James Conner
James Conner
26-Year-Old Running BackRB
Arizona Cardinals
Questionable
Injury Toe
2020 Fantasy Outlook
The Pittsburgh offense was a disaster throughout last season due to injuries, and while quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's elbow surgery was the biggest blow, Conner's inability to stay on the field didn't help. The Pitt product struggled out of the gate, but he seemed to have found his rhythm by Week 4, piling up 449 yards from scrimmage and five touchdowns over the next four games. A shoulder injury suffered in Week 8, and then a quad strain in Week 16, ruined his second half, and Conner managed to suit up for only 56 snaps in the Steelers' final nine games. When he's healthy, Conner combines a rugged, physical running style with strong receiving skills, but that accumulation of violent contact took its toll last year, and even when he was in the lineup he wasn't as effective as he had been the year before, dropping to 34th in yards per carry and 43rd in broken tackle rate. Roethlisberger's return should take pressure off the whole running attack, but given his already extensive medical file, Conner could find himself losing backfield touches to some combination of Benny Snell, Jaylen Samuels and rookie fourth-round pick Anthony McFarland. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
#49.53
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $1.75 million contract with the Cardinals in April of 2021.
Signs with Arizona
RBArizona Cardinals
Toe
April 13, 2021
Conner (toe) agreed Tuesday with the Cardinals on a one-year, $1.75 million contract, Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports.
ANALYSIS
Conner visited with the Cardinals on Monday and reportedly came to terms on a deal less than 24 hours later. After spending the first four years of his career in Pittsburgh, the soon-to-be 26-year-old joins an Arizona backfield where Chase Edmonds is the only other player with considerable NFL experience. Granted, the Cardinals still have plenty of time to add more bodies, particularly during the upcoming NFL Draft. Conner is still rehabbing from offseason toe surgery, but the expectation is he'll be healthy at some point in June.
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NFL Stats
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Fantasy/Red Zone Stats
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Advanced NFL Stats
How do James Conner's 2020 advanced stats compare to other running backs?
This section compares his advanced stats with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average. The longer the bar, the better it is for the player.
  • Broken Tackle %
    The number of broken tackles divided by rush attempts.
  • Positive Run %
    The percentage of run plays where he was able to gain positive yardage.
  • % Yds After Contact
    The percentage of his rushing yards that came after contact.
  • Avg Yds After Contact
    The average rushing yards he gains after contact.
  • Rushing TD %
    Rushing touchdowns divided by rushing attempts. In other words, how often is he scoring when running the ball.
  • Touches Per Game
    The number of touches (rushing attempts + receptions) he is averaging per game
  • % Snaps w/Touch
    The number of touches (rushing attempts + receptions) divided by offensive snaps played.
  • Air Yards Per Game
    The number of air yards he is averaging per game. Air yards measure how far the ball was thrown downfield for both complete and incomplete passes. Air yards are recorded as a negative value when the pass is targeted behind the line of scrimmage. All air yards data is from Sports Info Solutions and does not include throwaways as targeted passes.
  • Air Yards Per Snap
    The number of air yards he is averaging per offensive snap.
  • % Team Air Yards
    The percentage of the team's total air yards he accounts for.
  • % Team Targets
    The percentage of the team's total targets he accounts for.
  • Avg Depth of Target
    Also known as aDOT, this stat measures the average distance down field he is being targeted at.
  • Catch Rate
    The number of catches made divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Drop Rate
    The number of passes he dropped divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Avg Yds After Catch
    The number of yards he gains after the catch on his receptions.
Broken Tackle %
20.1%
 
Positive Run %
82.8%
 
% Yds After Contact
55.6%
 
Avg Yds After Contact
2.4
 
Rushing TD %
3.6%
 
Touches Per Game
14.6
 
% Snaps w/Touch
36.4%
 
Air Yards Per Game
-0.6
 
Air Yards Per Snap
-0.02
 
% Team Air Yards
-0.2%
 
% Team Targets
6.6%
 
Avg Depth of Target
-0.2 Yds
 
Catch Rate
81.4%
 
Drop Rate
9.3%
 
Avg Yds After Catch
6.8
 
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2020
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2017
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2019 NFL Game Log
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2017 NFL Game Log
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Snap Distribution / Depth Chart
Snap Counts
Snap %
Arizona CardinalsCardinals 2020 RB Snap Distribution See more data like this | See last season's snap counts
#% of Team Snaps

61554%
52647%
252%
40%
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Receiving Alignment Breakdown
See where James Conner lined up on the field and how he performed at each spot.
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2020 James Conner Split Stats
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Measurables Review View College Player Page
How do James Conner's measurables compare to other running backs?
This section compares his draft workout metrics with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average.
* The Cone Drill metric is from his Pro Day. All others are from the NFL Combine.
Height
6' 1"
 
