Backfield Breakdown: Week 2 Recap & Week 3 Sleepers

Backfield Breakdown: Week 2 Recap & Week 3 Sleepers

This article is part of our Backfield Breakdown series.

All eyes remain on the San Francisco backfield, which took yet another turn (for the worse) this week. Derrick Henry and Christian McCaffrey aside, it was a down week for RB production, including three guys who topped 80 percent snap share yet finished with single-digit fantasy points.

Steelers rookie Najee Harris led all backs in snap share for a second straight week, and while he struggled on the ground again, Harris made up for it with his contributions as a pass catcher. Saquon Barkley, Alvin Kamara, Joe Mixon and David Montgomery put up disappointing stat lines despite dominating snaps, but all should have big games soon enough if the usage continues.

We'll take a look at all 16 games and 32 backfields below, but first let's check out Week 2 leaderboards, injuries, routes and goal-line work, followed by waiver picks, sleepers and drops for Week 3...

Week 2 Usage Leaderboard

Top 10 in Bold. Only shows RBs with more than five touches or 30 percent of snaps.

 Snap %CarriesCarry ShareTargetsTgt SharePass SnapsTouch SharePPR pts
1Najee Harris94.6%1071.4%512.5%4036.6%19.1
2Saquon Barkley84.1%1346.4%39.4%3630.0%8.9
3Alvin Kamara84.1%847.1%628.6%2642.9%7
4Joe Mixon83.6%20100.0%26.9%2553.9%8.1
5David Montgomery80.0%2058.8%417.4%2246.9%10.9
6Dalvin Cook77.0%2281.5%39.4%2249.0%16.8
7Derrick Henry76.1%3587.5%615.4%2661.2%47.7
8James Robinson72.7%1168.8%39.1%2746.7%9.4
9Kenyan Drake71.2%728.0%616.20%3722.6%10.5
10Christian McCaffrey71.1%2472.7%617.1%2949.2%24.7
11Ezekiel Elliott71.0%1651.6%27.4%2633.3%17.7
12Miles Sanders68.4%1344.8%28.3%2134.2%6.9
13Darrell Henderson66.7%1344.8%517.2%2433.3%17.2
14Devin Singletary66.2%1343.3%310.3%2531.9%17.1
15Clyde Edwards-Helaire64.7%1372.2%00%1831.0%2.6
16Chase Edmonds63.9%838.1%514.7%2826.0%12.5
17Mike Davis63.4%945.0%714.6%3329.1%13.3
18Chris Carson63.0%1372.2%00.0%1932.5%15.1
19Austin Ekeler62.9%947.4%922.5%3136.0%22.5
20Elijah Mitchell61.4%1744.7%26.7%1631.7%7.3
21Myles Gaskin60.8%525.0%511.9%3720%8.6
22Antonio Gibson60.6%1359.1%24.6%2726.8%9.3
23Melvin Gordon59.4%1343.3%25.9%2626.8%8.9
24Nick Chubb57.4%1132.4%14.8%1622.6%16.8
25James White49.2%520.8%621.4%2323.9%18.5
26Leonard Fournette49.2%1152.4%411.1%2033.3%11.6
27Ty'Son Williams47.9%1331.7%28.0%1425.4%11.3
28Jonathan Taylor46.2%1557.7%12.9%1533.3%6.3
29Ty Johnson45.2%1238.7%00.0%1924.0%5
30Michael Carter45.2%1135.5%39.1%2026.0%10.8
31J.D. McKissic43.7%418.2%613.6%2316.1%20.3
32David Johnson42.6%621.4%27.1%1817.4%6.7
33Damien Harris42.4%1666.7%13.6%937.0%13.4
34Ronald Jones41.3%628.6%38.3%1615.6%4.6
35Javonte Williams40.6%1343.3%12.9%1325.0%8.4
36James Conner39.3%838.1%00%1116.0%2.6
37Kareem Hunt37.7%1338.2%14.8%826.4%6.3
38Latavius Murray37.0%922.0%00%915.3%9.6
39Nyheim Hines36.9%13.8%25.9%214.2%3.2
40JaMycal Hasty35.7%513.2%516.7%1515.0%9.9
41Tony Pollard33.9%1341.9%311.1%829.6%23.0
42Cordarrelle Patterson33.8%735.0%612.5%1721.8%23.9
43Kenneth Gainwell31.6%620.7%312.5%719.5%7.2
44Mark Ingram31.1%1450.0%27.1%532.6%5
45Salvon Ahmed31.1%630.0%37.1%1513%1.7
46Peyton Barber28.8%1352.0%00%424.53%3.2
47Zack Moss27.7%826.7%26.9%821.3%15.4
48Tony Jones27.3%317.6%00.0%510.7%0.7
49Sony Michel26.7%1034.5%00%620.8%4.6
50Chuba Hubbard25.0%824.2%00%1013.6%1
51Phillip Lindsay23.0%517.9%13.6%613.0%9.4

      

Week 2 Injury Report

Inactives

In-Game Injuries

    

