in the 1st/2nd, not with HUGE holes to fill on DEF.

    I’m all in on Benny Snell. Would not snub my nose up at Harris, Montgomery or Henderson…But also couldn’t see the Bucs draft any of them before the 3rd/4th.

  24. Arian Nation Says:

    Pass on Jacobs.

    I agree that Henderson is by far the best RB in the draft, the only thing keeping him out of the 1st round is his size (5’9″) and a botched 40 combine time.

    Memphis fans mostly agreed that he would run the fastest time at the combine, sub 4.4 and he did. He ran a 4.37 with one of the fastest 10 yard splits in combine history. The time was scratched and renegotiated to a 4.49.

    If the 4.37 stood, he would be a top 10 pick.

    If he was 2″ taller he would be a 1st rounder.

    If he went on the Brian Burns-Noah Spence diet he would gain 10 Lbs to 210.

    If you watch the Amazon special on the Cardinals and BA, you will see that BA chose David Johnson in the 3rd and he saved their season. The first two backs got injured and DJ excelled when given the chance. BA will not forget that lesson.

    Did I mention that DH can return kicks. He substituted one game as a kick returner and took one 99 yards to the house. Can you say, “Forrest Gump!”

    My arms are getting tired from banging the drum for Henderson but believe me, he won’t be there in the 3rd. I too would like a starting RG in the 2nd but we really need an impact player.

  25. Joe Says:

    Next…NO where in their entire explanation of criteria used

    That is fully incorrect. There is a list in the linked story.

    @Joes say they can’t stand the PFF tribe, which has a much deeper analytics database than 20 years, but hey….they’re…

    Can explain that. Joe knows the Football Outsiders crowd (and yes, have spoken to the PFF tribe as well). Is Football Outsiders a bunch of stat geeks? Sure, but they also break down film. Way too many times the PFF tribe has had meltdowns when their grades are called out when even a blind person can see it is BS. Have seen stories (plural) where Football Outsiders take to task their own stats, saying, “Even though the numbers say this, it doesn’t make sense.” Joe has never seen the PFF tribe say that or do that. That also demonstrates Football Outsiders folks have an open mind.

  26. Joe Says:

    had an on-campus workout of RB Miles Sanders/Penn State.

    Yep. And Elijah Holyfield.

  27. 813bucboi Says:


    that 9-7 record and 5game winning streak was a fluke…lol…the following 2years proved that……especially after adding more talent…..the coaching staff entered 2018 on the hot seat and got canned after the season…..

    what more proof do you need…….


  28. Arian Nation Says:

    The Bucs met with Darrell Henderson twice, at the combine and at his pro day.

  29. Buc1987 Says:

    Trent Richardson was going to be a star too!

  30. Defense Rules Says:

    @813bucboi … “that 9-7 record and 5 game winning streak was a fluke…lol”. And THAT’S the point I was making to Bonzai bucboi … you can’t have it both ways. Either they were BOTH flukes, or NEITHER was a fluke because the defense was primarily playing better was largely responsible for that 5-win streak. And yes, the following TWO 5-11 seasons proved that it was an anomaly.

  31. humblecrusher Says:

    @Joe says

    “That was fully incorrect”…pertaining to my comment of “NO where in the entire list of criteria used”…was THERE a factor mixed in by THEE Football Outsiders…FOR THE CONFERENCE THEY PLAYED IN…to achieve those “stats. @Joe…that’s what I typed and was referring to that their list DOES NOT adjust for. If a RB playing in a sh!tty conference of joke fools on the other side of the ball, versus a real conference, such as Big 10, or SEC game in and game out. They don’t adjust for that, it doesn’t “list” that at all.

    Don’t tell me what is incorrect and correct if CORRECTLY reading what I expressed of their glaring omission in their “formula”.

    Any comment @Joe…on the worth of their “prognosticative” ability by them saying that Alvin Kamara was rated lower than all RB’S they evaluated in the last 3 years????…

    Yeah, Saban doesn’t know what he’s doing with player evaluation…nor all the reach of resource and NFL tried/tested/true NFL personnel front offices…placing Jacobs in bottom of round one.

    But the Football Outsiders do… cuz Kamara’s just a RB right 🙂

  32. wideleftandright Says:

    Wasnt there a Alabama back that was an NFL bust recently ,and he had better numbers in college.
    Stay away from Jacobs,far away.
    I agree with Joe,Henderson with Memphis or Sanders would be great!

  33. Joe Says:

    Don’t tell me what is incorrect and correct if CORRECTLY reading what I expressed of their glaring omission in their “formula”.

    And don’t spread lies.

    That article not only contains the formula of how that stat is devised, it also lists comparisons of past players with the same stat and a list of past running backs and their stats. You clearly didn’t read the article. You just wanted to b!tch.

    Remember who runs this site. You don’t dictate what Joe writes or allows on his site.

  34. Tom S. Says:

    Bonzai, I know draft history very well actually and almost assuredly better than you do, though I’m sure you think you know best. My point is that yes, the draft is a crapshoot to a degree and to the degree that it is, Sally Bucsfan could look at Mel Kipers list, take players that Kiper rates highly and have found similar or greater success than the horrible job Licht has done. There is no special sauce to what Licht has accomplished. He has in fact accomplished less than the majority of GM’s in the NFL. You can look at record, playoff appearances, pro bowls, all pro’s and you’ll see objectively he is a no good, very bad GM.

    Want an example of the lack of talent/picks panning out from Licht’s draft? In Licht’s 5th season and despite starting with a top 10 pick in 4 of 5 draft, the Bucs had one pro bowler, Mike Evans a Pro Bowl alternate who was Licht’s first ever draft selection. If you look at Pro Bowl rosters you will see that with alternates coming in the average NFL team should have 3 Pro Bowlers. Licht’s team only gets one after injury replacement. That’s not a lot of Pro Bowl talent. In fact, when Pro Bowlers were announced the Bucs were one of only 3 teams without once, putting them in the bottom 10% of the league. Slice it any way you like, Jason Licht has failed the Bucs and failed the fans.