The New York Jets have a hole to fill at the running back position, which is one of the reasons they selected Houma, Louisiana native Elijah McGuire with the 188th pick in the draft. Now, McGuire has to prove he has what it takes to be an NFL running back. If you want to place an online wager on the Jets this year, check out our online betting on the New York Jets games.
Since he was drafted in April, McGuire has been hoping to compete for the third running back position on the team and worked hard during organized team activities and mini camps during the offseason. If McGuire shows the Jets coaching staff something that makes him stand out above the other young running backs invited to training camp, he should be able to make the team’s final roster.
McGuire has extra incentive to make the Jets because he and his girlfriend welcomed his first child during the offseason. Aubree Lynn McGuire was born in June. The birth of his daughter has led to McGuire pulling double duty at home as he tries to juggle learning the Jets playbook and being a parent.
McGuire said in an interview that he just realized how tough it is to be a parent. He said his daughter has been keeping him up at night, which is something he is still getting used to. Even though he isn’t getting as much sleep as he would like, he is still enjoying being a father.
McGuire added that being a father is giving him extra motivation to make the team’s final roster so he can provide for his daughter.
McGuire is expected to report to the Jets training camp on Thursday. He said he put on some extra muscle in the offseason and improved his speed and strength as well. McGuire also said he worked at being a better receiver out of the backfield and is in the best shape of his life.
Even though his love for the game helped him get where he is today, McGuire acknowledged that he is no longer doing it just for the love because it is now his full-time job.
McGuire and the Jets expect his transition to the pros to be smooth since he gets along great with Matt Forte and Bilal Powell, who are ahead of him in the depth chart. He has also been picking their brain to help get himself up to speed with the team’s playbook.
The rookie running back also finds himself in a unique situation with the Jets. Over the past two seasons, Powell and Forte have both missed some time due to injuries. If either running back gets hurt again this year, McGuire will get some extra playing time, which could be all he needs to become a bigger part of the team’s offense.
During OTAs and mini camps, McGuire impressed the coaching staff with his versatility and speed. If he continues putting in the effort, he should be able to eventually work his way up the depth chart.
The Jets are expected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL this season, and don’t have a proven quarterback, so expect them to run the ball more than they did last year, which means McGuire will definitely get a lot of touches this year.