Week 2 Route Report

Includes all RBs with 10+ routes and/or multiple targets 

 RoutesTgtTgt/RtRecYards
1Najee Harris32515.6%543
2Kenyan Drake30620.0%546
3Saquon Barkley27311.1%212
4Mike Davis26726.9%725
5Chase Edmonds25520.0%529
6Austin Ekeler24937.5%961
7Myles Gaskin24520.8%421
8Ezekiel Elliott2229.1%226
9Melvin Gordon2229.1%238
10Christian McCaffrey21628.6%565
11Antonio Gibson20210.0%24
12Derrick Henry20630.0%655
13Devin Singletary20315.0%29
14James Robinson20315.0%317
15J.D. McKissic20630.0%583
16Joe Mixon20210.0%12
17Alvin Kamara19631.6%425
18Darrell Henderson18527.8%329
19David Montgomery18422.2%318
20James White18633.3%645
21Miles Sanders18211.1%14
22Clyde Edwards-Helaire1700.0%  
23Cordarrelle Patterson17635.3%558
24Leonard Fournette17423.5%424
25Nyheim Hines17211.8%17
26Jonathan Taylor1516.7%12
27Chris Carson1400.0%  
28Dalvin Cook14321.4%217
29David Johnson14214.3%222
30Jeremy McNichols14321.4%326
31Salvon Ahmed14321.4%0 
32Elijah Mitchell13215.4%211
33JaMycal Hasty13538.5%421
34Kyle Juszczyk13323.1%215
35Michael Carter13323.1%229
36Nick Chubb1317.7%13
37Ty Johnson1300.0%  
38Patrick Ricard1100.0%  
39Ronald Jones11327.3%19
40Darrel Williams1000.0%  
41Javonte Williams10110.0%110
42Travis Homer10220.0%214
43Carlos Hyde7228.6%0 
44Damien Williams7342.9%2-2
45Kenneth Gainwell7342.9%218
46Tony Pollard7342.9%331
47Ty'Son Williams7228.6%216
48Zack Moss7228.6%28

    

Red-Zone Report

Inside the 5-Yard Line (Week 2 only)

 OpportunitiesRush Att.Rush TDTargetsRec. TD
Jonathan Taylor55000
Chris Carson22200
Damien Harris22000
Christian McCaffrey22000
Mark Ingram22000
Alvin Kamara11000
Nick Chubb11000
Darrell Henderson11100
Cordarrelle Patterson11000
Derrick Henry11100
Tony Pollard11100
J.D. McKissic11100
Ty Johnson11000
Elijah Mitchell11000
Ty'Son Williams11000
Miles Sanders11000
JaMycal Hasty10010
Zack Moss11100
Andy Janovich11100
Darrel Williams11100

   

Inside the 5-Yard Line (Weeks 1+2)

 Goal-Line LooksRush Att.Rush TDTargetsRec. TD
Jonathan Taylor66000
Mark Ingram55100
Darrell Henderson33200
Nick Chubb33100
Derrick Henry33100
Alvin Kamara32011
JaMycal Hasty21110
Chris Carson22200
Christian McCaffrey22000
Joe Mixon22100
Damien Harris22000
Austin Ekeler22100
Andy Janovich11100
Ty'Son Williams11000
Ezekiel Elliott11000
Najee Harris11000
Cordarrelle Patterson11000
Darrel Williams11100
Tony Pollard11100
Dalvin Cook11100
Josh Jacobs11100
J.D. McKissic11100
David Montgomery11100
Phillip Lindsay10010
Jamaal Williams11100
Miles Sanders11000
Ty Johnson11000
Zack Moss11100
Elijah Mitchell11000
Kareem Hunt11100
Mike Davis10010

    

Red Zone Opportunities (Weeks 1 + 2)

Only includes players with two or more RZ looks. There are four RBs with 20+ total touches who haven't seen enough red-zone work to qualify: Antonio Gibson (one), Miles Sanders (one), Myles Gaskin (one), James Robinson (zero).

 Red-Zone LooksRush Att.Rush TDTargetsRec. TD
Jonathan Taylor1312010
Christian McCaffrey1211110
Mark Ingram1110110
Derrick Henry1110210
Leonard Fournette96030
Darrell Henderson97220
Nick Chubb88200
Alvin Kamara86021
Austin Ekeler87110
Saquon Barkley75020
Chris Carson66200
Damien Harris66000
David Montgomery65110
Ezekiel Elliott54110
Mike Davis53020
Ty'Son Williams54010
Najee Harris53020
Devin Singletary54010
Cordarrelle Patterson53121
Kareem Hunt55100
James Conner55000
Javonte Williams44000
Zack Moss43210
Melvin Gordon44000
Michael Carter33000
James White32110
D'Andre Swift32010
Phillip Lindsay32110
JaMycal Hasty32110
Elijah Mitchell33000
Josh Jacobs33200
Salvon Ahmed31020
Kenyan Drake32010
Chase Edmonds32010
Dalvin Cook33100
Latavius Murray33200
Clyde Edwards-Helaire22000
Joe Mixon22100
Andy Janovich22100
Malcolm Brown22000
David Johnson20021
Reggie Gilliam22000
Damien Williams22000
Tony Pollard21110
Kenneth Gainwell21110
Ty Johnson22000
Tony Jones21010

       

Waivers and Sleepers

Limited to RBs that are rostered in half or less or Yahoo leagues.

