What's Going to Happen in the Denver Backfield?

The Footballguys staff offers thoughts on how the Denver backfield will shake out

In 2018, Phillip Lindsay came out of nowhere to lead the Broncos backfield and was a fantasy force. As a waiver wire pickup in most leagues, Lindsay contributed to a lot of championships.

But the coaching staff changed over the offseason. Some think the new scheme will favor Royce Freeman. Some think Lindsay is far more talented than Freeman regardless of the scheme. And Devontae Booker is still around and seems to be Denver's third-down back.

Is there any value here? Are all three backs worth roster spots in the average 12-team league? How does this backfield shake out?

Jason Wood

Philip Lindsay may be the biggest collective whiff of last year. No one saw his performance coming, including Denver's best beat writers and the vast majority of the fantasy analyst community -- ourselves included. His pedigree and size all but precluded Lindsay from a full-time role, not to mention the enthusiasm many had for Royce Freeman as the new bell cow.

In spite of our collective beliefs, Lindsay emerged and pushed Freeman to irrelevance.

It's tempting to assume Lindsay keeps the job until he does something to warrant losing the role. I'm not so sure.

There's a new coaching staff in Denver, including a new blocking scheme. Just because Lindsay was the apple of the 2018 coaches' eye does not mean he's guaranteed the lead role. Royce Freeman is getting rave reviews in early OTAs and seems humbled by last year's failures. Freeman remains a compelling talent more than capable of an every-down role in the right system.

At best, expect Lindsay and Freeman to share touches evenly with the game script being the tilting factor in any particular week. At worst, Freeman thrives in the new environment and takes over the job most had him earmarked for last year.

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