Sheesh. Monday Night Football between the Jets and the Bills was a terrible reminder: there’s a 100% injury rate in the NFL. It’s not enough to draft well. Roles change, and injuries happen every week, and we’ll need to be on top of them. Check into FantraxHQ every Tuesday for the best RB options on your bench/waiver wire, as we kick off Week 2 Running Back Sleepers and Streaming.
Whether it’s to improve your own team or keep one of your league-mates from improving, you’ll want to check in with us weekly. Let’s get into it!
Week 2 Running Back Sleepers and Streamers
Running Back Sleepers
Gus Edwards, Baltimore Ravens, ~21% owned
Speaking of injuries, J.K. Dobbins suffered the same fate as Aaron Rodgers this week. A season-ending Achilles tear. After that moment, we saw Justice Hill get into the endzone (twice), and Gus Edwards take 8 carries for 30+ yards rushing.
Gus Edwards has never averaged under 5.0 yards per carry for his entire career, and now he’s going to have the chance to get 15-20+ carries per week. I know Justice Hill got the TDs last week, but he’s always been used as more of a scat-back by the Ravens. Can Justice Hill run between the tackles? Yes. Will they use him to do that? Unlikely. Expect Edwards to take the mantle as the lead back going forward. Don’t be scared when they bring up a Melvin Gordon from the practice squad, or bring in a Kareem Hunt/Fournette from free agency. Gus Edwards will be the lead back, and any additional back brought into the fold will only take from Hill’s value.
Zack Moss, Indianapolis Colts, ~10% owned
Deon Jackson was horrendous in his debut as the Week 1 starter. We’re talkin’ 13 carries and 14 yards horrendous. Did I mention he had a fumble? He did. That was probably his worst performance as a starter, and not indicative of what he’s capable of. Zack Moss will be back from his injury this week, however. That means we can expect him to take the lion’s share of the carries. I will admit, Anthony Richardson takes some of his value at the goal line, considering his size and speed, but Zack Moss runs incredibly hard and why risk Richardson’s body when you have an equally powerful running back? I expect Moss to be well worth his ROI as a waiver wire pickup. We may not get his best game this week, but you’ll get it eventually.
2023 Week 1 RB Streamers
Kyren Williams, LA Rams, ~10% owned
Are you serious? Are we doing the doghouse thing with Cam Akers, again?! It appears we are. Except this time, it’s visibly deserved. Akers had an atrocious stat line of 22 carries for 29 yards. What?! Akers is electric and Seattle’s run defense isn’t what it used to be. He should’ve broken out this week. You know how I know that? Because Kyren Williams had 50+ yards and 2TDs. He was used at the goal line and used as a change-of-pace back. This week, I imagine Akers will cede more share to Williams. I can’t imagine Akers will have a worse performance, but you also have to reward production with more production, and Williams produced last week. I’d be cautious though, the Rams play the 49ers this week. Use Williams as more of a stash.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Kansas City Chiefs, ~10% owned
After being thoroughly outplayed by Pacheco last year, CEH has officially lost the role of Chiefs workhorse back. But he hasn’t lost the role of starter, however. Perhaps they are bringing Pacheco on slowly after his shoulder injury, but the fact remains, that CEH started last week and went for 22 yards on six carries. The Chiefs have a new offense, a new offensive coordinator, and struggled mightily in their passing game. We shouldn’t expect Mahomes to have a rough week like that all the time, but the Chiefs would be aided by running the ball more. That means more work for CEH. High-value work? Probably not. But 10-15 carries per game is certainly in the cards. Should Pacheco face injury, CEH becomes incredibly valuable.