Waivers, Pt. 1 Potential Week 3 Starters/Streamers

  1. Alexander Mattison - 33% rostered
  2. James White - 42%
  3. Kenneth Gainwell - 36%
  4. J.D. McKissic - 29%
  5. Cordarrelle Patterson - 15%
  6. Michael Carter - 50%
  7. Ty Johnson - 9%
  8. Peyton Barber - 10%

    
Waivers, Pt. 2 Bench Stashes & Sleepers

  1. Chuba Hubbard - 16%
  2. Tony Jones - 24%
  3. Devonta Freeman - 8%
  4. Jeff Wilson - 13%
  5. Damien Williams - 8%
  6. Carlos Hyde - 19%
  7. Marlon Mack - 6%
  8. Jerick McKinnon - 2%
  9. Salvon Ahmed - 2%
  10. JaMycal Hasty - 6%
  11. Benny Snell - 2%
  12. Anthony McFarland - 1%

   

Drops and Benchings

Drop'em

   

Bench'em

       

Game-by-Game Breakdowns

Giants (29) at Washington Football Team (30) 

 Snap ShareCarriesCarry ShareTargetsTarget SharePass SnapsTouch SharePPR pts.
Saquon Barkley84.1%1346.4%39.4%3630%8.9
Devontae Booker14.5%27.1%13.1%56%2.1
  • With Barkley returning to his three-down role and logging 58 snaps, third-stringer Gary Brightwell strictly played special teams (the rookie had one catch on eight snaps Week 1).
  • In the first half, Barkley played 74.2% of snaps and saw five carries and two targets.
    • After halftime, Barkley logged 92.1% of snaps with eight carries and one target.
  • Barkley's 41-yard run in the first quarter accounted for 59.4% of his total yards.
  • QB Daniel Jones had a 9-91-1 rushing line, with a six-yard score in the first quarter and a 58-yard-almost-score that was reduced to a 46-yard gain with a 10-yard holding penalty. He had a 6-27-1 rushing line Week 1, with a four-yard score on the final play of regulation.
    • Jones has accounted for 15 of the Giants' 48 rush attempts through two weeks, including 13 of 46 non-kneeldown carries (28.3%).
  • Looking at tailback touches only, Barkley has 23 of the 29 carries (79.3%) and six of the nine targets (66.7%) through two weeks. He should be back in all lineups for a Week 3 home game against Atlanta.
 Snap %CarriesCarry %Tgts.Tgt. %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR 
Antonio Gibson60.6%1359.1%24.6%2726.8%9.3
J.D. McKissic43.7%418.2%613.6%2316.1%20.3
  • McKissic rebounded in a huge way, after getting one target and one carry on 36% of snaps Week 1.  A better day for the Washington offense helped, and so did a pair of long drives in the two-minute drill (one at the end of each half).
    • McKissic had four touches for 12 yards and a TD on Washington's final drive of the first half (scoring from two yards out on third downs). And then three touches for 13 yards on the last drive of the second half. But his best play of the night — a 56-yard reception — came with about five minutes left in the game.
  • Outside of the two two-minute warnings, Gibson played 42 of 55 of snaps (76.4%). And McKissic only 15 of 55 (27.3%).
  • Through two weeks, Gibson is averaging 16.5 carries for 79.5 yards and 2.5 catches for 11 yards on 63% of snaps. Which is similar to his workload when he was healthy during the second half of last season, though he finished his rookie year with an average of only 12.1 carries per game (his role was smaller in September, and a toe injury limited his snaps in two December games).

   

Saints (7) at Panthers (26) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Alvin Kamara84.1%847.1%628.6%2642.9%7
Tony Jones27.3%317.6%00.0%510.7%0.7
  • Kamara landed on the wrong side of a blowout after getting 20 carries and four targets the previous week. Buy low, if anyone is foolish enough. Kamara has a team-high 10 targets through two games, with his 24.4% target share leading all NFL running backs. The 30-point fantasy games will come when the Saints play in more competitive contests... which should happen pretty often given that they're neither a great team nor a bad one.
  • Kamara and Darren Waller (29.2%) are the only non-WRs above 24 percent target share through two games. Ok, Travis Kelce (23.8%) is pretty close. And Christian McCaffrey (22.1%) isn't too far back either. Pretty funny that the list is already exactly who we expected after a sample of only two games; a nice reminder that target share is stable and predictable relative to darn near everything else we analyze about football.
 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Christian McCaffrey71.1%2472.7%617.1%2949.2%24.7
Chuba Hubbard25.0%824.2%00%1013.6%1
  • McCaffrey missed part of the third quarter while bothered by his calf/cramps, but he returned in the fourth to take eight touches for 22 yards and a TD. Seems like he's fine.
  • Hubbard got only two carries in the first half. He had four in the fourth quarter, including three in a row to finish out the game. So his workload was aided by garbage time in addition to the McCaffrey injury, i.e., don't expect another eight touches next week.

