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C.J. Spiller: Possible Darren Sproles 2.0?

The Saints are indeed in the process of rebuilding the makeup of the team but it’s not a 100 percent makeover though. Head coach Sean Payton had to find someone that is capable of running his precious screen play after they released running back Pierre Thomas who was a fan favorite among the Who Dat Nation.

The year prior they released another fan favorite in running back Darren Sproles who currently plays for the Philadelphia Eagles. The man that Sean Payton has decided to roll the dice with in 2015 is free agent running back C.J. Spiller. Spiller entered free agency after being notified on the NFL Network that Buffalo Bills had traded for running back LeSean McCoy of the Philadelphia Eagles.

The screen play has been a part of the Saints makeup ever since Sean Payton arrived in the “Big Easy.” C.J. Spiller fits that role perfectly due to the fact that he has the ability to catch the ball out of the back field via screen pass or be the third receiver on the field that opposing defenses have to concerned themselves with. Another feature that Spiller contains is his ability to be a factor in the special team game. We all know how big a kick or punt return for a touchdown can change the outcome of a game in a matter of seconds.

Spiller has shown that he has the potential to be a Marshall Faulk type back in the NFL but splitting carries with other backs have prevented that from happening. In Buffalo Spiller shared time with Fred Jackson and now he will split time with Mark Ingram in New Orleans. Maybe the possibility of being the second coming of Marshall Faulk is not one Spillers priorities right now because in New Orleans Sean Payton is about the two back system and it will most likely stay that way as long as he is the head coach. Even with a two back system Spiller will provide that spunk that Travaris Cadet failed to provide last year.

Spiller will be an upgrade over Cadet in the areas of the screen pass, kick returns, and being an extra receiver that defenses must pay close attention to. The key for success in all of this will be Spillers ability to stay healthy. Spiller missed the majority of the 2014 season when he broke his collar bone against the Vikings in week three of the 2014 regular season. The injuries to both Spiller and Jackson may have been one of the deciding factors in why the Buffalo Bills fail to make the playoffs in 2014.

The Saints cannot have a 65 percent healthy C.J. Spiller in the backfield. Unlike in Buffalo where that vaunted defense masked the deficiences of the Bills offense the Saints do not have that type of defense at the moment. Having a running back that is able to catch the ball out of the backfield is the Saints bread and butter on offense almost nine years they will look to continue that tradition with Spiller. If not we could see another dismal 7-9 team that we saw in 2014.

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Derrick
Derrick Branch is the founder and lead writer of Tops Sports.Com. He is a die-hard sports fan and keeps it 100 on all things that involve the NFL, NBA, NCAA Football.
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