Mancuso’s STUD RB Insurance Policies

Aug 24, 2009

By Marc Mancuso

As Chris Rock used to say… “Insurance is around in case s&*t happens.” For these guys its happened too much over the last 2 years so getting their backup is a smart move. These are insurance policies (handcuffs) for 1st/2nd rounders who are not in a defined timeshare AND either coming off injuries in 08, aging, or have an injury history.

In this age of multi-back attacks, some folks are not into this strategy, but I have to disagree. I recall my best fantasy team ever in 2005 when I had Domanick Davis as my lead back who went down to injuries during the season. I had the foresight to grab Jonathan Wells who saved my season and took me to the promised land of a fantasy championship. Wells got the bulk of the carries and I took him in the final rounds of the draft.

You will NOT see the RB1A’s of the world (LenDale White, Jonathan Stewart, Ahmad Bradshaw, etc.), but you will see guys who can save your season if your stud goes down.

Darren Sproles, San Diego Chargers – LT has brought much happiness to FFL owners over the years, but father time is catching up fast to him. Sproles, like Rudy is 5 foot nothing a hundred nothing, but unlike him he is electrifying and doesn’t get killed on the field. Sproles has made a career of proving the doubters wrong, and San Diego nearly cutting LT should tell you how highly they think of him. Look for Sproles starting in round 8 in 12 team leagues.

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles – “Shady” backs up Brian Westbrook who is coming off yet another surgery and is always a threat to miss games. The knock on McCoy is that he can’t pass block and that is a concern in the West Coast offense. The good news is that his performance in camp has shown he’s an adequate blocker and he already resembles Westbrook’s running and receiving style. If Westbrook goes down McCoy becomes a very desirable starter in 12 team leagues. Like Sproles you’re looking to grab him starting in round 8.

Jerious Norwood, Atlanta Falcons – Michael Turner coming off 382 touches (376 carries, 6 receptions) in 2008 scares me and I need to be prepared if the Burner goes down. Norwood has been a threat to score each time he touches the ball and has been for the last three years. People are overlooking Norwood yet again, and you can grab him late and be assured that if Turner hits the skids that you’ve got a game breaker on your roster which will only cost you a 10th round or later pick

Ladell Betts, Washington Redskins – Another forgotten man who when given the opportunity can save your season as he did in 2006 when Clinton Portis went down with injuries. Unfortunately for Betts, Portis has been very durable over the years, which has limited his value. However, given how the game is, it may be a matter of time before Portis is sidelined due to the overall workload and the law of averages in such a violent sport. Betts’ combination of running and receiving skills make him a very smart handcuff for Portis owners. As long as Jason Campbell is the QB, don’t expect Washington to turn into the Saints anytime soon, so they will continue to be a conservative offense. The best part is that Betts is pretty much off the radar for many folks so you can hold off until after round 12 to grab him.

Chester Taylor, Minnesota Vikings – News flash – Adrian Peterson is a beast. Coming into the NFL he was a brittle beast. While he’s avoided the injury bug since joining the league, his upright running style and heavy workload is a risky proposition. Taylor is a very productive back when given the chance, and he can produce solid results in the event that he needs to fill in due to injury. Smart owners should begin looking to handcuff Peterson with Taylor starting in round 9.

Glen Coffee, San Francisco 49ers – There is no real competition for Frank Gore and he’s looking fantastic in camp, so he will be getting the rock a lot this year. However, this is the same Frank Gore who has been hobbled in recent years and has an injury history dating back to his days at Miami. Coffee may not be as skilled as some of the other backs listed here, but opportunity is everything in fantasy and he has gotten good reviews from his coaches thus far. You should be able to grab him in the final rounds if you have roster space. In keeper leagues he has even more value.

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11 Responses so far | Have Your Say!

  1. Mackeran
    August 24th, 2009 at 2:12 pm #

    Hmm… I read blogs on a similar topic, but i never visited your blog. I added it to favorites and i’ll be your constant reader.

  2. Frank
    August 25th, 2009 at 6:09 am #

    Thanks for this & the WR info as I try to complete my TSN roster within their salary cap.

  3. LestersLegends
    August 25th, 2009 at 7:03 am #

    Marc did a great job on this.

  4. NFL Backup QBs: Break Glass in Case of Emergency | Fantasy Sports Blog
    August 25th, 2009 at 8:26 am #

    [...] we looked at Mancuso’s top RB handcuffs, guys you should stash away in case your Stud RB goes down.  Now let’s take a look at some QBs [...]

  5. NFL Backup QBs: Break Glass in Case of Emergency | Sports Fan Goods
    August 25th, 2009 at 8:40 am #

    [...] we looked at Mancuso’s top RB handcuffs, guys you should stash away in case your Stud RB goes down.  Now let’s take a look at [...]

  6. dan gamble
    August 25th, 2009 at 9:22 am #

    I am gald Edgerrin James has found a home . I told everyone Chase daniel could be a NFl QB and everyone laughed ,yet last weeks game show the guy can play.
    Same here with Edgerrin James,except it I see that he still can play and will do well of seahawks front line get well.

  7. LestersLegends
    August 25th, 2009 at 9:27 am #

    I wouldn’t put too much stock in the preseason Dan.

  8. Fantasy Football Preseason Heroes – Running Backs | Fantasy Sports Blog
    August 27th, 2009 at 9:15 am #

    [...] Glen Coffee, San Francisco 49ers – Coffee leads all RBs with 196 preseason rushing yards. He is averaging 6.5 yards per carry (ypc). He also has two receptions for 8 yard, but has failed to score a TD. The Rookie out of Alabama is doing all the right things to serve as Frank Gore’s primary backup. If Gore goes down, Coffee’s value skyrockets. He is a great late round value as a Gore handcuff or trade bait. [...]

  9. Fantasy Football Preseason Heroes – Running Backs
    August 29th, 2009 at 1:56 pm #

    [...] Glen Coffee, San Francisco 49ers – Coffee leads all RBs with 196 preseason rushing yards.  He is averaging 6.5  yards per carry (ypc).  He also has two receptions for 8 yard, but has failed to score a TD.  The Rookie out of Alabama is doing all the right things to serve as Frank Gore’s primary backup.  If Gore goes down, Coffee’s value skyrockets.  He is a great late round value as a Gore handcuff or trade bait. [...]

  10. Stanford Dilallo
    January 14th, 2011 at 11:36 am #

    good stuff. Do you have a RSS feed? And also will it be cool if I added your feed to a website of mine? I have a site that draws content from RSS feeds via a couple of websites and I’d like to add yours, most folks do not mind given that I link back and everything but I like to get approval first. Anyway let me know if you could, thank you.

  11. LestersLegends
    January 14th, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

    Yes, I have an RSS feed, and you can add it as long as it links back.

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