The second edition of our look at dynasty rookie running backs gets into sleeper pick territory. These next backs were selected in the 3rd and 4th rounds of the 2013 NFL draft and offer plenty of intrigue.
- Knile Davis (KC) – Drafted 96th overall, Davis was a combine stud with a 4.3 40-time and 31 reps on the bench press (which led all running backs). But when it comes to game time, he’s being compared to Shonn Greene. He concluded his college career with 8 fumbles and a 3.4 YPC. Looking at the situation in Kansas City, there is no path to starters minutes with Jamaal Charles. Nor should there be. Unless Davis can show promise in the few opportunities he’ll get, there’s not much to go off there. The only real reason to draft Davis is as a handcuff to Jamaal Charles.
- Johnathan Franklin (GB) – The Packers traded up to the 125th pick to snag Franklin to go along with Eddie Lacy. The Packers got great value as some had Franklin as the best running back in the draft after averaging over six yards per carry at UCLA. But at the same time, it remains to be seen where Franklin will fit in the new look backfield. Lacy is the obvious first stringer and goal line back but is Franklin a change of pace? 3rd down option? If he can get a cut of Aaron Rodgers throws, he’d be worth something as soon as this year. If not, Franklin is nothing more than a Lacy handcuff at this point.
- Marcus Lattimore (SF) – After totaling almost 1,500 yards and 19 total touchdowns as a freshman, Lattimore tore his left ACL the next year and completely ripped up his knee the year after, tearing 3 -CL’s (ACL, PCL, MCL) in his right knee. Widely projected as a top pick, Lattimore fell to the 49ers who, with their abundance of picks, was able to draft Lattimore as a luxury. Dynasty fantasy football players should probably treat Lattimore the same way. He won’t contribute any this year but would be great on the taxi squad. The offense in San Francisco is ideal but there’s no clear path to being the starter. Frank Gore has at least one more year while there’s competition for carries from Kendall Hunter and LaMichael James. Treat Lattimore as a luxury instead of a necessity.
None of these backs will contribute much this year but all are worth keeping an eye on for taxi squad. If NFL teams think this highly of them, you should too. Two are in the top 35 of running backs in dynasty ranks.