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Fantasy Breakdown: RBBC Review Week 4

Fantasy Football Running Back By Committee Breakdown

With running back by committees (RBBC) becoming all the rage in the NFL, it is becoming that much more vital to choose the correct running back for your fantasy team. Below you can find the most requested RBBC’s broken down statistically. The goal here is to go beyond who scored the most fantasy points last week and to delve into who was on the field more and who was a larger part of the offense.

Before we jump into it, a quick note on the data and terms used. All of the raw data is available at many free websites but FantasyData is where I have collected the majority of data before analyzing it further. I will be looking at the percentage of a team’s total offensive plays that a player was the focal point of the play (either via handoff or passing target). This will be referred to as % of Offense. This stat was greater than 10% more correlated with PPR points than typical snap percentages through the first two weeks of 2019. I also used FantasyData’s Fantasy Points per 100 snaps to help compare running backs as if they had received the same number of snaps. This statistic helps to answer the question “what if this secondary RB got as many snaps as the lead RB?”

Season Long Work Horses

Name Team GMS SNAP % SNAPS/GM % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Le’Veon Bell NYJ 3 96.3 61.3 41% 54.4 29.6
Christian McCaffrey CAR 3 97.6 68 38% 78 38.2
Dalvin Cook MIN 3 66.9 40.3 37% 78.4 64.8
Leonard Fournette JAX 3 94.4 56.3 35% 39.3 23.3
Nick Chubb CLE 3 76.2 54.3 34% 48.4 29.7
Alvin Kamara NO 3 75.7 47.7 33% 68 47.6

Through 3 weeks, these are the top running backs that are contributing to over one-third of their team’s offensive plays. Although some might not be putting up monster numbers – yes, we are all looking at you Leonard Fournette –  these are guys that you want to own and play on a regular basis. I also want to give an honorable mention to Marlon Mack. Mack has 32% of his team’s total offense. Though he narrowly missed the one-third cut off to be labeled a “Work Horse”, he is the last RB to be above 30% of total offense and he is currently the RB9.

Week 3 Work Horses

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Alvin Kamara NO 87.90% 26 45% 37.1 72.7
Christian McCaffrey CAR 92.10% 28 44% 27.8 47.9
Le’Veon Bell NYJ 100% 22 43% 10.3 20.2
Leonard Fournette JAX 100% 23 43% 15.2 28.1
Nick Chubb CLE 97.20% 30 42% 17.1 24.4
Phillip Lindsay DEN 56.20% 26 36% 29 70.7

These are the guys that made up over 35% of their teams’ total offensive plays (% of Offense) in Week 3. Alvin Kamara, Christian McCaffrey, Le’Veon Bell, and Fournette should not surprise anyone on this list. These running backs are easily the focal points on their respective teams. Despite lackluster performances from Bell, Fournette (again!) and Chubb, all six of these players are in the top 20 in season-long scoring. And if you don’t count Fournette, all the others are top 12 or better. These are guys that stay in your fantasy lineups no matter what.

San Fransisco

RBBC Breakdown

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Matt Breida SF 40.5 17 22% 10.8 33.8
Raheem Mostert SF 30.4 13 16% 5.9 24.6
Jeffery Wilson SF 26.6 9 11% 13.8 65.7

With Tevin Coleman still nursing an injury, the 49ers have employed a three-headed running back attack. Matt Breida is clearly the guy to own in this committee, at least until Coleman recovers. Breida is getting the most snaps, being used the most when on the field, and contributing the most to the offense. The real challenge here is picking the second guy. Raheem Mostert has been getting more work than Jeffery Wilson, however, Wilson has been getting more valuable work than Mostert. In only two games, Wilson has scored four, yes 4, touchdowns. I think it is fair to say regression is coming but Wilson could be setting himself up as a goal-line back that could be a very viable weekly flex-start or GPP DFS.

Your choice of who you would start says a lot about you or your position in fantasy. If you start Mostert, you’re risk-averse and playing it safe. If you start Wilson, you’re full-blown YOLO and going boom or bust.

