Wow – there’s running backs galore for this Tues-Thursday slate of games to pick from. I’d say none are super high-end and the good ones are priced at a point where they’ll need to really break out and have a good week. Either way, I think you’ll see a ton of lineup diversity at the RB spot this week – and at all spots in general, which makes it a fun slate to play in because just about anything can happen.
– App St
I’d say he’s fairly priced. I think he’s a cash game type guy because I think his upside is already priced in a bit with 2 TDs 100+ yards and 24ish fantasy points. The matchup is good, on the season Arkansas St has given up 4.4 yards per carry and 150 yards per game + 15 rushing TDs. All signs point to Cox getting in that 25+ carry range since they are a home favorite in the game.
Shock Linwood – Baylor
Seth Russell was kind of dual threat – but the kid they have now is more so. That might help Linwood, I don’t know. I would guess that Baylor runs a tad bit more in hopes to preserve their perfect season, and the backup they have in now until Russell comes back. I could see Linwood getting about 22ish fantasy points which would put him on the edge of value here. I might look to Linwood when I don’t start the Baylor QB.
Travis Greene – BGSU
I like Greene this week, and its nothing other than a hunch telling me that. Ohio’s run defense is considerably worse than the pass defense (on paper). At this price, I think Greene has a good shot at getting you about 15 fantasy points pretty easily … but he could also break out and get you 20+. On the season Ohio has given up 5.2 yards per carry, which is what you want to see when rostering an RB like Greene who rates to only get between 15 – 19 touches max.
Joel Bouagnon – NIU
Toledo’s rush defense looks really good on paper, 3.7 yards per carry, only 5 rushing TDs and 125 yards per game. And I’d agree – they are likely well above average. However, some of their stats is determined by game flow, and the 7-0 Toledo team has put up 30+ points in 5/7 games. Good runners have had good games, so I’m not scared to use Bouagnon this week, but keep in mind he’s going to need to get at least 1 TD to hit value.
James Butler – Nevada
I love this matchup, it’s one of the best on the board. On the season Fresno State has given up 4.8 yards per carry and 239 yards per game … not to mention 25 rushing TDs!! Butler basically is in a 50/50 split for carries with Don Jackson ($5,500) but Butler tends to get the TDs. I think Butler is a somewhat risky play because he’s inconsistent, but at this price I think he’ll be worth the gamble in some lineups.
Jamauri Bogan – WMU
Not a high volume guy, but has a track record over the last 3 weeks of getting the job done. The presence of Jarvion Franklin ($6,300) should keep Bogan’s upside somewhat limited, but he’s still a high upside type guy. On the season Ball St has given up 4.6 yards per carry and 186 yards per game, making this an above average matchup. I consider both tournament plays because their upside is pretty high, but the consistency is not there given the 50/50 split.
Marteze Waller – Fresno State
I probably like other guys at this price, so it might make Waller a tournament back, since I do think he has 2+ TD upside … and should be somewhat low-owned for a number of reasons. The matchup is not bad, Nevada has given up 4.5 yards per carry and 171 yards per game.
Anthone Taylor – Buffalo
Tough call here. I don’t think he has 2+ TD upside, so tournaments he’s not a great option, but at $4,500 he has an outside shot at reaching value … basically he’s the cheapest RB I’d consider rostering in a cash game. He’s back on the 2-deep depth chart for the first time in a while since he’s been dealing with injury. He did play last week.
Jordan Johnson – Buffalo
I’ve seen Buffalo play this season. This should be a grind-it-out type game. If you could project out that he’d get 28 carries again, I think he’d be a more safe play, but with Anthone Taylor back in the mix, his carries could go back down.
James Gilbert – Ball St
This is a great matchup against WMU who’s given up 5.3 yards per carry and 179 yards per game. Gilbert is still a risky play though at these prices since he hasn’t really hit any kind of value all season. He’ll need to have his best game of the season for that to happen – that would make him a risky tournament option in my book.
Raekwon James – Kent State
If you want to go off the board a bit, James could be an option. Game flow has hurt his stats in some of the games recently, and he’s listed as the #2 RB – but he does rate to get some receptions. I wouldn’t touch this backfield since the coach starts/plays a random mix sometimes, but you never know.