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Tuesday, August 21, 2018

2018 FANTASY FOOTBALL PLAYER ANALYZER: EZEKIEL ELLIOTT RB DALLAS COWBOYS

Last summer during the height of fantasy football drafts, each and every one of us weighed the risk/reward of investing in Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott.  The backdrop, of course, was Elliott being handed a six-game suspension from the league for an alleged domestic violence incident with his girlfriend; which was quickly followed by his vow to fight to the highest courts to have it overturned.  Having seen New England Patriots QB Tom Brady successfully stall his four-game Deflategate suspension for at least one season, the temptation was there to nab Elliott at a discounted rate in 2017 drafts in the hopes the same development could occur here.  Those who ultimately took that gamble lost as Elliott was forced to serve the suspension from Weeks 10-15 which was simply awful timing and only allowed his owners to have him for championship week if they even had made it that far.  Suspension aside, Elliot's on-field production was down from his out-of-this-world rookie performance as his yards per carry average dropped from 5.1 to 4.1; while he saw a dip in rushing from 15 to 7 as well.  In addition, Elliott remains shaky in the passing game as he caught just 26 balls for 269 yards and two more touchdowns.  More and more Elliott is resembling Adrian Peterson in his prime which is an excellent place to be in terms of running totals but the receiving numbers could remain below-average.  That makes Elliott a bit more valuable in standard formats and a notch below "The Big Four" of Todd Gurley, Le'Veon Bell, David Johnson, and Kareem Hunt in PPR leagues.

2018 PROJECTION:  1,427 yards 12 TD, 34 receptions 304 yards 1 TD

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