• Devonta Freeman
  • RB
  • , Atlanta Falcons
  • 27
  • 206 lbs
  • 5' 8"
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Scouting report

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - Week 6 Fantasy Football Outlook

Week 6 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Devonta Freeman rushed eight times for 32 yards in the Falcons’ Week 5 loss to the Steelers. He also caught two passes for an additional nine yards but suffered a knee injury, leaving his Week 6 status in doubt. This is quickly turning into a lost season for Freeman and the Falcons, who are now 1-4 to start the year. Assuming Freeman doesn’t play, Tevin Coleman will be Atlanta’s No. 1 back, and rookie Ito Smith will be promoted again to No. 2.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - Week 5 Fantasy Football Outlook

Week 5 at Pittsburgh Steelers

Falcons coach Dan Quinn confirmed Thursday that Devonta Freeman (knee) will play Week 5 against the Steelers. Freeman noted earlier this week that his knee feels good and with the way Atlanta’s defense has been shredded the past three weeks, the Falcons will need every weapon they have on offense to keep pace with Pittsburgh. With the total sitting at 58 for this matchup, fantasy owners can expect a shootout at Heinz Field. Freeman ranks as our RB27 and should be considered for a RB2 or FLEX spot until we see his production back where we expect it.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman Week 2 Fantasy Football Outlook

Week 2 vs. Carolina Panthers

Devonta Freeman rushed just six times for 36 yards in the Falcons’ Week 1 loss to the Eagles. His night was cut short by a knee injury, which has also left his status for Week 2 in doubt. The initial reports were that he would be fine but he missed practice on both Wednesday and Thursday. If he doesn’t practice again on Friday, then Freeman owners will need to go with Plan B. If you have Tevin Coleman, he’s a viable RB2 against the Panthers on Sunday. If Freeman does play, then view him as a low-end RB2 against Carolina’s defense. Freeman ranks as our No. 19 RB for Week 2.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - Week 1 Fantasy Football Outlook

Week 1 at Philadelphia Eagles

Devonta Freeman was held out of preseason play but he is not a threat to miss Week 1 of the regular season. He’s fully recovered from the MCL and PCL sprains that hampered him late last season and despite Tevin Coleman’s presence, Freeman remains the Falcons’ No. 1 back.

Freeman and the Falcons draw a tough Week 1 matchup against the Eagles, who held Freeman to just seven yards on 10 carries back in January when the two teams met in the playoffs. That said, Freeman saved his fantasy line that day by catching five passes for 26 yards and a touchdown. While he’s a borderline RB1 for the season, view Freeman as an RB2 for Thursday night. He ranks as our No. 16 RB for Week 1.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - 2018 Fantasy Football Outlook

Fantasy Upside

Despite battling concussion and knee injuries in 2017, Devonta Freeman still rushed for 865 yards and seven touchdowns, while also adding 36 receptions for an additional 317 yards with one score. Those numbers were good for RB13 on the year, making him a high-end RB2. Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian was criticized for his lack of creativity last year but his running game was still productive. The Falcons are likely to take it slow with Freeman after he played with sprains to both his MCL and PCL but he should be ready for Week 1. Despite Tevin Coleman and perhaps rookie Ito Smith getting touches, Freeman remains Atlanta's No. 1 back.

Fantasy Downside

Last season was the second year in a row Freeman took a step backward fantasy-wise. After finishing as the RB1 and the No. 2 overall fantasy player in 2015, Freeman dropped to RB6 for 2016 and then RB13 a year ago. Concussions and knee injuries limited him to 14 games as a whole but he also missed parts of other games as well. After finishing as the NFL's most explosive rusher in 2016, Freeman fell to 26th in 2017, so that was a problem as well. Finally, Sarkisian wasn't as creative or as aggressive with his passing-game playcalling as Kyle Shanahan was the year before and Freeman was one of the many Falcons players who suffered. Sarkisian also used Coleman more from a pass-catching standpoint, which limited Freeman's overall production.

2018 Bottom Line

Freeman enters the 2018 season as a borderline RB1. Ranked as our No. 13 RB, Freeman's ADP is in the middle of the second round, which is appropriate. Rookie Saquon Barkley, second-year back Dalvin Cook, and even new 49er Jerick McKinnon offer more upside in PPR leagues but Freeman's floor is high enough to make him a safe pick as an RB2. As long as he can stay relatively healthy, Freeman is a safe play given the number of touches he'll continue to receive as the Falcons' No. 1 back.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - Divisional Round Fantasy Football Outlook

Divisional Round at Philadelphia Eagles

Devonta Freeman rushed 18 times for 66 yards and a touchdown in the Falcons’ Wild Card victory over the Rams. Freeman didn’t tear up the stat sheet but it was a gritty performance from the veteran back, who was forced to perform on a slick track all night. On his lone touchdown, Freeman was basically carried into the end zone by center Alex Mack.

Freeman has a difficult matchup on Saturday when the Falcons visit the Eagles in the Divisional Round. Philadelphia has the second-ranked defense against fantasy running backs so Freeman could struggle. Ranked as our No. 5 RB for this weekend, view Freeman more as an RB2 than a bona fide RB1.

by Anthony Stalter

ATL RB Devonta Freeman - Wild Card Round Fantasy Football Outlook

Wild Card Round at Los Angeles Rams

Devonta Freeman rushed for just 23 yards on 11 carries but added 9 catches for 85 yards and a touchdown on 11 targets in the Falcons' Week 17 win over the Panthers. Freeman had a difficult matchup against a stringy Carolina run defense but he helped fantasy owners with his receiving production. After finishing in the top six the past two years, Freeman ended the regular season as fantasy's RB13. He was a weekly RB2.

Speaking of being an RB2, that's what Freeman will be on Saturday night when the Falcons take on the Rams in their Wild Card round matchup. One of L.A.'s weaknesses is its run defense so Atlanta will need to lean on Freeman and Tevin Coleman to set the tone for a struggling offense. He dealt with a knee injury earlier in the week but isn't even listed on the team's injury report so he's good to go. Ranked as our No. 7 RB for Wild Card weekend, view Freeman as an RB2 with upside.

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