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Fantasy Football: It’s Now or Never for Three Running Backs

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Who are three running backs in do-or-die seasons, where they will either become fantasy stalwarts or fantasy football busts?


Introduction

Fantasy football players are a strange group. This is not a diss or knock on them. I am one of them, and we are weird. We have quirks that cannot be explained. We somehow have both attachment and trust issues, and sometimes we have superstitions that go beyond the rational.

Sammy Watkins. Sammy Watkins is a perfect example of how fantasy football players cannot and should not be trusted with decisions. Every year — every single year — Sammy Watkins goes off in week one. He’s on someone’s team, clogging up their bench, and he scores 20-30 fantasy points and suddenly has a huge trade market.

I will say this right now — do not bother with Sammy Watkins. He always goes to a good situation, always has huge potential, always has that big week one, and then eventually he always hurts you. Watkins is that ex who promised to change, and does for like one week, and then suddenly your stuff is in a box on your porch, and you are left a crying mess in your room wondering where it all went wrong.

So now, we’ve come to the point of the article. Who is the next Sammy Watkins? Who is the next guy who could’ve been, but never was? Below I will be giving you three running backs who are in do-or-die seasons. Will either become fantasy stalwarts or fantasy football busts?

Three Running Backs in Do-or-Die Situations

1. David Montgomery

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Chicago Bears — ADP 2.12

David Montgomery. Oh the hype that came with his rookie year. Strong, quick, and with receiving skills, this guy was poised to be a perennial top 10 back. Look at this play for example:

Instead, we have seen wild inconsistency and a real struggle to create big plays out of Monty and the Bears’ offense. With only one 1,000-yard season in three years and a yards per carry average of under four for his career, the burst that we hoped he would have just hasn’t materialized. Averaging seven touchdowns on the ground per year will not get it done, either.

As a receiver, Montgomery averages about 40 catches, 300 yards, and 1 touchdown. For a late second-round pick, you need more. You cannot realistically rely on Monty to be much more than a solid flex play at this point.

Who should you take instead?

At his ADP, I am much more comfortable taking players like A.J. Brown, J.K. Dobbins, and Mark Andrews.

2. Clyde Edwards-Helaire

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Kansas City Chiefs — ADP 4.05

Clyde Edwards-Helaire — CEH — is not a guy you can trust in fantasy right now. He made this list because his situation is still driving his price and the hopes of fantasy football players up. Coming out of LSU, I was one of those people who were very wary of the new KC running back as his metrics were a bit concerning.

CEH ran a very slow 40 time for a running back with a 4.60 time, meaning he wasn’t going to be able to outrun the modern-day NFL linebacker. He was also the beneficiary of the greatest offense in NCAA history led by Joe Burrow, Justin Jefferson, and Ja’Marr Chase. When the weapons are that good, there is no way a team is focusing on stopping the run.

So, this is it. This is CEH’s last shot to be a thing. Ronald Jones has arrived in town and if Clyde cannot beat him out for the starting job and do so decisively, it is time to drop him to low-end flex or bench territory. Honestly, I don’t even know if the Rojo signing doesn’t spell the end of CEH as a starter before the season even starts.

Who should you take instead?

At his ADP, I would much rather have guys like Chris Godwin, Darren Waller, and Terry McLaurin.

3. Josh Jacobs

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Oakland Raiders — ADP 4.12

This is the one guy on this list whose ADP feels slightly low. It isn’t like there is significant competition for touches in Las Vegas right now, and a new head coach with significant offensive knowledge can only help Jacobs. At least it should. That is why he is on this list. Josh Jacobs has yet to ascend to the level we thought he could be when he was drafted in the first round.

Even the Raiders had said much of the same thing when they declined his fifth-year option. This is make-or-break for Jacobs. If he doesn’t show up and show out, he will be moving out of the desert and probably into a complementary role next season. Jacobs’ rookie year was his best so far, and that is concerning. Is his style too physical? Does he not have the right burst to get past the second level?

Jacobs has a lot of questions to answer on a team that should allow him to have plenty of running room with the addition of Devante Adams. A spread offense is great for backs. Josh Jacobs better take advantage or Las Vegas will find someone who will.

Who should you take instead?

I like him at his ADP, but alternatives like D.J. Moore, James Conner, and Amari Cooper could prove better.

So that is the list. Writing these up for you folks is nothing but fun, and I genuinely hope you find these articles to be helpful and, most of all, enjoyable. I cannot predict the future, but I believe in what the numbers and the eye test show me. That is what fantasy football is all about! Be sure to check out some of the fantastic articles my teammates have written like this one!


Thank you for reading my article on three running backs in do-or-die situations! Have a great day, week, month, or however long it is before we see you on here again! Please give me a follow on Twitter @FFbycommittee Remember, it’s never goodbye. It’s just ’til next time.

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