   

Bengals (17) at Bears (20) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Joe Mixon83.6%20100.0%26.9%2553.9%8.1
Samaje Perine5.5%00.0%13.5%30.0%0
Chris Evans3.6%00.00%13.5%22.6%2.4
  • Mixon struggled, but the workload remains promising. Through two weeks, Mixon has played 80.6% of snaps and handled 49 carries and six targets. And he's run 40 routes on Joe Burrow's 66 dropbacks (60.6 percent).
    • Last year, in his six games, Mixon ran a route on 45.1% of Burrow's dropbacks.
    • Mixon played seven of Cincy's 11 snaps (63.6%) on 3rd-and-medium/long in Week 2, up from five of 11 (41.7%) in Week 1. In other words, Mixon definitely is getting a larger share of the passing-down work post-Gio; it just hasn't led to much receiving production yet (five catches for 26 yards on six targets).

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
David Montgomery80.0%2058.8%417.4%2246.9%10.9
Damien Williams23.1%25.9%313.0%108.2%2.4
  • Though his production suffered, Montgomery actually took on a larger workload than in Week 1 (59% snaps, 16 carries, 1 target). It was basically the same as his 2020 usage, with a role that included most of the passing-down work.
    • Montgomery got 10 of 15 snaps (66.7%) on 3rd-and-medium/long, with Williams handling the other five. Montgomery also got four of seven (57.1%) in the season opener, so it looks like the Bears prefer him on both early downs and late downs (but also trust Williams to handle either, or both).
  • Montgomery got the team's only snap inside the 5-yard line, but it was a pass play.

   

Texans (21) at Browns (31) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
David Johnson42.6%621.4%27.1%1817.4%6.7
Mark Ingram31.1%1450.0%27.1%532.6%5
Phillip Lindsay23.0%517.9%13.6%613.0%9.4
Rex Burkhead18.0%00.0%00.0%90.0%0
  • Ingram now has 40 carries (plus three targets) on 55 snaps this year. The broadcasters weren't kidding when they mentioned how his presence on the field signals a run play.
  • Burkhead didn't get any touches but did play eight of the 16 snaps on third down. Johnson got nine of 16. Yeah, this is a mess.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Nick Chubb57.4%1132.4%14.8%1622.6%16.8
Kareem Hunt37.7%1338.2%14.8%826.4%6.3
Demetric Felton4.9%00.0%29.5%33.8%13.1
D'Ernest Johnson4.9%00.00%00%00%0
  • This was a low-volume game overall, with a lot of run plays from both teams and very few incompletions. Plus, QB Baker Mayfield and FB Andy Janovich both stole short rushing TDs.
  • Chubb played both inside-the-five snaps, with one being the Janovich touchdown and the other being a Chubb carry (no TD). Chubb's score came from 23 yards out in the fourth quarter.
  • Chubb has played four of five snaps inside the 5-yard line through two weeks, including three carries. Janovich and Hunt have one carry apiece inside the five.
  • Chubb may have taken more pass snaps overall, but Hunt still handled obvious passing downs, taking five of the six chances on 3rd-and-medium/long.
  • Felton's first NFL touch was a 33-yard TD on a screen pass from the slot. He played three snaps, but none came in the backfield. The rookie may eventually lose RB eligibility where he has it.

   

Rams (27) at Colts (24) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Darrell Henderson66.7%1344.8%517.2%2433.3%17.2
Sony Michel26.7%1034.5%00%620.8%4.6
Jake Funk5.0%00.0%00%20.0%0
  • Henderson played all 39 offensive snaps through three quarters, then injured his ankle on the first play of Q4.
    • Michel played 16 of 20 snaps (80.0%) after Henderson's injury, taking 10 carries for 46 yards.
  • Start Michel if Henderson is out next week; McVay's lead back will score fantasy points, functioning knees or not. And the Rams barely used Funk even after Henderson's exit, instead giving Michel carry after carry.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Jonathan Taylor46.2%1557.7%12.9%1533.3%6.3
Nyheim Hines36.9%13.8%25.9%214.2%3.2
Marlon Mack18.5%519.2%12.9%410.4%1.6
  • Mack rejoined the Colts offense after a Week 1 healthy scratch. Five carries and 12 snaps might not sound like much, but it's enough to bother Taylor's fantasy managers.
  • Taylor played all 16 snaps in the first quarter but only 14 snaps (28.6%) thereafter. In fact, Mack had just three fewer carries and two fewer snaps after the first quarter. Yikes.
    • And it actually looks worse if you sort by Indy's first three drives (22 of 24 snaps) vs. the rest of the game (eight of 41, or 19.5%... did I say "Yikes" yet?). The Colts did trail by 11 points for much of the third quarter, and they were either tied or down by three for most of the fourth.
  • After the first quarter, Hines got each of the six snaps on 3rd-and-medium/long. Taylor took one of those snaps in Q1.
  • Taylor played six of seven snaps inside the 5-yard line and took five carries in that area, but he didn't score. That included three consecutive stuffs from the 1-yard line on the opening drive.
  • I wouldn't sell low on Taylor right now, but I might try to move him next time he has a big game if the Colts are still crushing on Hines and Mack intermittently.  JT is at 50.3% snap share through two games... all the way up from 50.2% last season :)
    • It also isn't great for Hines if Mack is involved. They mostly play in different packages/situations, but Taylor could take more from Hines' pie if he's losing some first downs to Mack. Adding another body is never good, even if the effect is indirect.

