In a perfect world, we’d stack our roster with a bunch of workhorse 3-down backs. But unless you’re playing with your Aunt Jo and 10 of her friends, that’s not realistic.
As you move deeper into your PPR draft, you should be targeting RBs who catch the ball. That might seem obvious, but check this out:
Last season, a RB carry was worth an average of .63 PPR points. A RB target was worth 1.56 PPR points -- nearly 2.5x more than a carry.
Targets are the lifeblood of fantasy production in PPR leagues. Here are guys 5 guys, all going in the 12th round or later of PPR drafts, that we project for more than 45 targets this season. (And keep reading for a bonus deep sleeper!)
Dion Lewis, Titans
We’re buying into Derrick Henry in a workhorse role this season. But that doesn’t mean Lewis is without PPR value.
Henry has totaled 39 catches across 3 NFL seasons. That followed 17 grabs in his 3 seasons at Alabama. The guy hasn’t been a significant part of his team’s passing game in a long time.
Even during his massive 4-game run to close last season, Henry totaled just 3 targets.
Lewis, meanwhile, racked up 16 targets and 14 receptions over those 4 games. That was part of a 59-400-1 receiving line last season. Only 9 RBs tallied more catches; only 16 had more receiving yards.
Pro Football Focus ranked Lewis 21st in their receiving grades among 88 RBs who saw 10+ targets last year. Henry ranked 77th.
So while Henry figures to soak up a big chunk of the carries, look for Lewis to remain Tennessee’s primary pass-catching back. And it’s not like this will be a dominant Titans squad playing with leads early and often. Their 2019 win total is set at 8.
And if Henry goes down, Lewis turns into something close to a feature back. Behind him on the depth chart: David Fluellen, Jeremy McNichols and Alex Barnes. Henry, of course, is currently sidelined with a strained calf.
Lewis is a screamin’ value at his 14th-round, RB56 ADP.