Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Notebook; Todman Got Assistant's Message

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Notebook; Todman Got Assistant's Message

Article excerpt

Byline: Vito Stellino

When Jaguars tight ends coach Ron Middleton gave the players a passionate message Wednesday night before their final home game against Tennessee, running back Jordan Todman took it to heart.

Coach Gus Bradley often has assistants address the team before games and said Middleton has a lot of credibility with players because he played in the league for a decade.

"He said to play with passion and that we all have a story when we're on the football field," Todman said. "Write the ending to your story. Leave it on the field and show everybody your story and show them who you are. It was touching for me."

Todman wrote his own story on his first carry in the fourth quarter when he bolted 62 yards for a touchdown that wrapped up the Jaguars' 21-13 victory.

Todman said it was the first time he'd run that particular play in a game and Bradley said a fake reverse to Marqise Lee helped make it work.

"It did hold in the end," Bradley said. "At times, the defender can lose his eyes, not sure where the ball is. There was a little bit of hesitation. That created a cutback seam."

Todman entered the game because starter Toby Gerhart suffered a rib injury. Todman, who is mainly a kick returner, said he's not frustrated with his playing time.

"You can't be frustrated," Todman said. "You control what you can control. Gus talked about when they call your phone, pick it up. When your number is called, be ready to answer. I try to do that."


Before Gerhart was injured, he was a big factor in the team's second-quarter touchdown drive. He had runs of 14, nine and one yards on three consecutive plays for two first downs. He finished the game with 53 yards on 12 carries.

"It all started with Toby with the runs he made," Bradley said. "Yards after contact wasn't something Toby has done a good job with. The team felt it on the sideline when he made the long run and had yards after contact. The whole team because energized because of that."

"Things were kind of stagnant offensively and we got that little spark, got rolling, and carried that momentum in the second half," said Gerhart, who will be evaluated next week as to whether he can play in the season finale at Houston. …

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