RB Kalen Ballage - Miami Dolphins

6-2, 227Born: 12-22-1995College: Arizona StateDrafted: Round 4, pick 2018

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Photo: Jasen Vinlove, US Presswire

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News you need to know

From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Dec 2): Ballage left the Week 13 game with an injury and can be dropped in all leagues.

General News (Tue Dec 3): was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Tuesday, Dec. 3.

Week 14: at New York Jets

All RB vs NYJ

FBG says: Bad matchup. The 2019 Dolphins run game hasn't merely been unproductive; it's been difficult to watch such a display of ineptitude and bad injury luck. They sit dead last league-wide in attempts, yards per attempt, and yards per game, with their top three Opening Day backs all shelved or shipped away. Kalen Ballage is the latest to leave the lineup, landing on injured reserve to close out arguably the worst season in league history (1.8 yards per rush over 74 attempts). Going forward, it appears rookies Myles Gaskin (seventh round) and Patrick Laird (undrafted) will pair to lead the league's most punchless running game. Last week, they combined to turn 10 carries into just 25 yards, and their outlook gets no better against the Jets' smothering run defense. There's a chance that journeyman Zach Zenner, who just signed this week, could stake a quick claim to some work. But with no upside to speak of and zero-point floors, there's no reason to target anyone from this backfield in fantasy. Amidst a truly lost season, the Jets can at least look to their run defense as a point of pride. They've faced the league's 17th-most attempts, but have somehow given up the fewest yards. They haven't let a runner reach 45 yards since Week 8, shutting down the likes of Saquon Barkley (13 carries for 1 yard), Josh Jacobs (10 for 34), and Derrius Guice (7 for 24) along the way. The Jets' linebacking corps has been injury-ravaged and shaky at best, which highlights just how strong the play of the front line has been. Steve McLendon, Quinnen Williams, and Foley Fatukasi routinely control the gaps, leaving the second level clean to plug the gaps at least adequately. And they can always count on top-notch support from dynamic safeties Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye - though Adams is legitimately questionable for Sunday with an ankle sprain. Overall, it's never wise to project much success against this unit, and that goes extra for the Dolphins' toothless attack.

Recent Stats and Projections

WEEKOPPoSNAPRSHYDTDTARGRECYDTDFumLPts
10 at IND 54 20 43 0 4 4.0 2 0 0 4.5
11 vs BUF 53 9 9 1 6 5.0 8 0 0 7.7
12 at CLE 24 7 13 0 1 1.0 13 0 0 2.6
13 vs PHI 11 3 0 0 1 0.0 0 0 0 0
14 at NYJ PROJ-Bloom * 0 * * 0.0 * * * *

Weekly Performance vs RB 1, RB 12, RB 24, RB 36

Percentile ranks

Kalen Ballage's percentile rank in each category, among RB with more than 50 fantasy points.

Recent Game Summaries

2019 Week 13 vs PHI (3 / 0 / 0 rush, 1 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

While the end result may have been positive for Miami, they lost their starting running back to a knee injury. Ballage was carted off the field and his season is expected to be over. He struggled since taking over the leading duties and that continued today with 0 net yards on 3 carries. He was given every opportunity as players in front of him were traded or released and he was just not able to make anything happen. Patrick Laird led the back field after the injury to Ballage.

2019 Week 12 vs CLE (7 / 13 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 13 / 0 rec)

It is hard to try and commit to the run game when you are down 28 points and it has not been effective all season. Five different players had a rushing attempt for the Dolphins this week with Ballage getting the most carries. He was unable to do anything at all this week and averaged under 2 yards per carry with his 7 attempts. Both Ryan Fitzpatrick and Patrick Laird had more yards on fewer carries this week and it was Fitzpatrick who punched in the lone touchdown on the ground. Even with the plethora of injuries to receivers for Miami, Ballage only had a single target in the passing game that went for 13 yards. There is no real upside to the Miami back field right now as they continue to struggle in all aspects of the game. The defense is not stopping anyone, and the offense cannot sustain drives and that is not a great equation for trying to run the ball in the NFL.

2019 Week 11 vs BUF (9 / 9 / 1 rush, 6 / 5 / 8 / 0 rec)

It looked like it was going to be a good game for Ballage and then the Dolphins dug themselves in an early hole that they could not get out of. He averaged just a single yard per carry and was only given the ball 9 times. His longest rush went for 7 yards and that accounted for more than 2/3 of his total rushing yards. Ballage did score the first touchdown of the game for Miami after he powered the ball 3 yards up the middle. He put his head down and did not run into much resistance on the way to the end zone. This score was setup by a big 50-yard pass play to DeVante Parker. Ballage chipped in 5 catches on 6 targets for another 8 yards, but it did not do much to boost his overall stat line. In the end, he had 14 total touches for 17 yards and a touchdown. Kenyan Drake has found a better home in Arizona and Ballage is going to have to play a lot better if he wants to keep an increased role when Mark Walton gets back.

2019 Week 10 vs IND (20 / 43 / 0 rush, 4 / 4 / 2 / 0 rec)

It was not a great day for the rushing attack for the Dolphins. The team combined for 70 yards on 26 carries and Ballage accounted for just 43 of those yards and had 5 times as many carries as anyone else on the team. He was given the starting role with Walton being handed a 4-game suspension, but he struggled to find holes and added next to nothing to the passing game this week. His longest run went for 7 yards and he netted just 2 yards on his 4 receptions. Miami had a goal to go situation in the 1st quarter and Ballage got the ball twice. He took a direct snap for a single yard and then a 5-yard burst, but the team ended up turning it over on downs from the 3-yard line and left points off the board. Ballage will need to do a lot more if he wants to show that he can carry a bigger work load going forward. The Colts have a stout rush defense, but he should have been able to run for better than a 2 yards per carry average.

