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Israel Abanikanda Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2024

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the Jets are releasing RB Dalvin Cook. There's no fantasy impact here, because Cook didn't touch the ball the past two games and totaled just 2 touches the week before that. Rookie Israel Abanikanda carried twice and caught four of seven targets as the No. 2 RB in last Thursday night's loss to the Browns. Breece Hall is the only member of the Jets backfield you should be paying attention to if you're playing in Week 18. The timing of this release gives Cook a chance to catch on elsewhere, but we'd be surprised if he lands a meaningful role with a playoff team. Beyond that, we're not expecting much from Cook in 2024 either. The 28-year-old doesn't appear to have much left.

Jets RB Israel Abanikanda is expected to be out "a couple of weeks" with his thigh injury, HC Robert Saleh said Tuesday. When healthy, the rookie will be New York's third or fourth RB. He's off the redraft radar.

Jets RB Israel Abanikanda left Saturday's preseason game with an injury to his right thigh. ESPN's Rich Cimini said the rookie RB was putting no weight on the leg as he left the field early in the fourth quarter. We'll look for more info on his outlook. The rookie likely wouldn't be heading for much regular-season work even if healthy, though, after the Dalvin Cook signing.

Update: HC Robert Saleh said after the game it's merely a thigh contusion, Cimini reports. This shouldn't be a long-term issue.

The Jets have agreed to a one-year deal with RB Dalvin Cook. NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports that Cook is getting "up to $8.6 million ... with the majority guaranteed." He adds that it's the largest annual average of any deal for a RB free agent this offseason. This seems to signal a few things: First, the Jets like Cook much better than any of their current RB backups and were iffy enough on that crew to make a significant upgrade. Secondly, it also indicates they want to make sure not to overwork Breece Hall in his return from the ACL tear. Hall has yet to take the field in training camp, though reports have said they expect him to be ready for the regular season. Even if that holds true, expect Cook to cut way into the available work. That moves Hall down our RB rankings and gives Cook nice contingent upside, in case Hall misses further games. The rest of the Jets' current RBs are no more than end-of-draft fliers. At least one among Michael Carter, Zonovan Knight, and Israel Abanikanda probably isn't making the regular-season roster.

The Athletic's Zack Rosenblatt says Jets RB Zonovan Knight has "had a really good camp -- he's quite clearly been their best RB." That's, of course, with Breece Hall not yet practicing. But it's noteworthy that Knight earns such praise over Michael Carter and rookie Israel Abanikanda. We're not betting on another Jets RB being starter-worthy in fantasy whenever Hall is active. But Hall's still-progressing recovery from the 2022 ACL tear enhances the available opportunity for the rest of the backfield. Knight has been going basically undrafted by best ball ADP this offseason and sits well down our RB rankings. We'll see whether a big adjustment needs to happen.

Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic suggested in a recent report that he expects RB Michael Carter to be RB2 on the Jets' depth chart to open the 2023 season. Rosenblatt also noted that the possibility of free agent RB Dalvin Cook signing with the team "looms large" in the room, though Carter is "the most experienced, popular in the locker room and is generally a quality pass-catcher." It'll be fascinating to see how long he can hold onto this job assuming Rosenblatt is correct. Last season was not great for Carter. He opened the first six full games averaging 11.8 touches per game spelling fellow RB Breece Hall. Though after Hall tore his ACL in Week 7 vs. the Broncos, Carter's involvement dipped to just 7.6 touches per game. He was essentially phased out of a dysfunctional offense late in the year, eventually falling behind 2022 UDFA Zonovan Knight. Among 45 RBs with 100+ carries, Carter ranked 43rd in Pro Football Focus rushing grade, 45th in yards per carry, and 36th in yards after contact per attempt. On top of that, he only finished as a top-24 RB in PPR scoring in four games. Perhaps fantasy managers would be best to avoid Carter and bet on rookie Israel Abanikanda, a player who Rosenblatt predicts will inherit the #2 job as the season unfolds, instead. See where each of these backs appear in our current RB rankings.

The Jets selected Pittsburgh RB Isreal Abanikanda in Round 5 of the 2023 NFL Draft. At 20 years old, Abanikanda is one of the youngest prospects in this draft class, with much room to grow. It took a while for him to get going, but he led the ACC in carries (239) and rushing yards (1,431) as a junior in 2022, in addition to an NCAA-leading 21 total TDs. While his vision near the line of scrimmage is lacking at times, Abanikanda is a true home-run hitter at his best, as evidenced by his 61 runs of 10+ yards over his last 2 college seasons at Pitt. With the suitable scheme fit and patience, we may look back on Abanikanda as one of the draft's biggest steals. This, of course, is not a great landing spot for his immediate fantasy value. Abanikanda will compete with RBs Michael Carter and Zonovan Knight for the right to back up feature back Breece Hall.

Pitt RB Israel Abanikanda chose not to test at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. We’ll have a chance to see the 5’11, 216-pound RB put his skills to the test at Pitt’s pro day scheduled for March 29th. His size is about on par with where he was listed as a collegiate athlete, so that’s 1 less piece of the puzzle to worry about as far as Abanikanda’s profile goes. Tune back in at the conclusion of March for more information.

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