When you think of the Miami Dolphins offense, the guys that come to mind are often Tyreek Hill and Tua Tagovailoa. Rightfully so, as that duo has been terrific.
However, you could make the argument that it’s the team’s running game that makes them tough to beat, as they are the league’s second-best rushing team (145.2 yards).
So, should fantasy football managers consider starting one of their running backs in their lineup this week? We’ll let you know.
In the Pro Football Network Start/Sit Optimizer, our Consensus Rankings say that RB Raheem Mostert is the player to start in the Dolphins’ backfield. His projected 12.7 points include 59 rushing yards, three receptions, and 17 receiving yards. That projected stat line narrowly outperforms the consensus projection of De’Von Achane (10.0) and Jeff Wilson Jr. (6.6).
My ranking for these Dolphins’ running backs does not align with the consensus. Assuming he’s healthy, Achane’s big-play potential is too much to overlook when measuring these three players.
Over the last six weeks, a knee injury has caused Achane to miss five games and leave another after only three offensive snaps. It isn’t a question of production with him, it is solely his health that makes you hesitant
The good news on the injury front is that, while he was a limited participant, Achane did return to practice on Wednesday. He followed that up by practicing on Thursday and, barring a surprising setback, will be playing on Sunday.
Achane, when he was playing earlier in the year, was as big of a playmaker as any of the Dolphins’ players. He is averaging a ridiculously impressive 11.8 yards per carry. There are 40 players in the league with 400 or more rushing yards. All but one of those players has rushed the ball at least 70 times: Achane, who has carried the ball 39 times for 461 yards.
It’s also not a surprise that Achane has the most carries of 40+ yards this season (four). Mostert is the touchdown machine for Miami, but Achane has seven touchdowns this season on 39 touches.
He and the rest of the Miami offense could feast on the Washington Commanders’ defense, a unit that is allowing 5.9 yards per play this season — the third-most in the NFL.
It is hard to go against Mostert, as he has been fantastic all season for the Dolphins. He has 13 rushing touchdowns this year, which leads the NFL. He rushed the ball 20 times for 94 yards and two touchdowns in the win against the New York Jets on Black Friday.
One area of the game he isn’t involved in is the passing game. In his last four games, he has only one catch. If you take out his seven-catch performance against the Denver Broncos, he has only 13 catches this season. While Achane has only 10 catches in five games, I think a healthy Achane has a higher ceiling in the passing game than Mostert.
All of the running backs for the Dolphins have been injured at some point. Injuries to his midsection and his fingers forced Wilson to start the season on the injured reserve. He played in Week 7, but he didn’t get a carry in Week 8.
In the win against the Jets, he was solid with 11 carries for 56 yards in the win. If Mostert and Achane were both inactive, then Wilson would have top 10-15 RB potential. For the time being, though, there just aren’t enough touches for him.
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