The 49ers are on bye this week so that means you don’t have to worry about what running back has to face them, but you do have to worry about who will be sitting in for Frank Gore and Kendall Hunter on your fantasy teams. Two names that should be on that list are Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas. With a relatively short TD carry in the 2nd quarter of last weekend’s game against The Jets, Thomas seems to be a little more involved in Miami’s backfield plans recently, which puts both RBs in prime position to succeed against The Colts on Sunday. If they split carries like last week, look for both players to do everything in their power to stand out from the competition. One of them will almost certainly score and they should both have enough opportunities to pass 80 all-purpose yards.
Matt Forte owners are probably pretty pleased with his ability to hold off Michael Bush from any significant production theft and that trend should continue easily when The Bears travel to Tennessee. Forte is an almost sure bet for 90+ yards and a score this weekend, but if you’ve been holding onto Michael Bush, the best you can hope for is improvement, not start-worthy stats. Bush is little more than a handcuff to Forte at this point, but his value would skyrocket if anything were to happen to Forte so he’s worth hanging onto, but not if it has potential to cost you a win.
Anyone who traded for Mikel Leshoure after week 3 has probably been disappointed in his production ever since; zero TDs is a hard stat to get used to. However, assuming his leg is alright, Leshoure should have a fantastic day in Jacksonville. If Leshoure is unable to go, which seems unlikely given early reports, Joique Bell is a great waiver wire pickup this week. He did quite well in limited action last weekend.
Even without The 49ers, there are still plenty of formidable run defenses. One of them just happens to be The Dolphins. Bush and Thomas will see plenty of action, but Donald Brown and Vick Ballard are significantly less attractive options. Don’t worry, their schedule gets much easier from here on out so look to buy low on Brown especially after this weekend, but you’ll be able to buy low because of his performance against Miami.
The Bears are also quite stout at run defense and while Matt Forte goes off, Chris Johnson will have some trouble. Johnson has been consistently startable these past three weeks, but against Chicago, I wouldn’t expect to see more than 60 yards on the ground from him. He may have gotten off to a rough start, but he’s still an incredible talent and The Titans will use him, but if you’re looking at 3 decent RB options and you can only start two, consider making Johnson your odd one out this week.
In case you haven’t noticed the pattern, there are numerous games this weekend with a great run defense playing against a terrible run defense. The situation is no different in Jacksonville. With Maurice Jones-Drew sidelined, a lot of faith is being put in Rashad Jennings’ abilities. Unfortunately, MJD’s injury came at a rough time for matchups. With only 59 yards on the ground last weekend, Jennings made up for his shortcomings with 56 yards through the air. However, this weekend, The Lions should have an easier time containing him. Less than 60 all-purpose yards would not surprise me at all.