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Anthony McFarland Jr. Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2022

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

The Steelers released RB Anthony McFarland. The 2020 4th-rounder never seemed to make a push for the #2 RB job this offseason. Pittsburgh is rolling with RBs Jaylen Warren and Benny Snell behind RB Najee Harris.

Steelers beat writer Chris Adamski writes that the #2 RB job is “wide open” between Anthony McFarland, Benny Snell and UDFAs Jaylen Warren and Mataeo Durant. “I’ve had a lot of setbacks, but I’ve learned a lot,” McFarland said. “Coming into Year 3, I’m feeling more comfortable and understanding what it is that I want my role to be to help the team out. I know there is a lot of doubt in my game. That’s what happens when you haven’t stepped on the field and showed much. But that’s what makes me hungry.” Veteran status makes McFarland and Snell the early favorites. But it’s quite possible Pittsburgh adds talent to the backfield this summer.

Steelers RB Anthony McFarland missed the team's preseason finale with an unspecified injury. Mark Kaboly of The Athletic reports that whatever the issue is, "it could land him on IR" this week. That would knock McFarland out for at least 3 games. We'll keep an eye on this situation. Benny Snell and Kalen Ballage also remain on the depth chart behind Najee Harris.

Update: McFarland has been placed on IR with his undisclosed injury, so he'll miss at least the first 3 games of the season.

Mark Kaboly of The Athletic writes that RB Anthony McFarland has “shown the most promise” among Pittsburgh backups. Kaboly notes McFarland’s scheme fit while calling his rushing ability “notably better than a year ago.” While the 2020 4th-round pick goes just 5’8, he's well built at 208 pounds. Kaboly also called Kalen Ballage a “pleasant surprise” but noted his similarities — at least stylistically — to Najee Harris. A Harris injury would almost certainly lead to a timeshare.

New Steeler Najee Harris got the "3-down back" label from GM Kevin Colbert on Thursday night. “He’s a three-down back that played in an NFL system,” Colbert said after taking Harris 24th overall. “His one hidden trait is that he finds invisible yards at that second level. There are times when you think he should be going down and he finds 6, 7, 8 yards. It is really exciting to get a three-down back and add him to the team.” This is a "3-down back" label we can buy into considering Harris will be competing for touches with Benny Snell and Anthony McFarland. Pittsburgh's offensive line figures to be a problem for Harris. But volume trumps all in fantasy football, and the rookie has a shot to finish top 10 in total touches this season.

The Steelers have signed RB Kalen Ballage to a 1-year deal, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Ballage lands in a backfield with plenty of opportunity currently available. We'll see, though, whether Pittsburgh adds a RB in the draft. We'd bet on the Steelers doing so, with the big question being how early. Ballage saw surprising touch volume with the Chargers last season, after injuries knocked out Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson. But he averaged only 3.3 yards per rush and 5.0 per reception. If you want to take a shot on Ballage at the very end of best-ball drafts, there's little risk. But we'd hope to see more touches go to Anthony McFarland -- who sure looks like he has a higher ceiling -- than Ballage. Even Benny Snell would probably still be a better bet for carries on the current depth chart.

The Ravens had no new positive COVID tests on Saturday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, and their game vs. the Steelers is still on for Tuesday night. QB Lamar Jackson, RB J.K. Dobbins and RB Mark Ingram -- along with a host of others -- will miss the game on the Baltimore side. Pittsburgh will be without RB James Conner.

Steelers RB Anthony McFarland sustained a concussion in Thursday's practice, according to The Athletic's Mark Kaboly. We'll see when the rookie is cleared, but he's off the redraft radar for now. Benny Snell will enter the season as Pittsburgh's #2 RB -- and the handcuff to James Conner.

The Steelers selected Maryland RB Anthony McFarland in the 4th round of the 2020 NFL Draft. Watch McFarland’s 298-yard, 2-TD dismantling of Ohio State back in 2018 and you’d think he’s 1 of the top backs in this class. That was part of an impressive redshirt freshman season that saw him tally 1,034 yards on 7.9 yards per carry. 39 of his 131 carries went for 10+ yards that year. McFarland took a colossal step back this past season, though, battling through a high-ankle sprain and totaling just 614 yards on 114 carries (5.4 YPC). He’s also fairly inexperienced in the passing game, with only 24 catches across the past 2 years. But McFarland’s flashes are exciting. And the 5’8, 208-pounder confirmed his big-play ability with a 4.44-second 40 time at the Combine. He’s an intriguing addition to Pittsburgh’s backfield alongside James Conner, Benny Snell and Jaylen Samuels.

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