Are you upset that the stud you drafted to be just that, a stud, is not getting the looks or touches he needs to succeed? Or on the flip side, are you wondering why some schmuck or washed up old guy is still getting all the action? In the Usage Report, we take a look at the trends as they turn into realities, and determine whether or not we expect this to end or continue to drive you nuts! Carefully color coordinated to resemble our beloved stop light system: Green means GO GO GO while Red means don’t you dare.
Week 6 saw a total of 9 running backs carry the ball over 20 times each! Get your hands on a bell-cow running back as they are the key to winning the positional battle at running back. JUST DO IT!
14 targets, 10 receptions, 133 yards
Demaryius Thomas got banged up during this game, but not nearly as banged up as his counterpart Emmanuel Sanders. When you look at the rankings every week, you often see both Thomas and Sanders in the top 24 rankings in terms of receivers. Take out Sanders, and Thomas will EAT. Don’t be concerned about seeing heavier coverage, as he should stand to benefit the same way Deandre Hopkins does in Houston with superior jump-ball skills and size.
Marvin Jones Jr.
14 targets, 6 receptions, 96 yards, 1 touchdown
Much the same as Demaryius, Marvin Jones Jr. should be able to take advantage of increased targets with Golden Tate set to miss a few weeks. Monitor the Tate situation, as the Lions have their bye this week, but as of right now a “few” weeks seems like it isn’t something that the bye week will fix. Jones Jr. is a serious stud when given volume, and did you see his one handed touchdown grab? Yuck. 14 targets may be the closer to the norm in the coming weeks.
11 targets, 10 receptions, 138 yards, 1 touchdown
After feasting on sub-par coverage and overall defense against the Bucs in Week 6, the old guy trio of Carson Palmer/Adrian Peterson/Larry Fitzgerald may look like a core that would’ve been better off a decade ago, but don’t count these guys out for great usage. Fitzgerald faces some tough matchups down the stretch, so temper expectations, but he may have one of the safest floors in the league at the position.
Marquise Lee / Allen Hurns
10 targets, 5 receptions, 83 receiving yards, 1 carry, 17 rushing yards / 3 targets, 3 receptions, 37 yards
This seems to go back and forth from week to week, so picking which one will get the work is up to you. Just know that one of them will benefit any given week being the only pass catchers there, so if you’re in a tough spot during a bye, fire one up. Not the greatest advice, but have you ever truly understood what Blake Bortles is doing out there? Maybe sell Marquise Lee following this good week, and sell Allen Hurns after his?
3 targets, 3 receptions, 27 yards
Tyrell Williams isn’t even the only Williams anymore, with rookie Mike Williams finally entering the fold. Also, Tyrell fumbled the ball once. A healthy Keenan Allen limits everyone else’s usage in the passing game, and even Melvin Gordon and Hunter Henry are being targeted and catching a whack of balls. Perhaps you don’t want to own the 4th or 5th option on a pretty bad team that plays Denver next…
5 targets, 3 receptions, 23 yards
Kirk Cousins threw for 330 yards. So what happened to Pryor? The Redskins are even rolling out two tight end sets now with Vernon Davis and a (relatively) healthy Jordan Reed. Pryor will have his games, but the once believed to be potential favorite new target for Cousins doesn’t seem to be happening.
11 targets, 8 receptions, 46 yards, 1 touchdown
It’s safe to say, Austin Sefarian-Jenkins has arrived. Fire him up as a TE1 rest of season. Don’t expect him to always have great games like he did in Week 6, but how many tight ends even have the capability to get the looks that Sefarian-Jenkins has been getting? Josh McCown has always loved throwing to tight ends, remember Gary Barnidge? He had no business being regarded as a top tight end at the time. Throw an actual superior athlete in at McCown’s favorite position to target and watch the targets towards Sefarian-Jenkins fly.
7 targets, 5 receptions, 90 yards
This is less about Henry, and more about what the offense is shaping up to be. With so many receiving weapons, it could be expected that Henry would have some ups and downs, but Antonio Gates had 1 target, and Henry has now had 4 great games in his last 5. That’s as close to TE1 consistency as you are going to find without having one of the top players at the position.
