Charles Sims transferred to West Virginia for his final year of college eligibility in 2013 and was a productive dual threat, leading the Big 12 in yards from scrimmage (1,496; 1,095 rushing and 401 receiving) along with 14 total touchdowns (11 rushing and three receiving). Despite not have a glaring need at running back, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers took Sims in the third round (69th overall) and added him to a depth chart that already includes Doug Martin, Bobby Rainey and Mike James.
Buccaneers’ offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford has hinted at using multiple backs, even with Martin No. 1 on the depth chart, and with the likelihood of a run-first offense there should be a lot of work to go around. More recently, Tedford touted Sims as a complete running back.
Sims is a capable receiver, with 203 receptions during his college career, which puts him in line for a passing down role right out of the gate. Prior to this year’s draft, Greg Cosell of NFL Films compared Sims to Matt Forte.
Sims may look to be buried on the depth chart, but Martin and James both missed significant time with injuries last year. Rainey did well when he got an opportunity, but he only had 99 rushing yards over the last three games of 2013. So if Sims can assert himself with a strong preseason, I think he can make a case for a big all-around role right away.
Martin was very productive as a rookie in 2012, with over 1,400 yards and 11 touchdowns as well as 49 receptions for 472 yards and another touchdown. Even in a running back committee, which is already potential bad news for fantasy owners, Sims will have to usurp Martin to become Tampa Bay’s primary goal line back.
Sims is older than a typical rookie, since he’ll turn 24 in September. That means an already abbreviated shelf life as an NFL running back is likely to be a bit shorter.
Sims belongs on the radar of owners in dynasty leagues, but it will be difficult to rely on him as a consistent weekly option in re-draft leagues this year if Martin stays healthy. He is on track to be worth drafting in deep leagues, particularly as a handcuff to Martin, and if Sims winds up with a prominent role at any point he could be a big factor in PPR leagues.
Bye Week: Week 7
Projected Round: 12th or 13th Round
Auction Value: $2 (Fantasy Sharks.com)