Buffalo Bills running back Fred Jackson is a fan favorite among Bills fans, and he’s also a favorite among fans of other teams. This is a guy who plays the game the right way with his team-first mentality and incredible toughness, and one thing I will always remember is how he returned several weeks earlier from an MCL sprain than expected last year. Heck, he also played through a knee injury and scored a touchdown in a Week 7 game against the Miami Dolphins (correct me if I’m wrong about that one). Jackson isn’t as productive as he used to be and isn’t as talented as C.J. Spiller, but not many 32-year-old backs are as productive as they were several years ago and not many backs are as talented as Spiller. In short, Jackson is still productive enough and talented enough to more than get the job done, especially when he works with Spiller to form the Bills still-deadly 1-2 punch.
The 32-year-old had a nice bounce-back season in 2013 even as Spiller slumped, as Jackson ran for 896 yards and a whopping nine touchdowns on 207 carries for an average of 4.3 yards per carry. He was also a huge part of the passing game and helped out first-round rookie E.J. Manuel by hauling in a career-high 47 passes for 387 yards.
Most running backs don’t have that kind of a season at that age, so Jackson is basically defying time right now. Another thing to his credit is the fact that Jackson doesn’t see his production running out any time soon and is confident that he will be able to last three or four more years in this league. A 35 or 36-year-old back with a history of knee injuries maintaining solid play is an extreme rarity, but give credit to Jackson for his optimism.
Appearing on WGR 550′s Howard Simon show Jackson said, “I want to get three or four more years in. I confidently believe I can do that. Especially with the workload being split between C.J. and I. That definitely gives me the opportunity to be out here three or four more years and competing with these guys and getting this thing turned around. That’s the number one goal, getting this thing turned around and giving this city something to be excited about and that’s what I want to do before I’m out of here.”