With the running back situation so muddled and uncertain this season, those who have one of the few clear-cut RB1’s are breathing a lot easier than everyone else each Sunday.
Owners fortunate enough to have players like Jamaal Charles and Matt Forte on their teams have the luxury of knowing that they can rely on them for a steady flow of big numbers week in and week out. It’s a fortune that only few share as the rest of the fantasy world is forced to deal with frustrating uncertainty on a regular basis.
There’s just a handful of true RB1s this season and beyond them, it’s been a roller coaster ride for everyone else. Halfway through the season, we also have a pretty solid grasp on most players’ ceilings and at this stage, it’s incredibly rare to find a guy who has any real chance of drastically upping his value. Rare, however, does not mean impossible; now and then you find a gem hiding in plain sight. Such is the case with Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy.
Lacy’s numbers on the season don’t stand out at first glance. He only has 352 rushing yards and two touchdowns thus far, but the stats are actually very deceiving. He suffered a concussion near the very beginning of the team’s second game of the season after carrying the ball just once. He missed the rest of that game and didn’t play the following week either.
The Packers then had their bye week and Lacy returned to the field in Week 5, so he’s essentially played in four games this season if you don’t count Week 2. Taking all that into account, the rookie’s numbers are pretty solid. Not only that, but he’s getting better each week as well.
Lacy has more than 20 carries in each game since returning in Week 5. His lowest rushing total in those three games was 82 yards last week against the Cleveland Browns, a game in which he added a career-high five catches for 26 yards and a rushing touchdown. His production is steadily rising, and he’s a freight train that’s about to destroy everything in its path over the second half of the season.
With only four full games under his belt in his young career, he’s just starting to scratch the surface of his true potential. A rare every-down back, the Packers are starting to keep him on the field for almost every single offensive snap and the sky is now the limit. He’s likely to get at least 20 touches in every game for the rest of the season.
What’s more is that in the blink of an eye, the Packers’ receiving corps was decimated by injuries. Randall Cobb is out for the foreseeable future with a broken fibula, as is Jermichael Finley after he suffered a frightening neck injury last week. James Jones is also currently out with a knee injury, so the Packers are expected to lean heavily on Lacy going forward, involving him in the passing game as well.
Combine that with the fact that he has a favourable schedule ahead of him, and you suddenly have a guy who has a very realistic shot at being a top-5 running back the rest of the way.
In spite of all signs pointing to him shredding it from here on out, Lacy hasn’t been talked about all that much recently. He’s magically still flying under the radar because, as I said before, his numbers are very deceiving. Anyone who’s been paying close attention knows that his fantasy value is through the roof right now, but somehow a lot of people still haven’t keyed in on it.
It’s a situation that you have a short window to take advantage of if the person who owns Lacy in your pool is one of those late to the party. It’s possible he’s even still sitting on some fantasy benches so this is a chance to pay a relatively cheap price for a guy who’s quietly breaking out in a big way.
If you have a chance to deal for Lacy, don’t hesitate for a second. This is a train you’re going to want to be on.