Tag:Adrian Peterson
Posted on: August 30, 2008 10:37 am

Fantasy impact of losing OT Bryant McKinnie

The NFL has suspended OT Bryant McKinnie four games. What does this mean for Adrian Peterson?

Surprisingly, not as much as it will mean to Tarvaris Jackson (or whomever is starting at QB for Minnesota).

Let's drill deeper ...

McKinnie's suspension is for four games for violating the Personal Conduct Policy. I'm a huge fan of McKinnie, a fellow Hurricane and someone who used to talk to him on a weekly basis back when he was going through the draft process, and I think he's a solid left tackle and a big reason why the Vikings' run game is so good.

But his absence will make an impact. Artis Hicks, a seven-year veteran, will start in his place.

WEEK 1: Minnesota at Green Bay. Hicks will go head-up with Packers DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila on passing downs and Cullen Jenkins on running downs. This matchup isn't as fearsome as you might think as KGB has taken a step back and is actually hurt right now. Jenkins is a versatile big boy but he shouldn't overmatch Hicks.

WEEK 2: Indianapolis at Minnesota. Hicks will take on Dwight Freeney. Oof. Freeney is well rested after missing a chunk of last year with an injury. Even though he'll be at home, I don't think he'll do very well against the speed and quickness Freeney utilizes.

WEEK 3: Carolina at Minnesota. Hicks draws Julius Peppers as his opponent. Double Oof. Peppers has been a house of fire this preseason, something new from him. Obviously, he realizes his 2007 season was a huge bust and if he's going to cash in on his contract year, he needs to play inspired ball. I don't like Hicks' chances here, either.

WEEK 4: Minnesota at Tennessee. Assuming Hicks isn't benched by now, his opponent here is Kyle Vanden Bosch, who is a powerful bull rusher who not only can get to the quarterback, but also stop the run. To be honest, this is the only matchup I'd be a little nervous about Adrian Peterson not performing well in.

Ultimately, I think Jackson will see much more pressure in the pocket than Peterson will have against the run. Peterson remains a top-five Fantasy pick, but I might go elsewhere for a backup QB.
Posted on: July 25, 2008 9:33 am

Sophomore slump for Adrian Peterson?

Thought I'd pop open the ol' Inbox this morning and see if we had any interesting emails. Indeed we did.

From Ken Z.: Dave, In years past, several FF analysts have mentioned the sophomore slump of several RBs. Adrian Peterson is in his second year, yet I have not heard anyone mention a possible down year for him. Does everyone think AD is simply just that good and he won't have a down year? I think AD is going to be the biggest first round bust. Thoughts?

I did a lot of research this offseason, but one item I didn't get to was this one. Let's take a look at the running backs who were Rookies of the Year and how they did in their second season (keeping in mind that their first season was obviously amazing, otherwise they wouldn't have won the award):

1993 ROY: Jerome Bettis
1994 season: 1,025 on 319 carries (3.2 avg.) with 3 TDs; 293 receiving yards and a receiving TD, a slight improvement over his rookie year.
Sophomore Slump? Yes.

1994 ROY: Marshall Faulk
1995 season: 1,078 yards on 289 carries (3.7 avg.) with 11 TDs; 475 receiving yards and 3 receiving TDs much improved from rookie season
Sophomore Slump? Nope.

1995 ROY: Curtis Martin
1996 season: 1,152 yards on 316 carries (3.6 avg.) with 14 TDs; 333 receiving yards and 3 receiving TDs, also an improvement
Sophomore Slump? Nope.

1996 ROY: Eddie George
1997 season: 1,399 yards on 357 carries (3.9 avg.) with 6 TDs; only 44 receiving yards, but with a touchdown
Sophomore Slump? It's borderline, but statistically speaking, yes.

1997 ROY: Warrick Dunn
1998 season: 1,026 yards on 245 carries (4.2 avg.) with 2 TDs; 344 yards receiving but with no touchdowns
Sophomore Slump? Yes, but again that's statistically speaking.

1999 ROY: Edgerrin James
2000 season: 1,709 yards on 387 carries (4.4 avg.) with 13 TDs; 594 receiving yards and 5 TDs through the air.
Sophomore Slump? No way. In fact, James is the only RB on this list so far whose rushing average INCREASED in his second year.

2000 ROY: Mike Anderson
2001 season: 678 yards on 175 carries (3.9 avg.) with just 7 starts. Oh, he also had 4 TDs; he had 15 in his rookie year.
Sophomore Slump? Oh yeah.

2001 ROY: Anthony Thomas
2002 season: 721 yards on 214 carries (3.4 avg.) with 6 TDs and four games missed. Receiving stats were minimal.
Sophomore Slump? Yessir.

2002 ROY: Clinton Portis
2003 season: 1,591 yards on 290 carries (5.5 avg.) with 14 TDs and 314 receiving yards. Matched his average from his rookie year.
Sophomore Slump? No way.

2005 ROY: Cadillac Williams
2006 season: 798 yards on 225 carries (3.5 avg.) with 1 TD. He added 196 receiving yards.
Sophomore Slump? Yes.

2007 ROY: Adrian Peterson
2008 season: ?????

The thing to note is that other than Edgerrin James and Clinton Portis, every single ROY RB listed above had a worse yards-per-carry average in his sophomore year than his rookie year. Six of them failed to average even 4.0 yards per carry.

That said, keep in mind that Peterson averaged 5.6 yards per carry as a rookie, and that was on 238 reps. We expect him to top that 238 carry total, which will likely mean a drop in his yards per carry average anyway.

The other thing to remember is that the history of other running backs on other teams in other years has no bearing on Peterson's 2008. The Vikings' offensive line is one of the best in football, and the gameplan they run tends to focus more on rushing than passing. Even though Peterson will lose some carries to Chester Taylor, he's still expected to produce high numbers.

We don't foresee a sophomore slump for Peterson. We like him between third and fifth overall in drafts this summer.
Category: NFL
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