   

   

Patriots (25) at Jets (6) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
James White49.2%520.8%621.4%2323.9%18.5
Damien Harris42.4%1666.7%13.6%937.0%13.4
J.J. Taylor8.5%28.30%00.0%34.4%0.3
  • Rhamondre Stevenson was a healthy scratch, after fumbling in his NFL debut. It's not automatic that he'd just take over Harris' role if Harris were to miss time; the Pats could also use Taylor a little more, or even Brandon Bolden.
  • White and Harris got six touches apiece in the first quarter, both playing 10 of 22 snaps (Taylor got the other two).
  • Harris finished Sunday's action ranked sixth in the NFL for carries (39) and eighth in rushing yards (162) this season.
  • Harris got 75% of snaps and eight carries in the fourth quarter but gained only 12 yards.
  • White's 13 targets through two weeks are good for second on the team and tied for second among NFL running backs, but he's run only 32 routes, which isn't even top 20 among running backs.
    • White has always been targeted on a huge share of his routes, including 41.3% last year. He isn't likely to hit that mark again — even though he's there through two weeks — but it is possible for him to average 5-6 targets on only ~15 routes. For real upside, a.k.a. more routes/targets, White would need the Pats to place more emphasis on Mac Jones and less on Harris.
  • Matchups have helped, but cumulative backfield production is way up from last year. Cam Newton may have helped with YPC, but he was terrible for the RB routes/targets and goal-line carries.
    • Harris has both of New England's inside-the-five carries this year, and four of the five inside-the-10 carries. However, his snap share (48.1%) and receiving production (three catches for 19 yards) do reflect some of the preseason concerns.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Ty Johnson45.2%1238.7%00.0%1924.0%5
Michael Carter45.2%1135.5%39.1%2026.0%10.8
Tevin Coleman9.6%516.1%00.0%210.0%2.4
  • Johnson got the start but split work with Carter throughout. Coleman had two carries in the second quarter and three in the third.
  • Johnson got seven of the nine snaps on 3rd-and-medium/long. Carter took the other two.
  • Johnson played 38.7% of snaps on first down, 38.5% on second down, 69.2% on third down.
  • Carter got 48.4% of first downs, 50.0% of second downs and 30.8% on third downs. So maybe he'll see a few more carries and Johnson a few more targets in future weeks, despite the opposite happening Sunday. Or maybe not. This was pretty close to interchangeable use, and both guys are smaller, speedy backs. Either way, there isn't likely to be much production to go around.
  • Carter got four of seven red-zone snaps and took three carries. Johnson played the other three and took two carries.
  • Carter played two of three snaps inside the 10 and took two carries. Johnson played the other and took a carry.
    • However, Johnson got the lone inside-the-five look... he was stuffed from the 2-yard line on a 3rd-and-goal in the second quarter.

   

Broncos (23) at Jaguars (13) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Melvin Gordon59.4%1343.3%25.9%2626.8%8.9
Javonte Williams40.6%1343.3%12.9%1325.0%8.4
  • This was pretty close to a 50/50 split for the second straight week, though tilted slightly more toward the veteran, especially when we look at routes and pass snaps. Gordon now has a 5-2 advantage in targets, while Williams has a 27-24 lead in carries. Both are dicey-but-startable in most fantasy leagues, with Gordon the better play short term.
  • Denver's final three snaps of the game were the only three that occurred inside Jacksonville's 10-yard line. Williams played all three, but it doesn't mean much given that the Broncos were up by 10 and the opponent had no timeouts. It was pretty much the same deal as last week, with the two backs splitting clock-killing work before Williams took over in true garbage time.
    • In other words, Gordon's managers shouldn't panic if they read that Williams has played 80% of snaps inside the 10-yard line. (It's a five-snap sample from mostly garbage time.)
 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
James Robinson72.7%1168.8%39.1%2746.7%9.4
Carlos Hyde25.5%212.5%26.1%106.7%0.7
  • In Week 1, Robinson played 63% of snaps — including 61.8% of first downs — but got only five carries. Whereas Hyde logged only 34.2%, yet led the team with nine carries.
    • As predicted, Robinson got more of the rushing work this week, though production remained lackluster as he was again stuck in negative game script with a struggling Jags team.
  • Robinson is benchable if you have a trustworthy RB2 to replace him with. But he does have nine targets and 67.7% snap share through two weeks, so I wouldn't bench him for someone like Javonte or Devin Singletary.

   

Bills (35) at Dolphins (0) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Devin Singletary66.2%1343.3%310.3%2531.9%17.1
Zack Moss27.7%826.7%26.9%821.3%15.4
Matt Breida3.1%00.00%00000
  • Moss rejoined the offense after a Week 1 scratch, but he played only 16.7% of snaps in the first half, while Singletary handled 83.3% of snaps, 10 carries and one target before the break.
  • Singletary and Moss both played four of eight snaps inside the 10-yard line, with Moss getting three carries (two TDs) and Singletary one (no TD; he scored from 46 yards out on the opening drive.
    • Moss scored a 7-yarder early in the fourth quarter to make it 28-0, then a one-yarder midway through the fourth to make it 35-0. But Singletary did get snaps/touches on both drives, so it's not like he'd been pulled for the day when Moss scored... at least not for the first TD. There's a pretty good chance the Bills prefer Moss over Singletary for goal-line work again, even if Singletary has increased his lead everywhere else. And this is still a good bet to be a bottom-10 offense for RB production, given Josh Allen's dominance of high-value opportunities (and all opportunities, at that).

