Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett has done an about-face on running back Melvin Gordon.
Hackett announced Wednesday that Gordon would start Sunday against the New York Jets. The decision comes after the coach met with Gordon following Monday night's second-half benching.
"It was a great talk," Hackett said. "Love Melvin, have so much respect for him as a pro for all he's done in this league. We'll keep all that stuff private."
Following Monday's 19-16 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, Gordon told NFL Network's Bridget Condon he didn't know why he was benched in the second half and overtime. The running back added that it wasn't due to injury.
On Tuesday, Hackett cited the lack of plays as the offense sputtered for the reason Gordon was saddled to the bench. That excuse didn't hold much water as the Broncos ran 33 plays in the final two-plus quarters, relying on Latavius Murray (27 snaps) and Mike Boone (19), while Gordon played just eight plays in the first half.
Gordon was on the outs in Denver after a fumble in Week 4 against the Las Vegas Raiders. Then Javonte Williams suffered a season-ending injury that changed the outlook.
Maybe Hackett and the coaching staff have changed their minds about Gordon. Maybe they'll start the back and still give Murray and Boone more burn as the game wears on.
Actions speak louder than words. We'll see if Wednesday's words are hot air on Sunday against New York.