Yesterday, the New England Patriots have released fullback Joey Iosefa after a two-week stint on the team's active roster. The move shows that the team trusts the players on the current running back depth chart - particularly its newest member: Steven Jackson.
While Iosefa has shown promise against the Tennessee Titans, carrying the ball 14 times for a team-leading 51 yards, he has disappeared against the New York Jets. Iosefa saw only one carry - the 3rd down play during which Sebastian Vollmer injured his foot - and was stopped for no gain. Instead, the big back snaps were given to recently acquired free agent Steven Jackson.
While Jackson was far from a difference-maker in New York - a by-product of shaky offensive line play - he did show a lot of initial burst when hitting the holes. And despite finishing the day with just 15 yards on seven carries, the coaching staff apparently thinks enough of his potential to perform in the offense to expose its only other bigger running back, Iosefa, to being claimed by another team.
Time will tell if Jackson's role within the Patriots' offensive attack will indeed grow. Given the injuries to Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola paired with inconsistent pass blocking from the offensive line, New England has to hope that it will. Releasing Iosefa can be interpreted as a first sign of confidence in the veteran.