   

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Myles Gaskin60.8%525.0%511.9%3720%8.6
Salvon Ahmed31.1%630.0%37.1%1513%1.7
Malcolm Brown12.2%525.00%00411%2.1
  • Gaskin played 65.4% of first downs, 60.0% of second downs and 57.9% of third downs. That's three-down usage, but with Ahmed (and occasionally Brown) subbing in. And in an offense that looked bad even before its starting QB was injured. So not a ton of upside.
  • Gaskin's eight pass-blocking snaps were three more than any other RB this weekend (Najee Harris had five). And PFF's charting suggests Gaskin was a disaster on those eight snaps, somehow allowing six pressures, four hurries and two QB hits. Maybe that opens the door for Ahmed, though he had a fourth-down drop in garbage time and has otherwise been quiet in his limited role so far.
    • Gaskin's stat lines so far are very similar to how he started last season... lots of snaps and targets but not many carries, in part because the Dolphins aren't playing well. Maybe he turns it on again, or maybe the team never gets a running game going this year. Or maybe the mediocre start allows Ahmed/Brown to get more work. TBD. But it's not like Gaskin has lost the lead role; at least not yet. In fact...
  • Brown got four of his five carries in the fourth quarter. Ahmed got three of his six carries in the fourth.
    • Prior to the fourth quarter, Gaskin played 75.9% of snaps, taking five of nine RB carries and five of six RB targets. (There's still hope for RB2 production.)

     

Raiders (26) at Steelers (17) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Kenyan Drake71.2%728.0%616.20%3722.64%10.5
Peyton Barber28.8%1352.0%00%424.53%3.2
  • Josh Jacobs (toe) was inactive, setting the stage for the highly anticipated return of Peyton Barber.
    • Barber didn't play many snaps (19), but got carries (13) on most of them. Eight of Barber's 13 carries came on the final two drives.
  • The Raiders didn't run any plays inside the 5-yard line, but Drake did play each of four snaps inside the 10, including one carry.
  • Drake played 80.9% of snaps through three quarters, with five carries and six targets to Barber's five carries and zero targets.
    • But then Drake dropped to 47.4% in Q4, with two carries to Barber's eight.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Najee Harris94.6%1071.4%512.5%4036.6%19.1
Benny Snell5.4%214.3%00.0%14.9%0.1
  • Harris obviously won't get as many touches as Christian McCaffrey, but the rookie is about as good of a bet to lead all halfbacks in snaps this season. Harris played 100% of snaps in the opener and missed just three plays in Week 2. 
  • Harris scored from 25 yards out on a catch, with his 5-43-1 receiving line making up for 10-38-0 on the ground. He's averaging only 13.0 carries for 41.5 yards (3.2 YPC) through two games, despite rarely leaving the field. In other words, he'll need those targets (fortunately, he should get them).
  • Harris has run 56 routes, second-most among RBs after Ezekiel Elliott (60). Both figure to see more targets per route going forward, though Zeke could also lose routes with Tony Pollard earning more work.

   

49ers (17) at Eagles (11) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Elijah Mitchell61.4%1744.7%26.7%1631.7%7.3
JaMycal Hasty35.7%513.2%516.7%1515.0%9.9
Trey Sermon1.4%12.6%00.0%01.7%0.8
Trenton Cannon1.40%12.6%00.0%01.7%-0.1
  • Mitchell got the start and played 67.4% of snaps through three quarters, seeing 12 carries and two targets. Hasty got zero carries and four targets on 32.6% of snaps.
    • Prior to the fourth quarter, Mitchell got 80.0% of first-down snaps and 81.3% of second-down snaps, while Hasty took eight of nine third downs (88.9%).
  • Mitchell then had a one-yard TD overturned early in the fourth quarter, and he hurt his shoulder on the play. So, Hasty took three straight carries to start the next drive, but he injured his ankle and was replaced by Trey Sermon.... who promptly suffered a concussion on his first NFL snap.
    • After Sermon, the Niners brought Cannon in for one carry, then had Mitchell come back into the game for three more carries (for 10 yards) down the stretch. Did you follow all that?

     

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Miles Sanders68.4%1344.8%28.3%2134.2%6.9
Kenneth Gainwell31.6%620.7%312.5%719.5%7.2
  • The split was pretty similar Week 1, with Sanders having a 46-25 snap advantage (65.7%), 15-9 carry advantage and 5-3 target advantage over Gainwell. Both guys were far more productive in the opener, facing Atlanta rather than San Francisco. That'll happen.
  • Sanders played 60.0% of snaps on first down, 77.8% on second down and 69.2% on third down. That includes six of 10 of 3rd-and-medium/long. This is another one where the lead guy and his backup are used interchangeably, rather than the early/late-down split that dominated in recent years.
  • Sanders got both snaps inside the 5-yard line and three of five in the red zone (but no carries/targets).
    • In Week 1, Gainwell got three of five snaps inside the 10, including a TD on the only non-Hurts carry.
  • The Eagles have run 11 plays in the red zone. Sanders has been on the field for four, and hasn't seen a carry or target on any. Small sample warning does apply; he's still the lead guy, and there hasn't been any real goal-line work (Gainwell's TD in Week 1 was from eight yards out). So Sanders could still be the TD-scoring back, but in an offense where the QB also figures to do a lot of the red-zone rushing.

