2018 Fantasy Football: Can a RB Strong Team Carry Weakness at WR?

Shawn Childs continues to examine whether a team with extreme running back strength can compete despite lacking weapons at the wide receiver position in the Fantasy Football World Championships!

Read my FFWC Team Reviews examinations of Team 4, Team 6Team 11 & Team 1 vs. Team 9 vs. Team 12

My next stop in the recent FFWC drafts that had a rush on early RBs is Team 6. Here’s another look at the draft board:

After the first two picks, I’d be extremely excited to land two strong pass-catching RBs with plenty of upside. I expect both Alvin Kamara and Christain McCaffrey to be edges at RB1 and RB2.

When comparing this owner’s decisions in his depth at RB to Team 4, I believe he made bigger moves in ADP. After the first 16 RBs came off the table, only Rashaad Penny looks out of place. Penny did have a high ADP of 18 in the previous FFWC drafts, which means that some Fantasy owners are extremely high on his value and opportunity.

Derrius Guice had an ADP of 38 over the previous drafts in the World Championships with a high of 27. Based on draft flow, this owner didn’t feel Guice would make it back to the fourth round. Here’s my player profile on Derrius in 2018 at ScoutFantasySports.com:

Derrius Guice (RB) – Over his last two seasons at LSU, Guice rushed for 2,638 yards with 29 TDs plus 27 catches for 230 yards. His yards per rush (7.6) and yards per catch (11.8) were much more impressive in 2016. Those two stats fell to 5.3 and 6.9 last year. The difference in his last two seasons in college came down to more long runs in 2016. Derrius will attack the line of scrimmage if the play calls for him to be a north/south runner plus run with vision and acceleration to the outside. His burst upfield is sneaky leading to defenders being left in the dust if they fail to take the correct angle on a tackle. Guice creates space and separation with his quick cut and the ability to downshift and upshift in a matter of a couple of steps. He’ll break many tackles while also taking some unnecessary hits in his quest to finish runs. Derrius has a talent for breaking out of tight quarters when a play looks dead in the water. Last season Washington’s RB ran the ball 352 times for 1,269 yards and seven TDs. Their RBs gained only 3.6 yards per rush with only three runs over 20 yards. Guice is a player who will upgrade the Redskins rushing attack and prove to be a factor at the goal line. His passing catching upside will be limited with Chris Thompson scheduled to be the third-down back. Derrius will handle his responsibilities in pass protection while still adding some value in the passing game. He has relatively low mileage in college. I fully expect 275+ touches for 1,300+ yards with a chance at double-digit TDs and more than 20 catches. He projects as RB2 with his best value possible coming late in the season.

The decision to draft Guice falls back into a conversation with Adam Ronis on The Scout Fantasy Show about drafting players with resume over upside. In this draft, this owner passed on multiple WRs and TEs with a floor of 200+ Fantasy points in PPR leagues. Even with my projections (about 187 Fantasy points), Guice projects to score about 11.75 Fantasy points per week. His value does rank above Flex1 value (9.5 Fantasy points in 2017), but this team will be falling further behind at WR1.

Just like his RB3 selection, this Fantasy owner pushed up Jay Ajayi who has an ADP of 47 in the previous FFWC drafts with a high of 36. Here’s a look at his player profile in 2018:

Jay Ajayi (RB) – After a breakthrough season in 2016 with the Dolphins, Ajayi fell out of favor with Miami’s coaching staff after a slow start to the year (532 combined yards with no TDs and seven catches). His game was much improved with the Eagles (5.8 yards per rush and 9.1 yards per catch). With Miami, Jay averaged 21.7 touches per game compared to 11.4 with Philadelphia. Over his last three games with the Eagles, Ajayi gained 242 combined yards with five catches and one TD on 46 touches plus 254 combined yards in three games in the playoffs with 16 touches per game. In 2018, the RBs on Philly combined for 2,287 yards with 13 TDs and 53 catches. In 2018, Jay will be the early-down back with minimal chances in the passing game. A fair starting point would be 250 touches for 1,200 yards with a chance at double-digit TDs. Ajayi will have the most value in games when Philly plays from the lead. Mid-tier RB2 in PPR leagues.

In 2016, Ajayi did rank 11th in RB scoring in PPR leagues with 216.30 Fantasy points despite minimal chances over the first four games of the season. In his case, Jay does have a season of value in his resume. If given this draft choice, I would draft Ajayi over Guice based on his previous season and the upside within the Eagles’ offense. He should be an edge at Flex2 with a healthy season.

This owner chooses to grab a nice edge at QB with Aaron Rodgers while fading the TE position.

He chased WR over five of the next six rounds – Julian Edelman, Robby Anderson, Will Fuller, Allen Hurns, and Dez Bryant.


I like taking shots at WR. Edelman will miss four games, but he’ll be a WR2 at the very least when he returns.

Anderson posted a WR2 season in 2017, which points to a weekly starter for this owner.

Fuller needs to stay healthy while having the base skill set to post some impact scores. Ideally, Fuller would be a better WR4 or Flex1 option. At the very least, he’ll be the bridge player for Edelman with playable upside throughout the season.

Someone has to emerge as the WR1 in Dallas, which points to Hurns based on his experience in the NFL. His best season in 2015 (64/1031/10) is well within the top 36 WR rankings.

Dez Bryant has a low price point due to him still being a free agent. Once he signs, his value will jump quickly based on his expected value in his new team’s offense.

This owner made three other upside swings at WR later in the draft – Chris Godwin, Dante Pettis, and Terrelle Pryor. I like both Godwin and Pettis while understanding they may lack an early season opportunity. Pryor will be insurance for Anderson while still having a skill set to surprise.

He added a pass catching RB in the 10th round (Devante Booker) and a flyer on Peyton Barber in the 13th round.

Both of his TE options (Jared Cook and Austin Seferian-Jenkins) fall into the backend TE1 category.

Overall, I like the decision making of this owner over Team 4. His roster structure should lead to fewer mistakes in decision making each week. Both teams have enough talent to be competitive if their key players at the secondary position play above the expected value. The success of each team requires their RBs to set a very high floor.

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Shawn Childs
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Shawn Childs has been a high stakes Fantasy baseball and football player since 2004 where he had success in his first season (three titles and $25,000 in winnings). In early years of the high stakes market in Fantasy baseball, he was ahead of the curve in player evaluation, draft value, and free agent bidding setting up four top-five finishes in the National Fantasy Baseball Championship. He has four AL-only Auction titles, one NL-only title, and five Main Event titles plus an overall title in 2012 at RTFBC (netted $10,000). This success led to an induction into the NFBC Baseball Hall of Fame. His success in the high stakes market led to a career in providing Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Football content. On the football side, he’s competed and won in all different formats – auctions, draft championship, main events, and high-dollar leagues. He won 2nd place overall in the 2014 Most Accurate Salary Cap Expert contest at FantasyPros.As a dual-sport player, it was natural to transition to the daily games where he is a “swing for the fences type of guy.” Childs has appeared in one FanDuel NFL Live Final and one DraftKings NFL Live Final, a season-ending tournament which led to a couple of chances to win over $1,000,000.