Playing with a chip on his shoulder
Jordan Howard no longer has the chip on his shoulder of having to carry an entire offense. No running back should have that type of chip on his shoulder as that is expecting so much of one person. However, while the motivation of being the heart and soul of a unit is gone, there are still lingering motivating factors behind Howard.
The hiring of Matt Nagy seemed to be tied to the start of Jordan Howard trade rumors. Howard for Jarvis Landry made headlines, and when Howard deleted a bunch of pictures from his Instagram, the fire was lit.
He put the photos back up. Matt Nagy has gone to bat for Jordan Howard. Still, there are rumors floating around that he is not in the team’s long-term plans. These are respected reports and writers as well. They are either fishing for something that isn’t there or there is real friction.
The hope is that Jordan Howard can bottle this friction up and use it to explode on his opponents. Howard is a physical runner and when you put an emotional chip on his shoulder or the idea that he is playing for his job, it could be a true motivating factor.
This could be the most motivated, experienced and in shape Howard we ever see. Add in the better offense and we could be cooking.