2023 NFL Draft Rookie Profile: Tank Bigsby (Fantasy Football)

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As we close the door on the epic 2022 fantasy season, we open the window to the dynasty offseason and the rookies that it brings. Whether you are a seasoned dynasty player or fresh to the scene, you may have heard how deep this 2023 rookie RB class is. We all remember the 2022 NFL draft and the lack of big-name RBs after Jason’s poster boy Breece Hall, but 2023 should be an entirely different ball game. The odds-on favorite is Bijan Robinson, and trust me, you will see why in his rookie profile, but there are some amazing athletes behind Bijan. Let’s begin with Cartavious “Tank” Bigsby, RB from Auburn. In these rookie profiles, we will look at the athlete’s college production profile, check out what is on tape, and analyze their potential fantasy outlook in 2023 and beyond. Let’s dive in with Tank!

Editors Note: This article is part of our Rookie Profile series going on until the 2023 NFL Draft. For more on each rookie, check out Andy, Mike, and Jason’s exclusive rookie rankings and production profiles found only in the Dynasty Pass, part of the UDK+ for 202.

College Production Profile

Bigsby was born and raised in Hogansville, Georgia, and ran for over 1600 yards and 27 TDs his senior year in high school. By the time he committed to Auburn University as a four-star recruit, he was ranked as the 4th best overall recruit in Georgia by 247 Sports. With an impressive first year at Auburn, finishing with 834 yards, he was voted the SEC newcomer/freshman of the year, only playing ten games. Tank continued to impress in his second year at Auburn, doubling his TDs and rushing for over 1000 yards. He ended his college career with a stat line of almost 1000 rushing yards, 10 TDs, and 30 receptions for 180 yards.

Year Games Attempts Rush Yards YPA Rush   TD Receptions Receiving    Yards
2022 12 244 976 5.5 10 30 180
2021 12 238 1008 4.8 10 15 112
2020 10 172 834 6 5 11 84


This article was written before the NFL combine, which Bigsby has been invited to, so after that event, more measurable data should be released.

Age Height Weight 247 Sports
21.4 6’0″ 213 Four-star recruit

When you look at Bigsby, he screams, “this is what an NFL RB looks like.” At a solid 6’ and just over 210 pounds, he is spot on for the average height and weight for those that play the position. The man is entirely in the green regarding the measurables chart in our production profiles. He also had a breakout age of 19 (the age at which a running back first posts a 20% dominator rating), which is considered excellent.

What’s on Tape

Games Viewed: Ole Miss (2022), Georgia (2020), Mercer (2022), Mississippi (2022), Alabama (2022)

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1. Patience is a Virtue

One of the most difficult things to find in a young RB is the ability to wait for a play to develop. The patience to wait for the blocks to establish in order to make one’s move is one of the prime qualities of a potential NFL-caliber RB. Bigsby has just that. Playing behind a clearly average offensive line at Auburn, Bigsby’s sense of patience was tested more than players like Jahmyr Gibbs from Alabama or Zach Charbonnet from UCLA. According to PFF, Auburn ranked 93rd in grade for run blocking. Tank had an uphill battle waiting for plays to develop. That being said, his vision and patience often allowed him to make something out of nothing and gain positive yardage where there was initially none. He also used his creativity to create missed tackles and constantly kept his legs churning as he ran into defenders. According to PFF, Tank had 156 missed tackles forced since 2020, which leads all SEC RBs.

2. Consistency is King

Looking at Bigsby’s overall numbers, you probably will not be blown away – there is not one category where he is head and shoulders above the rest of the RB class. However, the man is consistent. All three years at Auburn, he clocked over 800 yards, and the most significant difference between yardage totals among years was only a 174-yard difference between his freshman and sophomore year. His success in the receiving game steadily rose over his tenure, as well as his receiving yards. His strong start in his freshman year held steady throughout his time at Auburn. I feel like Tank may be slightly overlooked in dynasty drafts simply because of this quality, reminiscent of how people overlooked Josh Jacobs last season in redraft. Bigsby also had close to the same amount of TDs as the likes of Sean Tucker and Zach Charbonnet, with much less usage during his final year at Auburn. Again, not an incredible ceiling, but a consistent floor. We all want to shoot our shot and grab that potentially ceiling-breaking RB, but should we be chasing that over consistency? At least later in the draft? These are the questions fantasy owners will be considering when they see Bigsby’s name on their draft board.

3. Overall Power and Speed

In addition to football, Bigsby was an ex-track athlete, competing in sprints and the long jump. You can see these skills manifested in his power and explosiveness as he breaks tackles and runs in the open field. According to PFF, he had a solid breakaway percentage (the percentage of a running back’s carries that are designed runs of 15 yards or more), having a better breakout percentage than backs like Zach Evans, Zach Charbonnet, and even Bijan Robinson. Those three had more designed rushing attempts for more than 15 yards, but Bigsby had a higher percentage in comparison to his total amount of rushing attempts.

What’s Not on Tape

1. An Amazing O-Line

I have said it before, Bigsby did not have the privilege of a solid offensive line to run behind, not to mention a QB with less than a 50% completion rate to catch passes from during his final year at college. Thirty of his 42 targets were behind the line of scrimmage, with an ADOT of – 3.6. Talk about literally playing from behind. Even with that horrible setup, Bigsby managed to gain 131 yards on those 30 targets for 213 yards YAC. Imagine what the guy could do with a little blocking.

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2. Elite Pass Catching

As we all know RBs who can catch the ball are worth their weight in gold. Bigsby’s receiving numbers are average yet not remarkable, which is clearly the category we hope to see improvement in at the NFL level. He does not have an excellent grade for pass routes – 54.3 from PFF, which puts him in the bottom third of RBs in his draft class – and even though he was able to turn potential negative gain pass targets into yards after the catch, he only had a 71% reception rate. There are times he looks awkward attempting to make a catch. Hopefully, that will improve with better QB play. Bigsby could also stand to improve his overall blocking. He was average at pass-blocking, earning a 58.9 grade from PFF. His rush blocking was significantly worse on average, earning a 54.6 rating which was 49th among RBs in his draft class that played at least 20 snaps.

Fantasy Outlook

According to NFL Mock Draft Database, Bigsby is currently projected as a  3rd – 4th round pick and will need to find a suitable scheme to unlock his next level of potential. Regarding dynasty drafts, Bigsby is still a solid target, but so much rides on his landing spot, as opposed to talents like Bijan and Gibbs, who look to have success out of the gate wherever they go. RB-needy teams like Carolina and New Orleans (ahem, Kamara potential suspension) could be spots where Tank could end up. On the surface Bigsby has the potential to be a solid RB, he just needs the right team to buff away the tarnished spots and create a better overall package.


Branson says:

The YPA numbers seem off. Unless you’re adding in something else, the yards/attempts math has his YPA for each season lower than what the table suggests.

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