Arian Foster landed in a backfield where there is certainly opportunity for enough work to be fantasy relevant with no incumbent starter in Miami. Combine with the fact that he is not the first but the second free agent running back Adam Gase signed (Denver matched Miami’s offer sheet on restricted free agent C.J. Anderson), and it leads you to believe there isn’t full confidence in 2nd year back Jay Ajayi in Miami. If Foster wins the starting job, Gase has produced fantasy studs at RB. Matt Forte finished as the #9 RB in standard leagues in just 13 games in 2015, and C.J. Anderson was the #11 RB in 2014, despite starting only seven of 15 games. That’s promising upside for Foster in this offense.
Let’s begin with the fact that Arian Foster is coming off a ruptured Achilles going on to age 30. That injury occurred Week 7 last year. Different position, but it took Colts defensive end Robert Mathis more than 12 months to get back on the field with limited snaps for weeks even after his return. It’s also just the latest injury in Foster battered career, missing 23 games now in the past three seasons. Any faith in Foster’s upside in Miami must first come with hope that he stays healthy, and that is a big leap of faith. Combine that with the Miami Herald reporting shortly after the signing of Foster that Ajayi and him would both get “plenty of carries”, and it makes it hard to envision a high ceiling for Foster.
Foster’s ADP is around the 11th round in 12-team leagues since signing with the Dolphins. In PPR leagues, we have Foster ranked ahead of Ajayi, with the game script likely to favor the passing down back more often in Miami. In either standard or PPR leagues, Foster is only a flex consideration at most until there’s more clarity in this backfield.