Sports Out West

Is Danny Woodhead the new Darren Sproles?

Photo File: Sports Out West

San Diego Chargers running back Danny Woodhead is one of the main reasons the Bolts are comfortable moving to a running-back-by-committee approach for the 2013 season. 

He looks a lot like the last undersized tailback who used to throw defenses off with his ability to change the pace of the running game.

Darren Sproles gave the Chargers a different look from LaDainian Tomlinson and Ryan Mathews for five seasons, and was especially adept at catching the ball and making big plays out in space. He parlayed his success with the Bolts into a $7.283 million payday as a backup  and then a multi-year deal with the New Orleans Saints.  

For that team, he was worth every penny, and so too, is Woodhead to the 2013 squad. The fifth-year pro has cemented himself as a valuable NFL asset, and he’s the reason the Chargers are comfortable giving him a healthy dose of touches and alleviating some of the heavy burden on the fragile shoulders of Mathews. The league as a whole is largely headed in the direction of having multiple backs share the workload rather than have a traditional workhorse.  

Mike McCoy has a weapon that will make things easier for everyone to transition to a new offense and has proven himself to be capable in any role when called upon. Not only can he build on his careerr-high 40 catches out of the backfield in 2012, but he’s strong in pass protection. That makes him available in any situation, and that’s been cemented by his role in training camp. 

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Michael C. Jones is the managing editor and founder of Sports Out West and a Southern California-based sports journalist. His work is also regularly featured on Yahoo! Sports and SB Nation. You can catch up with him on Twitter: @MikeJonesTweets.