Joe McKnight Says New Jets Running Backs Will Have to ‘Kill Me to Take My Spot’

Joe McKnightEveryone knows that the Jets’ quarterback situation is a mess, but their status at running back is far from settled, either.

There was much shuffling among the New York tailback ranks, with former starter Shonn Greene heading to Tennessee in free agency and newcomers Chris Ivory and Mike Goodson joining the roster.

That fluidity has led some to question running back/returner Joe McKnight‘s chances of surviving final cuts, but McKnight emphatically announced Thursday that he does not plan on going anywhere.

“I don’t care who they bring in, they’re going [to have to] kill me to take my spot. You understand that now?” McKnight told the New York Daily News. “Just because they bring Goodson and Ivory in they already think I’m gone. They just bringing people in for competition, they ain’t bringing nobody in to say, ‘Joe is done.’

“Yeah, I’m going to be on the team, I ain’t going, no damn way,”

Though he has been a very effective kick returner for the Jets — he ranked fifth in the NFL in total kick-return yardage (1,072) and third in yards per return (27.5) last season — McKnight has struggled to contribute significantly to the running game, so much so that Jets coach Rex Ryan briefly moved him to cornerback when Darrelle Revis went down last September.

The USC product totaled just 179 yards on 30 carries in 2012 as the third-stringer behind Greene and Bilal Powell.

Powell remains with the team, and the additions of Ivory (a 700-yard rusher as a rookie in 2010) and Goodson likely put McKnight fourth on the depth chart entering OTAs.

Photo via Facebook/New York Jets

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