Jacksonville workhorse Leonard Fournette reportedly entered training camp at a shredded 223 lbs — 15 down from last season and reportedly his lightest since high school. Though all “best shape of his life” reports warrant eye rolls, shedding pounds has often helped RBs make major leaps, especially in the pass-game. Just last year Carlos Hyde dropped 15 and saw his receiving spike from 27 rec and 163 yds to 59 rec and 350 yds, while Le’veon Bell ascended to the elite in his sophomore campaign after losing 20 lbs (45 rec + 399 yds to 83 rec + 854 yds).
Last season Fournette was an absolute beast… most of the time. Known for his angry running and break away speed, Fournette didn’t look in shape for the entire year. During his first six games, Fournette averaged around 4.4 YPC. During his last seven, some of the tread seemed to fall off his tires as he only averaged around 3.1 YPC. This drop off can also be attributed to him spraining his ankle during his sixth game, and carrying less weight can only help his durability and improve his conditioning. With a little less weight holding him back, look for Fournette to become more explosive and more durable down the stretch. Between the line upgrades with Andrew Norwell, coach Doug Marrone promising more third down work, and Fournette trimming himself down, there’s real top-five upside if he can maintain health.