RB Kenyan Drake | Miami Dolphins | 3rd Year
2017 Stats: 133 carries for 644 yds, 3 TD; 32 rec., 239 yds, 1 TD
In the middle of last season, as head coach Adam Gase tries to shape things the way he’d like, the Miami Dolphins traded Jay Ajayi to the Philadelphia Eagles. That opened up an opportunity for Kenyan Drake, and from Week 9 on he had 619 rushing yards (5.0 yards per carry) with 29 receptions (42 targets for 232 yards. He was a top-10 fantasy running back over that span.
Over those nine games, Drake had at least 90 total yards six times. From Week 13-Week 17, he averaged nearly 119 total yards per game on 21.6 touches per game with at least 23 fantasy points (ESPN PPR scoring) in each game from Week 13-15. An increase in volume clearly agreed with him, despite splitting time and some injury history from his time at Alabama, which points to a workhorse role over a full season this year.
The Dolphins signed Frank Gore in free agency, and took Kallen Ballage in the fourth round of April’s draft. The ageless back is a threat to take touches from Drake, but he has averaged less than four yards per carry in three straight seasons and without carry volume his fantasy value is minimized. Ballage is a solid dynasty league flier, but a lot has to happen in front of him to find fantasy value as a rookie.
The Dolphins had a bad offense last year, ranking toward the bottom of the league in deeper metrics like total plays, yards per drive and points per drive. A healthy Ryan Tannehill back under center should help that all the way around.
Drake’s overall red zone involvement was dismal last year (14 red zone carries and three red zone targets). But 11 of those red zone carries came in the final five weeks, and Gore’s scoring output has dissolved as he has crossed into his 30s.
There is some skepticism about Drake, as reflected by his ADP in 12-team standard (RB22, pick 4.04) and PPR leagues (RB21; pick 4.06) right now. He straddles the line of being under or overvalued, but he has low-end RB1 upside with a low-end RB2 floor.
Kenyan Drake 2018 Projection: 235 carries, 1,050 yards, 6 TD; 45 receptions for 360 yards, 1 TD
Breakout Percentage: 75%
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