Now that we're done with bye weeks for the rest of the regular season, fantasy football rosters have some extra bench space to utilize. That means you can afford to take up some space stashing running back handcuffs without hurting your ability to field a full starting lineup.
With every game being a must-win down the stretch, the value that a handcuff can bring is two-fold. Rostering the backup to your own stud RB gives you a layer of safety, while owning the backup of a stud you don't own keeps them off your opponents' teams while also giving you huge upside if those starters do go down.
The following three backs are the top handcuffs available heading into the fantasy football playoffs.
1. Latavius Murray, New Orleans Saints
Alvin Kamara missed two games earlier in the season, and Latavius Murray's workload was absurd. In Weeks 7 and 8, he played at least 80 percent of the New Orleans' Saints offensive snaps in each game, tallying 27 carries plus six targets in Week 7 and 21 carries with 12 targets in Week 8. He averaged an absurd 34.3 PPR fantasy points per game in those two contests. He is a bonafide RB1 play if Kamara misses any more time this year.
2. Reggie Bonnafon, Carolina Panthers
No RB is seeing a bigger workload than Christian McCaffrey this season, averaging 20.2 carries and 7.1 targets per game while playing a position-leading 94 percent of offensive snaps. Reggie Bonnafon isn't likely to assume that entire workload if McCaffrey goes down, but he's the only other Panthers back with more than five carries or one target, and he would stand to inherit a ton of volume if he were forced into a starting role.
3. Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys
It feels like a lifetime ago that a potential Ezekiel Elliott holdout made Tony Pollard an intriguing fantasy pick in drafts, and the rookie is back on the radar now. Dallas had said they were going to be willing to feature Tony Pollard as a bell-cow if Zeke sat, and we shouldn't expect that to chance if Elliott gets hurt. We've seen Pollard flash some serious upside, including gaining 128 yards on 16 touches in just 23 snaps in Week 3, and workhorse volume would make him a must-start fantasy back.
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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.