Sony Michel Fantasy Football Outlook & Value 2019

Position Ranking– RB28, ADP– 5.01, Auction Value ($200)– $36, Team– NE, Bye– 10

Tom Brady had another great year in 2018, leading the New England Patriots to yet another Super Bowl victory. However, this year will certainly be a different year with tight end Rob Gronkowski leaving the team and the New England running backs likely running a lot more. They ran a 3 wide receiver set and ranked 4th in overall offense. The running game was exceptionally good with Sony Michel and James White. The unit ranked 5th in rushing yards and 4th in rushing TDs.

FPTS 2018 GP ATT RU YDS YDS/ATT ATT/G 100+ YDS RU TD REC TGTS/G REC YDS REC TD Yahoo FPTS/G
134.1 13 209 931 4.5 16.1 4 6 7 0.8 50 0 10.43

Upside

Michel had a terrific season in 2018, leading the Patriots attempts and yards despite playing only 13 games. His counterpart, James White was used as a pass-catching back while Michel was the primary rushing attack. That trend looks like it’ll continue in 2019 as the Patriots will lose one of their top targets in Gronkowski. If Mitchel continues to develop the passing game in year 2 of his young NFL career, he could be in for a very nice season. The Patriots obviously trusted him enough to be their lead rusher in his rookie season and I’d look for more opportunities come year 2. Michel will continue to grow in the passing game while also rushing for 1,000 yards with 7 TDs.

Floor

While Michel is the clear lead rusher in the New England offense. White could become a problem if the Patriots decide to go with more of a passing attack in games. As such a one dimensional player, defenses may begin stacking the box a bit more when Michel is in the backfield whereas play further back for White. Nevertheless, Michel is primed for another solid campaign as the Patriots’ lead back and at worst, can get 800 rushing yards and 5 TDs.

What to Expect

New England PatriotsMichel is currently ranked as the 28th running back off the board and holds an auction value of $36. He’s currently projected to have 5th round draft value. This is a tough running back to grade. On one hand, Michel gives strong RB2 potential if he can grow in the passing game and become a dual threat option for Brady. On the other hand, if the Patriots decide to exclusively use him in the running game, there could be a strong case for Michel owners to draft White as a handcuff.

Ranked as the 28th overall running back, Michel shows RB2 potential but probably profiles as a RB3 to start the year. There’s no doubt he has the ability in the running game but with White being such a dangerous pas catching option out of the backfield, you have to wonder who the Patriots will commit to in critical situations. As it currently stands, both Michel and White are projected as 5th round picks and you’ll likely need to pick between one of the two backs which isn’t going to be easy.

In auction drafts, the choice is much easier. There will always be a chance to pay up for both backs but that’ll end up costing you around $50 for the pair. At his current price of $36, Michel is likely overpriced whereas White at $14 is a much safer option. If it was the 5th round and both New England running backs were available, I’d pass on Michel in the 5th and take White in the 6th should he fall that far.

There’s a lot of boom-or-bust potential with Michel who could see his stock jump if he becomes a player in the passing game. Otherwise, his game will remain one dimensional and be limited by his legs. He’s likely to project for another 900 rushing yard season with 6 TDs.

  
Originally from San Francisco, California, Justin Yeung has grown up as an avid Giants and Warriors fan, watching them both through the good and bad times. Currently, he is a junior attending the University of California, Irvine majoring in business economics and minoring in management. When he’s not in class, you’ll often find Justin at various sporting events and pursuing his goal of visiting all 30 Major League stadiums.

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