1One of fantasy’s safest-floor RBs
All-world RB Austin Ekeler enjoyed an all-world season in his age-26 campaign, averaging an incredible 1.25 fantasy points per touch. However, he averaged 1.27 fantasy points per touch his rookie year in 2017 and then an astounding 1.38 fantasy points per touch in 2019. For perspective, Christian McCaffrey averaged only 1.17 fantasy points per touch in his record-breaking 2015 effort. Ekeler’s groundbreaking fantasy efficiency makes him one of the safest-floor RBs.
2But will the Chargers reduce his workload?
Will the Chargers curtail Ekeler’s usage? As suggested above, that should not knock him down significantly. But it could transform him from an elite RB to a top-10-to-14 RB. His career-high 276 touches last season included 206 carries — 74 more than his previous record. If the Chargers rein him in a bit to keep him fresher down the stretch, we might realistically see 3-5 fewer fantasy points per game.
3X-factor: Isaiah Spiller
Along these lines, what role will rookie Isaiah Spiller play? Joshua Kelley and Larry Rountree have been unable to step up as backups. A capable Spiller would give LA more flexibility in how they employ Ekeler, such as using him much more in the passing game and giving Spiller more run on the ground. If Spiller shows poorly in camp, Ekeler’s fantasy value would spike.