The Chiefs unsettled backfield has fantasy football players and analysts struggling to know what to make of things in the early going.
The Kansas City Chiefs have some serious decisions to sort out when it comes to running back. One year ago, the tandem of Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West were supposed to set the tone until Jamaal Charles made it back. One season later, West fell flat, Charles has been released and Ware earned some serious production on the ground and through the air, yet also faded as the season wore on. Heading into training camp there are several questions about where everyone stands heading into the regular season.
That’s bad news for fantasy football experts who are currently drafting leagues (not us, so don’t ask, because we don’t get it either). The Chiefs drafted Toledo running back Kareem Hunt in the third round and also signed veteran C.J. Spiller in the offseason. Ware is still supposed to be the top back, but Hunt’s presence, and the fact that the Chiefs packaged picks to get him, muddies the water. Jeff Ratcliffe of Pro Football Focus says no one is quite sure where to draft either player.
Ware’s ADP is all over the place in the industry depending on where you draft right now, but the average is right around RB18, which Hunt is going outside the top 60 at the position. Expect that gap to close over the course of the next three months, but at this point, Hunt offers the better value. Until we get more clarity regarding the Chiefs’ backfield, both players are risky fantasy picks in redraft leagues.
The preseason is likely to sort things out, because the Chiefs have shown an ability to go with a rookie early in the preseason and stick with him if that’s where they want to project him during the year. Mitch Morse started early and often at center in 2015. Parker Ehinger did the same last year at left guard. If the Chiefs want to feature Hunt as a lead back, they’ll put him in and make their case loud and proud. However, the team has been vocal about Ware’s abilities and Hunt is likely going to have to earn his time as he goes. Remember Tyreek Hill was largely a second half sensation last year.