The New York Giants made some waves this week by cutting 26-year old running back Ahmad Bradshaw in a move made to clear cap space. While it remains to be seen where Bradshaw lands, the move creates an opportunity in the Giants backfield.
The obvious name to take advantage is David Wilson, who had an up-and-down rookie season, but showed flashes of brilliance at times and finished with a 5.0 yards per carry average with 358 yards on just 71 carries. Wilson was put in his place after a Week 1 fumble set him back, but he stepped up and didn’t lose the ball again the rest of the season.
Wilson is the guy expected to breakout, but fantasy football owners should not overlook Andre Brown.
When Bradshaw went down with nagging injuries, it was Brown, and not Wilson, who initially saw a boost in fantasy points. Brown originally became a force in September, with over 200 total yards and three touchdowns in two games with Bradshaw limited. Bradshaw returned to action, but went down again later in the season.
In Bradshaw’s absence, Brown became the force in the red zone for the Giants and scored in five straight games. The only thing that stopped Brown down the stretch was a broken fibula, which ended his season at the end of November, and made room for Wilson to finish the season strong.
Brown is just 26 and all but two of his career carries came last season, so he still has very fresh legs for a professional running back. The Giants throughout the years have shied away from a one-back system, often utilizing two or even three backs at a time during the season. When Brown was healthy, he was clearly a beast in the red zone, and the Giants would be silly not to utilize him again in 2013.
Sure, Wilson will likely be the featured runner for the G-Men this season, but as long as Brown can recover from the broken fibula with no issues, he will absolutely have fantasy value. Brown could pay huge dividends as a flex option for your fantasy football team this season, so don’t underestimate him in 2013.