FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. – When the Falcons took Bijan Robinson with the No. 8 overall pick in this year's draft, one of the first questions on everyone's minds had to do with Tyler Allgeier. The former fifth round pick was the biggest surprise for the Falcons in 2023.
After starting the year as a healthy scratch in Week 1, Allgeier went on to become the Falcons leading rushers and one of the most productive rookies in last year's entire class. Allgeier finished the season with 1,035 rushing yards on 210 carries. He averaged 4.9 yards a carry in 2023, one of the top clips in the league, in Atlanta's run-often offense.
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But with the addition of Robinson and with Cordarrelle Patterson returning for the final year of his contract, what does all of this mean for Allgeier? Let's discuss.
Tori: I said this before and I'll say it again, the drafting of Bijan Robinson isn't a knock against Tyler Allgeier. I think if anything, it's a decision that compliments Allgeier and one that may help him in the long run.
However, the addition of Robinson does change my expectations for the sheer numbers of Allgeier's second year. If everyone remains healthy through 2023, that means Arthur Smith is working to split carries between three very capable backs. The good news is all three have different skill sets even though they play the same position.
Allgeier is thunder. Robinson is lightning. And Patterson? He wants to get back to his 2021 role, which was a little bit of everything. In terms of problems to have, this is a good one.
This does (in my mind at least) mean that the chances of Allgeier having a 1,000-rushing yard season seems a lot less likely. You don't invest in Robinson at No. 8 overall if he doesn't get a brunt of the carries. He has to. But Allgeier has shown time and time again that he is capable of being a productive and necessary part of this offense. How they work in tandem and work off of each other dictates the production we see from Allgeier and vice versa. The expectation for me goes beyond carries and how they're split up, but what each individual does with said opportunities.
Scott: Tyler Allgeier made it clear this offseason that he wants to be an all-around back. That means receiver and pass protection prowess working out of the backfield, in addition to being the elusive, bruiser back he already is.
That's definitely in the cards for a versatile talent committed to improvement and not resting on laurels after setting a franchise rookie record for rushing yards. There are a few other readymade all-around backs already here, meaning Cordarrelle Patterson and Bijan Robinson might get more opportunities out of the backfield.
The more Allgeier can show during training camp, the more involved he'll be on passing downs in the fall. I still think Allgeier's on the field a lot, with Robinson and even Patterson moving all around the formation with Tyler staying in the backfield. I also think we could see Allgeier and Robinson on the field at the same time, with one going in motion or both staying in the backfield.
The Falcons will be unpredictable and tax defenses in search of advantageous matchups. Head coach/play caller Arthur Smith will find plenty for Allgeier because he's so tough to bring down.
Now on to Tori's point: Getting him to 1,000 yards seems less likely considering all the options available at running back.
There's another stat that will show his value within the position group: yards per carry. If that remains high – it was at 4.9 ypc last season – then Allgeier's doing his job well.
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