Weight
233 lbs
 
40-Yard Dash
4.65 sec
 
Cone Drill*
7.41 sec
 
Vertical Jump
29.0 in
 
Broad Jump
113 in
 
Bench Press
20 reps
 
Hand Length
9.88 in
 
Arm Length
31.25 in
 
Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring James Conner
NFL: Rookie Redraft Rankings
13 days ago
With easily the highest projected workload from scrimmage, Najee Harris ranks atop the 2021 rankings for the rookie class.
NFL Draft: Day 3 Fantasy Fallout
15 days ago
Conventional wisdom said the Dolphins would pick Myles Gaskin's replacement, but they instead waited until the seventh round before finally drafting a running back.
NFL Draft: Day 1 Fantasy Fallout
17 days ago
John McKechnie breaks down the fantasy impact from Round 1. Najee Harris has a clear path to a workhorse role in Pittsburgh, but could other factors within the Steelers offense lower his ceiling?
Best Ball Journal: Last-Round Targets
32 days ago
Dan Arnold might function mostly like a wide receiver in Carolina, making him an interesting best ball option in the final rounds at tight end.
2021 NFL Offseason Guide: Free Agents, Cap Casualties & Draft Capital
98 days ago
Jerry Donabedian reads offseason tea leaves for every NFL team, including an up-and-coming Chargers squad that needs to make tough decisions on Hunter Henry and Mike Williams.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
2017
In his second year, Conner became a true hometown hero for the Steelers. He was born in Erie, Pa., and matriculated at Pitt, where he ran for 26 touchdowns as a sophomore and then overcame Hodgkin's lymphoma to become a third-round pick in the 2017 draft. Conner got a chance to start for the Steelers when Le'Veon Bell's annual preseason holdout became a slow, season-long divorce between the star running back and the franchise. Conner's 135-yard, two-TD performance on the ground Week 1 helped fans quickly forget all about Bell. While the rest of his season was a little more erratic, Conner still showed enough to solidify his hold on the No. 1 job before an ankle injury cost him three games late in the season. Seen as primarily a power back coming out of college, Conner proved to be adept as a receiver, but it's still his ability to plow through contact that remains his best asset --- his 24 broken tackles on rushes tied for ninth in the league, and his 17 carries inside the 5-yard line tied for third as he converted 53 percent. That bulldozer approach may lead to further injuries (he's missed time late in the year twice in two seasons) but with Jaylen Samuels and Benny Snell on hand as capable backups, the Steelers aren't likely to grind Conner into the dirt with a massive workload the way they did with Bell.
A third-round pick in last year's draft, Conner didn't get much of a chance to show he was worth the investment as Le'Veon Bell dominated the backfield before Conner suffered a Week 15 knee injury that ended his campaign early. The 23-year-old is accustomed to setbacks – he's already come back from Hodgkin's lymphoma, so a little MCL strain should be no big deal. Conner is a burly back who ran with power and anger during a prolific college career at Pitt, frequently shoving defenders aside with stiff arms before lowering his shoulder at the end of runs. He also displayed the balance to keep his feet in traffic, but he isn't particularly elusive and his skills as a receiver and pass-blocker are rudimentary. His best fit in the NFL might be as a short-yardage back, and in that role he could be an effective complement to Bell. Of course, the Steelers seemingly intend to wring every snap they can out of their star before he walks out the door – a plan that would once again leave little work for Conner.
Currently listed at 6-1, 233 pounds, Conner overcome Hodgkins lymphoma and a torn MCL from 2015 to return to the field in 2016, and he came back with a leaner build and improved pass-catching skills. The 2017 third-rounder doesn't look like a standout talent and won't have much opportunity to produce behind Bell, but he's probably talented enough to produce if Le'Veon Bell should miss any time. Conner finished his college career at the University of Pittsburgh with 3,733 yards (5.6 YPC) and 52 touchdowns over the span of 39 games.
More Fantasy News
Recovering from surgery
RBFree Agent
Toe
April 12, 2021
Conner is recovering from toe surgery but should be healthy in June, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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Set to visit Cardinals
RBFree Agent
April 12, 2021
Conner is scheduled to visit the Cardinals, Jay Glazer of Fox Sports reports.
ANALYSIS
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Could stay in Steel City
RBPittsburgh Steelers
January 21, 2021
The Steelers could try to re-sign Conner, but they won't necessarily bring him back as their starting running back, Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
ANALYSIS
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Tallies 62 total yards
RBPittsburgh Steelers
January 3, 2021
Conner rushed the ball nine times for 37 yards in Week 17 against the Browns. He added five receptions for 25 yards.
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Finds end zone in return
RBPittsburgh Steelers
December 27, 2020
Conner (quadriceps) carried five times for 20 yards and a touchdown while catching all five of his targets for an additional 45 yards during Sunday's 28-24 win over the Colts.
ANALYSIS
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