Fantasy Football 2014 Breakout Player: No. 2 Giovani Bernard

By Dom DeCarlo
Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

It is probably the first position you try to draft in your fantasy football draft every season. The running back position is the most important position that every manager has on his team. This is the position that will make or break your team every season.

If you were a manager that drafted Ray Rice or Trent Richardson last season, then there is a very good chance that you did not have a very good season or you had to make up for the poor play of those players just to squeak into the playoffs. In this addition of breakout fantasy football players for 2014, we are going to examine the running back that I feel will have the biggest breakout season, and that is Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard.

The 2013 NFL Draft did not have many high profile offensive players that were scheduled to be in this draft. Most drafts, teams look for that top-notch running back, quarterback or wide receiver. This was not one of those drafts, because there just wasn’t any, so it seemed. In the second round of the draft, there were three running backs selected to teams that needed help in that position. Eddie Lacy was selected by the Green Bay Packers, Le’Veon Bell was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers, and Giovani Bernard was drafted by the Bengals. Lacy and Bell have already established that they are going to be “the guy” for their teams going into the 2014 season.

Bernard, even though he was not the every down running back for the Bengals in 2013, had a great rookie season. While sharing time with veteran running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Bernard showed his great potential. Bernard totaled 1,209 yards receiving and rushing. He really came into his own in his rookie season, giving Andy Dalton another great weapon in this already dangerous offense. Towards the end of the season, Bernard started seeing even more goal line touches than Green-Ellis.

Going into the 2014 NFL and fantasy football season, the Bengals know that they have a better chance of winning the more they get this man the football. I can see Bernard’s touches per game going up to about 20-25 a game and having Green-Ellis just come in for short yardage situations and goal line plays.

If you are in need of a player that will start out as a RB2 and play like a RB1 throughout the season, Bernard has to be your guy. He will get touches when the team is ahead on the ground and touches through the air when the Bengals are trailing. He will give you the best of both worlds and needs to be snatched up no later than the fourth of fifth round.

Dom DeCarlo is a Fantasy blogger for Follow him @DomDecarlo1, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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