I’m not going to dive into how much I love Bishop Sankey. I’m not going to do it. I’m not going to do— oh, who am I kidding?
I love Bishop Sankey.
Fantasy football owners may love him, too. The Tennessee Titans became the first team to select a running back in the NFL Draft this past May, and Sankey is in an ideal landing spot for fantasy success.
The landing spot is the biggest positive for Sankey, but the guy is also very talented. The best back in the class, Sankey has terrific vision, great pass-catching skills, can pass-block (which is key) and is an incredible cutter. He reminds me of a less explosive Giovani Bernard. He doesn’t exactly do anything at an elite level, but he does everything well. Then, of course, there’s Tennessee, who’s offensive line ranked inside the top-five last year. They have tons of size up front, and according to Pro Football Focus, since 2008, Chris Johnson went untouched in the backfield on 70 percent of his carries each season. He’ll get plenty of holes, and because he is a more patient and decisive runner, Sankey should see success.
While he is by far the most talented back on the roster, Sankey hasn’t been named the starter just yet, so there is a little bit of risk. Shonn Greene, though a plodder, is an experienced back in this league. Also, if there is one weakness to Sankey’s game, it’s that he has below average balance, which could impact some of his goal line work. Also, with Ken Wisenhunt calling the shots, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Titans threw the ball more in 2014. But seeing as Greene and Jackie Battle aren’t exactly pass-catching backs, Sankey should still be heavily involved.
Sankey, assuming he is the starting running back, should walk into a top-20 fantasy campaign. Ever since his 2,000-yard season, Johnson hasn’t been nearly as good, but still consistently served as a top-15 fantasy back. I’m higher on him than most, ranking him as the number 17 back, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he finished better than that, either.
Bye Week: 9
Projected Round: 4th
Auction Value: $9 (via ESPN)