With his ability to pick up yards after contact, Bills RB Fred Jackson has made his living bulldozing over defenders. But the new NFL preventing ball carriers from initiating contact with the crown of their helmets has him concerned about his running style.
“I think this rule, out of anybody on this team, it applies to me the most,” Jackson said Wednesday night on The John Murphy Show.
” Its one of those things I thrive on, being able to break tackles and make yards after contact. We’ll see what happens. I’m looking forward to getting back out on the field and see how this rule affects me.”
The rule was approved by NFL owners by a 31-1 margin Wednesday. It’s described as a “player safety” step by Rams Coach Jeff Fisher, a member of the league’s Competition Committee.
Under the new rule, a runner or tackler will draw a 15-yard penalty if he initiates forcible contact by delivering a blow with the top/crown of his helmet against an opponent when both players are clearly outside the tacikle box (an area extending from tackle to tackle and from three yards beyond the line of scrimmage to the offensive team’s end line).
Jackson says he’s all for player safety, but he’s not sold on this rule.
“You gotta respect what they’re doing, they’re trying to make our game safer,” he said. “But at the same time, they’re limiting some of the stuff you can do as a runner. I guess we just have to evolve, but you cant change how you play. I’m a guy that likes to be physical in the running game. I like to break tackles and create some contact. It will be interesting to see what goes on.”
Jackson is worried that running backs might not be able to protect themselves when a defender is bearing down on them.
“I don’t think I lead with the crown of my helmet,” he told host John Murphy. “But when you go to break a tackle and a D-B is coming after you, the first thing you do is lower your shoulder and means you’re lowering your head. It’s gonna be interesting to see how they call it. That’s one of the things I like to do, use my shoulders to break a tackle. Those safeties are coming downhill pretty fast, and they try to get their shoulders lower, too. There will be some contact.”
The entire interview with Fred Jackson is available at buffalobills.com/johnmurphyshow
Tags: Fred Jackson, The John Murphy Show
Posted in Inside the Bills