2019 Week 7 vs BUF (3 / 7 / 1 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

It may not be the biggest role, but Ballage continues to get the ball down around the goal line. He punched in the first touchdown of the game from 3 yards out and capped off a 70-yard drive that gave the Dolphins their first lead. He looked to get another chance from the 2-yard line in the second half before a Fitzpatrick fumble and ensuing interception took that chance away. Ballage does not play an active role in the passing game and will not see consistent work as an every down back, but he is getting the goal line carries in Miami right now and has been the best bet to punch it in.

2019 Week 6 vs WAS (3 / 7 / 1 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

The overall touches were not there this week, but Ballage has emerged as the goal line back for the Dolphins. He was given both carries from the 1-yard line and made the most of it by punching it in for the score. Mark Walton saw double the carries and 6 targets in the passing game to 0 for Ballage, but the goal line carry is something important to note. Miami has watched Drake fumble the ball on the 1-yard line before and has turned to Ballage to try and punch it in. He will never see the volume needed to make him a consistent contributor and he will almost always be touchdown dependent. Ballage is trying to carve a bigger role in the offense and that started this week with his touchdown run.

2019 Week 3 vs DAL (8 / 17 / 0 rush, 3 / 1 / 10 / 0 rec)

It appears as if Miami is trying to get a good look at Ballage while they decide if they want to move on from Drake. He was given only 4 fewer carries and was targeted 3 times in the passing game this week. It was also Ballage that had his name called 3 straight times in a goal to go situation while the game was still close. He rushed for 5 yards on the first carry and then was stuffed at the line the next 2. Ballage caught 1 of his 3 targets for 10 yards and is not the same weapon out of the back field that Drake is. He looks better in pass protection than Drake and the Dolphins allowed the fewest sacks in a game so far this year with 3. Ballage rewarded Miami with 2.1 yards per carry and does not look like a lead back. There is no telling what they will do the rest of the season but Ballage is firmly entrenched as the number 2 right now.

2019 Week 2 vs NE (4 / 6 / 0 rush, 5 / 1 / 6 / 0 rec)

It is tough being the back up running back on a team that is unable to even utilize their starting running back. Ballage was given the ball 4 times and averaged 1.5 yards per carry. He was targeted 5 times but only came down with a single reception. Both Fitzpatrick and Rosen were under heavy pressure and rushed the passes towards Ballage. Drake is still the starter in Miami and at the current rate of the offense there will not be a lot of opportunity for Ballage.

2019 Week 1 vs BAL (5 / -1 / 0 rush, 1 / 1 / 13 / 0 rec)

It was surprising to see the Dolphins give Ballage the ball 5 times. This led the team in carries, and he rewards them with -1 yards on the ground. Ballage had a long run of 6 yards and then was unable to pass the line of scrimmage again on his other 4 carries. He did manage to catch his lone target and take it for 13 yards, but the damage had already been done on the ground. The team was playing catch up and abandoned the run early, but there appeared to be no sign of life from Ballage this week with the limited looks he got.

More

Latest News

Dolphins | Kalen Ballage will be ready for offseason (Thu Dec 5, 10:06 PM) - Miami Dolphins RB Kalen Ballage (leg) is expected to be ready for offseason workouts, according to head coach Brian Flores.

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Dolphins | Kalen Ballage done for 2019 (Tue Dec 3, 05:09 PM) - Miami Dolphins RB Kalen Ballage (leg) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Tuesday, Dec. 3.

Our View: Ballage wasn't doing a ton for the Dolphins even though he was the lead back. Free-agent RB Zach Zenner (Cardinals) was claimed off waivers to replace him on the roster. The Dolphins will use Zenner for depth but will turn to Myles Gaskin and Patrick Laird in the backfield with Ballage out.
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Dolphins | Kalen Ballage out of game (Sun Dec 1, 02:13 PM) - Miami Dolphins RB Kalen Ballage (leg) suffered a leg injury during the Week 13 game and is considered questionable to return.

Our View: Patrick Laird will get the carries in place of Ballage, but no one is going anywhere in this running game.
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Dolphins | Kalen Ballage not on injury report (Fri Nov 29, 04:17 PM) - Miami Dolphins RB Kalen Ballage (Achilles) fully participated in practice Friday, Nov. 29, and is not on the injury report for Week 13.

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Dolphins | Miami's injury report for Week 13 (Fri Nov 29, 03:11 PM) - Miami Dolphins CB Ken Crawley (shoulder) and DB Steven Parker (groin) were limited in practice all week and are listed as questionable for Week 13 against the Philadelphia Eagles. CB Ken Webster (ankle) was upgraded to a full practice Friday, Nov. 29, and is also listed as questionable. LB Jerome Baker (chest) was not given a practice designation for a second straight day Friday but is expected to play. RB Kalen Ballage (Achilles), DE Taco Charlton (elbow), QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (shoulder, forearm), WR Allen Hurns (ankle), CB Ryan Lewis (chest) and WR Albert Wilson (hip, chest) practiced in full Friday and no longer appear on the injury report.

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More News

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Schedule

14@ New York Jets
15@ New York Giants
16vs Cincinnati Bengals
17@ New England Patriots