The Duel

Patrick Laird Fantasy Outlook Rises With Kalen Ballage Placed on IR

Jason Schandl
Patrick Laird runs the ball in a preseason game against the Saints.
Patrick Laird runs the ball in a preseason game against the Saints. / Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images
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Patrick Laird's fantasy outlook looked ready to explode when Kalen Ballage got banged up in Week 13, and now Laird's value gets a big boost for the fantasy football playoffs with the Miami Dolphins placing Kalen Ballage on IR.

Ballage's role was already trending in the wrong direction before the injury. He was the clear-cut lead back in Miami in Weeks 10 and 11, handling a combined 38 touches while playing over 75 percent of the snaps in both games. Turning in terrible efficiency though, he dropped to just eight touches, playing 38 percent of the snaps in Week 12.

Laird has seen a corresponding increase in volume. His snap share has increased in each of the last four games, culminating with a 60 percent mark and 14 touches in relief of Ballage in Week 13. He turned that work into 16.8 PPR fantasy points.

Even Ballage, who averaged a historically bad 1.8 yards per carry on 74 rushes this season, managed to offer some fantasy value as the Dolphins' lead back, so we can expect Laird to find some success in that role as well.

Drawing a favorable matchup against the New York Jets, Laird checks in at RB30 in our Week 14 PPR fantasy football rankings.


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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.

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