For the first time in weeks, during their tie game against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, Steven Jackson was clearly the St. Louis Rams' No. 1 running back. Daryl Richardson had seven carries for 58 yards, so he was—as usual—active and effective. The difference was just how many carries Steven Jackson got. Off the bye week, Jeff Fisher gave him a full-on Eddie George workload; he got 29 carries in five quarters, for 101 yards and a touchdown. (While he was at it, he made two catches for 26 yards, one of which salvaged a crucial and unlikely first down late in regulation.)
That's the promise of Richardson's presence on the Rams, of course: He'll get his, leaving Jackson free to take two-thirds or so of his usual workload without collapsing in on himself. But of late it's been closer to half, with the Rams' offensive shortcomings and a weirdly run-averse offense pushing Jackson's carries down even as Richardson got his.
If Week 10, the Rams' chance to restart for the second half, was any indication, that won't be happening again. Jackson's not going to average 30 carries a game, of course, but 20, at least, seems within reach for the rest of the season. It worked on Sunday, outcome aside, so why not?