The Falcons backfield will be under the fantasy microscope with Devonta Freeman out of the picture. (Credit: Dale Zanine/USA Today Sports)
Player Team Week 6 Touches Season Total Average
Todd Gurley LAR 30 150 25
Ezekiel Elliott DAL 25 139 23.2
Sony Michel NE 24 94 18.8
James Conner PIT 23 129 21.5
Saquon Barkley NYG 22 125 20.8
Melvin Gordon LAC 20 121 20.2
David Johnson ARI 20 109 18.2
Alex Collins BAL 19 85 14.2
Wendell Smallwood PHI 19 54 10.8
LeSean McCoy BUF 19 73 14.6
Adrian Peterson WAS 17 84 16.8
Lamar Miller HOU 17 83 16.6
Peyton Barber TB 17 69 13.8
Kenyan Drake MIA 17 73 12.2
Marshawn Lynch OAK 16 102 17
Bilal Powell NYJ 16 87 14.5
Frank Gore MIA 16 66 11
Christian McCaffrey CAR 15 105 21
Kareem Hunt KC 15 113 18.8
Isaiah Crowell NYJ 15 78 13
Joe Mixon CIN 15 84 21
Chris Carson SEA 14 84 16.8
Jordan Howard CHI 14 88 17.6
Carlos Hyde CLE 14 119 19.8
Corey Clement PHI 14 68 13.6
Matt Breida SF 14 74 12.3
Ito Smith ATL 13 42 8.4
Marlon Mack IND 13 24 12
Tarik Cohen CHI 12 53 10.6
Tevin Coleman ATL 11 84 14
T.J. Yeldon JAX 11 92 15.3
James White NE 11 66 11
Rashaad Penny SEA 11 44 8.8
Phillip Lindsay DEN 10 75 12.5
Royce Freeman DEN 9 62 10.3
Derrick Henry TEN 8 76 12.6
Aaron Jones GB 8 36 9
Chris Ivory BUF 7 56 9.3
Dion Lewis TEN 7 83 13.8
Jamaal Williams GB 7 67 11.2
Austin Ekeler LAC 7 55 9.2
Mike Davis SEA 7 51 8.5
Nyheim Hines IND 5 67 11.2
Javorius Allen BAL 4 59 9.8
Doug Martin OAK 1 31 5.2
Alfred Morris SF 0 68 11.3
Alvin Kamara NO BYE 100 20
Mark Ingram II NO BYE 18 18
Kerryon Johnson DET BYE 63 12.6
LeGarrette Blount DET BYE 50 10
Giovani Bernard CIN DNP 48 12
Chris Thompson WAS DNP 49 12.25
Leonard Fournette JAX DNP 12 12
Dalvin Cook MIN DNP 45 15

 

Trending Up

Ito Smith

With Devonta Freeman out of the picture until at least week 15, Ito Smith is poised to keep the reasonably-sized workload he’s had over the past few weeks. In games where Freeman has been out, Smith has averaged 9.5 touches per game and appears to be the preferred option in the red zone and on the goal line. Tevin Coleman has been unimpressive despite having a ton of opportunity with Freeman’s injury woes. And his lack of production might pave the way for Smith to take more of his touches going forward. Just this past week, Smith out-touched Coleman 13-11, with Coleman’s 11 touches being his lowest total of the season in games where Freeman has been out. Even if this backfield remains a relative 50/50 split, the Falcons clearly trust Smith when it matters. He’s got the makings of a solid flex with upside for more if Coleman continues to be mediocre.

Marlon Mack

Finally back from injury, Marlon Mack looks ready to reclaim his bellcow role. The Colts have rotated several not-very-good RBs this season so giving Mack a healthy 13 touches in his first game back was a no-brainer. The only guy who poses a threat to Mack’s workload for the rest of the season is Nyheim Hines who will take some passing down work. But he won’t take anything more than that, making Mack one of the highest-upside waiver adds for the season’s second half. Double-digit touches should be a guarantee in every game for the foreseeable future. Similar to Ito Smith, Mack profiles as a good flex with the potential to approach low-end RB2 value.

Trending Down

Alfred Morris

Despite the fact that he is listed as the #1 RB on the 49ers on the depth chart, Morris’s workload is nowhere near what fantasy owners are looking for. Morris received 1 touch in Week 6 which did not get recorded in the stat sheet as his 9 yard carry was called back due to an offensive holding call. Not only has Breida impressed but Raheem Mostert out of nowhere received 12 carries taking full advantage of his opportunity by racking up 87 yards. The final snap count of Monday night’s game vs Green Bay was: Breida 27, Mostert 23, Morris 1. Kyle Shannahan said that Mostert over Morris is “not permanent” but the one-two punch of Breida and Mostert was very effective for the 49ers. Morris is sitting at 3.7 YPC while Breida is at 6.8 and Mostert at 5.4. Nevermind Morris being in fantasy lineups, he shouldn’t be on the field for the 49ers based off the way he has performed compared to the other two backs.   At this point, fantasy players should avoid playing either Morris or Mostert until there is more of a track record to fall back on establishing which one is the best option behind Breida.

Jordan Howard

Seeing Howard as one trending down may lead you to jump to the conclusion that it is just because Tarik Cohen is stealing touches from him. That is part of it. However, to be completely honest, Jordan Howard just isn’t that good. Howard is a downhill runner which is was effective in John Fox’s offense. However in Nagy’s current offense, when Howard is on the field, defenses know what’s coming and as such stack the box and sell out on the run. This appears on the stat sheet as three out of his five games, Howard has averaged less than three yards per carry. Howard seems to be touchdown dependent at this point. The Bears appear to be moving on from him and as a fantasy owner you should too.

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