Bryce Brown Fantasy
Up until this past Monday night, the only real hatred towards Andy Reid was coming from Philadelphia Eagles fans. But after Bryce Brown racked up 178 yards and two touchdowns against the Carolina Panthers, Reid can add fantasy owners to the list.
There is no question the Eagles are notorious for wanting to throw the ball. So much so, that LeSean McCoy could be arguably perceived as a better wide receiver than a running back. The Eagles have a long history of refusing to run the ball, and some believe that Bryce Brown’s successful week 12 performance just caught the Panthers off guard, but I disagree.
With backup quarterback Nick Foles filling in for Mike Vick, and injuries across the board including to starting running back LeSean McCoy, fans were shocked to see the Eagles coaching staff call a balanced game plan. The Eagles had 21 passing attempts and 25 rushing attempts in a heartbreaking loss. This is very uncharacteristic for anyone who follows the Eagles –well, not the losing part, but fantasy owners were furious; LeSean McCoy, a 1st round fantasy talent never seems to get the ball enough, and in his first absence, the backup RB sees a solid workload for jackpot numbers.
I was very confident entering the Monday night game that the Eagles were going to be able to gain at least 80 yards on the ground. I’ve watched Bryce Brown for a few weeks now, and really like his no-nonsense running style and aggressive smash-mouth attack with the ball in his hands. Unfortunately, he still has trouble locking up the football, with two fumbles that were very costly, yet the end result has now drastically shot Bryce Brown’s fantasy stock into a starting option role against the Dallas Cowboys for week 13.
LeSean McCoy vs. Bryce Brown
Most fantasy players who own LeSean McCoy rarely even watch him play. Nowadays with the luxury of smart phones, instant stat tracking, and fantasy football becoming purely a game of numbers, the fantasy fan only cares about results. McCoy is an elusive running back with excellent vision and soft hands that give the Eagles exactly what they want when calling plays in their pass happy attack. You can line LeSean McCoy up just about anywhere on the field and gain an advantage against a defender. McCoy is a perfect running back for the West Coast-Andy Reid offense. Unfortunately, if another coach comes in and revamps offensive schemes, I’m afraid his fantasy stock may decrease slightly.
I’ve been saying for years the Philadelphia Eagles complicate things when they don’t need to. They have excellent talent on both sides of the ball, yet the play calling is very questionable. Only the Philadelphia Eagles would go 5WR set on a 3rd & short, or call three passing plays in a row to kill a drive in the red zone. In order to win, you need to get back to basics and move the chains. If you can run at a defense, you not only force defenders to respect a rushing attack, but you also wear out opponents and set the stage for playaction pass.
Bryce Brown didn’t do anything spectacular Monday night, he simply hit the hole and ran hard. At 6 feet 223 pounds, Brown is more your prototypical NFL running back than LeSean McCoy. I’m not saying that he is a better option for the Eagles, but in a game in which everyone was banged up, Brown served a purpose for production. He simply helped move the chains, and allowed the Eagles to not have to put all the pressure on their rookie quarterback.
Moving forward I believe Bryce Brown could become a complement running back that could one day get into a split carry situation if the right coaching staff comes along and recognizes his talent. For the remainder of the season he looks to be a solid RB2 or flex option against average to bad rushing defenses. Check out where we ranked Brown for week 13 in our Fantasy Players Rankings