Barkley comes fresh off a bye week for a Texans defense that’s been getting obliterated by the run all season. Houston ranks 30th in Football Outsiders’ run defense DVOA, 32nd in Pro Football Focus’ run defense grades and 32nd in adjusted fantasy points allowed to RBs. RBs are ripping off 5.7 yards per carry against the Texans.
Barkley is averaging 20.4 carries per game and is a good bet for another 20+ highly efficient totes with the Giants 4.5-point home favorites on Sunday.
Kamara was quiet last week in a total dud from the Saints offense. But his role remained awesome. Kamara played 88% of New Orleans’ offensive snaps and ran a route on 75% of pass plays – elite marks. He handled 9 of 12 RB carries (75%) and garnered 4 targets (13% share).
As long as the Saints don’t lay another egg this weekend, Kamara will contend for the touch lead among RBs. Remember that he averaged 17.2 carries and 8.2 targets over his previous 5 games.
Kamara draws a Steelers defense on Sunday that ranks dead last in Football Outsiders’ run defense DVOA over the last 5 weeks. They’re coughing up 4.6 yards per carry to RBs during that stretch.
Pierce remains too cheap for the volume he’s been getting. The rookie has averaged 19.6 carries over his last 7 games, with 20+ in 4 of those. He didn’t see a target last week but ran a route on a solid 56% of pass plays. He’d tallied 4+ targets in each of his previous 4 games.
Pierce gets a Giants run defense that ranks 26th in Football Outsiders DVOA over the last 5 weeks, yielding a big 5.8 yards per carry to RBs.
Also consider: Derrick Henry ($8,300), Travis Etienne ($7,100)