Carolina Panthers RB Jonathan Stewart took to Twitter this morning to say what DeAngelo Williams fantasy football owners had been hoping hear all week long.
“Looks like I’ll be missing the game opener this year due to my recent ankle sprain!”
Stewart tweeted that he expects to sit out week 1 of the Panthers regular season today against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. While that may not affect too many people who own Stewart on their team, as they most likely only drafted him as a back-up, it may do wonders for owners of Williams, who should now consider him a must-start running back this week.
I am fortunate enough to be one of those happy owners who have already inserted Williams into my starting lineup.
Depending on the other running backs on your roster, Williams should almost automatically start on most teams. In my league, I am starting him over Adrian Peterson, Peyton Hillis, Benjarvus Green-Ellis and Donald Brown. While I never thought all that much of Williams as he was going to be in a timeshare with Stewart, this week is different.
Due to Stewart saying he is out, Williams could be a top five back this weekend.
The Buccaneers were absolutely horrible against the run last season, and it does not appear as if they did all that much to change that this year. Sure, Cam Newton will steal some carries near the goal line, but Williams can break a run or two to still score at least once, and should certainly run up his rushing yard total.
If by some chance you went heavy enough early on with running backs and have a pair of other studs besides Williams, then you have a decision to make. For example, if your team includes any combination of Lesean McCoy, Ray Rice and Darren McFadden, then you are starting two of them.
But with question marks surrounding Chris Johnson or Arian Foster or Marshawn Lynch due to injuries or effectiveness, you may want to go ahead and bench them for one week only in favor of Williams.
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