Corey Clement realizes something that it would benefit the meeker of us to remember — if you want something, you gotta shoot your shot.
Prior to the Eagles’ ultra-satisfying 34-13 win over the New York Giants Thursday night, running back Corey Clement apparently wanted to let general manager Howie Roseman something about his rumored pursuit of a running back.
Corey Clement says he told Howie Roseman before the game that he didn’t need to add a runner. Roseman challenged him to prove it.— Les Bowen (@LesBowen) October 12, 2018
With Jay Ajayi out for the rest of the season with a torn ACL and veteran Darren Sproles having missed the last five games with a balky hamstring, it’s understandable why the Eagles have been connected to top running backs Le’Veon Bell, David Johnson and LeSean McCoy.
As BLG noted in his 10 takeaways piece, the Eagles do need some help in the backfield. Last night, Smallwood rushed 18 times for 51 yards (2.8 avg), with a long of just 8 yards, and Clement, who is still on a snap count as he deals with a nagging quad injury, ran 11 times for 43 yards (3.9 avg), with a long of 14 yards. He also added 3 receptions for 26 yards.
Clement has clearly shown to the better player over the last year and a half, and as he gets healthier he should see more carries. You’ve also got to love the boldness of going up to the team’s general manager and telling him there’s no need to trade for a running back. That takes cajones.
Clement’s bold claim, and Roseman’s response for him to prove it, is reminiscent of a similar challenge made by a former Phillie legend.
During the 2008 Phillies season, right-handed slugger Jayson Werth was not an everyday player, playing mostly against left-handed pitchers as left-handed hitter Geoff Jenkins played against most right-handers.
As noted in this Washington Post piece, Manuel’s message to Werth was simple.
He finally won the job for good by June, after Manuel challenged him to improve against right-handed pitching.
Werth went on to become of the core members of those teams that won five straight division titles and a World Series victory in 2008.
Can Clement do the same thing?
Unless Roseman swings a deal during the Birds’ long layoff, he’ll get the chance. He showed a lot last year when he ran for 321 yards (4.3 avg) and scored 6 total TDs, with one huge play after another in the Super Bowl. This season, he’s averaging 4.1 yards per rushing attempt, with 155 yards and 2 TDs on 38 carries.
He’s a strong, hard runner and has proven to be a solid weapon out of the backfield. But he has not proven himself as an every down, workhorse back, and it’s hard to see that in there just yet. Of course, it was hard to see Werth becoming a guy who would one day earn a seven-year, $125 million contract, so you never know.