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An important aspect of fantasy football is getting ahead of the curve in player values. We've listed and highlighted some players who show a change in value and lets you know what to do with them in Week 2's "Three Up, Three Down" article.
Brian Robinson could be back as early as Week 5. So if you think that Gibson’s Week 1 performance was due to Robinson’s absence, at best, you might be able to sell high. But there’s reason to think that Gibson’s usage in Week 1 could signify things to come. The eight targets he puled against the Jaguars were a career-high for Gibson, a former college wide receiver. NFL pundits have long wondered why Gibson hasn’t been utilized more as a receiver, considering it’s one of his biggest strengths. Not only did he pull the receiving volume, but he was effective with it, boasting 10.3 yards per reception. After adding his 14 carries, Gibson’s 21 touches tied with Derrick Henry for the eighth-most in Week 1. His receiving work doesn’t appear to be flukey either, as Gibson saw 30 passing snaps to McKissic’s 22. For reference, McKissic out-snapped Gibson 157 to 137 in games where both backs were healthy last year. As a rookie, Gibson finished as the RB13 in PPR scoring. Last year, he was the RB10. Our pre-draft ADP had Gibson going off the board as RB27. Perhaps fantasy managers overreacted to rumors of his demise. There’s still some concern about what Gibson’s workload could look like when Robinson returns to the lineup, but you can confidently fire up Gibson as a high-end RB2 until then.
After Cam Akers’ awful showing on Thursday Night Football, many saw that as a precursor for James Robinson. An Achilles injury has proved to be a severe hurdle for NFL running backs to return from. Although we saw it last year with DOnta Foreman, he was three years removed from his injury before finally breaking out. With Robinson suffering his injury less than nine months ago, he was expected to be a non-factor in Week 1. Well, he saw twice as many touches as backfield mate Travis Etienne. He punched in two touchdowns and finished as the RB11 in PPR scoring on the week. Etienne is recovering from an injury of his own, and that might explain his limited role. Etienne was overthrown while wide open in the red zone and had a brutal drop on what would have been a walk-in touchdown. But the likely scenario is that we’re looking at a committee in Jacksonville. Historically, head coach Doug Pederson has implemented a backfield-by-committee approach. Because of uncertainty about Robinson's health, Etienne projected for a much more significant role. But it’s time to adjust those sliders and move more projected work to Robinson. While it’s entirely too early to panic on Etienne, Robinson’s outing lends plenty of reason to bump him up in rest-of-season rankings.
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