One word comes to mind when you think of Jamaal Charles in 2017: Wasted.
Despite the myriad of times Vance Joseph said the Denver Broncos would get the veteran running back more involved in the offense, it never happened. Despite the fact every time Charles touched the ball and you inched forward in your seat, Joseph and the coaching staff kept him on the sideline. Despite the fact he was the most complete running back on Denver’s roster and would have brought another element to the offense ... you get the idea.
So in that sense, Charles’ grade for 2017 is incomplete. The failing grade goes to Joseph and the coaching staff.
Charles stats 2017
Charles played in 14 games and started none. According to Pro Football Reference, he finished with 69 carries for 296 yards and one touchdown. Charles also added 23 receptions for 129 yards and another touchdown.
Charles also led the team in average yards per rush at 4.3. Would have been nice to see him get more touches, but I digress. One fumble was enough for Joseph to put him on the bench, yet Trevor Siemian and Isaiah McKenzie got chance after chance after chance to screw the team over.
How a team that struggled to get running backs and tight ends involved in the passing game didn’t use this valuable weapon is beyond stupid. It’s not like he didn’t show flashes either, because he did.
Charles PFF grade
Pro Football Focus graded Charles as you would expect — poor. Overall the site gave him a 51.0. His running game grade was 50.9, while his passing game grade was 59.5. As mentioned earlier, this grade should go to Joseph and his staff since they never utilized Charles, used him properly or found a way to get him into the offense let alone on the field.
John Elway and the Broncos should have done Charles a solid and released him when it was clear he wouldn’t play or have a role on this team. He’s now an unrestricted free agent and free to sign where he chooses. I wouldn’t be shocked to see him wind up with the New England Patriots.
Charles is done in Denver. The only word that comes to mind to describe his time here is “wasted.”