The Browns are one of the best rushing teams in the NFL, but Hue Jackson admits he isn’t giving Nick Chubb the carries he deserves.
When the Browns chose to spend a second round pick on Nick Chubb in this year’s draft there was a natural expectation that he’d be heavily involved in Hue Jackson’s offense. To date, that hasn’t come to fruition. The good news for Chubb, is that his head coach admits that his talented rookie needs to get more carries.
Jackson freely admits that there is “nothing holding (Chubb) back.” Instead, he believes it’s up to the coaching staff to give the former Georgia star more playing time. In fairness it would be hard to give him less touches than the Browns did last week. He only got three carries, but he certainly made them count. Chubb finished his game against the Raiders with 105 yards and two touchdowns.
Part of Chubb’s struggles to carve out a meaningful role in the offense is due to the players in front of him. Carlos Hyde may not be a Pro Bowl running back, but he’s an effective pro. He’s already got five touchdowns on the young season. His 3.4 rushing average leaves a lot to be desired though. There’s definitely an argument to be made that Chubb deserves an even split with Hyde on first and second down.
Duke Johnson will still continue to get the lion’s share of playing time on third down. He is certainly a better pass catcher than Chubb. The Browns have also committed to him with a new, multi-year contract. It’s very unlikely Chubb can phase him out on third down anytime soon.
Chubb might want to consider waiting an extra week before he really ramps up his workload. Next week the Browns host the Ravens. Baltimore has one of the best rush defenses in the NFL. Chubb is capable of grinding out yards against their Division rivals, but it’s not going to be easy sledding.
At the very least, it will be very interesting to see how Jackson manages his running backs moving forward. Speaking publicly about giving Chubb more carries should force him to keep his word. It’s unclear just how much his workload will increase though. That should be a product of whether or not Chubb can continue to be efficient when his number of carries increases.