Taking a flier on Westbrook
Posted Aug. 16 at 10:45 PM
I'm into the latter rounds of a couple of different experts drafts right now, which is when the kickers, running back handcuffs, and second tight ends are going off the board. And where I'm drafting Brian Westbrook.
I actually had him queued up even before he signed with San Francisco yesterday. Because he was clearly going to sign somewhere, and although I don't view him as a guy who will have a heavy-duty role, there's little doubt he's going to play. And that, more than some random possible handcuff like Toby Gerhart or Mike Bell, is where I like to go with those later round picks.
I like taking fliers on guys who might explode if an injury elevates them into the lineup. But with the possible exception of Bernard Scott and Javon Ringer, I don't see a ton of players like that this year.
So instead, I'm looking for guys who are actually going to play and contribute. Both leagues I'm in -- one at this link, that's finishing up right now, and one here, that features IDPs and is going a whopping 29 rounds -- feature PPR scoring.
So projected third-down backs like Westbrook, Darren Sproles, Brandon Jackson and even aged Kevin Faulk could turn out to be 7- to 8-point per week guys, at a minimum, even if they never start a game. And that makes them usable players. Weeks they catch 5 passes for 50 yards and rush for 20-30 yards....well, I think Westbrook might have a few of those, too.
Westbrook is an older, banged-up guy coming off a concussion-riddled season, so he's not a guy to build a team around. But if you've got an early bye week or a need for a spot start? I'll take him over the other running backs I could select at the end of a draft.
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | Aug. 17 at 02:50 AM
I concede there's a certain lack of upside there. Functional option in case of injury or bye week issues is about it.
Posted by ALAN CAMERON | Aug. 24 at 09:26 AM
I agree with the value of Westbrook as a late round pick-up. The three dirtiest words in my draft vocabulary are "running back handcuff". There are enough single backs on good teams, commitee backs on good teams, single backs on not so good teams and situational guys who always get their reps without waiting for an injury to fill my roster.
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