Throughout the preseason, I'm going to post a random series of posts of "things that ______ me." This can be things that scare me, that excite me, that disturb me, that arouse me, or that incite some other emotion that may or be worthy of a post.
Don't bother asking what the schedule of these posts will be, because if we've learned anything over my years of blogging, it's that I'm about as consistent at posting as Kenny Britt is at staying off the blotter.
In the first edition, I'm going to talk a bit about Arian Foster. "Foster?!" says you. "Yes, Foster," says I.
Originally, I was going to talk about having a bit of concern regarding Foster's work load. See, despite missing three games in the regular season last year, Foster still ranked sixth in carries and fifth in receptions among running backs.
Then I thought, "Well, we still have Ben Tate backing him up and Justin Forsett seems to be a pretty solid third option, so there should be plenty of opportunity to give him rest." Besides, his usage is pretty consistent with the most badass of running backs past and present.
So I was kind of without a post, and I started thinking about other things that scare me (like spiders and light beer). Then I watched the first preseason game.Late in the season last year, Foster had a few games where he seemed to start fumbling a bit more. In defense of the man, I drafted up this post arguing that Foster's new fumbles were just a blip on the radar.
When Arian fumbled in the first quarter on Saturday night, a rush of bad feelings returned. I immediately remembered writing that post and silently cursed him for making me look bad (I mean, what's the point of football if not to make amateur bloggers feel good about themselves?).
I also recall that after that post, Arian proceeded to put the ball on the ground at a relatively alarming rate in the post-season, even if he excelled otherwise.
*Note: The official box score of the first playoff game against Cincinnati says that Foster had zero fumbles, but I recently rewatched that game and he definitely lost his grip twice. Why they were not listed as fumbles is beyond me, but also irrelevant.
I'm not at all worried about Foster's ability to continue to see the holes, to be incredibly shifty, to be a great receiver, and to be awesomely entertaining. I'm just scared about his ability to hold on to the ball.
And, to be fair, this isn't a worry level on the magnitude where I fear for the future of my children, but more of something where I will have a nagging feeling in the back of my mind every Sunday until he proves otherwise.
Whether or not something has changed in Foster's grip, running style, or something else is hard to say, but I can only hope that the only reason to ever refer to this post in the future is to say something along the lines of, "Well, that was dumb."
For now, Foster's fumble on Saturday, paired with the way he finished off last season, has my level of concerned a little bit peaked.