Melvin, Who? Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson Will be Fine Fantasy Options for the Chargers - Roto Street Journal
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Melvin, Who? Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson Will be Fine Fantasy Options for the Chargers

Although it was the Kyler Murray show ft. the Chargers on Thursday night, it was the two Chargers running backs, Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson, who proved they’re more than equipped to own the backfield with Melvin Gordon still MIA.

Ekeler looked like the team’s “between the 20s” back, gaining 69 total yards on only eight touches during his two drives of the game. Ekeler did fumble on the goal line though, which led to Jackson getting the Chargers’ second goal line carry to cap off their ensuing drive in a violent fashion.

Ultimately, Ekeler did look like the “workhorse” here, racking up 12/16 (75%) plays with the starters as compared to 4/16 (25%) for Jackson. Ekeler also had two of three goalline touches, suggesting he could be a true three-down horse. Owners must continue to monitor these snaps all preseason, as Gordon’s holdout looks like it could last into the season. If that happens, both Ekeler and Jackson hold standalone fantasy value as the two are perfect complements for one another. 

Just those two drives alone showed how well those two backs work together. Ekeler is smaller and is a known pass-catcher, but he showed he has the chops and quickness to run between the tackles. On the other hand, Jackson recorded 22 yards on five carries and scored the lone touchdown of the two running backs. Jackson was a workhorse at Northwestern and made a fantasy impact when Gordon was hurt last season.

As of today, it seems like The Wolf is much higher on the probability of Gordon’s holdout extending into the season. He currently has Gordon as his RB23, which is a -10 vs the current ECR. He then followed that up with Ekeler ranked as his RB25 (+10 vs ECR) and Jackson situated at his RB41 (+13 vs ECR). Expect these rankings to change a bit over the next week.

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