Darren Sproles Fantasy News

C.J. Spiller should have Darren Sproles-like role

Sunday, July 5, 2015, 3:20pm

Fox Sports - [Full Article]

Whether or not Saints RB C.J. Spiller ends up being the starter is question in and of itself, but he is going to come through with a big season.

He may not see the same type of usage on the ground, but he is going to fill a role that is very similar to the one that Darren Sproles had during his tenure with the Saints. As Robert Cobb of TheInscriberMag.com stated, Spiller’s ability to be a receiver out of the backfield is going to be a major help for the Saints’ offense.

New Orleans head coach Sean Payton loved what Sproles brought to the field, and it was obvious that they missed him last season after trading him. Signing a player like Spiller shows exactly how much the Saints wanted to bring back a player who is similar to Sproles.

Fantasy Impact:

Unfortunately, Spiller has struggled with quite a few injury issues throughout his career. He has only played an entire season as a workhorse in one of his five NFL seasons, and he was an absolute star in that season, the story said. Other than that, Spiller has been inconsistent at best or simply wasn’t used much. Spiller should help to fill a void left by TE Jimmy Graham, so Spiller's value should come in PPR leagues as Mark Ingram is expected to get a bulk of the carries. We forecast Spiller for 68 catches, the most among RBs.

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Sproles: Eagles TE Zach Ertz is 'about to be a superstar'

Tuesday, June 23, 2015, 12:09am

NFL.com - [Full Article]

Eagles RB Darren Sproles had some nice things to say about TE Zach Ertz.

"He has great hands, man," Sproles said last week, via CSN Philly. "His hands and his route running are just great, really. He's about to be a superstar."

Ertz has earned praise from coaches and teammates for his impressive showing in OTAs and minicamp.

Fantasy Impact:

Ertz was the #13 TE in both standard and PPR formats despite only playing half of the Eagles’ snaps in his second year. Ertz played mostly (73%) on passing downs, so if his playing time is going to increase, a majority of the additional snaps are likely to come in run formations. Still, there’s upside with Ertz if he begins to see starter’s snaps. The Eagles lost their leading receiver -- first DeSean Jackson and then Jeremy Maclin -- in back-to-back seasons, so there will be opportunity from a targets standpoint.

Eagles Beat: RB DeMarco Murray 'fits' into offense 'perfectly'

Monday, June 22, 2015, 1:22pm

Eagles - [Full Article]

Eagles writer Dave Spadaro: If I had to say one player who stood out, it would be running back DeMarco Murray. He is much more fluid as a pass catcher than I thought, and he's in tremendous shape and just looks like he "fits" into this offensive structure perfectly. The backfield is a must-see group with all of that talent.

Fantasy Impact:

Murray had a career year in his fourth season, racking up 2,261 total yards and 13 touchdowns on 449 touches. He should get plenty of work in Philadelphia, though the signing of Ryan Mathews and the presence of Darren Sproles make it very unlikely that he’ll approach 450 touches in 2015. LeSean McCoy averaged 353 touches over the past two seasons, so that’s probably Murray’s ceiling if everyone stays healthy. He’ll hold low-end RB1 value, though the presence of Mathews and Sproles may make even that a stretch. Chip Kelly did not utilize McCoy much as a receiver last season.

Saints Beat: C.J. Spiller, Mark Ingram 'will be very close in total yards from scrimmage'

Monday, June 22, 2015, 12:35pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Saints beat writer Mike Triplett on the fantasy value of the team's running backs:

It's pretty close between C.J. Spiller and Mark Ingram. I'm really excited to see what Spiller will do in this offense as both a runner and receiver - mostly because you can tell that Sean Payton is really excited about the possibilities when he talks about Spiller. I think Spiller and Ingram will be very close in total yards from scrimmage - right around 1,000 yards each, with Ingram gaining almost all of those yards as a rusher and Spiller having a pretty even split between rushing and receiving yards. Spiller will get a boost in point-per-reception leagues. Ingram will probably score more TDs, though.

