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What's Going to Happen in the Philadelphia Backfield? - Footballguys

The Footballguys staff offers thoughts on the Philadelphia running back situation

Philadelphia has one of many backfields where the roles are not clearly defined. Since running back is one of the most important positions in fantasy football, it's wise to get as clear a picture as possible on every backfield.

With LeGarrette Blount in Detroit, the door seemed to open for Jay Ajayi to control much of the action in Philadelphia. But Corey Clement is extremely talented. Darren Sproles was also brought back, and the Eagles have a number of other running backs in camp. How does this backfield shake out?

Bloom: Have to assume the team expects Sproles to be his old self after they signed him and he has been listed as one of the three roster locks with Clement and Ajayi. Pencil him in for 7-10 touches a game. Clement was a quality UDFA contributor and he should be good for 6-8 touches a game with room for a little growth. That only leaves 12-18 touches a game for Ajayi. I don't expect the Eagles to adopt a Patriots-like approach to finishing games and give Ajayi a role like 2016 Blount. If Ajayi was going to collect most of the red zone touches, that could give him another route to delivering on his ADP. Sproles and Clement are both viable there and the team has given them a decent amount of red zone opportunities (Clement 16 last year, Sproles 30 in 2016), and Blount only vacates 34 red zone opportunities from last year. Blount was also shockingly ineffective last year (2 touchdowns on 15 carries inside the 5) - where Clement was 2 for 6. If Ajayi gets 12 or more of those and converts 50% or more (he was 5 of 9 in 2016), and scores 2 or 3 from outside the five, he's the range to be a weekly boom/bust RB2. It's possible, but on an RBBC team, Ajayi's ceiling probably isn't high enough to justify his ADP, you're basically drafting him at best case scenario price. Clement and Sproles have best ball appeal. Ajayi is basically an overpriced matchup RB2 or what the heck flex, and Sproles and Clement are weekly desperation plays, albeit ones with high ceilings because of the offense they play in.

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