Eagles Make Move For Playoff Run
Philadelphia, PA (AP) – The NFL-leading Eagles bolstered their running attack Tuesday, acquiring Jay Ajayi from the Miami Dolphins for a 2018 fourth-round draft pick hours before the trade deadline.
Ajayi has 465 yards rushing and is averaging 3.4 yards per carry with no touchdowns. He went to the Pro Bowl last season after running for 1,272 yards, including three 200-yard games.
Dolphins coach Adam Gase signaled his displeasure with Ajayi last week after Miami was routed 40-0 at Baltimore, noting missed blocking assignments in pass protection .
“The running back, we never blocked the right guy,” Gase said. “I don’t even know if we know who we’ve got. We’ve got to get that fixed.”
LeGarrette Blount leads Philadelphia with 467 yards rushing and is averaging 4.7 yards a carry with two touchdowns.
The Eagles (7-1) have the fifth-ranked run offense and have won six straight games. Coach Doug Pederson wasn’t sure the team needed any help.
“It has to be the right fit,” Pederson said Monday. “It can’t just be anybody. From my standpoint, you don’t want to disrupt the chemistry that is going on in the dressing room right now. Those guys are playing with a lot of confidence and they’re rallying around each other so it would have to be a pretty special fit to make it work.”
Ajayi fits the “special” category despite his inconsistent season. He had 122 yards rushing in Week 2 and 130 in Week 6.
Last year, Ajayi was lauded for his durability and ability to break tackles. He helped the Dolphins reach the playoffs for the first time since 2008, and joined O.J. Simpson, Earl Campbell and Tiki Barber as the only players to rush for 200 yards three times in a season.