Broncos running back Willis McGahee turns 31 years old next month and has close to 2,000 touches in his career. With Peyton Manning and not that No. 15 guy at quarterback this year, the Broncos won't run nearly as often as they did last season, but the team will be keeping a sharp eye on McGahee's carry count.
"The thing is, with running backs, when they start to get a little bit older, you have manage their workload -- not only in practice, but also in games," Broncos executive vice president John Elway said. "... The last thing we want to do is wear him out. Obviously he does a good job on first and second down; he's tremendous between the tackles; he still has great feet and is our big back at 240 pounds.
You shouldn't count on McGahee repeating his 249 carries from last season, but he remains the Broncos' clear early down and goal-line running back. I thought he was underrated in fantasy drafts, and he should be able to score more touchdowns that what he did in 2010 and 2011. He's a very solid weekly flex option.
In related news, the latest Broncos depth chart shows that Knowshon Moreno is now the immediate backup to McGahee. Lance Ball is No. 3 and preseason favorite Ronnie Hillman has fallen to fourth. So it looks like Moreno has come from the depths to once again become McGahee's handcuff.