Falcons running back Steven Jackson will be the team's starter in Week 1 against the Saints. That is pretty much assured for the 11-year veteran. But Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com thinks Jackson's time as the starter may be brief if rookie running back Devonta Freeman continues what he started in the spring into the summer and fall.
Vaughn cited the Falcons' running back position last week as the team's top position battle to watch during training camp.
"Steven Jackson is the starter. He turns 31 next month and probably has one good season left in him -- but if he is slowed by nagging injuries, the Falcons will turn to someone else," McClure wrote. "They drafted Devonta Freeman in the fourth round with thoughts of grooming him as the three-down back of the future. If he looks as good in pads as he did in shorts, Jackson might have a battle on his hands."
The draft stocks of these two players continue to run like trains passing in the night. According to FFToolbox's ADP chart, only one round separates where Jackson and Freeman are being selected by fantasy owners. Jackson has a ton of NFL mileage on him and is coming off a supremely disappointing season spoiled by injury. But he is a bargain at his current ADP in the ninth or 10th round. Again, he is still the starter. Freeman has been one of the most buzzed-about players so far, but he still has to show through a grueling training camp that he deserves to even play in front on Jacquizz Rodgers . I'm a fan of his, especially in dynasty leagues, but let's calm down on the rookie just a smidge, OK?