The 2019 NFL Draft wasn't loaded with top-tier running back talent, but it looks like it's shaping up to be a deep class at the position, with plenty of players in line to make an impact in the 2019 fantasy football season.
The highest average draft position (ADP) for a rookie RB belongs to Josh Jacobs at RB17, according to FantasyPros.com. The Oakland Raiders not only made Jacobs the lone first-round RB in the draft, but he was also the only back taken in the first 50 picks.
David Montgomery has the next-highest ADP (RB22) for a rookie back, and reports out of training camp have been glowing after the Chicago Bears traded up to select him in the third round following an impressive career at Iowa State.
David Montgomery Fantasy Outlook 2019
Montgomery's skill gives him a terrific ceiling, and the Bears seem to want him to develop into a three-down back. However, he's stepping into a fairly crowded backfield though.
Free-agent acquisition Mike Davis still figures to see some volume on the ground, and Tarik Cohen can be expected to severely limit Montgomery's receiving work this year after seeing 91 targets in 2018. This gives Montgomery a low floor in his rookie season, making him something of a boom-or-bust pick.
Jacobs, on the other hand, is expected to step in as a workhorse back right away.
Josh Jacobs Fantasy Outlook 2019
The Raiders don't project to be an especially good team this season, with a win total over/under set at only 6.5, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. This does limit Jacobs' ceiling some, as there might not be a ton of scoring to go around in Oakland.
Still, volume is by far the most important factor in a running back's fantasy football value, and that's something Jacobs should see no shortage of in 2019. The Raiders head into the season without their only two players that ran the ball more than 55 times last year (combining to vacate 262 carries), and Jacobs has been their only meaningful addition at the position.
Jacobs is a slightly more expensive investment, going in the late third round on average, compared to the early fourth round for Montgomery. He's a good bet to more than pay off that difference, though, thanks to the huge workload he's in line to see while Montgomery fights through a murkier situation in Chicago.
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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.