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Jonathan Taylor Placed Outside Top 10 In PFF's Elusive RB Rankings

Despite being the best running back in football, Jonathan Taylor ranks middle of the pack in Pro Football Focus's elusive RB rankings.
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Coming off of a season in which he rushed for 1,811 yards and 18 touchdowns and truly carried the Indianapolis Colts' offense for stretches, MVP candidate and star running back Jonathan Taylor continues to be slightly overlooked and overthought at the position. 

On Tuesday, Pro Football Focus dropped its most elusive RB rankings of the top 32 backs in football. Taylor, who finished second in the NFL behind only Pittsburgh's Najee Harris is forced missed tackles per touch with 76 last season, somehow finished outside of the top 10 at No. 15 overall, recording 0.199 forced missed tackles per rushing attempt. 

Taylor's placement at 15th, while set on hard numbers, had him slotted between New York's Tevin Coleman in 14th (0.202 forced misses per touch) and Arizona's James Conner in 16th (0.198 forced misses per touch). 

Though Pro Football Focus's Bryant Horn called Taylor the NFL's best running back and pointed out that he led the league in forced missed tackles on rushing attempts with 66 last season (his other 10 forced missed tackles came on catches), Taylor still ranked in the middle of the pack. 

Leave it up to PFF to try and rank elusiveness based on average forced missed tackles per touch, rather than the overall body of work. 

"It’s to absolutely nobody’s surprise that Taylor was the best NFL running back last season. He leads the list in just about every category," Horn writes regarding Taylor's placement at No. 15 overall. "The Colts’ back earned the third-highest grade (90.0) and recorded the most missed tackles forced (66), attempts (332), yards (1,811), yards after contact (1,272), touchdowns (18) and first downs (106). Obviously, his forced missed tackle total comes with a high number of carries, but he still averaged a missed tackle about every five attempts."

So, Taylor gets punished in the arbitrary rankings due to him being a workhorse and having far more rushing attempts than anyone else, which lowered his average forced missed tackles per rushing attempt number to slot him between Coleman (who had just 84 carries last season) and Conner (202 carries).

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Spare me, PFF. 

Taylor was an absolute monster with the football in his hands and made defenders consistently miss while carrying the Colts' offense. He was so good at picking up extra yards after contact, and was special in the open field, forcing defenders to miss at an impressive clip. 

Regardless of his rankings based on missed tackles per touch, there's no denying Taylor is a special talent at the position, one that has transcended the Colts' offense under head coach Frank Reich and offensive coordinator Marcus Brady. 

You can't quantify that, PFF. 

Have thoughts on Taylor's placement in PFF's elusive RB rankings? Drop a line in the comments section below letting us know how you feel!


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