Bernard Pierce, RB, Jaguars
2014 Outlook: Sleeper (undervalued)Last updated on Aug-18-2014 by Rob Warner
Pierce underwent shoulder surgery in January, but is expected to open the season as the Ravens' starting running back since Ray Rice is facing suspension. The 24-year-old Temple alum fell on his face in 2013: averaging just 2.9 yards per carry on 152 carries. Both he and Rice really struggled behind what turned out to be one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL. Over his first two seasons, Pierce has scored just three touchdowns. Without Rice around to share the workload, Pierce will have a golden opportunity for 20-plus touches per game as the Ravens' lead back in September. It is worth noting that the Ravens' schedule over the first month includes a few difficult matchups against solid run defenses (Cincinnati in Week 1 and Carolina in Week 4). Pierce's ADP (RB42, 123.02) places him around Round 11. This is a pretty good value if it turns out that Pierce hits the ground running as the team's starter.
Editor's note: A hot start would provide RB2-quality production from a back typically drafted as one of the top bench players on a given fantasy team. This offers valuable roster flexibility at the start of 2014. Unfortunately, you have to assume Baltimore's offensive struggles last year were the exception, not the rule.
UPDATE: Many view him as a better fit for Kubiak's zone blocking scheme and the results from the first two preseason games have been impressive (17 carries for 92 yards (5.41 YPC) and a touchdown. Pierce should see close to 20 touches per game in the first two contests (versus the Bengals and Steelers) with Ray Rice suspended.
FFToolbox NFL News & Rumors3/12 - Ravens re-sign RB Justin Forsett for three years, $9 million
2014 Mock Draft Results
FFToolbox Mock Draft July 21
|9.12||DraftTV.com - @ShanePHallam - Love Pierce to be the starting RB in Baltimore and to nab that at the end of the 9th round could be a coup. Kubiak's system definitely is RB friendly and Pierce is a fine bench/flex shot to take|
FFToolbox Mock Draft July 14
July 14, 2014
|9.08||#28 World Ranked - I needed to invest in RB again. Pierce could open the season as the starter and if all goes well carve out a nice role in Kubiak's RB friendly system.|
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