Bill O’Brien: Lamar Miller had too many carries

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien doesn’t want to wear out Lamar Miller.

While talking to the media at the NFL Scouting Combine on Wednesday, Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien said he thought starting running back Lamar Miller carried the ball too much this past season.

“I think he probably carried it a little bit too much early on.” O’Brien said of Miller, via State of the Texans. “We were very, very dependent on him because he’s that type of player. He’s a guy that shows up every day, he’s in excellent condition, plays through pain.”

“30 carries in a couple games, things like that, that’s probably a little bit too much.” O’Brien explained. “We feel like we have a pretty diverse group of running backs so I think in order to get him at his best in January, we probably need to cut down on that early in the year.”

More from Toro Times

Miller carried the ball for a total of 268 times, which led to 1, 078 yards, 4.0 yards per carry and five touchdowns.

Miller was sixth in the NFL when it comes to total carries, Todd Gurley (278), DeMarco Murray (293), David Johnson (293), LeGarrette Blount (299) and Ezekiell Elliott (322) all had more carries than him.

When breaking down Miller’s carries during the season, he had 93 after the first four weeks.. He had 60 carries from weeks 5-8, but he did miss some time due to injury.  He had 72 carries from weeks 10-13. Miller then had 43 carries during weeks 14-15.  He then missed the Texans’ final two regular season games.

I can see what O’Brien is talking about.  93 carries after four games is a lot.

But I’m not sure the Texans really have a running back behind Miller that they truly trust.

Alfred Blue is average at best and we need to see more from guys like Akeem Hunt and Jonathan Grimes.

The Texans would smart to check out the free agent market for a running back  that wouldn’t cost too much.

Guys like Joique Bell, James Starks, Andre Ellington or Christine Michael could come in and help out Miller and the Texans.

Next: Patriots lying about unwillingness to trade Jimmy Garoppolo?