According to the Buffalo Bills’ official website (click here for the article):
“If the offense is operating at peak efficiency Spiller is likely to touch the ball 20 times a game, they just won’t all be carries out of the backfield.”
While that statement may get people a little bit excited, we have to remember a few things. For one, Spiller shares the Bills’ backfield with Fred Jackson, Bryce Brown and Anthony Dixon. While Spiller and Jackson are obviously going to lead the way, we can’t ignore Brown or Dixon and their potential to make plays as well.
Secondly, we heard similar things regarding Spiller this time last year. In a quote courtesy of Tim Graham of the Buffalo News (click here for the blog post) regarding Spiller’s role in the offense:
It’s real simple,” Hackett said. “We’re going to give him the ball until he throws up. So he’s either got to tap out or throw up on the field. Let’s just put it that way.”
While injuries obviously played a role, Spiller’s performance clearly fell flat (933 rushing yards, 2 TD). He has the upside to be one of the elite running backs in the league, but it’s hard to expect entering the season. It’s also impossible to anticipate him getting 20+ touches per game, with around 15 more likely. That’s exactly where he was last season, so similar results with a few more TD (though he’s never scored more than 8 in a season) is fair.
That’s still enough to make him viable, especially as a mid-range RB2. Just temper your expectations and don’t expect miracles.
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Make sure to check out all of our 2014 rankings: