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DFS Running Backs That Could Be Undervalued Early On

Todd Gurley – Atlanta Falcons

The Atlanta Falcons offensive line was a mess in 2019. They had many injuries and dealt with a declining Davonta Freeman who wasn’t particularly healthy. Freeman finished 39th in DYAR (Defense-adjusted Yards Above Replacement) and 37th in DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average) last season.

In comes Todd Gurley. Despite having a marginal season for his standards, Gurley totaled 14 touchdowns over 15 contests with the Los Angeles Rams. His yards per attempt were way down, but the running back is still just 25-years-old. There isn’t much competition for touches in Atlanta, so expect Gurley to have the workload of an RB1, assuming he’s healthy. With plenty of weapons for Matt Ryan to target in the pass game, defenses shouldn’t worry as much about Gurley.

Leonard Fournette – Jacksonville Jaguars

It was assumed that Leonard Fournette would be dealt after making comments about wanting the Jacksonville Jaguars to sign Cam Newton in free agency. The team searched for a fit, but in the end decided that it wasn’t worth moving him.

Fournette is coming into a contract year with Jacksonville declining his fifth-year option. The tailback has every reason to want to thrive in 2020. Fournette scored just three touchdowns in 2019 over 15 games, but the running back was highly-involved in the pass game for the first time. You may be shocked to learn that Fournette racked up 100 targets and nabbed 76 of them for 522 yards. This brought his all-purpose yardage up to 1,674 last season. Fournette was one of the top NFL picks in the draft and now he may finally live up to his expectations

Gardner Minshew went 6-6 as a starter last season. He also accounted for three comebacks and three game-winning drives. This offense may be better than people are expecting and Fournette could benefit greatly from this. Keep an eye on Fournette’s spread on his yards this season because it may be something bettors can take advantage of.

Melvin Gordon – Denver Broncos

With the addition of rookie wide out Jerry Jeudy, the Denver Broncos offense just became well-rounded. Defenses won’t feel as comfortable stacking the box with Jeudy and Courtland Sutton gashing opponents’ secondaries.

Even with a loaded backfield, the Broncos didn’t spend big on Gordon to have him split time. Despite Phillip Lindsay rushing for 1,011 yards and seven scores in 2019, Denver chose to upgrade. They sought out a running back with hands as a safety net for Drew Lock. Gordon was on pace for 56 receptions last season if he had played in all games. In fact, his reception rate of 75.2 percent over his career tops Lindsay.

Expect Gordon to be cheaper among DFS formats early on, especially with the uncertainty of playing time with the other Denver running backs. Although the acquisition of Gordon was one that the NFL public betting crew supported, it will need to be established that Gordon will get the lion’s share of touches and snaps, then his DFS salary will spike. Take advantage early!

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