Fantasy Impact:

Senior Editor laid out The Case for C.J. Spiller earlier in the offseason. It's not inconceivable that Spiller posts top 5 PPR numbers a la Darren Sproles in 2011. Ingram should get his share of touches, though a healthy Khriy Robinson is a concern. Spiller would be our choice for PPR formats, with Ingram coming in higher in standard leagues.

Browns using RB Duke Johnson at receiver

Thursday, June 18, 2015, 12:43pm

Nate Ulrich, Twitter - [Full Article]

Browns OC John DeFilippo said using rookie RB Duke Johnson as a receiver yesterday is part of the plan for how he'll be used.

Fantasy Impact:

We've updated our projections for Johnson since he's generating so much buzz in the passing game. We now have him for 45 catches for 294 yards, which makes him a low-end RB3 in PPR formats. He has upside from there if he turns into a Darren Sproles/Danny Woodhead type. The Browns didn't throw the ball much to their running backs last season, but there's a new offensive coordinator in town, so anything could happen. His ADP is currently in the 8th round.

Eagles Beat: Divvying up the carries in the backfield

Tuesday, June 16, 2015, 12:49pm

Philly Mag - [Full Article]

Eagles beat writer was asked to predict how the team will divvy up the carries:

Obviously, when you sign two guys like DeMarco Murray and Ryan Mathews, you expect to spread the carries around a little more, but I don't see this as anything close to an equal time share.

Eagles running backs had about 26 carries per game last season. Overall, the team had 474 rushing attempts, which ranked seventh in the NFL. I think there's a good chance those numbers could increase this season. Running backs coach Duce Staley has already said the offense wants to regain its identity, and that identity is a run-based spread.

My guess (and I reserve the right to change this in August!) is that Murray would get around 17 carries per game; Mathews would get seven; and Darren Sproles would get two.

Assuming Murray stays healthy the whole season, that would translate to 272 carries. Only four running backs in the NFL had more than that last season.

Fantasy Impact:

We currently project Murray for 17.9 carries, Mathews for 8.3 and Sproles for 2.8. The Eagles didn't use LeSean McCoy much in the passing game last season, which is why we're a bit down on Murray this year. He should be a fine value around the 1/2 turn.

Saints RB Mark Ingram (foot) back at practice

Thursday, June 11, 2015, 12:02am

ESPN - [Full Article]

Mark Ingram was back in action Wednesday during the New Orleans Saints' organized team activities practice -- backing up coach Sean Payton's insistence that the running back wasn't dealing with any significant injury when he was held out of practice during parts of the past two weeks.

Payton had said Ingram was dealing with a minor foot/ankle issue but that it was mostly about being smart and cautious at this time of year.

Fantasy Impact:

Ingram averaged 19.6 touches for 85 yards and 0.69 TD per game in his 13-game season in 2014. He averaged 4.27 YPC last season after averaging 5.02 YPC in 2013. He benefited somewhat by injuries to Khiry Robinson, who could potentially eat into Ingram's 2015 workload. The team also signed C.J. Spiller to fill the Pierre Thomas/Darren Sproles role in the offense. Ingram posted the #11 PPG in PPR formats (#8 in standard). We’re expecting a step back from those numbers as the team gets Robinson and Spiller involved.

Eagles RB DeMarco Murray is a 'perfect fit' for Chip Kelly's offense

Wednesday, June 10, 2015, 11:42am

NJ.com - [Full Article]

Eagles RB DeMarco Murray is drawing rave reviews during his first spring as an Eagle, including from running backs coach Duce Staley during his media availability with the rest of the Eagles' assistant coaches last week.

"He's a perfect fit for us," Staley said. "He's exactly what we want to do: full steam, downhill and full steam ahead. That's what we're preaching every day; one, two, three, four yards and a cloud of dust. And all the backs that we have are able to do that."