   

Vikings (33) at Cardinals (34) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Dalvin Cook77.0%2281.5%39.38%2249.0%16.8
Alexander Mattison21.3%311.1%13.13%88.2%3.8
Ameer Abdullah1.6%00.0%13.13%100
  • Cook played through an ankle sprain late in the game. I'd pick up Mattison wherever he's available, as it's possible Cook deals with swelling that threatens his availability for Week 3 against Seattle.
    • Everyone remembers Mattison's Week 6 dud against Atlanta last year, but his second start of the season (Week 17 at DET) yielded a 21-95-1 rushing line and 3-50-1 receiving line.

   

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Chase Edmonds63.9%838.1%514.7%2826.0%12.5
James Conner39.3%838.1%00%1116.0%2.6
  • The split was similar Week 1, with Edmonds at 58% snaps, 12 carries and 4 targets. While Conner got 49% snap share, 16 carries and zero targets.
  • Conner got eight of 10 snaps in the red zone, but just one carry. Edmonds got three of 10, and also one carry.
    • That includes four of five snaps (and the one carry) inside the 10, but 'Zona didn't run any plays inside the five. Conner did get the one inside-the-five snap so far... a Kyler Murray run in Week 1.
  • Through two games, Edmonds has a 9-0 advantage in targets and a 47-15 advantage in routes, while Conner has a slight edge in carries (24-20) and is probably preferred at the goal line. It looks like Edmonds is way ahead for PPR scoring, while the two could be pretty close in standard (even though they aren't so far).

   

Falcons (25) at Buccaneers (48) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Mike Davis63.4%945.0%714.6%3329.1%13.3
Cordarrelle Patterson33.8%735.0%612.5%1721.8%23.9
  • If you'd told me that Davis and Patterson would have 21 combined targets through two weeks, I'd tell you that the Falcons must be absolutely terrible again. Sound about right?
  • Davis played 67.7% of snaps on first down, 66.7% on second down, 53.3% on third down.
  • Both backs were involved throughout, with Patterson getting six or more snaps and multiple touches in each of the first three quarters.
    • C-Patt did drop to 16.7% snap share (three snaps) in the fourth quarter when Atlanta was in full-blown comeback mode, showing that Davis is preferred for clear passing situations even if Patterson does poach some third downs.
  • Davis' receiving volume seems more sustainable than Patterson's. Davis has 13 targets on 55 routes (23.6%), while Patterson has eight on 26 (30.8%). Sure, Patterson is a former wideout, but this is also the second straight team to prefer a different back on passing downs (Montgomery in Chicago, now Davis in Atlanta). In other words, Patterson needs more snaps in order to maintain his four-target-per-game average through two weeks.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Leonard Fournette49.2%1152.4%411.1%2033.3%11.6
Ronald Jones41.3%628.6%38.3%1615.6%4.6
Giovani Bernard9.5%00.0%25.6%54.4%3.6
  • Jones technically got the start, but even in the first quarter Fournette took 57.9% of snaps, four of the seven carries and two of the three RB targets.
    • In Week 1, with RoJo benched after an early fumble, Fournette played 65% of snaps with nine carries and seven targets.
  • In terms of snaps, first downs were a 55/45 split in favor of Fournette, as were second downs. And then third downs went 50% to Bernard, 25% apiece to Jones and Fournette. So, it was messy, though Fournette put up an okay line again.
  • Fournette and Jones each played two of four snaps inside the 5-yard line (all four were pass plays, none to the RBs). The team's fifth play inside the 10 was a Fournette carry from the Atlanta 7-yard line (for a gain of four).
  • Tampa has seven carries in the red zone so far, with Fournette getting six and Brady one. But none of those has been inside the 5-yard line.

   

Titans (33) at Seahawks (30) - OT 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Derrick Henry76.1%3587.5%615.3%2661.2%47.7
Jeremy McNichols23.9%12.5%37.7%196.0%5.9
  • This feels like one where I can get away with one bullet point and save us all a little time, but I guess I should mention that McNichols played 11 of 15 snaps on third down, because I know there are some Henry drafters trying to talk themselves into 4-5 targets per game now. Don't be so greedy; the rushing production is enough.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Chris Carson63.0%1372.2%00.0%1932.5%15.1
Travis Homer25.9%00.0%26.5%135.0%3.4
Alex Collins11.1%15.6%00.0%52.5%2.5
  • Rashaad Penny (calf) didn't play, while Travis Homer jumped from two snaps in Week 1 to 14 in Week 2, taking work away from Carson on passing downs.
    • Homer played eight of the nine snaps on 3rd-and-medium/long, after Carson had taken four of nine the previous week.
  • Carson still ran more routes (14) than Homer (10), but 14 routes on 37 QB dropbacks (37.8%) isn't quite what you want to see. Especially after Carson was all the way up at 64.3% in Week 1. He really needed the TD deodorant in this one, and may need it in the future if/when Seattle goes pass-heavy. Week 1 was more encouraging, even though Carson finished with more points (thanks to two TDs) in Week 2.

