Three Reasons To Like RB Jerick McKinnon In Week 5 And Beyond
If you missed Jerick McKinnon’s first big run of his NFL career against Atlanta last week, watch it right now. The kid gets a nice big hole, sure, but he continues to make great decisions all the way down the field as well, breaking tackles and adjusting to blocks on his way to a 55-yard run.
McKinnon looks to be here to stay, and he has had an immediate impact on fans and bettors alike. A quick look at the Week 5 NFL betting lines shows that the Vikings line has already moved two and a half points for their game against the Green Bay Packers, and McKinnon has undoubtedly been part of what has excited Vegas about Minnesota this week.
Here are three reasons to like Jerick McKinnon going forward.
He’s Better than Asiata
When Adrian Peterson got in trouble off the field, the consensus was that third-year back Matt Asiata would shoulder the load, and he did initially, picking up some decent yards (3.4 yards per carries with three scores this season). Still, a lot of that can be attributed to the Vikings’ O-line, an elite unit that creates holes anyone could run through.
McKinnon has averaged 6.3 yards per carry on just 23 carries, and has looked as explosive as Asiata has looked stunted thus far.
The Coaches Like Him
After McKinnon’s 55-yard eruption on his first carry last week, his coaching staff took notice and McKinnon was on the field more than Asiata from that point on, lining up for 32 snaps to Asiata’s 31. While Asiata will continue to get touches, McKinnon seems to be getting the recognition he deserves from the decision makers on the sidelines.
McKinnon is about to play two of the three worst run defenses in the league this season, and by the time that’s over his role should be well and truly secured. The Packers (who the Vikings play Thursday night) have allowed a brutal 176.0 yards per game on the ground, and the Rams (Week 6) are only marginally better, at 155.0.
With so much going for him, now is the time to get comfortable spelling the name Jerick. This kid is legit.