Fantasy Impact:

Murray had a career year in his fourth season, racking up 2,261 total yards and 13 touchdowns on 449 touches. He should get plenty of work in Philadelphia, though the signing of Ryan Mathews and the presence of Darren Sproles indicate that he won’t approach 450 touches in 2015. LeSean McCoy averaged 353 touches over the past two seasons, so that’s probably Murray’s ceiling if everyone stays healthy. He’ll hold low-end RB1 value on draft day.

Saints RB Mark Ingram sitting out with foot issue that is 'nothing significant'

Friday, June 5, 2015, 1:42pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Running back Mark Ingram was once again watching from the sideline during the New Orleans Saints' second week of organized team activities (OTAs) on Thursday. But coach Sean Payton stressed that he's not dealing with anything "significant" and that the Saints are just being smart at this time of year.

Ingram was also out last Thursday with what Payton described as a minor foot/ankle issue.

“We’ve just sat him,” Payton said. “There’s nothing significant. It’s this time of the year where we’re smart about what we’re doing.”

Fantasy Impact:

Ingram averaged 19.6 touches for 85 yards and 0.69 TD per game in his 13-game season in 2014. He averaged 4.27 YPC last season after averaging 5.02 YPC in 2013. He benefited somewhat by injuries to Khiry Robinson, who could potentially eat into Ingram's 2015 workload. The team also signed C.J. Spiller to fill the Pierre Thomas/Darren Sproles role in the offense. Ingram posted the #11 PPG in PPR formats (#8 in standard), and will be drafted as a high-end RB2 in 2015 fantasy drafts, provided this foot issue doesn't linger.

Eagles Beat: Sorting out the team's backfield

Tuesday, May 19, 2015, 2:25pm

Philly.com - [Full Article]

Philly.com's Zach Berman on the Eagles' new running backs:

Last season was the first time DeMarco Murray played 16 games, and he had 392 carries. That was the most by any running back since Larry Johnson in 2006. Johnson never had another 1,000-yard season.

Don’t expect Murray to near that carry total this season. He will no doubt be the featured running back, but coach Chip Kelly wants carries to be shared. That’s where Ryan Mathews comes in.

Mathews appeared at first to be the consolation prize to missing out on Gore, but the Eagles still signed him. The former first-round pick is a talented rusher who has twice topped 1,000 yards, but injuries have also been an ongoing issue. He had a career-low 330 yards last season while playing on six games. I wouldn't count on him carrying the ball more than 220 times like he did in his 1,000-yard season (unless Murray gets injured), but he can find a sweet spot in the mid-100s.

Fantasy Impact:

We currently project Mathews for 132 carries for 561 yards, which jibes with the numbers that Berman had in mind. We project Murray for 285 carries (for 1,279 yards), which is a far cry from the 392 totes he saw last season. Berman went on to say that the team "needs to get" Darren Sproles more involved, but that may be tough since the team replaced LeSean McCoy with two new running backs.

Friday, April 10, 2015, 4:28pm

Times-Picayune - [Full Article]

What happens to Saints RB Khiry Robinson?

Robinson will enter his third season with the Saints as third fiddle with Mark Ingram returning and C.J. Spiller signing with the Saints. The landscape looked quite different one month ago with Ingram being a potentially hot free agent and Pierre Thomas being released.

Ingram will be the clear-cut option for snatching up carries after his breakout 2014 season. Spiller is a far more capable runner in the traditional ground game than Pierre Thomas and Darren Sproles the last few seasons.

This means more carries for Ingram and Spiller and less touches for Robinson. The logic entering 2014 was that we'd see more Robinson. Barring injuries, Robinson will likely find fewer opportunities.

Fantasy Impact:

Robinson will likely get some work but Ingram proved last year he can carry the load when the Saints turned to the ground game, while Spiller likely gets the Pierre Thomas, pass-catching duties.

RB DeMarco Murray has agreed to terms with the Eagles

Thursday, March 12, 2015, 3:37pm

Star-Telegram - [Full Article]

DeMarco Murray flew to Philadelphia via private plane on Thursday and indeed agreed to a contract with Eagles.

Murray will get $42 million over five years, including $21 million in guaranteed money, per reports.

