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Jonathan Taylor on ‘Learning Experience’ 2022 Season; Challenge of Slowing Down Justin Jefferson

Jonathan Taylor on 'Learning Experience' 2022 Season; Challenge of Slowing Down Justin Jefferson


The 2021 season was a magical ride for Jonathan Taylor.

Selected by the Indianapolis Colts in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft, Taylor, after an adjustment period the first half of his rookie season, really started to take off from there, showing off his elite blend of athleticism, speed, strength and vision to close out 2020 already considered one of the top running backs in the league.

He followed up his rookie year with one of the best overall years by a running back in recent NFL history in 2021. Taylor set single-season franchise records for rushing yards (1,811; winning the league rushing title by a wide margin) and rushing touchdowns (18), and was named an unanimous Associated Press First Team All-Pro and Pro Bowl selection.

Not bad for a franchise that has a storied history at the running back position that includes the likes of Edgerrin James, Lydell Mitchell, Marshall Faulk, Eric Dickerson and Lenny Moore.

Understandably, Taylor had some high expectations heading into his third NFL season in 2022. Yet, while there have certainly been performances reminiscent of his elite 2021 campaign, a variety of factors — injuries, shuffles along the offensive line, etc. — have limited Taylor’s productivity now as the 2022 regular season enters its final phase.

His numbers entering Saturday’s Week 15 road matchup against the Minnesota Vikings are certainly nothing to sneeze at — he’s played in 10 of the Colts’ 13 games and has collected 192 rushing attempts for 861 yards (4.5 avg.) and four touchdowns on the ground. With solid health, Taylor is certain to earn a 1,000-yard rushing season for a third straight year to begin his career, and he would be flirting with entering the top 10 in NFL history for the most rushing yards by a player in their first three years.

Similarly to the Colts’ performance as a team this year, entering the Vikings matchup with a 4-8-1 record, Taylor acknowledged Wednesday his season has seen its share of adversity, but the fact the Colts…

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