JACKSONVILLE, Fla - The Jacksonville Jaguars made one last roster move on the opening day of free agency, agreeing to terms with Minnesota Vikings running back Toby Gerhart on a three-year deal worth $10.5 million, late Tuesday night.
The move fills one hole at the running back position for the Jaguars who earlier Tuesday released Justin Forsett after a disappointing 2013 season riddled with injuries. The Jaguars also decided to let running back Maurice Jones-Drew test the free agent market, leaving them extremely thin at the position before the addition of Gerhart.
Gerhart, originally a second-round pick (No. 51 overall) by the Vikings in the 2010 NFL Draft, has spent the past four seasons backing up Adrian Peterson so he hasn’t seen a lot of action. However, he has flashed when given the opportunity. Gerhart carried the ball 36 times in 2013 for 283 yards with an impressive 7.9 yards per carry. In his four seasons with Minnesota he rushed for 1,305 yards and five touchdowns on 276 carries.
Some might remember Gerhart from his college career at Stanford where in 2009 he led the nation in rushing yards (1,871), rushing touchdowns (28), total touchdowns (28) and total points scored (172). He finished second in the 2009 Heisman Trophy voting to current New Orleans Saints running back Mark Ingram.
Gerhart will join Jordan Todman and Denard Robinson in the Jags backfield for the time being. However, the team is likely to add more pieces to the running back position before the beginning of the 2014 season.