Redskins RB Samaje Perine has "a ways to go" to catch RB Rob Kelley atop the depth chart, according to the Washington Post's Mike Jones. That jibes with OC Matt Cavanaugh's declaration last month that Kelley had "earned" the starting job with his 2016 showing. Kelley finished with a decent 4.2 yards per carry, although he mustered just 3.2 over his last 6 outings. Washington's coaching staff evidently liked what it saw, though. And Kelley has reportedly worked on his pass-catching ability while shedding some body fat this offseason. Perine beats out Kelley in the college production and athleticism departments and certainly has a shot to claim a significant role this year. But he's currently going 3 full rounds ahead of Kelley in fantasy drafts.
Washington OC Matt Cavanaugh told CSN Mid Atlantic recently that RB Rob Kelley "obviously has earned" the right to remain the team's lead back heading into this season. It's not surprising to find the incumbent getting the 1st shot there. But Cavanaugh's wording seems a bit strong for a player who reached 80 yards just 3 times last year. Kelley was solid overall, including rankings of 17th and 15th in Football Outsiders' main rushing efficiency metrics. Pro Football Focus graded him 26th among RBs. But Kelley was a dud as a pass-blocker. And he averaged 4.0 yards per carry across a 4-year Tulane career that never saw him reach 100 attempts in a season. Samaje Perine looks like the highest-upside fantasy back in Washington right now. If you own Kelley in dynasty, we'd recommend trying to sell before he does lose the starting job.
ESPN's John Keim considers rookie RB Samaje Perine an "instant challenger" for RB Rob Kelley's starting job. One anonymous Redskins player even predicted that Perine would win the battle. He and Kelley are cut from the same cloth. They're power backs with remarkably similar measurables: Perine a 5'11, 233-pounder with a 4.65-second 40 time and Kelley 5'11, 226 pounds with 4.68 speed. That'll make it an intriguing battle to watch this summer, with the victor potentially returning RB2 value in a talented Redskins offense.
The Redskins added Oklahoma RB Samaje Perine in the 4th round of the 2017 NFL Draft. Perine turned in a huge freshman season, taking 263 carries for 1,713 yards and 21 scores. That included an FBS-record 427 rushing yards against Kansas. His numbers slid from there as Joe Mixon arrived in Norman, but Perine still totaled 2,409 yards and 28 TDs on 5.7 yards per carry across the past 2 years. He wasn’t nearly as productive in the passing game, failing to top 15 catches or 108 receiving yards in any of his 3 seasons. He also tested poorly at the Combine, registering a 33rd percentile SPARQ score. An early-down pounder, Perine seems like a redundant player with Rob Kelley already in Washington. Kelley isn’t a special talent, though, so Perine is a threat to steal significant work this season.
Did you know that Doug Baldwin faced 9 bottom-8 WR defenses last year? Or that Jordan Howard drew 7 top-8 RB defenses? Find out who else will benefit from an easier schedule or be tasked with a tougher slate in 2017.8:07am EDT 7/20/17 Read More
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