Jamaal Charles Biography

Jamaal Charles Biography on Monsters and Critics

Summary

"Jamaal RaShaad Charles" (born December 27, 1986 in ) is an American football running back for the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Chiefs in the third round of the 2008 NFL Draft. He played college football at Texas.

Charles' first year as a Chief was hardly in the spotlight; as a backup to halfback Larry Johnson, Charles rushed only 67 times for 357 yards. His breakout season came the following year. In his sophomore year, Charles rushed 190 times for 1,120 yards, despite only starting 10 games after running back Larry Johnson was suspended. Shortly thereafter, Johnson was released, leaving Charles as Kansas City's starting halfback.

Early years

In his junior year, Charles ran for 2,051 yards and 25 touchdowns while leading Memorial High School of Port Arthur, Texas to the 5A Division II quarterfinals. He was named first team all-state by the Texas Sports Writers Association and second team all-state by the Associated Press.

Charles followed up his stellar junior season by rushing for 2,056 yards and 25 touchdowns his senior year. The Associated Press named him to their first team all-state squad and he was declared the "Houston Chronicle" area offensive MVP. Charles was also named to the 2005 "Parade" All-America Football Team and was the District 22-5A Player of the Year both his junior and senior years. Charles participated in the 2005 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

He is a two-time recipient of the Willie Ray Smith Award he was drafted in the 4th round, which is given to the southeast Texas offensive MVP.

In July 2003, the summer between his sophomore and junior years, Charles won the bronze medal in the 400m hurdles at the IAAF World Youth Championships. He went on to win the 110m hurdles and 300m hurdles Texas 5A state championships with times of 13.69 and 36.03 seconds, respectively, his senior year.

College career

Track

On March 11, 2006, Charles placed fourth in the NCAA 60-meter indoor track and field championship finals. On May 14, 2006 Charles captured his first conference title and the third Big 12 100-meter title for Texas by winning the event in 10.23 at the Big 12 outdoor meet. He led the 200 meter race after the preliminary round but elected not to participate in the final, as Texas had the Big 12 team title well in hand. On June 10, at the NCAA outdoor competition, Charles took a fifth in the 100 meter finals, edging out UTEP's stand-out sprinter Churandy Martina (sixth place), who earlier in the year ran a 9.76 (wind-aided) 100-meters. Charles also placed seventh in the 200 meter finals, and ran the third leg of the 4 x 100 Texas Longhorn relay team, earning a fifth place in the finals. Charles' efforts helped the Longhorns earn a third place showing for the men's track and field team, the highest since a second place finish at the 1997 NCAA finals. Thus, Charles completed his first collegiate track season as a four-time All-American (60m indoor, 100m outdoor, 200m outdoor, 4x100m relay outdoor).

Football

In his true freshman season with the 2005 Texas Longhorn football team, Charles rushed 119 times for 878 yards and 11 touchdowns, averaging 7.4 yards per carry, and assisting his team in winning a national championship.

After a disappointing performance in his sophomore campaign, where Charles did not reach the 1,000 yards rushing mark, Charles opted not to participate in track so he could focus on getting bigger for football.

In the summer prior to the 2007 season some observers believed he was the fastest college running back in the up-coming season. CBS SportsLine said, 'Track star Jamaal Charles has the potential at running back to enjoy a break-out season and possesses the kind of breakaway speed that lead to an 80-yard rush and a 70-yard catch last season.' Athlon Sports remarked, 'Over the last two years, running back Jamaal Charles has run for 1,702 yards at 6.2 yards per carry with 18 touchdowns despite starting only four games. He has the job to himself and should have a breakout year.'

With the 2007 Texas Longhorn football team, Charles rushed for over 1,400 yards, with an average of more than six yards per carry. Early in the season, Mack Brown and Greg Davis hinted that Jamaal Charles could face less playing time as a result of his fumbling problems. Charles says that he feels a deep remorse over his fumbles and feels that he is the biggest reason the team lost to the Oklahoma Sooners in the 2007 Red River Shootout. Texas running backs coach Ken Rucker and former Longhorn running back Earl Campbell have both worked with Charles on his ball handling. Greg Davis said he wants to get the ball to Charles 'in space', on pitches and passes, instead of in heavy traffic up the center.

