The Injury Files: JK Dobbins
In this series of articles, I’ll be looking at players who missed significant time last year and how it’s affected their Fantasy Football value for the 2022 season. Some of these guy’s may have had people step up in their absence, their team signed another player to fill the void or they could be heading to a new franchise off the back of an injury.
I’ll be diving into several players, at numerous positions and how their value differs from last off-season.
In the stacked Running Back class of the 2020 NFL Draft, Dobbins was the 5th player selected at his position. The Baltimore Ravens turned in the card at 55 overall. The former Ohio State was joining a crowded backfield with no real stand out player. Plus the rushing upside of MVP Quarterback Lamar Jackson.
Even with the competition in front of him, Dobbins played in 15 games. The rookie turned in a very solid stat line. He finished as the RB23 in PPR for 2020. JK scored in each of his last 6 games that he played in the regular season. Missing the week 12 divisional match-up @ Heinz Field vs. the Steelers due to being on the Covid-19 list.
Fast Forward to the pre-season of 2021. On August 28th, Dobbins suffered a season ending ACL tear in the Ravens warm up game vs. Washington. This was the 2nd season ending injury in his career. He broke his fibula back in 2016 whilst playing High School football. As a result, he missed his senior year.
There seemed to be something in the water at M&T Bank Stadium last year. Back up Running Back Gus Edwards tore his ACL in practice in September. The same month, 3rd string Running Back Justice Hill tore his Achilles tendon. All 3 missed the 2021 season. Not just this, but their dual threat Quarterback also missed time last year!
Baltimore bounce back?
It’s much the same in terms of JK Dobbins’ opportunity to be lead back. Lamar Jackson put up back to back 1000+ yard rushing seasons in 2019-2020. He was also on pace for that last season, so how much does this cut into Dobbins share? Well, the Ravens are a high rushing volume offence. Mark Ingram, Dobbins’ main competitor for 2020 touches, isn’t around no more. Gus Edwards will fall back into his back up role.
Ingram was the last Ravens Running Back to have a 1000 yard rushing season in 2019. Lamar was the team’s leading rusher that year, with over 1200 yards. And Gus Edwards put up over 700 yards himself. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it’s a very similar story to 2019 this year in Maryland.
Using Underdog ADP, Dobbins is being drafted as the RB17 currently. Higher than Cowboys lead back, Zeke Elliott, newly re-signed Tampa Bay’s Leonard Fournette. And, crucially, before all of the 2022 rookie Running Backs. The price is probably fair for what he could return in the 2022 season. But I’m not sold. Why would you, when you can get last season’s RB5, 6 or 7 later in drafts?
He did bounce back after his last season ending injury, by having a solid freshman campaign at Ohio State. By all means, his rehab is also going well. But, unless his ADP drops a few places, I can’t see myself having too many JK Dobbins shares for the 2022 season.
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