Where To Spend Late Picks in Your Draft: RBs (Fantasy Football)

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Drafting an RB early in your draft can be a rollercoaster of emotions. One day you are high-fiving the room because you snagged CMC, and then two weeks later, in the 2020 season, you are burying your head in your hands when he is injured in Week 2. This rollercoaster gave birth to the zero RB or hero RB strategy, which can help soften the blow slightly when you lose an RB to an injury, often because your draft capital was not as high to begin with. So, understanding the fragility of the most aggressive position in fantasy football, we are constantly looking for late-round options that could hit.

A reminder that all of the RBs mentioned here are currently being drafted after round 12, courtesy of the UDK’s ADP comparison tool on the website, and that we are using 12-team, 0.5 PPR data.

Kendre Miller, New Orleans Saints, 12.01

With news breaking recently that Alvin Kamara would receive a three-game suspension, we did see Miller’s ADP fluctuate slightly, but it shouldn’t be enough to take away his late-round potential. His ADP moved again when he suffered a sprained knee in the preseason game against the Chiefs. It didn’t seem to matter as he came back and wowed people in a game against the Chargers.

The Saints drafted Miller in the third round, even though he was still recovering from an MCL injury he sustained in the 2022 Fiesta Bowl. The RB room in New Orleans did gain Jamaal Williams from Detroit, and we all know that Williams had literally a gazillion TDs last year so you can bet on some regression there. Miller’s floor could be simply the third RB, who becomes a change-of-pace option and could break some runs via his fast twitch and explosive running style. However, his ceiling could be very high. With his strong vision, Miller could easily slide into the RB1 role with Kamara gone and earn future snaps when Kamara returns.

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Jaylen Warren, Pittsburgh Steelers, 13.04

I am a big believer that we will see positive TD regression for Kenny Pickett this year, and therefore I am all in for all the offensive weapons in Pittsburgh. I know it feels weird to say. Najee will be the primary recipient of the improved offense but don’t count out Jaylen Warren. Sure, he only ran for around 400 yards last season, but his 4.9 yards per attempt was tied for the 9th best among RBs with at least 20 attempts. And he can still be successful even with Najee on the field; there were two weeks when both men were top-24 RBs. Jaylen Warren is a great insurance policy to pair with Najee, and Jaylen Warren could be a star if Najee goes down. Get a great backup with the chance to succeed on his own in the 13th round? Yes, please.

Zach Evans, Los Angeles Rams, 20.03

You might not know the name, Zach Evans. He is a rookie RB for the Rams who, after two years at TCU, transferred to Ole Miss and ran for almost 900 yards and eight TDs in 2022. The depth in the RB room in Los Angeles behind Cam (eron) Akers is Kyren Williams, Evans, Ronnie Rivers, and Royce Freeman. Williams was not great his rookie year, not even getting to 200 yards rushing. The RB2 spot is there for the taking for Evans, and knowing McVay’s tendency to bench a player when they don’t perform, Evans could even stand a chance to grab Akers’ job if he has a few down weeks. You might be able to get Evans on the waiver wire post-draft, and he could easily be cut loose after the picture of the offense in Los Angeles comes into better focus.

Zamir White, Las Vegas Raiders, 15.02

If you have a plethora of Josh Jacobs shares it has been a scary offseason. The calmness seems to be settling in as it was reported this week that Jacobs will end his holdout before Week 1 and be with the team and ready for the regular season. This is excellent news for the 2022 RB star and even more reason why you should target his backup Zamir White at the end of the draft. First of all, White’s ADP might go even lower with the Jacobs announcement, so do yourself a favor and buy the dip. Also, we know that players that do not participate in the preseason have a slightly higher risk of injury in the regular season, and for someone who had 90% of the team’s rushing attempts last season, it seems like a potential for the glass house to shatter. White could be there to pick up the pieces.

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Super Deep Options: Evan Hull (Colts), Sean Tucker (Bucs), Rico Dowdle (Cowboys), Jerome Ford (Browns)


Ryan Manse says:

Can we get a 12 team supeflex mock ep?

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