Kenyan Drake Fantasy: Should You Start or Sit the Dolphins RB in Week 8?

Kenyan Drake

Getty Miami Dolphins RB Kenyan Drake

The Miami Dolphins rushing attack has been one of the toughest to gauge in the NFL to this point. There’s an (uneven) time split between Kenyan Drake and Frank Gore, and in turn, it’s impacted the fantasy football value of each. Drake has flashed upside but only has more than six carries once in the past five weeks.

Even still, the 24-year-old back is at least in the mix as a potential fantasy starter in Week 8 as the Dolphins take on the Houston Texans. On the season, he’s totaled 58 carries for 282 yards and two touchdowns, but much of his value seemingly comes from the fact that he’s a solid pass-catcher. Drake has 25 receptions for 160 yards and one touchdown on 39 targets through seven games.

One thing that stands out about Drake’s fantasy value this week is the fact that Miami is shorthanded offensively. Not only is Brock Osweiler starting for the injured Ryan Tannehill, but both Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson are out for this game. Along with Drake, names like Danny Amendola, Jakeem Grant and possibly DeVante Parker are intriguing options.

With that said, let’s break down whether fantasy owners should start or sit Drake this week.


Key Stats and Kenyan Drake’s Fantasy Outlook

I’ll break down the matchup along with a few key numbers for Drake and the Dolphins ahead of the Week 8 matchup. All information on fantasy points and statistics for defense vs. position are from ESPN.

  • Houston Texans vs. running backs in 2018: 157 attempts, 524 yards, 44 receptions, 316 receiving yards, five total touchdowns (No. 14 fewest fantasy points per game)
  • Drake out-snapped Gore 36-25 and 49-30 over the past two games, per Football Outsiders
  • Texans have allowed just one rushing touchdown this season, but 44 receptions to opposing running backs

There’s no question Drake is receiving the larger workload compared to Gore, but his fantasy production hasn’t been as stellar expected. On the bright side, the third-year back’s big-play potential and ability to catch passes helps keep him relevant and in the mix as an option.


Should You Start or Sit Kenyan Drake?

As intriguing as Drake’s playmaking ability is, I’d probably stand pat on him this week. There’s a strong likelihood the Dolphins will be playing from behind Thursday night and a lead would be the only way to project an increase in rushing attempts for him. Drake will undoubtedly see targets from Osweiler, though, as he caught eight passes over the past two weeks.

In 12-team leagues or smaller, I’d keep the Dolphins back on the bench, but in 14-team leagues or above he’s a flex play or fringe RB2 depending on your depth.

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