Damien Harris Fantasy Outlook Paints Him as Risky RB Depth Option Heading Into 2021

Adam Taylor McKillop
New England Patriots running back Damien Harris' fantasy outlook paints risky depth option heading into 2021.
New England Patriots running back Damien Harris' fantasy outlook paints risky depth option heading into 2021. / Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

With the healthy return of Sony Michel, the running back depth chart is full once again for the New England Patriots heading into 2021. That's a great sign for team success, but paints a murky picture for Damien Harris' fantasy outlook this year.

Damien Harris Fantasy Value

It's quite clear that of all the head coaches in the league, Bill Belichick is one probably the least worried about a clear pecking order for his position players, or establishing a depth chart that rules all. He's going to ride the hot hand, and that's simply all you need to know about it.

One of the biggest areas of concern for Harris' fantasy value this season is his lack of impact in the passing game. At best, Harris presents as a No. 2 or No. 3 running back on a fantasy roster. But, if you're playing in a PPR league, it's best to steer clear.

With Michel limited by injuries last year, Harris took on a bigger role in New England's offense. He suited up and started in 10 games, putting together a respectable 691 yards and two touchdowns. From Weeks 6-14, the most consistent stretch of Harris' 2020 campaign, he put up RB23 numbers. Very respectable.

But, New England clearly still relies on James White as their passing back, with Harris managing just 7 targets and 5 receptions in those 10 games. That's less than 1 target and 1 reception per game.

Fantasy managers should expect more of the same from New England's running backs in 2021. On running downs, Belichick will ride whoever of Michel or Harris has the hot hand. But, when it comes to a passing down, White's the only real option. After all, White averages 82 targets per year over his past six seasons.

Damien Harris ADP

According to FanatsyPros' PPR data, Harris owns an average draft position (ADP) of 86.4 and RB33. He's listed as RB32 on The Duel's preseason fantasy football rankings.

In a PPR formats, it's best to wait until the later rounds when drafting Harris. He's a great bench option and presents real value if Michel struggles with injuries again. But, it'd be surprising to see him put up top-24 running back fantasy points again this season.

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Adam Taylor McKillop is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Adam Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username atmckillop. 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.