by Inside the Redzone staff – Bill Seng
Get ready to re-embrace Joseph Addai, fresh off signing a 3-year deal, as a productive RB2 in the 2011 fantasy football season. With rumors swirling that Peyton Manning will once again go under the knife for a second neck surgery, the Colts will transition themselves quickly to a run-first team. Kerry Collins is still learning the playbook and and main objective is to try to stay upright.
If your fantasy draft is being held today or a little later this week, I’d reach just a little on Addai who is being drafted as an RB3. The Colts will want to get some ROI on that 3-year deal they gave to Addai. In years past, the 28-year old running back from LSU was the nice compliment to Peyton Manning’s traditional 40+ passing attempts per game. It’ll be interesting to see how he’ll do as a semi-work horse again. In the 2006 and 2007 seasons, he had 226 and 261 carries. He had 1,071 and 1,082 rushing yards and 19-total touchdowns in that span.
What makes this number more remarkable was he was sharing the load with another back. That’s why, I’m going to show some to rookie tank, Delone Carter this year too. Among the Colts backs, he might be the most physically built to withstand a large jump in NFL carries. As coaches and fans have found out, Addai is probably at his best in a platoon situation. Which is why Delone Carter will be a great late round fantasy football selection. In 2006, hard running Dominic Rhodes picked up 641 yards and 5 touchdowns. He also chipped in 251 yards pass receiving. By all accounts, the Colts could be checking down a lot more this season. But what about Donald Brown? So far, he’s shown the talent for being brittle. Not a great trait to have as an NFL running back.
Also factor in the lousy AFC South competition. Jacksonville gave up the 6th most fantasy points for running backs in 2010, Tennessee the 16th, and Houston the 9th.
To reiterate to the opportunistic fantasy football owner, if I were drafting this week, I’d make sure to get Joseph Addai in the mid-rounds, but would also be thrilled if the consolation prize was Delone Carter.