RB James Conner - Pittsburgh Steelers
|6-1, 233||Born: 5-5-1995||College: Pittsburgh||Drafted: Round 3, pick 2017|
Week 20: bye week
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs RB 1, RB 12, RB 24, RB 36
James Conner's percentile rank in each category, among RB with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2019 Week 16 vs NYJ (6 / 32 / 0 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
Even after being stuffed for a loss of yards on the first rush attempt of the game, early on Conner was the most explosive part of the Steelers offense. Conner found good space up the middle on his second carry and the Steelers' offensive line was getting a great push against the Jets defensive line. Conner was showing fresh legs with three runs of more than 10 yards. Conner ended up leaving the game early. Again.
2019 Week 15 vs BUF (8 / 42 / 0 rush, 5 / 4 / 9 / 1 rec)
In his first start since suffering a setback to his shoulder injury, Conner's opening carry went for 15-yards off the left side. Conner's worst play of the night came on a wildcat play where Conner took the snap. At the mesh point (point where the wildcat quarterback keeps the ball or hands the ball off), the ball was never completely handed off or kept. Ultimately, the ball was fumbled away. Trying to get things back on track, Conner's first touch of the second half was impressive and made the defender buckle his knees. Conner displayed excellent vision and lowered his shoulder at the end of the run. Conner seemed to be getting stronger through the game as Devlin Hodges found him out the backfield for a reception. Conner shed the tackle in the open field and was able to stay on his feet for a touchdown. After Conner's touchdown he only managed four total touches throughout the rest of the game.
2019 Week 11 vs CLE (5 / 10 / 0 rush, 2 / 1 / 6 / 0 rec)
In Week 11, James Conner returned from a shoulder injury he suffered two weeks prior. It was believed Conner was held out of Week 10's matchup to save himself for this game. Conner's night started off almost breaking a long run to the outside when he was taken down by a shoestring tackle. Conner even fell down on a route out of the backfield. He eventually got up and flashed as a checkdown for Mason Rudolph for a short gain. Unfortunately, similar to previous weeks, Conner's night was cut very short. He exited the game with an aggravation of his shoulder injury from two weeks prior.
2019 Week 6 vs LAC (16 / 41 / 1 rush, 7 / 7 / 78 / 1 rec)
With the exception of a Thomas Davis body slam, there wasn't much slowing down James Conner or the Steelers running backs in Week 6. Conner does not have gamebreaker ability, but his smoothness and patience are always on display, Conner is a reliable receiver out of the backfield, never goes down by arm tackles and is willing to take defenders on one on one to finish runs. Against the Chargers, Conner's abilities were on full display as he touched the ball on nine of the first eleven plays for the Steelers, including a touchdown run. On Conner's first touchdown a simple combination block when Vance McDonald chipped at his first defender, disengaged and took on a second defender at the second level spring Conner for his long touchdown. Conner followed McDonald perfectly through the hole and was untouched on his first score. Conner's second score of the night was a reception out of the backfield. Like most of the night, defenders were bouncing off of Conner or weren't able to get a good grip on him. In the third quarter James Conner was finally hit and he was hit hard. As he was hurdling a defender, Thomas Davis caught Conner in mid-air and slammed him to the ground. Conner immediately left the game and was used sparingly for the remaining time.
2019 Week 5 vs BAL (14 / 55 / 1 rush, 0 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)
The rushing totals are a start, but in a game where Conner had multiple big runs and the starting quarterback exited the game, Conner's usage was low. In fact, since becoming the starter in 2018, this is the first time James Conner has not received at least one target and the second time in 17 games he hasn't received at least three targets. To make matters worse, Conner didn't even see a touch until the third possession of the game. When Conner did touch the ball on the third drive, he touched the ball three times for more than five yards each time. Conner did not have a highlight run on the night, but he also did not have a bad run on the night. Conner was consistently pushing the pile, getting small through the hole at the line of scrimmage and showing the patience always get the yards available to him.
2019 Week 4 vs CIN (10 / 42 / 0 rush, 8 / 8 / 83 / 1 rec)
It isn't always about the big flashy plays. Sometimes it is about letting your playmakers find their footing and allowing them to make plays and not being the reason, those players can't make plays. During most of the game Rudolph had handcuffs on. Passes being throw were all within five yards of the line of scrimmage. Late in the second half the short throws began going for large gains. The pass-rush wasn't getting to Rudolph and simple screen passes being taken for large gains. Rudolph's first touchdown of the game came on a screen pass to James Conner on a spring right. Rudolph was able to hit Conner in traffic and place the ball in a place where he could work after the catch. There wasn't much downfield throwing in this game, but Rudolph did take two deep shots downfield. The first was to Johnny Holton incomplete, but the second was for a touchdown to Diontae Johnson. Johnson was lost in the mix in coverage and Rudolph was able to hit him on a deep post. It wasn't a perfect throw as Rudolph almost overthrew Johnson, but it was just good enough.
2019 Week 3 vs SF (13 / 43 / 0 rush, 5 / 4 / 14 / 0 rec)
There was nothing flashy about Conner's performance against the 49ers, but he was reliable until he wasn't. Throughout the game Conner was showing well. Consistently running through contact, being an outlet for Mason Rudolph with pressure coming and picking his way through traffic with great patience. Conner's best run of the game came on his first run of the third quarter. It was an outside zone run and Conner showed solid explosion and finish the run strong. Unfortunately, with the Steelers winning by three points and trying to grind out the clock, Conner fumbled the football giving the 49ers great field position to score their winning touchdown.
2019 Week 2 vs SEA (11 / 33 / 1 rush, 4 / 3 / 12 / 0 rec)
It looked like early on in the game James Conner was going to be a focal point of the game. The Steelers were using the Seahawks aggressiveness against them as Roethlisberger, and Rudolph, were allowing oncoming rushers to get close and then hit Conner in the flat when they over pursued their angle. James Conner, by both quarterbacks, handled significant punishment when targeted. On a reception in the third quarter Conner didn't catch, he was hit hard immediately after missing the catch and again late in the third quarter before leaving with a knee injury. Conner had multiple runs where he was close to breaking off a bigger run than what he had. Conner's best run of the night came on a run up the middle. It looked like there wasn't any room, but Conner got small and navigated himself through the Steelers line for a 10+ yard run.
2019 Week 1 vs NE (10 / 21 / 0 rush, 4 / 4 / 44 / 0 rec)
After touching the ball on four out of the first five plays of the game, it looked like the Steelers were planning on feeding Conner a healthy workload against the Steelers. Conner did not have any big gains to start the game, but was picking his way through the Patriots defense patiently and taking what was given. After the first five plays of the game, James Conner did not see another touch until the second quarter of the game, when he was stuffed on a third and short, forcing the Steelers to punt the ball. On their fourth possession of the game, Conner received three straight toss plays. On the first, Conner picked up five yards and followed his pulling guard perfectly. The second, was a quick toss to the left from shotgun where Conner caught the ball and picked his way through the center of the Patriots offense. On the third straight toss, which looked identical to the first, linebacker Jamie Collins cut through the Steelers offensive line and tackled Conner for a four yard loss on third down, stalling another Steelers drive. Conner's best run came in the second quarter. He was lined up in the slot and ran a drag route. Conner made the defender miss and was able to take advantage after the catch. Conner looked to be removed from the game early when it was out of hand.
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