1 target, 0 receptions, 0 yards
Even the other tight end Michael Hoomawanawui had more targets and a touchdown. Looks like his first two weeks are the outlier here. Although, it’s also funky that Michael Thomas had a really quiet game as well. The random touchdowns are what will allow Fleener to score within the top of the pack, but the usage just isn’t there to enjoy when the touchdowns are happening.
25 carries, 114 rushing yards, 2 touchdowns & 5 targets, 5 receptions, 36 receiving yards
The hype around Adrian Peterson leaving an the backfield carries being left almost solely for Ingram was warranted. Mark Ingram finished 1 touch shy of his career mark (set in 2014 at 31 touches). Owners may be scared of Alvin Kamara and his continued usage, but the truth is, a more dynamic offense such as New Orleans will yield better results for Ingram and allow him to be spelled after successive runs. Injuries have often plagued Ingram, so this is a welcomed backfield approach.
21 carries, 117 rushing yards, 1 target, 1 reception, 13 receiving yards
Although we would be silly to expect the Giants to always have this kind of success running, it may have answered the question as who will lead the team in touches moving forward with Orleans Darkwa having a great game. He’s been around the team long enough to know the offense (or what’s left of it), so thinking the keys to the backfield were going to be passed to the rookie Wayne Gallman was a bit silly. We may never see Darkwa have over 100 yards in a game again, but he carved out more of a role and will likely lead the team in backfield touches moving forward.
Adrian Peterson / Andre Ellington
26 carries, 134 rushing yards, 2 touchdowns / 1 target, 0 receptions, 0 receiving yards (no rushing stats)
Perhaps Adrian Peterson just needed his own backfield? Whether he holds up is one question, but he should be a decent play until David Johnson comes back around Thanksgiving. On the other hand, unless Andre Ellington is being played out wide (which is doubtful as Larry Fitzgerald, John Brown, J.J. Nelson, and Jaron Brown are all options ahead of him in the pecking order), he may be the biggest loser of the week in terms of perceived usage moving forward (especially in PPR formats).
Chris Thompson / Semaje Perine
16 carries, 33 rushing yards & 5 targets, 4 receptions, 105 receiving yards / 9 carries, 23 rushing yards & 3 targets, 3 receptions, 24 receiving yards, 1 touchdown
Chris Thompson seemed like he was just going to be one of those “flash in the pan” type players, but he is proving everyone wrong. 20 touches is nothing to scoff about, and don’t look too much into Semaje Perine‘s touchdown. If Perine was going to break-out, this would’ve been his chance (although he has even had earlier chances to do so). This is the type of scenario that is the opposite of the last pairing (Peterson/Ellington). Had Perine looked great, he would’ve taken more looks and backfield touches away from the pass-catching Thompson moving forward. This should provide clarity that Thompson will be used whether Perine or Rob Kelley are earning carries.
13 carries, 62 rushing yards & 2 targets, 0 receptions, 0 receiving yards
If Marshawn Lynch was going to prove he could achieve greatness with less than sufficient carries, this was the game against a horrendous run defense. He simply can’t get enough touches to be trusted. It was even anticipated that he could lead the league in rushing touchdowns much like LeGarrette Blount with the Patriots last year by being the forceful back in a high-powered offense. Oakland’s offense, however, was drastically overrated when this statement was made. You are banking on him falling into the end zone, and that just isn’t often enough at the moment.
10 carries, 44 yards
The total touches aren’t what scares you, it’s the amount of time Mike Gillislee saw the field. If Bill truly wants to pound the ball, he will give it to his most trusted back. A fumble doesn’t help Gillislee’s cause either and he played a total of 13 total snaps while Dion Lewis and James White saw 29 total snaps.
To leave off…
The “Use It or Lose It” usage stats of the week!
In Week 6, nine running backs had the as many if not more carries (21+) than Kareem Hunt had rushing yards (21).