HomeSportsShould Tony Pollard be the number 2 selected back in checkers?

Should Tony Pollard be the number 2 selected back in checkers?

Fantasy football analyst Dalton Del Don analyzes some key numbers as we move through the 2023 draft season.

Case for Tony Pollard as Fantasy RB2

Christian Macaffrey earns the top spot among fantasy RBs given its use in Kyle Shanahan‘s offence (even with the Elijah Mitchell factor). But there’s a big tier after CMC, made up of nine running backs, all with similar arguments (and questions) to be ranked next. Tony Pollard is my No. 2 fantasy back (its expert consensus rank is the RB7), especially now with Ezekiel Elliott in New England. Pollard average 19.3 PPR points on 10 carries last season, which would have been good for Fantasy’s RB3.

He ended up as the RB8 despite seeing less than 50% of snaps in eight games and a modest 232 total touches – Dallas runs back combined for 524, and Elliott is gone. Pollard won’t be a real workhorse with 325+ touches, but he is average 102.3 yards from scrimmage and 0.91 touchdowns during games with a rapid rate of over 50% throughout his career; now he is clearly ready for the vast majority of opportunities in his career.

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Meanwhile, there are concerns about the other eight comparable running backs:

Pollard’s turn touchdown regression and will suffer by Kelly Moore departureBut Mike McCarthy‘s run heavy play calling should help.

Pollard in round three was always too good to be true, but he still is an absolute winner in the late second.

Bonus: You may want to avoid Rachaad White at ADP

White sees plenty of fantasy love as the Buccaneers’ likely new workhorse thanks to Tampa Bay’s small RB league. But expectations should be kept in check (and fantasy picks around his 81.1 Yahoo ADP should be used elsewhere, like on our guy Rashad Penny instead). White is a late third round pick who has never reached 200 carries, dating back to college and it was one of the league’s worst runners as a rookie, finishing last in rush hour. He was also outplayed by Dusty Leonard Fournet in the passing game and benefited greatly from Tom Brady checkdowns.

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The Buccaneers leave providing the most catchable targets in the league last season to Baker Mayfield (or Kyle Trask). Mayfield too targets running backsbut its EPA/dropback (-0.12) and CPOE (-7%) were both worse than Zak Wilson final season; a downgrade doesn’t get more dramatic than going from the GOAT to Mayfield. Tampa Bay scored the second fewest points in the NFC last season and is expected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL in 2023.

White’s selling period in dynasty leagues is now.

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