Addai or Rhodes?

What is the most frustrating thing for a fantasy owner? Well, injuries has to top the list and behind that would be a starter being unnamed. In Indianapolis everyone has come to the expected realization of the power fantasy numbers from Edgerrin James. With him in Arizona someone now has to fill that void. Will Tony Dungy go back to the days of splitting carries like he did in Tampa Bay with Warrick Dunn and Mike Alstott? Or will Joseph Addai or Dominic Rhodes be the clear cut starter?

As of now we would give the upper hand to Joseph Addai. He is the future feature back without question and the Colts did spend their first round pick on him. With that being said Dominic Rhodes has handled the ball well in prior instances when needed. The Colts will test him out as a starter, but Addai might has the extra edge with his athleticism.

Rookie running backs tend to make the adjustment to the NFL easier than any other position. Addai played for a great college football team in LSU. So there should not be too much of an adjustment for him besides the speed of the game. Even looking at last years rookies in Carnell Williams and Ronnie Brown, they both probably did a little better than people envisioned.

Another negative slight on Dominic Rhodes is his contract status. The Colts have not invested or sought to extend his contract…yet. It would take Rhodes having an unthinkable year for the Colts to draw him another offer. His two year deal that he did sign was amazing for a backup running back at nearly 5 million for two years with a 2 million signing bonus.

Foreshadowing anything but split carries in this battle is the only reality unless a couple of things happen. Joseph Addai struggles mightily adjusting to the NFL…ala JJ Arrington, or the most probable cause in that either or gets hurt for a serious duration of time.

Addai better get hit butt signed and to training camp. As Peyton Manning has no patience for a rookie when he is no huddling and doing Manning things. If he holds out too long that puts a serious damper on Addai having any fantasy value for the first half of the season. It will be fairly close to what Cedric Benson caused himself last year.

In early fantasy and mock drafts there have been some owners that have taken Addai before Rhodes. We would question that especially at this point until Addai signs. Of course do not forget Addai is a rookie, so expect rookie numbers from him. He can’t be considered more than a third running back in fantasy leagues.

As for Rhodes just remember what he was able to do when Edgerrin James missed action in 2001. In ten starts and fifteen total games of action, Rhodes had over 1100 yards and nine touchdowns. That’s a wide gap from then and now but it is definitely possible.


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