Running Miles Miles Sanders' sophomore year with the Eagles

Running Miles: Miles Sanders’ sophomore year with the Eagles

  • Doug Pederson
  • LeSean McCoy
  • Miles Sanders
  • Philadelphia Eagles
  • Running Backs
By Shannon Algarin August 18, 2020 1 Comment
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Miles Sanders set a new record for the Philadelphia Eagles for rushing yards by a rookie last season. Can he do even more this year?

Miles Sanders could be a big problem for opposing defenses in the 2020 season. On August 9th, he told the media that he feels snubbed for not winning rookie of the year. Sanders is using that snub as extra motivation to get out on the field and dominate the run game.

This year will be much different for him though as the lead back for the Philadelphia Eagles. But Sanders is ready for his new role in the starting line up.

Miles Sanders’ rookie season

Sanders was the number two running back behind Jordan Howard last year. Sanders saw his first career touchdown on October 27, 2019, during the game against the Buffalo Bills. This 65-yard run was a great display of his speed which reached over 20 mph.

The following week Howard was injured with a stinger in the Eagles win over the Chicago Bears. Sanders stepped into the starting line up and took advantage of the opportunity, quickly proving he could be the Eagles’ number one back.

Sanders finished the ’19 season with 818 rushing yards and 509 receiving yards. The Eagles’ previous franchise record for most rushing yards by a rookie was set by LeSean McCoy at 637 yards back in 2009. Sanders shattered that record even though he spent half the season behind Howard.

In McCoy’s second season with the Birds, he ran for 1,080 yards. It is not out of the question to expect more from Sanders considering what could have been if he been the starting running back for the entire 2019 season.

If he could achieve 818 yards rushing in just half a season he may have been well over 1,000+ yards as a rookie.

The expectations for the 2020 season

Coach Doug Pederson told the media that Sanders is “the guy” this year and plans to increase his reps. Since Pederson took over the Philadelphia Eagles have relied more on the passing game than the run. But Pederson told the media at training camp that he hopes to utilize Miles Sanders in the backfield more.

Last season the Eagles called passes 57.6% versus 42.4% run. For reference, the San Francisco 49ers 49% passing versus 51% running the ball.

With a back like Miles Sanders, there is no reason Coach Pederson shouldn’t be calling more run plays to take some of the burden off of Carson Wentz.

As long as Sanders can stay healthy this season, and there is a balance in the play calling, there is no reason Sanders cannot achieve 1,000+ rushing yards. Let’s hope Doug Pederson stays true to his word, recognizes the talent he has in Miles Sanders, and balances out the run/pass game this season.

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Katie Scott

August 18, 2020

Great Article!! Looking forward to a great Eagles Season.

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