Former Indiana University running back Jordan Howard is making a big splash with his new team. In his first training camp as a Philadelphia Eagle, Howard is already impressing coaches and teammates alike. In fact, the former Indiana football product is reportedly “dominating” first-team repetitions and is the clear number one running back on the depth chart going into the season. Howard appears to be a perfect fit to lead a revamped backfield.
He joins former Indiana quarterback Nate Sudfeld, who signed a 1-year deal with the Eagles, in the City of Brotherly Love.
“He’s quiet, but yet he is a guy that asks a lot of questions on the field and in the meeting room. Takes it from the meeting room to the field. Been pleasantly surprised with him. Obviously what he put on tape prior to coming to us is exciting, and he’s fit really well,” said Philadelphia coach Doug Pederson about Howard.
Last season, Philadelphia struggled to get consistent play from the running back position with Jay Ajayi, Darren Sproles, and Corey Clement all dealing with injuries while Josh Adams and Wendell Smallwood were unable to take advantage of their playing time. Thus, the door is now open for Howard to take command of the backfield.
Howard was traded by the Chicago Bears to Philadelphia in March. Howard was extremely productive for Chicago but the Bears, who are not heavily reliant on running the ball, instead favored a pass catching back to Howard’s downhill running style.
As a rookie, Howard finished second in the NFL in rushing with 1313 yards. He followed up the next season with 1122 rushing yards and 9 touchdowns. Then, last season, Howard continued to perform well despite fewer carries, finishing with 935 rushing yards with 9 touchdowns.
Currently, Howard appears to be the favored back. However, he is not without competition. Rookie Miles Sanders has also impressed in camp. The Penn State alum was taken 53rd overall in this year’s draft and is expected to also receive a good amount of carries throughout the year. Likewise, Corey Clement and Darren Sproles will feature heavily in passing downs. Still, Howard is expected to handle the majority of carries.
(Photo Credit: Philadelphia Inquirer)