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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

FANTASY FOOTBALL STATUS REPORT: DEVONTA FREEMAN/TEVIN COLEMAN RB ATLANTA FALCONS

If you are a fantasy football owner of Atlanta Falcons running back Devonta Freeman, the first two weeks of the season did not go according to plan.  If you are an owner of Atlanta Falcons running back Tevin Coleman, the first two weeks of the season supplied some very good value and intriguing upside numbers.  The difference between the two centered on their draft price, with Freeman ending up as a late first round pick in PPR formats and in Round 2 in standard, while Coleman was nothing but a mid-to-late round grab.  We warned over the summer though that Coleman would be a big threat to Freeman's numbers as the Atlanta front office drafted the former and were going to give him every chance to succeed.  Meanwhile Freeman's average was not impressive in 2015 despite a big start and other than his receptions, he seemed limited.

So as the first two games got underway, my prediction came true as Coleman got half of the rushing carries for the Falcons and also was the primary goal-line back.  Meanwhile Freeman failed to do anything to stand out the first two games which heightened the stress for his owners.  Enter in the truly horrific New Orleans Saints defense Monday night and all is right both in the Coleman and Freeman worlds.  First let's start with Freeman who ran for a monstrous 152 yards on 14 carries while also catching 5 passes for 55 yards and a score. Freeman showed his tremendous speed and cutting ability in the game and at least for one week, has re-established himself as a top RB 2.  Meanwhile all Coleman did was rush for 42 yards on 12 carries while also picking up three touchdowns on the ground.  Coleman did his PPR part as well with 3 catches for 47 more yards.  So right now what we have is one team possessing two fantasy football starting-caliber runners which both Freeman and Coleman are now.  Both are RB 2's though given the split work but both guys are playing very well.  Now as far as the future is concerned, it is becoming clear how both will be used.  Freeman will be a prime receiving back and get most of his carries from the 20 to the other 20.  Meanwhile Coleman will get the goal-line work and also get half the carries and a few receptions.  Thus it is easy to see Coleman being the better standard runner and Freeman the better in PPR.  No matter how you slice it, both should remain in your lineups for Week 4 and for Freeman owners especially, breathing some sighs of relief is now recommended.


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