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New England Patriots

RBBC Breakdown

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Rex Burkhead NE 74% 18 23% 18.9 33.2
Sony Michel NE 22.10% 10 13% 7.1 41.8
Brandon Bolden NE 28.60% 5 6% 3.9 17.7
Damien Harris NE 6.50% 0 0% 0 0

James White took the day off to be there for the birth of his child. In a game that everyone expected the Pats to win easily, they dismantled the visiting Jets and in the process set up a frustrating scenario for fantasy owners of any New England RB. Week 4 should have White returning, Rex Burkhead coming off his best game of the season, Sony Michel licking his wounds from his worst outing of the season, and, just for fun, Brandon Bolden and Damien Harris. To compound the issue further, the Pats are going to Buffalo in Week 4. Buffalo is a top-five defense in fewest yards allowed per game and top-ten in fewest rushing yards allowed per game.

Over the first three weeks, New England has had an RB place in the top-24 and had two RBs in the top-24 twice. So, despite the circumstances, I am willing to start White, Burkhead or Michel in my flex and, if desperate, second RB spot. I would be looking to sell Michel if I could in a package to get a more consistent RB because despite his volume he is touchdown-dependent in fantasy. White and Burkhead are the guys to own especially in full PPR leagues.

Kansas City Chiefs

RBBC Breakdown

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Darrel Williams KC 54.40% 14 21% 15.9 43
LeSean McCoy KC 38.20% 11 16% 23 88.5
Darwin Thompson KC 7.40% 4 6% 0.8 16

Sometimes, no matter how hard you wish for something to happen, it just doesn’t come true. Darwin Thompson exploding into the Fantasy Football stratosphere when finally given the chance in 2019 was my wish, unfortunately, he was barely used in the absence of Damien Williams (who didn’t play due to injury) and after LeSean McCoy left with a possible tweak to his already ailing ankle. Sunday was Darrel Williams’ day to shine – he got the majority of the snaps and was responsible for more than 20% of the offensive plays. People aren’t going to like this but as long as McCoy is healthy he is the back to own here. McCoy may be getting out-snapped by Damien Williams but McCoy is utilized more on the snaps that he is a part of and is also out-pacing Damien Williams in PPR points per 100 snaps implying that he is doing much more while on the field. Damien Williams is a sell if you can, and Darrel Williams is a nice pick up if he isn’t already snapped up. And although I don’t fully recommend it, I am keeping Darwin Thompson if I have space (c’mon, how healthy can McCoy be all year, right?).

Green Bay Packers

RBBC Breakdown

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
Jamaal Williams GB 61.40% 14 25% 10.6 30.3
Aaron Jones GB 38.60% 11 19% 15.3 69.5

The Packers’ record looks good at 3-0 despite being a bottom 5 offense in terms of yards per game and a bottom 10 rushing offensive unit. However, Aaron Jones is a top 15 RB in PPR points so far this season. That being said, we saw a dinged up Jones give way to Jamaal Williams as the featured back in Green Bay in week three. This appears to be more anomaly than a trend especially given that Jones is actually be used 52.4% of the time he is getting a snap whereas Williams is only being used 35.4% of the time he is getting a snap. Jones and Williams are getting roughly the same amount of snaps per game but give me the guy that is actually getting the ball when he gets a snap, Aaron Jones. Personally I am staying away from Williams, even as a handcuff.

Chicago Bears

RBBC Breakdown

Player Team SNAP % #Plays Utilized % of Offense PPRpts PPRpts / 100 Snaps
David Montgomery CHI 66.70% 16 24% 11.1 25.2
Tarik Cohen CHI 48.50% 8 12% 4.4 13.8

The Bears, oh my! They have not been very good offensively, especially in the running game. Chicago is averaging the 4th fewest offensive yards per game and the 12th fewest yards rushing per game. Despite Tarik Cohen out-snapping David Montgomery on the season, Montgomery is the player to own in this backfield. Montgomery is currently just outside RB2 status for the season and should make the jump into RB range over the next few weeks especially with, as the number from Week 3 show, Head Coach Matt Nagy increasing the workload that Montgomery is seeing. If you own Cohen don’t distress – there will still be plays designed specifically for Cohen and he will carry some flex appeal. (note: Mike Davis is not included in this because he had one snap for one attempt for two yards which adds up to one bad performance.)

Let me know which RBBC you want to be broken down next week by commenting below or reaching out via twitter @fftheathomedad!

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