Fantasy mini-camp: Don't sleep on Dolphins RB Lamar Miller
Division: AFC East
Team: Miami Dolphins
Situation: RB competition, but not really
Player to watch: Lamar Miller
Back in 2011, the Dolphins drafted Daniel Thomas in the second round, hoping the big boy running back would move piles and move Miami's ground game into weapon status. Many a fantasy player concurred, making the stout 233-pounder a genuine high riser on draft boards.
Um, yeah. After two seasons, 256 carries and a 3.5 per carry average, fantasy owners have moved on. Tack on lots of fumbles plus several injuries and it appears the Dolphins are open to moving on from Thomas as well in a lead back role even with Reggie Bush having motored on to the Detroit. Of course, one needs an alternate plan in order to scrap a previous one. Welcome to Miller time.
Drafted in the fourth round last year by the Dolphins, the shifty Miller looks like a viable No.1 option for the Dolphins heading into 2013. Undervalued coming out of the University of Miami, Miller certainly showed significantly more promise and pop when given carries than Thomas did, averaging 4.9 ypc on 51 handoffs.
Not shy about his upcoming goals, Miller is talking about rushing for 1,500 yards next season. That will require significantly more than 51 carries, though the Dolphins are apparently willing to accommodate; the sense out of South Florida is the 215-pound back leads the running back battle and that with his pass blocking and receiving skills can play every down if needed. Rookie Mike Gillislee is a noted pass protector, giving Miami another option in that role.
Never shy about pounding sleeper options, the fantasy industry is already keenly aware of Miller's potential (check out round 3). Friends in your neighborhood league are likely slow on the uptake with Thomas still the more recognizable name and free agent acquisition Mike Wallace the more notable offensive playmaker. Start pondering Miller as an RB2 now and beat the August rush.