Fantasy Football: 5 Reasons Not to Draft RB Darren Sproles in 2014
Do Not Draft Darren Sproles
Sproles started his career with the San Diego Chargers, and despite only being listed at 5-foot-6, he was able to find a place in the offense. Between 2008 to 2010, he rushed for 943 yards, scored four rushing touchdowns, had 1,359 receiving yards and caught 11 touchdown passes. While not a major contributor in fantasy football, Sproles was always on the border of being fantasy relevant.
When he was traded to the Saints in 2011, he became a top-15 running back in standard scoring leagues. Sproles finished his strong 2011 campaign with 603 rushing yards, scored two rushing touchdowns, had 710 receiving yards and caught seven touchdown passes. Much like Giovani Bernard, Sproles was able to insert himself as a dual-threat running back who could be used in a variety of ways. Sadly, Sproles was unable to maintain this level of production.
After rushing for the most yards in his career in 2011, Sproles only rushed for a combined total of 464 yards between the next two seasons. He recorded similar receiving stats in 2012, but his receiving touchdowns decreased sharply in 2013.
Even with such an explosive offense, the Saints have struggled to find an identity when running the ball. Pierre Thomas and Mark Ingram have shown flashes of greatness, but neither has ever solidified a starting role. Sproles only complicates this matter, so it does make sense that the Saints will try to save money by releasing him.
Despite having the ability as a rusher and receiver, Sproles will disappoint fantasy football players this season.
Here are five reasons why fantasy football players should not draft Darren Sproles in 2014.
At 30 years old, Sproles is closer to retirement than his rookie season. His age will be a factor for any team he plays for.
4. Declining Stats
Sproles' production in the running game has greatly declined since 2011. He only posts average numbers as a receiver, and he is only valuable when he is able to both rush and receive a minimum of 500 yards.
Most fantasy football players would find it concerning when a player hasn't been able to finish a complete season in two years. Because of his size and age, Sproles is a risky option to remain injury free in 2014.
2. Not A Lead Back
When you aren't a featured back, your production is limited. Sproles will never be the featured back in any system.
1. Leaving An Offensive Powerhouse
If Sproles struggled with such an explosive offense, where will he be successful? There will be few teams that would allow him to have the type of success he did with the Saints.