38-Year-Old Running Back – Free Agent
2014 Fantasy Football Outlook
There was no outlook written for Fred Taylor in 2014. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
Fred Taylor Contract Information:
Signed with Patriots in February of 2009.
Taylor will sign a one-day contract with Jacksonville on Friday that will allow him to retire as a member of the Jaguars, the Boston Globe reports.
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|Rushing||Rush Distance||Big Rush Games||Receiving||Kick Ret||Punt Ret||Fumbles|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Fantasy Points Per Game||Rushing Stats||Red Zone Runs||Receiving Stats||Red Zone Targets|
Age is determined on September 1st of each season.
|Snap Count||Rushing||Rush Distance||Receiving||Fumbles||Kick Ret||Punt Ret||Red Zone Runs||Red Zone Targets|
Fred Taylor: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Fred Taylor.
Taylor, who was slowed by an ankle injury in his first year with New England, returns to a backfield that brings back its top five RB's from 2009. With Laurence Maroney, Sammy Morris, Kevin Faulk and to a lesser degree, BenJarvus Green-Ellis also in the mix, figuring out who will get the touches on a weekly basis will remain a major headache. As long as he can stay healthy, Taylor figures to carve out a role, but he would need a break or two (in terms of injuries to teammates) to get the sort of workload that would allow him to be a reliable option for fantasy owners.
Taylor looks like a good fit with the Patriots given their success in recent years with veteran backs (Antowain Smith, Corey Dillon, Sammy Morris and LaMont Jordan) under coach Bill Belichick. The team's coach staff has an earned reputation for putting players in positions to succeed (given their skill sets) and even at 33, Taylor has the power and breakaway ability to be a nice weapon, if deployed judiciously. Sammy Morris, Laurence Maroney, Kevin Faulk and perhaps BenJarvus Green Ellis are also in the New England backfield mix, but the past couple of seasons have demonstrated to the team that there's no such thing as too much RB depth.
Taylor continues to defy odds, turning in his second straight healthy season with a careerbest 5.4 YPC last year. For someone once so injury- prone, it's remarkable Taylor's gotten more durable the older he gets. Despite receiving just 223 carries, he recorded four rushes for 40-plus yards, the second most in the league. The timeshare in Jacksonville's backfield has contributed to Taylor's improved health, but it also limits his upside. He is removed on all passing downs and short-yardage situations, so if he is to score, it has to come from longer distances. The Jaguars have a run-first philosophy on an improving offense with an emerging star in quarterback David Garrard. However, Taylor is now 32, has nearly 2,300 career carries and a lengthy injury history, so temper expectations.
Taylor has defied logic, actually proving more durable the older he gets, averaging more games played his last three years than his first three years in the league. One could argue that just means he's more likely to go down this season, which he’ll enter as a 31-year-old. That Taylor faded badly down the stretch last season could be a red flag moving forward. He's played in 16 games just twice in his nine-year career, and suffered a hamstring injury late in 2006, resulting in only nine carries for 63 yards over the final three weeks of the season. Even if Taylor does stay healthy, he’ll split carries with Maurice Jones-Drew with Jones-Drew getting most of the chances from in close.
With short-yardage man Greg Jones improving last season and the Jaguars using a second-round pick on Maurice Drew, a third-down back who would effectively complement Jones, Taylor’s role on the Jaguars would seem to be shrinking. But even at age 30, Taylor’s got excellent speed and cutback ability, which make him a threat to go the distance, and he’s shifty and elusive in the open field. And at 6-1, 234, he’s able to break tackles, though he hasn’t been used in short-yardage situations for several seasons. In short, Taylor’s still the most talented back on the team and likely to begin the year with the feature back role. After missing just two games since 2001, Taylor missed five last year with a bone bruise on his ankle. That injury isn’t a concern, however, as he was impressive during the Jaguars’ spring mini-camp, reportedly displaying improved quickness and speed, thanks to a rigorous independent offseason conditioning program. Taylor skipped the team’s “voluntary” passing camp and the group conditioning program, so there’s a chance he could start training camp in coach Jack Del Rio’s doghouse. But barring news of that sort, assume that Taylor will see most of the team’s carries save for the short-yardage variety.
Taylor’s fantasy stock has dropped the last several seasons as the Jaguars have chosen to spell him at the goal line. Aside from that, however, there haven’t been significant indications of statistical decline from the 29-year-old back, though durability issues that dogged him earlier in his career may have resurfaced. Taylor, who missed the last two games of 2004 with a sprained left knee, had arthroscopic surgery in January, and though he expects to be ready for training camp, there have been rumblings that the injury could linger – possibly causing him to miss part of the season. In 14 games last season, Taylor averaged 4.7 yards per carry, caught 36 passes and racked up 1,569 yards from scrimmage a year ago, totals that prorate to 1,793 yards and 41 catches over a full schedule. At 6-1, 234 pounds and still possessing good speed, Taylor can run between the tackles or get outside. Despite his size, he’s not an overpowering back, but he will break tackles in the open field and is still a threat to break off a long run. Taylor has lost a little bit of the explosiveness he once had, and his yard-per-carry average is probably a little bit inflated by the fact that he’s not used frequently in short yardage. Taylor has struggled at the goal line the last two years, converting just 5-of-16 chances from inside the five in 2003 and just 1-of-9 last season. As a result, look for Greg Jones, LaBrandon Toefield or Chris Fuamatu-Ma’afala to spell him from in close.
The formerly fragile Taylor should have had a much better fantasy season. Taylor had 25 opportunities from inside the 10-yard line and converted only five times. That’s the worst percentage by far among backs with a significant number of attempts. And last season’s poor showing in that area was no aberration. Taylor was 3-for-15 in ’02 and 8-for-31 in ’00 (he missed most of ’01 due to injury). So Taylor owners shouldn’t complain when he runs the ball up and down the field between the 20s and gets pulled near paydirt in favor of 250-pound, pile-driving rookie Greg Jones (already anointed by the Jags as their new Mike Alstott). Taylor was explosive in the second half of the season, averaging an even five yards per rush. But he predictably only punched it in four times during that stretch. Taylor is most effective running as the lone setback (5.7 per rush on 90 attempts in ’03), yet got more carries out of both the I (3.6 per rush) and Pro Sets (4.4 yards per rush). Taylor owners have to hope the Jaguars coaching staff makes the necessary play-calling adjustment. Although he’s thought of as a good receiver, Taylor dropped the most passes in football last year (12).
A lot of fantasy players were disappointed in Taylor's 2002 season – even though Fragile Fred played a "full" season, his season-ending numbers were good but not great (1,725 total yards, eight touchdowns). In an ordinary league using yardage and touchdowns for scoring, Taylor checked in as a pedestrian 11th in the final rankings. Things figure to be a lot different this time around – Taylor won't get the gentle handling he got last year, to be sure, but he'll also get back most of the goal-line carries Stacey Mack stole last year. Taylor scored seven of his eight touchdowns from nine yards and out last year (including runs of 63, 44, 22, 18 and 12 yards), while Mack's nine touchdowns all came from inside the 10-yard line, and eight of them were from three yards and in. Because the team will implement a West Coast offense in 2003, expect Taylor to be used more in the passing game at the expense of his running touches.