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Jackson cleared to play, but Spiller to start

Posted Nov 21, 2012

As expected Fred Jackson will be back on the practice field Wednesday with his teammates as he’s been medically cleared after completing his concussion protocol Tuesday.

“It was good. They did everything they had to in order to get me cleared. Following protocol I think is more important than anything,” said Jackson. “Following the protocol and making sure I’m fine and can get out there and play.”

“As I understand it he has been fully cleared to play and we expect him to play this weekend,” said head coach Chan Gailey.

The only change however, is that the rotation between Jackson and C.J. Spiller sounds as if it will lean more heavily toward Spiller Sunday against the Colts.

“C.J. will start, but we’re still going to play Fred,” said Gailey. “It takes two. It does. So Fred will get quite a few snaps, but C.J. will start and get the majority of the snaps.”

Through the first 10 games Spiller has 109 carries to Jackson’s 75. He also has five more receptions than Jackson (31 to 25) and one more touchdown (5 to 4), but Jackson has also missed almost four full games this season, while Spiller has only missed most of one after being injured early in the Week 3 game at Cleveland.

Spiller isn’t reading much into the impending playing time rotation for Sunday in Indianapolis.

“Every time my number’s called, I just try to help my team win,” said Spiller. “Don’t try to go out there and be Superman, or be the hero, just go out there and play the way I’ve been playing these last 10 games. And then at the same time, we’re going to use Fred, too. I’ll be ready for it. It’s not like I won’t be prepared, I’ll be ready to go come Sunday.”   

Jackson isn’t concerning himself with the number of carries he gets Sunday either. He’s just focused on making the most of the times when he has the ball in his hands.

“It’s focus on what I can do and all I can do is go out there and take advantage of the opportunities I’m given,” he said. “People are going to want different people out there. People are going to have their opinions about what should go on and things like that. But you can’t focus on that. All you can do is take care of your job and be the guy that you need to be when called upon.”

Knowing Jackson is very effective at getting the tough yards, Gailey is more than happy to welcome him back to the lineup especially when it comes to the offense’s effectiveness in the red zone.

“He helps us because he’s a great football player,” said Gailey. “Great football players help you wherever you are (on the field). He’s going to help us get down there as well as score touchdowns.”