Leonard Fournette Fantasy Outlook Features Underwhelming Value in Crowded Buccaneers Backfield

Isaiah De Los Santos
Leonard Fournette's fantasy outlook features underwhelming value in crowded Buccaneers backfield heading into the 2021 NFL season.
Leonard Fournette's fantasy outlook features underwhelming value in crowded Buccaneers backfield heading into the 2021 NFL season. / Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette turned it on in last year's playoffs, emerging as a key factor during his team's championship run. However, that masked a lackluster regular season, and he heads into the 2021 campaign destined to split touches yet again.

The Buccaneers' loaded backfield severely caps Fournette's fantasy potential this year.

Leonard Fournette Fantasy Value

Fournette finished as an underwhelming RB35 in PPR scoring in 2020. He's currently being drafted as RB32, according to FantasyPros, which is questionable given the timeshare he's in.

The former No. 4 overall pick recorded a meager 367 rushing yards last season on 97 attempts along with 6 scores. His average of 7.5 rushes per game was nothing amazing, though he added value as a receiver, turning 3.6 targets into 2.8 receptions per contest.

Things won't get any better for Fournette in 2021. Ronald Jones could end up as the lead back once again for this offense after averaging 13.7 attempts per game and totaling nearly 1,000 rushing yards in 2020. Jones (5.1 yards per attempt) severely outpaced Fournette (3.8 Y/A) behind the same offensive line last year, which should give him an edge.

Then there's the addition of Giovani Bernard, who is turning heads at training camp. Bernard is a receiving specialist out of the backfield that presents a major threat to Fournette's passing game opportunities. Bernard has averaged 57.1 targets over his eight seasons in the NFL, and he's the exact kind of pass-catching RB that Tom Brady has loved to play with throughout his career.

Jones taking on a majority of the rushing touches, plus Bernard becoming a major factor in the passing game, would spell fantasy irrelevancy for Fournette. It's hard to see him commanding enough reps to be starter-worthy with two players presenting real competition.

Leonard Fournette ADP

Fournette checks in at RB34 in The Duel's 2021 PPR fantasy football rankings.

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Isaiah De Los Santos is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Isaiah De Los Santos also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username zayyy05328. 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.