Tag:Ladell Betts
Posted on: January 6, 2011 5:30 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2011 5:31 pm

Campbell says he was Redskins 'scapegoat'

J. Campbell said he was Washington's scapegoat before he left for Oakland (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Not surprisingly, Raiders QB Jason Campbell, coming off a decently-successful season in Oakland, doesn’t look back on his time with the Redskins especially fondly. Or, you know, you could say he’s actually pretty bitter about the whole thing.

In fact, he told Washington-based blog Mr. Irrelevant that he was the team’s scapegoat.

“That last season I put up really good numbers, and my star running back was out,” Campbell told the blog. “Clinton Portis was out for most of the season. Then Ladell Betts came in and got hurt. We lost Chris Samuels. We lost our right guard and our right tackle.

“So you’re still out there fighting hard in every game … and there were a lot of close games we should’ve won.

“The fact that I was the scapegoat for all of that, it really stung a little bit. It was tough.”

Campbell also had this to say about his former boss, owner Daniel Snyder.

“I was always trying to put my heart into everything (the Redskins) did. The owner or whatever it was, the owner was always pointing the finger at me. It was always like people were out to get me.”

Campbell has a point (though he does come off a bit paranoid). In 2009, he threw for 3,618 yards, 20 TDs and 15 INTs, and he had the best statistical stats of his career. But Redskins coach Mike Shanahan couldn’t get him out of D.C. fast enough, and at first, it did sound like a good plan (who wouldn’t basically trade Campbell for Donovan McNabb at that point?).

But Campbell has the last laugh. Sort of. Sure, he doesn’t have a head coach at the moment, even if the Raiders are coming off an 8-8 season. Of course, he also doesn’t play for a team whose top quarterback currently is Rex Grossman.

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Posted on: October 12, 2010 5:29 pm

Saints sign Julius Jones, release John Carney

Posted by Andy Benoit

Injuries to Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas have left the Saints thin at running back. Undrafted rookie Chris Ivory has been decent as a fill-in starter. Veteran Ladell Betts impressed in his debut two weeks ago. However, at Arizona on Sunday, Betts was responsible for two turnovers that led directly the two Cardinals touchdowns.

So, to improve the backfield depth, the Saints signed former Cowboys/Seahawks running back Julius Jones. Jones offers better quickness and agility than Betts, though he’s not the home run threat many believe him to be. The 29-year-old has never responded well to contact, and he lacks the vision and downhill change-of-direction skills needed to be a creator.

In short, Jones requires open space in order to thrive, which is why he’s always been so good on draw plays but bad behind a lead-blocker. Open space ability may seem fine, but ask yourself: Which running back wouldn’t thrive in open space?

As a temporary fill-in piece, Jones would be an upgrade over Betts. However, that doesn’t mean he’ll take Betts’ playing time. In order to make room for Jones, the Saints waived sluggish runner DeShawn Wynn.

Jones was not the only roster move New Orleans made Tuesday. The John Carney experiment came to a quick end as the team released the 46-year-old kicker. That means Garrett Hartley has his job back. Hartley did not win his job so much as Carney lost his. Carney was 5/6 on field goals, but his range was limited and his accuracy – even on the makes – was sporadic.

Filling Carney’s roster spot will be newly acquired backup safety Matt Giordano, a former fourth-round pick of the Colts.

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Posted on: October 8, 2010 3:43 pm
Edited on: October 8, 2010 3:55 pm

Pierre Thomas out for Week 5

Posted by Andy Benoit

The New Orleans Saints will be without top running back Pierre Thomas for a second straight game. Thomas hasP. Thomas (US Presswire) not practiced since injuring his ankle against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 3.

According to James Varney of the Times-Picayune, Thomas would try to play if this were a playoff game. But it’s Week 5, and the fourth-year pro has the rest of the season to consider. Plus, Thomas is yet to even run full speed on the ankle (he’s mainly been doing underwater exercises).

The Saints, of course, are already without No. 2 running back (and No. 1 mismatch creator) Reggie Bush. This means Ladell Betts and undrafted rookie Chris Ivory will share the rushing load against the Cardinals. This formula was efficient against the Panthers last week. Ivory rushed for 67 yards on 12 carries; Betts rushed for 47 yards on 13 carries.

Perhaps influencing the Saints’ decision to wait on Thomas is the fact that the Cardinals are currently giving up 154.8 yards per game on the ground, third worst in the NFL.

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