Wednesday, August 25, 2010

8/25 Bust of the Day: C.J. Spiller


Fantasy geeks are going ga-ga over Spiller this preseason, and I can't say I blame them. If you've seen the speedster play at Clemson, caught the preseason highlight in the video above, or heard the news about fellow Buffalo backs Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson being injured, there's much to be excited about.

I don't doubt that Spiller has the talent to be a future NFL star, and I believe he'll be a worthwhile fantasy choice this year. I'm just cautioning that the rookie deserves to be an RB3 at the start of the year, no higher. Yes he's got a chance to be Buffalo's No. 1 back in Week 1 - but it's Buffalo! The offensive line was terrible last year and the QB play was subpar, and they've done next to nothing to improve either in 2010. The versatile Jackson did manage a 1,000-yard rushing total last year with the Bills, but is Spiller ready to take on that kind of workhorse role? He was originally slotted in as a "hybrid" player, a change-of-pace back, and he may still play that role when Jackson returns somewhere by Week 2. But I question whether new Bills head man Chan Gailey (who hasn't been an NFL head coach since 1999) even knows what he's doing here and will be able to maximize Spiller's potential.

Again, I believe in the talent, but I can't elevate Spiller to being a top-20 RB yet. I like him as a No. 3, but even then I'd be more inclined to take another rookie runner, Jahvid Best, a Spiller clone who has a better supporting cast around him in Detroit.

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