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Austin Ekeler - Fantasy Points Outlook

Basic StatsAustin Ekeler's Basic Stats

Austin Ekeler
Bye: 8
Experience: 5 Yr(s)
Age: 27.7
Height: 5'10"
Weight: 200
40 Time: 4.48
Burst Score (Rank): 132.90 (96%)
Agility Score (Rank): 11.06 (86%)
Three Cone Drill (Rank): 6.85

Austin Ekeler's Weekly Outlook

This is a regular season feature

We’ll have detailed analysis of this player’s performance added here after each week’s game. Weekly outlooks are posted Tuesday at 1pm EST each week.

Rest Of Way Outlook

Austin Ekeler's 2022 Projections & Outlook


#3 Running Back

230.1 Projected Points

ADP Rush Atts Rush Yds Rush TDs 100 Fum Rec Rec Yds Rec TDs
Not Available 208.1 925.8 8.4 2.1 1.8 71.9 625.5 4.7

3D Projections DS 3D Projections

Basic StatsAustin Ekeler's Preseason Player Analysis

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What You Need to Know:
  • Ekeler set career highs last year in all fantasy scoring systems, finishing 2nd among RBs in PPR, half-PPR and non-PPR points.
  • His 12.9 carries and 56.9 rushing yards per game were both personal bests.
  • Ekeler hit 15 carries in 6 games after doing so just 6 times total over his first 4 NFL seasons.
  • He remained efficient with the heavier rushing load. While his 4.4 yards per carry was the 2nd-lowest mark of his career, he actually earned his 2nd best Pro Football Focus rushing grade. It ranked 14th among 50 RBs with 100+ carries last year. Ekeler ranked 18th out of 50 in PFF’s Elusive Rating.
  • He remained busy in the passing game, tallying 94 targets, 70 catches and 647 yards. Those marks ranked 1st, 2nd and 1st among RBs. Ekeler also ranked 3rd at his position in pass routes (417).
  • His 1.55 yards per route run was good for 7th among 33 RBs with 40+ targets.
  • But, most of all, Ekeler’s big 2021 fantasy season came via TDs. He scored 20 of them, tying Jonathan Taylor for the league lead and smashing his previous career high of 11.
  • Ekeler definitely overachieved in that department. Based on his usage, he was expected to score 13.2 TDs.
  • Those 13.2 expected TDs were still 2nd most among RBs, though, behind only Jonathan Taylor’s 16.9.
    • Ekeler ranked 6th among RBs in both carries inside the 10-yard line (25) and inside the 5 (12).
    • He led RBs with 16 red-zone targets.
  • Ekeler will benefit from continuity in 2022:
    • HC Brandon Staley and OC Joe Lombardi are back for year 2 with the Chargers.
    • QB Justin Herbert enters his 3rd NFL season.
    • The Chargers return 6 of last year’s top 7 target-getters, with TE Gerald Everett replacing TE Jared Cook.
    • Four of last year’s 5 offensive line starters are back: LT Rashawn Slater, LG Matt Feiler, C Corey Linsley and RT Storm Norton. The 1 change will come at RG, where 1st-round rookie Zion Johnson is slated to replace Michael Schofield. Schofield ranked just 55th among 70 qualifying guards in Pro Football Focus’ run-blocking grades, so Johnson might prove to be an immediate upgrade.
  • The Chargers added RB Isaiah Spiller in the 4th round of this spring’s draft.
    • Spiller led the Texas A&M backfield in all 3 years on campus, totaling 2,993 yards and 25 TDs on 5.5 yards per carry.
    • He also racked up 74 catches for 585 yards and a score.
    • Spiller bombed the pre-draft testing, though, with a 4.64-second 40 time (32nd percentile among RBs), a 30-inch vertical (7th) and a 114-inch broad (22nd).
  • We’re expecting Spiller to beat out Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree for the #2 RB job behind Ekeler. We’ll see if Spiller claims a bigger role than the 7.6 carries and 1.4 targets per game non-Ekeler RBs averaged in Ekeler’s 16 games last season.
  • Ekeler stated, “As far as my load, yeah, maybe it could be altered a little bit but I don’t think it’ll go down. I think it’ll just look a little different, if anything.” OC Joe Lombardi is on the same page. “I’m not expecting any kind of dip in usage with him,”.
Draft Sharks Bottom Line:

Ekeler is coming off a massive season, finishing RB2 across fantasy scoring systems. He returns in 2022 to the same offense with the same QB and with 4 of 5 of last year’s O-line starters back.

