By: Justin Lynch
Assuming Dalvin Cook it out for an extended period of time, Jerick McKinnon and Latavius Murray become the fantasy options. For reasons I don’t understand, the Vikings decided that Murray was the lesser of two evils after Cook went down. Murray struggled to be a viable fantasy option behind one of the best offensive lines in the league in Oakland, where the passing attack was also much stronger. It’s only worth it to target Murray based on touches, but I think McKinnon will be more involved in the passing game, and this will be mostly a committee for carries. If Murray is in free agency, think about picking him up. But I don’t think either will be Murray or McKinnon will be viable options this season.
With Darren Sproles out for the year, Wendell Smallwood and Corey Clement become the options to target. LeGarrette is slowly losing carries, and both Clement and Smallwood have some talent. With that said, I don’t think you can consider Clement as a real option. He isn’t a threat in the passing game, and Blount is still going to take a bunch of his carries. Smallwood, on the other hadd, is worth a waiver pickup. His few carries can result in big gains, and he gets enough targets receiving to put up points every week. He isn’t a starter yet, but he has high upside if he breaks one. I think he’s worth a roster spot if you can afford it.
Andre Ellington is the best option in the Cardinals backfield until David Johnson returns (assuming he comes back). Ellington is the best option in the passing game, and that is all you really need when you aren’t getting that many carries. If he can get anything going between the tackles, he could be semi-dangerous. He’s definitely worth a look.
I think Alvin Kamara is someone to keep an eye on. He isn’t worth a start yet, and won’t lead his team in carries in any week, but he’s the best running back they have, and that’s worth something. He will keep getting targets in the passing game, and the Saints are going to keep passing. Maybe take a shot in waivers, or just keep him on your radar. He could slowly become a flex option if the matchup is right.
Elijah McGuire had a big game, and so did Bilal Powell. It’s likely Powell isn’t available, but I would imagine McGuire is there for the taking. Still, most of his yards were aided by one big rush, and he’s not going to be playing Jacksonville every week (even though the Jags are better, they still aren’t good). Don’t buy into the one-week aberration.
Charles Clay had another big week. I can’t buy into what he’s selling, but at a position that is really struggling for consistency, three weeks at 15+ points is something to watch. If you want him, and he’s available, now may be the last time you can get him. Still, I don’t trust him to continue his performance.
Will Fuller scored two TD’s in his season debut. Cool. Four catches in a game where the Texans dropped 50 doesn’t excite me. Touchdowns are fleeting. Especially red zone scores for big play receivers. Don’t jump on him too fast.