On October 28, 2007, Charles rushed for 290 yards, the most ever against the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the fourth-highest total in Texas Longhorns history. His 216 yards in the fourth quarter were just six shy of the NCAA record for a single quarter set by the University of Washington Huskies's Corey Dillon in 1996. For these accomplishments, Charles won a fan vote for AT&T All-America Player of the Week.

Charles decided to forgo his senior season with Texas in favor of joining the NFL as a professional football player in the 2008 NFL Draft. This decision came after earlier statements that he would stay with Texas. In November Jamaal Charles said he would return for his senior season rather than enter professional football in the NFL. Sources reported in December 2007 that Charles and fellow Longhorn Jermichael Finley had filed paperwork with the NFL to evaluate how high they might be drafted if they decided enter professional football in the NFL Draft instead of returning for their senior season. Mack Brown did not comment about specific players but said, 'We always try to help our guys get as much information as possible when it comes to the NFL. We encourage and help them go through the process... All of our underclassmen have told us they will be coming back, but if you're playing well enough to be considered an NFL prospect, going through the process can only help you better understand it and realize what you need to work on to improve your status.' Charles said he would not go pro unless he was predicted to be chosen in the first round of the draft. After the 2007 Holiday Bowl Charles said, 'Right now, I'm probably coming back. I didn't think I did that good in the game. Next year maybe I'll be up for the Heisman. I will come back.' From 2000–2007 the Longhorns have had sevenplayers taken in the Top 10 draft picks by the NFL, more than any other school.On January 2 Charles announced he received and was happy with the results of his draft evaluation and that he would declare for the draft.

Despite skipping his senior year, Charles ranks fourth in the list of total-rushing yards by a UT player, behind Ricky Williams, Cedric Benson, and Earl Campbell, with 3,328yards. Williams and Campbell each won the Heisman Trophy in their senior season.

Professional career

Kansas City Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs selected Charles in the third round of the 2008 NFL Draft with the 73rd pick. The back thought he would go early in the second round but said he had no regrets about leaving college early. Charles was expected to begin his career as the Chiefs' No. 3 back behind Larry Johnson and Kolby Smith.

In Charles first professional football game, he rushed for 28 yards on 5 carries against the New England Patriots. He also recorded two catches for six yards. The Chiefs would go on to lose the game 17-10.

In Charles first professional season he ended with 357 yards rushing and 272 yards receiving, but what was most impressive in his rookie season was his 5.3 yard per carry average. In week 9 of the 2008 season with Larry Johnson out, Charles was given the bulk of the carries and managed 106 yards on 18 carries against Tampa Bay. In week 16 of the 2008 season Charles managed to go over 100 yards receiving with 3 catches for 102 yards against Miami.

During Week 9 of the 2009 NFL season, Larry Johnson was released and Charles was promoted to first-string but split carries with Kolby Smith. In his limited action Charles managed 36 yards on only 6 carries for a 6 yard per carry average. During Week 10 of the 2009 NFL season, Charles ran for 103 yards on 18 carries including a 44 yard TD run, the Chiefs first rushing TD of the year.

In week 11 of the 2009 NFL season, against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Charles returned the opening kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown. He went on to rush for 58 yards and also had had a 2 yard reception for a touchdown. The Chiefs won the game 27-24 in overtime. Charles was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week.

In week 14 of the 2009 NFL Season, against the Buffalo Bills, Charles ran for a 76 yard touchdown,one of the longest runs in Chiefs history.

In week 17 of the 2009 NFL Season, on the road against the Denver Broncos, Charles rushed for 259 yards on 25 carries, scoring 2 touchdowns and breaking the Chiefs' single-game rushing record. The Chiefs won 44-24. Charles also became the only player in NFL history to rush for 1,100 or more yards in 200 or fewer carries. He also became the only running back in NFL history to rush average 5.9 yards per carry, run 1000 yards and catch 40 balls.

External links

(Kansas City Chiefs bio)

(Texas Longhorns bio)

Credit

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article about Jamaal Charles.