Although the Cowboys said they wanted Murray to return, they never came close to meeting his contract demands, citing the diminished value of the running back and the decline in production as they get older.

Fantasy Impact:

Murray had a career year in his fourth season, racking up 2,261 total yards and 13 touchdowns on 449 touches. He should get plenty of work in Philadelphia, though the signing of Ryan Mathews and the presence of Darren Sproles indicate that he won’t approach 450 touches in 2015. LeSean McCoy averaged 353 touches over the past two seasons, so that’s probably Murray’s best-case scenario if everyone stays healthy. He’ll hold low-end RB1 value, though the presence of Mathews and Sproles may make that a stretch.

Eagles have agreed to terms with RB Ryan Mathews

Wednesday, March 11, 2015, 2:21pm

Ian Rapoport, Twitter - [Full Article]

Former Chargers RB Ryan Mathews is on a plane to Philly. He has agreed to terms on a 3-year, $12M deal with the Eagles, source said, pending physical.

Fantasy Impact:

It's reportedly a 3-year, $12M deal. Philadelphia would have been a good landing spot for Mathews before the team also agreed to terms with DeMarco Murray. The Eagles ran the ball a lot more than the Chargers did, but they'll be hard-pressed to find enough carries for Mathews to allow him to maintain his RB2 value from his days in San Diego. The signing is also a downgrade for Murray, whose workload is surely to take a hit from the 449 touches he saw in 2014.

Monday, December 29, 2014, 12:47pm

NJ.com - [Full Article]

Traded to the Eagles last offseason by the New Orleans Saints, Darren Sproles was supposed to create a dynamic backfield with Pro Bowl running back LeSean McCoy. Together, the two were supposed to be a nightmare for opposing defenses.

A vision that never came to fruition.

"I feel we could have done more," Sproles said of playing with McCoy, "but I don't know."

"Have us on the field the same time more," Sproles said of what he would like to see next season. "Have me do more routes out of the backfield."

Fantasy Impact:

Sproles was on the field for 344 total snaps in his first season with the Eagles. Of those 344 snaps, Sproles shared a backfield with McCoy only 38 times. The two were successful during their limited time together, as the offense averaged 6.5 yards per play this season with both McCoy and Sproles on the field, the story said. Sproles had double-digit touches the team's first two games but then the touches got less and less as the weeks went on. He did miss a game because of a knee injury. Sproles didn't catch a ball in three games this year and in two of those he wasn't even targeted.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014, 9:35am

Philly.com - [Full Article]

Something still is wrong with the Eagles' running game, 2 weeks into the return of Evan Mathis from an MCL injury and 3 weeks since Jason Kelce returned from abdominal surgery.

LeSean McCoy gained 155 yards on 25 carries when the Eagles won at Green Bay last November. Sunday, he slogged to 88 on 23. Same defense, except Clay Matthews had two healthy hands this time and was playing inside most of the time Sunday. Same offensive line, except for Matt Tobin replacing Todd Herremans.

"It was just a combination," HC Chip Kelly said yesterday, asked what he saw hindering the run game when he reviewed film of Sunday's 53-20 loss to the Packers, who came in ranked 30th in the NFL against the run. "There were times where it was blocked up pretty good and we hit a couple in there, and then there were some other times where we're just slipping off of blocks. We're not sustaining blocks or hitting it the right way."

Fantasy Impact:

Asked what McCoy can do better, Kelly said he couldn't specify one thing, but did think McCoy was patient, something that hasn't always been the case with the RB this season. Darren Sproles is averaging 6.8 yards per carry in very limited work behind the same line, but Kelly spoke enigmatically of "the rotation" and asserted that "LeSean is our guy." Asked why Sproles gets so few touches, Kelly said: "Yeah, I just don't think we're running the ball well overall." McCoy continues to get his 20-plus carries and while the yards have been OK as of late, he has just one TD in his last five games and just two overall. Sproles has just been getting a handful of touches since seeing double-digit touches very early in the season.

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