The only real question here is whether rookie RB Isaiah Spiller will cut into Ekeler’s volume at all, especially near the goal line. But Ekeler could lose some of that work and still score as a top-5 fantasy RB.

He’s a safe pick in the 1st round of fantasy drafts, with more value in full PPR setups.

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Justin Herbert, QB LAC

12:55pm EST 1/30/23

Chargers to hire Moore as OC

The Chargers are set to hire Kellen Moore as their new OC, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero. Although we just learned that Moore was done in Dallas on Sunday, the Chargers had been working on this hire "for a while," per Rapoport. It's a great get for QB Justin Herbert and Co. Moore helped the Cowboys to top-11 finishes in both points and total yards in 3 of his 4 seasons -- with the only exception being 2020, when QB Dak Prescott missed most of the year. That included a 1st-place finish in both points and yards in 2021. Moore's Dallas offenses were balanced to run-leaning in terms of Pass Rate Over Expected, although he certainly seems willing to adjust his play calling to the personnel. Moore also deploys a fast-paced attack, with the Cowboys ranking top 4 in both pace and situation-neutral pace in all 4 of his seasons.

View all Justin Herbert Shark Bites »

The Chargers have fired OC Joe Lombardi, according to NFL Network. Lombardi piloted Los Angeles to top 9 finishes in total yards in each of the past 2 seasons, despite dealing with a bunch of injuries to offensive linemen and skill-position players. But his scheme simply didn't accentuate QB Justin Herbert's arm talent, as evidenced by his 7.6 and 6.4 intended air yards per pass attempt marks over the last 2 years. That 6.4-yard mark this past season ranked 31st among 33 qualifiers. We'll see who the Chargers tab to replace Lombardi -- but the change is more likely than not to be good news for Herbert's fantasy value.

View all Justin Herbert Shark Bites »

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler capped off his age 27-season with 13 carries for 35 yards and 2 scores. Credit the Jags for filling up rushing lanes — and limiting Ekeler to only 2 catches for 8 yards (4 targets). A TD machine with 40 scores over the past 2 seasons, Ekeler is now scheduled to enter the final year of his second contract. Change could be coming to the Chargers’ coaching staff, but there's no reason to alter RB1 expectations for 2023.

View all Austin Ekeler Shark Bites »

If the Bengals beat the Ravens -- and they're currently 7-point favorites -- in the early slate of games on Sunday, the Chargers will clinch the AFC's #5 seed and have nothing to play for vs. the Broncos in the late slate. And it sure sounds like there's a chance that HC Brandon Staley will rest starters in that case. "Once we find out about that game, then we'll make the appropriate decisions moving forward," Staley said Wednesday. The Chargers are notably 2.5-point underdogs right now, suggesting the oddsmakers are at least baking in some chance of starters not playing. We'll continue to keep an eye on the situation, but guys like QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler and WRs Keenan Allen and Mike Williams carry elevated risk in Week 18 fantasy lineups.

View all Justin Herbert Shark Bites »

Chargers HC Brandon Staley plans to play starters in Sunday's game vs. the Broncos. A win would lock up the AFC's #5 seed for the Chargers, meaning a Round 1 game vs. the Jaguars or Titans. A loss would open the door for the Ravens to take the #5 seed with a win over the Bengals. That'd push the Chargers down to #6 and mean a Round 1 game vs. Cincinnati. “Our approach is definitely going to get shot to win this ballgame and play as well as we can play heading into the playoffs,” Staley said. “I think that there’s certainly an advantage to be in the No. 5-seed, from where I stand, so we’re going to try and get there.” Staley did add that he'd consider sitting banged-up players. But, as of now, we're projecting full playing time for QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler and WRs Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.

View all Justin Herbert Shark Bites »

Dynasty Overview View RB Dynasty Rankings »

Austin Ekeler, RB LAC
Dynasty MVP 129.8
Position Rank #25 RB
3yr Projection
5yr Projection
10yr Projection
Dynasty Write-up
Ekeler, 28 in May, has finished as a top-10 PPR RB in 3 of the last 4 seasons. Signed for 1 more season, he remains tied to 1 of the best young QBs.

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