It is no secret that the running back position for the Rams is wide open. The favorites for winning the job are Isaiah Pead and Daryl Richardson, the underdogs being Zac Stacy and Terrance Ganaway. Many think this is just a two man race between Richardson and Pead and that Zac Stacy could surprise and possibly rise as the starter. However, nobody is giving Ganaway a chance, in fact many aren’t even giving him a chance at making the roster. With that said, is Terrance Ganaway being overlooked?
Terrance Ganaway was drafted last season by the New York Jets in the 6th round out of Baylor where he was eventually cut before the season and was picked up off of waivers by the Rams. During his senior season at Baylor with RGIII under center, Ganaway had 250 carries for 1,547 yards and 21 touchdowns. Ganaway pulled out good stats against TCU, Missouri, and Washington where he rushed for 120, 186, and 200 yards. He also scored 8 touchdowns in those three games. However, Ganaway struggled against the good defenses of Kansas St. and Texas A&M where he only rushed for 72 yards on 29 carries and one touchdown.
Ganaway is 6’0 240 pounds and is that big punishing back that the Rams are missing now that Steven Jackson is gone. Ganaway is quick to hit his hole, but also has the patience to allow the play to develop, and once he hits his hole he has the ability to either run through the defender like Jackson did, or even make a move to make the defender miss. He’s also is a reliable pass catcher. One thing scouts said about Ganaway was that he can play passive which is unusual given his size. Ganaway can get caught stutter stepping in the back field rather than hitting the hole with authority which is something Ganaway has to do to be successful. He has an incredible physical build, he just needs to use it.
Ganaway was drafted by the Jets in the 6th round before being released, which can be seen as a red flag because the Jets don’t have a standout running back. Shonne Greene is not a bad running back as he has rushed for over 1,000 yards the last two season, but there was a stretch of four straight games where Greene failed to rush for more than 50 yards. With that said you have to be concerned as to why Ganaway couldn’t make that roster. Ganaway also scored the only touchdown for the Jets last preseason, therefore you just have to assume Ganaway just wasn’t the right fit for the Jets. There are always those players that fail to make some rosters then become superstars on others. A few examples being Arian Foster, Danny Amendola, and Kurt Warner.
Ganaway spent most of last season on the Rams practice squad, and was only on the active roster for three games, and even then he didn’t get any action. Ganaway has the potential to be a player like a Peyton Hillis, Brandon Jacobs, or Steven Jackson given his build. He could surprise many people and be that hidden gem, Ganaway might have just needed an opportunity to shine. With the Rams having an open competition, this might be the best chance Ganaway ever gets to start, and he needs to take advantage.
It is highly unlikely the Rams keep four funning backs on the roster. Ganaway will have to beat out one of the Rams top three guys in order to not spend another season on the practice squad or get released. With Richardson showing promise last season, and Pead being taken in the second round it his highly unlikely that the Rams cut one of them. The final spot will end up going to either Zac Stacy or Ganaway, and the Rams just took Stacy in the 5th round of this year’s draft, therefore Ganaway might end up being the odd man out. Ganaway will be coming into camp as the big underdog, but with a year under his belt and an opportunity at his doorstep, Ganaway may just rise to the occasion. With Jeff Fisher as the coach, you know the best players are going to make the team and the best players are going to start. If Ganaway can prove during camp that he is the better player, then he has nothing to worry about.