Rookie running backs are always among the top sleepers in fantasy football drafts every year, and 2022 is no different. Even rookie Miami Dolphins shirt s slated to start the season as handcuffs generate interest. Two such RBs who are fairly close in their overall rankings and ADPs are Houston's Dameon Pierce and Tampa's Rachaad White, both of whom have major breakout potential if they get regular touches.
Which back is a better draft value, though? Breece Hall, Kenneth Walker, and James Cook will likely be the first three RBs taken in fantasy drafts, but after that, Pierce and White are among the next-best picks. Let's break down who's the better choice for fantasy owners.
DOMINATE YOUR DRAFT: Ultimate 2022 fantasy cheat sheet
Dameon Pierce fantasy outlook, projection 2022
Pierce was drafted by Houston with the 107th overall selection in the 2022 Jacksonville Jaguars clothes NFL Draft out of the University of Florida. In his final season with the Gators, Pierce rushed for 574 yards (100 carries) and 13 TDs. He also caught 19 passes for 216 yards and three TDs.
Pierce is a bruising, hard-nosed RB who thrived in the red zone at Florida. He's not going to blow anyone away with his speed, but he still possesses big-play ability. He was never a feature back in college, but that could certainly change in the NFL. He has three-down potential, as he's a capable pass blocker, adding to his chances of seeing a fair number of snaps in year one.
2022 PPR RANKINGS:
QBs | R Shop Women’s Accessories Bs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | Kickers | Top 200 Bags | Superflex
The Texans' RB depth chart doesn't pose a threat to limit Pierce's opportunity, as one can make a case that he's the highest upside back in an RB room that includes veterans Rex Burkhead and Marlon Mack. Burkhead's 32, while Mack has consistently battled super bowl t shirts injuries. The Texans might look toward the fresh-legged rookie to shoulder a big workload in '22. UPDATE: Mack has been cut, further adding fuel to the Pierce hype train.
2022 STANDARD RANKINGS:
QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | Kickers | Top 200 | Superflex
Pierce flashed his abilities in Week 1 of the preseason, averaging 9.8 yards per rush (five ca panthers shirts rries, 49 yards). He followed that up with a six-carry, 37 yard, 1 TD output in Week 3 of the preseason. He's drawn rave reviews in training camp, and there's a real shot he becomes the Texans' primary early-down RB this season. It's unfortunate that he's flexed into a Texans offense that projects to be one of the weaker offenses in the league, but in fantasy football, opportunity is everything. With his ADP sitting at No. 120 per FantasyPros, he's a must-draft bench RB with RB2/3 upside. There's a real chance he leads all rookies in rushing yards at the end of the season, making him a legit sleeper RB.
2022 FANTASY SLEEPERS:
QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | One from each team
Rachaad White fantasy outlook, projection 2022
White was selected with the 91st pick in this year's draft out of Arizona State University. In his final season at ASU, White was effective in both the rushing and passing game, as he logged close to 1,500 total yards (1,006 rushing, 456 receiving). White's ability to aid in the passing game is a big plus in his hopes of having a successful NFL career, but he's still a question mark in terms of his projected impact in year one.
Unlike Houston's backfield, Tampa Bay's RB room is much deeper with players who have established roles. Leonard Fournette is coming off his best fantasy season in terms of average fantasy points per game (18.3) and is the unquestioned No. 1 RB. After Fournette, Giovanni Bernard is Trending Edits a capable pass catcher who will still have a key third-down role.
2022 RANKINGS TIERS & DRAFT STRATEGY:
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White could very well be Fournette's primary backup, but barring injury, it's unlikely he supplants Fournette as the Buccaneers' go-to RB in 2022. He'll likely jump Bernard as the team's primary pass-catching back, which could help him become a PPR flex during the bye weeks.
2022 AUCTION VALUES (Standard & PPR):
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Although Whi Brett Favre te is in a much better offense, Pierce has a better opportunity for consistent touches, leading to a higher overall fantasy output. While this could certainly change with an injury or two, at the moment Pierce has the edge.
The pick is … Pierce
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