   

Cowboys (20) at Chargers (17) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Ezekiel Elliott71.0%1651.6%27.4%2633.3%17.7
Tony Pollard33.9%1341.9%311.1%829.6%23
Corey Clement1.6%00.0%00100
  • Elliott still had a comfortable snap lead, but touches were close to 50/50, largely because Pollard got the ball on 16 of his 21 snaps (76.2%).
    • Pollard finished with 13-109-1 rushing and 3-31-0 receiving. Elliott put up 16-71-1 and 2-26-0.
  • Elliott got eight of 10 snaps on third down. And although he saw one fewer target, Zeke ran 22 routes to Pollard's seven.
  • Pollard got five carries in the fourth quarter, but Elliott was also plenty busy in the final frame, with four carries and two targets on 77.8% of snaps. It's not like the Cowboys pushed Elliott aside after Pollard blew up. They just made room for both. That's a problem for Zeke's fantasy prospects, but we aren't in panic territory just yet.

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Austin Ekeler62.9%947.4%922.5%3136.0%22.5
Justin Jackson22.9%421.1%12.5%1010.0%3.9
Larry Rountree14.3%15.3%12.5%84.0%0.8
  • Ekele has now played 58% and 63% of snaps, averaging 12.0 carries for 55.5 yards and 4.5 catches for 30.5 yards. Not quite what managers were hoping for, but also not far off.
  • Rountree's role was scaled back after eight carries and 27% of snaps Week 1. Naturally, given that I picked him up in a bunch of deep leagues last week.
    • Jackson, meanwhile, got a bit more involved, after seeing only one carry and one target on 14% of snaps in the opener.

   

Chiefs (35) at Ravens (36) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt. %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Clyde Edwards-Helaire64.7%1372.2%00%1831.02.6
Darrel Williams27.5%316.7%00%107.15.8
Jerick McKinnon7.8%00.0%13.30%32.42.4
  • Another rough night for Edwards-Helaire, who had zero targets and a long gain of nine yards, not to mention his massive lost fumble on what should've been a game-winning FG drive for the Chiefs. He's lucky he's a first-round pick who doesn't have a whole lot else behind him in the backfield. Still, patience may be wearing thin in KC.

   

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt. %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Ty'Son Williams47.9%1331.7%28.0%1425.4%11.3
Latavius Murray37.0%922.0%00%915.3%9.6
Devonta Freeman13.7%24.9%00%53.4%2.9
  • Williams got the start and played 60.5% of first-half snaps, entering the break with 10 touches (eight carries) for 69 yards.
    • After halftime, Williams got just five carries on 34.3% of snaps, losing more playing time to Murray (48.6%, four carries) and Freeman (17.1%, one carry).
  • Freeman took his first carry in a Ravens uniform for a 31-yard gain in the first quarter, sprinting upfield after a beautiful cut in the backfield. But he didn't get another touch until the third quarter, and then just the one.
  • Williams took five of the six snaps in goal-to-go situations. All six plays were rushes; three for Lamar Jackson, two for Williams and one for Murray. Jackson went for 2-for-3, Murray 1-for-1 and Williams 0-for-2.
  • Williams nearly scored a 10-yard TD in the first quarter, but he coughed the ball up near the goal line and Ravens WR Devin Duvernay jumped on it for the TD. Later on, in the fourth quarter, Williams was brought down at the Chiefs' 1-yard line after a gain of three. So he did come close to scoring twice.
  • Passing-down work was split, and the Ravens even used FB Patrick Ricard a few times. Out of eight snaps on 3rd-and-medium/long, Williams and Ricard got three apiece, followed by Freeman (two) and Murray (one).
  • Through two weeks, Williams is averaging 11.0 carries and 3.0 targets on 49.6% snap share. He has 187 total yards and a touchdown, looking like a tolerable RB2 if not yet a reliable one.
  • Le'Veon Bell is still on the practice squad.

   

Lions (17) at Packers (35) 

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
D'Andre Swift63.2%842.1%513.9%2526.7%11.8
Jamaal Williams38.6%736.8%38.3%1222.2%6.7
  • The split was similar to Week 1, but with far fewer cumulative productions and less production. The big Week 1 was largely a product of Detroit having more than 90 snaps in the loss to San Francisco.    

    

 Snap %CarriesCarry %TargetsTgt %Pass SnapsTouch %PPR
Aaron Jones69.2%1754.8%622.2%2243.4%41.5
A.J. Dillon29.2%516.1%13.7%1211.3%3.6
Kylin Hill7.7%26.5%00.0%03.8%0.8

   

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jerry Donabedian
Jerry was a 2018 finalist for the FSWA's Player Notes Writer of the Year and DFS Writer of the Year awards. A Baltimore native, Jerry roots for the Ravens and watches "The Wire" in his spare time.
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