Ito Smith is “Lead Runner” for Falcons
The Falcons brought in Todd Gurley during the offseason to serve as their feature back, but he’s been a major disappointment. He’s averaged just 3.5 yards per carry this season on 182 attempts, and he’s also posted a career-worst 5.4 yards per reception.
With that in mind, it’s not surprising that the Falcons have made a change at the position. Interim head coach Raheem Morris told reporters that Smith was now the “lead runner”, and he led the Falcons’ running backs in both attempts and targets vs. the Bucs on Sunday. Gurley and Brian Hill are still going to be a part of the rotation, but Smith appears poised to lead the team in opportunities over the final two weeks.
Unfortunately, that didn’t result in much fantasy value vs. the Bucs. He finished with just 4.3 FanDuel points, but the Falcons went with an extremely pass-heavy approach in that contest. Matt Ryan attempted 49 passes, while the three running backs combined for just 12 carries.
Smith will be an interesting fantasy option in Week 16 vs. the Chiefs. Both of these teams rank in the top 10 in terms of neutral pace this season, so this game should feature plenty of offense. Kansas City also entered Week 15 ranked 30th in Football Outsiders‘ rush defense DVOA, and they’ve also struggled vs. running backs in the passing game.