Packers: Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon are best in the world
Ground and pound. Thunder and lightning. It’s crazy to say that’s the identity of a team with Aaron Rodgers as the QB, but that is exactly the case. Matt LaFleur comes from the Mike Shanahan coaching tree, which means the running game is the most important part of the offensive scheme.
In order to make that part of the offense effective, you have to find RBs capable of gashing defenses with speed and power. The Green Bay Packers have two. Two workhorses.
Aaron Jones and A.J. Dillon have taken the Packers’ rushing attack to the next level. As a matter of fact, it’s a fair to say that they are the best duo in the NFL.
Jones is the more seasoned back as he will be entering his sixth season in Green Bay. After securing a four-year, $48 million extension last offseason, Jones had another impressive season with close to 1,200 scrimmage yards and 10 total TDs.
In four of his first five seasons, the UTEP product has eclipsed at least 900 total yards and nine TDs. His last three seasons, he has eclipsed at least 1,150 yards and 10 total TDs. His most impressive season came in 2019 when he totaled 1,558 yards from scrimmage and 19 TDs, which led the NFL.
Statistics aside, the Pro Bowl RB has turned himself into a more physical back. He looks for contact, much like his friend A.J. Dillon. He has put himself in a category with guys Alvin Kamara and Christian McCaffrey, who can line up anywhere in the backfield or on the line of scrimmage.
He has the ability to run any type of route as a WR while still being able to master the RB position. His ability to engage the afterburners is top-tier too. His vision in between the tackles has improved more and more as the years have gone on. His pass-blocking even took another step. The El-Paso native is the most versatile back Green Bay has had in decades.
While Aaron Jones is lightning in a bottle, A.J. Dillon is thunder in a bottle.
If it’s a one-on-one matchup between the Boston College product and one defensive player with no help, a quick prayer should be said for that player. It’s science. At 6-foot, 250 lbs, Dillon is an absolute monster.
He has proven it over his brief two-year career with the Packers, especially last season. In Dillon’s rookie season, he only recorded 263 yards from scrimmage with the majority of those coming in an almost meaningless Sunday night game in Week 16 vs. the Tennessee Titans.
A game in which he ran the ball 21 times for 124 yards and two TDs. It was a sign of things to come. Talk about a jump. Dillon totaled 1,116 scrimmage yards last season with seven TDs. He averaged over 4.3 yards per carry, which is the league average. He did this as a backup.
He will run through you. He will run past you. There is a reason his nickname is “Quadzilla”. He will also protect the QB, especially with his physique. He has proven to be more than just a backup RB clearly.
The duo of Jones and Dillon really has a compelling case to call themselves the best in the galaxy. If it’s first-and-10 on your own 25, give it to No. 33. He’ll take it to the house. If it’s fourth-and-1 with the game on the line, give it to Dillon. He’ll get you your yard.
Jones and Dillon were one of just three duos to total over 1,000 total scrimmage yards. Head Coach Matt LaFleur and former Run-Game Coordinator and current OC Adam Stenavich have found a way to make this two-back system work in Green Bay.
The Packers have two starting backs. That is what Jones and Dillon both are. They are different types of back in terms of their size. One might be faster. One might be a boulder. But they do their jobs. They do them at a high level. They get yards when that is their job. They get the ball into the end zone when that is their job.
They are leaders on this team because of who they are as people and who they are as players. The Green and Gold are in a much better place as a franchise because of those two.