Draft Day Strategy: How To Approach A Crowded Seattle Backfield (Rawls, Carson & More)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Seahawks running back rotation was always going to be an interesting story, but preseason injuries have helped to further complicate things.  First let’s look at the performance in the all important third preseason game from Friday night:

  • Eddie Lacy – 4 carries for 21 yards
  • Chris Carson – 8 carries for 46 yards; 2 catches for 44 yards
  • Thomas Rawls – DNP
  • C.J. Prosise – DNP

Carson, who was a seventh round draft pick, has taken advantage of his opportunities and earned a spot on the final 53-man roster.  The big question is where he fits into the depth chart, especially early in the season.  While you would think he’ll be #4 initially, how long that lasts is a completely different question and a lot more complicated:

Thomas Rawls – He sat with what has been labeled a minor ankle injury, and expectations are that he’ll be ready to roll for Week 1.  That said he’s coming off an injury plagued sophomore campaign, where he was limited to 9 games and averaged just 3.2 yards per carry when he was on the field.

C.J. Prosise – He hasn’t been capable of staying on the field since being drafted, and the consistent missed time is quickly going to become frustrating to the coaching staff.  He has the potential to be a PPR monster, but he needs to get reps and stay on the field.  Unfortunately that’s hardly a given.

Eddie Lacy – We all know his history of weight issues and he only played in 5 games last season.  Even if he stays healthy he’s two years removed from fantasy viability and may never return to that form.

Does Carson necessarily have more talent than the three names listed above him on the depth chart?  Nope, but he’s making the most of his opportunity.  Maybe he needs injuries to get a shot in the regular season (and that’s not far-fethched), but maybe not.  It’s not like any of the three above him are locks to produce like elite RB and Carson presented himself well in the preseason dress rehearsal.  Don’t overlook that or his opportunity at the very tail end of your draft.

Draft Day Strategy:

  • Thomas Rawls (Average ADP – 117.2) – In the ninth round or later, he’s a “gamble” well worth taking
  • Eddie Lacy (Average ADP – 83.0) – Too many questions to select in the first eight rounds, so at this price we’d pass (especially since Rawls offers more upside)
  • C.J. Prosise (Average ADP – 134.4) – In PPR formats he is worth the gamble, but too many injuries to think he’ll make much of an impact
  • Chris Carson (Average ADP – Undrafted) – Given the questions on the depth chart, those in deeper leagues should take the flier in the final round

Sources – ESPN, Fantasy Pros

Make sure to check out all of our 2017 Preseason Rankings:

Position
Last Update
Quarterbacks08/23/17
Running Backs08/28/17
Wide Receivers08/29/17
Tight Ends08/30/17
Defenses08/22/17
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14 comments

  1. trevor says:

    rob kelley or bilal powell for standard flex.

  2. trevor says:

    kelvin benjamin or jacquiz rodgers standard flex.

  3. trevor says:

    fournette, rob kelley or matt forte for standard flex

  4. trevor says:

    rob kelley, abdullah or ingram for standard

  5. trevor says:

    start two(standard):bilal powell, jonathan stewart, rob kelley or carlos hyde

    • rob kelley or bilal powell for standard flex. – Powell

      kelvin benjamin or jacquiz rodgers standard flex. – Benjamin

      fournette, rob kelley or matt forte for standard flex – Fournette

      rob kelley, abdullah or ingram for standard – Abdullah

      start two(standard):bilal powell, jonathan stewart, rob kelley or carlos hyde – Powell/Hyde

  6. haggy says:

    Put these in order you would draft them prof. Hilton, Hopkins, Dez Bryant,A.Cooper, E.Elliott,and J.Ajayi.

  7. trevor says:

    adrian peterson & rob kelley standard flex

  8. Mean Machine says:

    12-man; full point PPR: advice in keeping two of these 3 rookies based on their value and upside.
    -Tarik Cohen (I currenlty own Jordan Howard and picked him up as a potential handcuff)
    - James Conner
    - D’Onta Foreman

    Thank you in advance

    • As a handcuff I can see Cohen, but it’s unlikely he makes much of an impact. Conner is the best own, with Foreman #2 for me (so if you wanted the handcuff I’d go Conner/Cohen)

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