Fantasy Football: Rodney Anderson Rookie Profile
Each year in the NFL Draft, players are drafted much later than their talent would dictate.
The reasons for this can be everything from character concerns to injury history. However, every year when the regular season rolls around, we see certain players “outplay” their draft selection.
One of the players who has a very real possibility of following this trajectory is former Oklahoma Sooners running back, Rodney Anderson. If it weren’t for Anderson’s extensive injury history, we may be discussing him as the best running back of the 2019 class. However, the injuries are a cause for concern and he’s being bumped down draft boards because of it. But that doesn’t mean that you should be all out on the powerful running back…
NFL Scouting Combine Overview
|6'0"/224 pounds||25 reps|
Due to Anderson currently recovering from an ACL injury, he was unable to participate in any of the running or movement drills at the Combine. He was able to put up great numbers in the bench press though and prove that the power part of his game is not a fluke on tape.
Anderson is powerful at the point of attack. He’s able to lower his shoulder and drive through a defender if necessary. The combination of his strength and size allows him to initiate contact and move his opponent backwards to pick up those tough yards. But he’s not only a powerful back…Anderson is smooth in between the tackles.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) February 19, 2019
While Anderson displays good vision, tremendous balance, and great receiving ability, it’s his ability to step up in the big games that makes him an attractive option to NFL teams.
|Year||Rushing Yards||Yard Per Carry Average||Rushing TD's||Receptions/Receiving Yards||Receiving TD's|
These stats will indicate how little Anderson ended up playing throughout his college career due to injuries. However, when he did play in 2017, his numbers were incredible.
You need to come with more than that to stop Rodney Anderson pic.twitter.com/2BU0TlKdlM
— SI College Football (@si_ncaafb) September 1, 2018
But it was the 2018 Rose Bowl that put Anderson’s competitive edge on display. In that game, he had 26 carries for 201 yards on the ground and 2 touchdowns. Not only are those insane numbers, but that was against the Georgia Bulldogs defense that was one of the top defenses in all of college football that season.
Anderson can play when he’s on the field. As stated before though, the only issue is whether or not he’ll be on the field enough to be useful for fantasy football.
When healthy, Anderson reminds me of his former college teammate, Joe Mixon. They are both smooth runners, have underrated speed and have great hands out of the backfield. While Anderson doesn’t have the elusiveness that Mixon does, he does have an edge on him in the power department. Overall, Anderson is a really well-balanced running back and could be a star at the next level.
I'm becoming more and more impressed with Rodney Anderson. Good in pass protection, great acceleration in the open field and has excellent hands out of the backfield. pic.twitter.com/KCLKG1nnWx
— Kyle Yates (@KyleYNFL) February 14, 2019
There’s an obvious risk though with Rodney Anderson and that should be restated over and over again. There’s a possibility that Anderson could only see 100 carries in the NFL before he injures himself again and no team is willing to give him another shot. Or he could never be injured again and be a dominant fantasy force for years to come…
Since we have no way of predicting injuries, he’s the epitome of a boom-or-bust player. If he falls to a place in your Dynasty rookie drafts where you can absorb the loss of him not panning out, he’s certainly worth pulling the trigger on. For me personally, I’m unwilling to draft him until around pick #15 in a Dynasty rookie draft.
There’s no doubting the talent with Anderson. It’s just a matter of health at this point and whether or not he’ll be available for you for the long run.