Armstead (illness) isn't expected to play this season while he continues to experience complications while recovering from COVID-19, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports. Armstead was expected to challenge for the top job at running back following the release of Leonard Fournette in late August, but the second-year player has struggled to bounce back since initially testing positive for COVID-19 in the summer. According to Schefter, Armstead has been hospitalized on two occasions after experiencing a variety of symptoms of the coronavirus, including significant respiratory issues. The Jaguars believe the 23-year-old will be able to return to action at full strength in 2021, but even if his condition improves in the weeks to come, Armstead won't be rushed back for the second half of the current season.
While meeting with members of the media Monday, coach Doug Marrone noted that there's no timetable for the return of Armstead, who is on the Jaguars' reserve/COVID-19 list. Marrone did acknowledge that Armstead, who is on the list for the second time and also dealt with another illness as well as a groin injury during training camp, will be out "for a while." With Leonard Fournette no longer on the team, the Jaguars are prepared to open the season with a "situation- and matchup-based" approach to how the team's backfield work will be divided, per Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com. In Week 1, look for Chris Thompson, Devine Ozigbo and undrafted rookie James Robinson to see touches, with Thompson likely to be active in passing situations while Ozigbo and Robinson rotate on early downs.
Armstead, who was recently placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list for the second time, isn't likely to be available for Week 1, Michael DiRocco of ESPN.com reports. DiRocco notes that the running back also dealt with another illness as well as a groin injury during training camp. It's thus unclear when Armstead might be activated and how prepared to play he'll be at that time. The team's current available backfield options are Chris Thompson, Devine Ozigbo and undrafted rookie James Robinson. Meanwhile, it was reported Saturday that Devonta Freeman had a visit planned with the Jaguars. Looking ahead to the season opener, coach Doug Marrone has acknowledged that the team's approach to who gets carries out of the gate will be "situation and matchup-based." With that in mind, it's possible that Thompson sees the bulk of his early season touches in passing situations, with Ozigbo and Robinson rotating on early downs.
The Jaguars placed Armstead (illness) on the reserve/COVID-19 list Friday, John Reid of The Florida Times-Union reports. In the wake of Leonard Fournette getting waived, Armstead moved up the RB pecking order in Jacksonville, but now his practice reps will be impacted. If he continues to log positive tests into next week, it also may impact his viability for a Week 1 game against the Colts. Such a development would leave the Jaguars with a backfield composed of Chris Thompson, Devine Ozigbo and James Robinson.
Armstead will move up the depth chart after the Jaguars waived Leonard Fournette on Monday. A 2019 fifth-round pick, Armstead served as Fournette's backup last season but didn't see much playing time until the veteran missed Week 17. It's now Armstead who stands as the best bet to lead the team in carries, though he could be part of a committee that includes some combination of Chris Thompson, Devine Ozigbo and James Robinson. The second-year pro averaged only 3.1 yards on 35 carries and 6.0 yards on 24 targets last year, but he does offer some upside with 4.45 speed in a 220-pound frame.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|3 Year Avg||35||108||0||14||144||2||36|