Through two preseason games, Spiller has looked faster than he did a year ago, which isn't surprising given the various injuries with which he dealt in 2015. Unfortunately, injuries are hardly something new with Spiller. The depth chart behind Mark Ingram remains in flux, so there's still a potential role for Spiller as the
Spiller had two carries for two yards in Thursday's preseason opener against the Patriots.
Despite being fourth on the Saints' initial preseason depth chart, Spiller worked ahead of Marcus Murphy, who is listed as the No. 3 back. Regardless of where he lands on the Week 1 depth chart, Spiller is merely competing for a role on passing downs. Tim Hightower will likely be the top backup for early downs.
Spiller said he and the Saints' staff determined that limiting him to start camp would be the best course of action in preparation for this season. The veteran had arthroscopic knee surgery last August, and although he returned by Week 2 following that procedure, Spiller's ability to cut was clearly limited throughout the campaign. To ward off further lingering effects going into this season, Spiller will be eased into the action, as his early camp participation level reflects.
Spiller (leg) has looked much improved during OTAs, the Saints' official site reports. "I'd say C.J.'s health and his movement skills look noticeably different," head coach Sean Payton said. "He worked his butt off in the offseason to get the strength back in that knee where he had his injury. That has been really encouraging."
Spiller was a disappointment, to say the least, after joining the Saints as a free agent, but arthroscopic knee surgery performed during the preseason served to put him behind the eight ball. He still managed to make his season debut in Week 2 and played in 13 straight games until he was shut down for good in the penultimate week of the regular season. However, he received no more than 26 snaps in any contest, while reaching a season-high 10 touches on two occasions, en route 36 carries for 112 yards (3.1 YPC), 34 receptions (on 44 targets) for 239 yards, and two receiving touchdowns. If his conditioning is indeed reminiscent of his tenure with the Bills, he could serve as a nice pass-catching complement to Mark Ingram in the upcoming campaign.
C.J. Spiller (leg) gained 112 yards on 36 carries and 239 yards on 34 receptions in 13 games in his first season with the New Orleans Saints .
2015 was an unmitigated disaster for Spiller, as he failed to meet fantasy owners' high expectations after signing with the Saints this offseason. Rather than serving as the Saints' backfield pass-catching option, a la Reggie Bush or Darren Sproles, Spiller missed nearly all of training camp following arthroscopic knee surgery and struggled to earn playing time after he returned to health. Spiller is still under contract for another three years, but with Mark Ingram emerging as a receiver and Tim Hightower exploding back onto the NFL scene, not to mention the possible return of Khiry Robinson, Spiller will likely enter a crowded Saints' backfield in 2016.
|2||9/18/16||@ NYG||1:00 pm|
|4||10/2/16||@ SD||4:25 pm|
|Bye: Week 5|
|7||10/23/16||@ KC||1:00 pm|
|9||11/6/16||@ SF||4:05 pm|
|11||11/17/16||@ CAR||8:25 pm|
|14||12/11/16||@ TB||1:00 pm|
|15||12/18/16||@ ARI||4:05 pm|
|17||1/1/17||@ ATL||1:00 pm|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||2||36||112||3.1||11||0||0||5|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||2||34||239||7.0||80||2||1||1||13|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||7||149||21.3||26||0||0|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0||---||0||0||0|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||0||0||0||---||0||0||0|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|
|2015||New Orleans Saints||13||1||0||0||1||0||0||1||0|
|2016||New Orleans Saints||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|