Thursday, August 25, 2016


With PPR formats becoming more popular by the season, there are some clear dividing lines when it comes to some running backs in today's game and how they rate both in standard and in the point per recepion realm.  Putting it more succinctly, there are some big pass catching backs in fantasy football who do very little in the way of running and thus have little to no value in TD-heavy standard formats where no points per reception are counted.  With that in mind, here are some nicely priced "RB 2's" who could add some big value in PPR formats without costing a bundle.

Shane Vereen:  While many thought leaving New England where he developed into a key pass receiving back would be a detriment, New York Giants veteran back Shane Vereen set a career-high in receptions in 2015 with 59 grabs for 495 yards and four scores.  Vereen also averaged 4.3 per carry on his 61 touches but receiving is his game all the way.  Yes the Giants backfield is very crowded with Rashad Jennings, Andrew Williams, Paul Perkins, Orleans Darkwa, and Bobby Rainey all still around but Vereen should be good for another 50-plus receptions and around 500 yards.

Duke Johnson:  Johnson is doubly intriguing for the Cleveland Browns as only the up-and-down and limited Isaiah Crowell sits in front of him on the depth chart.  Already Johnson has developed into a terrific receiving back as he grabbed 61 passes for 534 yards a year ago.  There is more running upside here for Johnson as opposed to someone like Vereen who won't get enough carries to be helpful there. 

Darren Sproles:  Yes Sproles is aging but he is one of the best receiving backs of all-time and now we get recent word that the Philadelphia Eagles will "feature" Sproles in the passing game.  This is a good idea as Sproles can still be an effective weapon there.  While his days of catching 80-plus balls left the station when Sproles exited New Orleans, he still caught 55 passes on a terrible Eagles offense a season ago and he only has the injury-prone Ryan Mathews in front of him for carries as well.  Sproles looks like a monster value play in PPR based on the setup.

Theo Riddick:  This one came out of the blue in 2015 as Riddick caught 80 big passes for 697 yards.  Riddick was pretty much a non-factor for the Detroit Lions his first two years in the game before last season's explosion and like in Philly, he has little in front of him in terms of big players.  Amir Abdullah is anything but a proven commodity and he is an injury waiting to happen with his smallish size.  As a result, Riddick could also be in line for an increase in usage like with Duke Johnson. 

Danny Amendola:  Perhaps the most accomplished pure receiving back specialist in the game today, Woodhead excelled again in 2015 by catching 81 balls for 756 yards and 6 scores.  Basically Woodhead is now what Darren Sproles was in New Orleans.  Yes Woodhead is aging a bit and injuries are becoming more and more of his storyline but the San Diego Chargers figure to trail in a bunch of games again this season which means more garbage-time production. 

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