Fantasy Panic Meter: Jonathan Taylor Rest of Season Fantasy Outlook Following Week 8 - Roto Street Journal
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Fantasy Panic Meter: Jonathan Taylor Rest of Season Fantasy Outlook Following Week 8

The NFL usually sees highly-touted rookie running backs step in and make a substantial impact in their rookie season. In 2020 however, it’s the wide receivers that are cranking out more of the rookie breakouts.

For running backs, it’s been a pretty shaky year. Adrian Peterson threw off D’Andre Swift‘s potential. Darrell Henderson and Malcolm Brown have been reliable enough for the Rams to severely cap Cam Akers‘ ceiling.

After week 8, two other rookie running backs have shaky futures for the rest of 2020: Jonathan Taylor and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.

Should we panic?

Part 1: Jonathan Taylor

In Week 8, JT and the Colts faced Lions, who’ve given up the second-most fantasy points to running backs this season. Taylor could only muster 22 yards on 11 carries.

Meanwhile, he saw Nyheim Hines get five carries and two receiving scores, Trey Burton running one in, as well as Jordan Wilkins getting his own rushing TD.

Ah, Jordan Wilkins. Once the fourth man on Indy’s backfield totem pole, he essentially replaced Taylor and produced 96 yards on 20 carries. That’s 4.8 yards-per-carry, compared to 2.0 for Taylor.

Unfortunately, this game hasn’t been the exception for JT. He’s produced a pedestrian 3.9 yards-per-carry for the season, and his 2.1 yards-after-contact is a far cry from the 3.7 he produced at Wisconsin.

Panic Meter: 8/10

Even after coach Frank Reich said this before the season started…


… Jordan Wilkins was an afterthought in that equation. When Marlon Mack went down in Week 1, there was still reason to believe it was Taylor’s backfield for the taking, even coming into the matchup versus the Lions.

Another opportunity for JT to break out and another opportunity missed, this time in a big way.

Should Injury be a Concern?

At this point, a tweaked ankle isn’t going to provide a mulligan for Taylor’s whole season. The door’s been open for him to take the job outright, and he hasn’t produced. The door opened for Jordan Wilkins this week, and he stormed through it.

“Hot hand” is another way of saying that a running back could give fantasy owners a dud on any given week. Hopefully, Taylor owners have a plan B better than grabbing Wilkins off the waiver wire in what is now a very volatile backfield. If not, the situation may dictate acquiring some Jonathan Taylor insurance.

JT was ranked as the RB8 on The Wolf’s Rest Of Season Big Board And Rankings coming into week 8. Where will he end up now? Find out as the Big Board gets updated every Monday evening on Facebook, Youtube, and Periscope.


  • Driven by profit, has the lobes for business. Prioritizes anchors as part of a diversified portfolio. Seeks to be the first hue-mon to become the Grand Nagus. On Twitter @ChaseM_G

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