LaGarrette has been trying to change some perceptions and apparently he is making headway. I mean it’s been over a year since he cold cocked someone, at least to the best of our knowledge. Mostly the perceptions he is trying to change relate to on-field performance; like blocking, pass catching, and curbing the fumbling. It has been widely reported that Blount took the majority of first team snaps in last week’s min-camp over the rookie first round selection Doug Martin.
The PewterReport.com is among the best fan sites dedicated to covering an NFL team. They had a great write up on Blount’s efforts to stop his fumbling, improve his read and reaction to blitzes, catching the ball.
In their team preview FFToolbox.com speculated that Blount’s days the starting RB are likely numbered and they have Martin ranked as their #25 RB overall while Blount is a little lower at #33.
Our friends at ProFootballFocus.com are optimistic that Martin will have a very good rookie season. They project 202 carries and 54 catches with a cumulative yardage total of over 1,200 yards. They have him ranked 16th on their RB rankings/projections and Blount ranked 37th.
FANTASY FOOTBALL SPIN
This may be the most interesting and fantasy relevant running back camp battle in the NFL. Doug Martin is the favorite but we don’t think you can disregard Blount. Heck, he might break Martin’s jaw or shoot him or something. Regardless of who emerges from camp atop the RB depth charts for the Bucs you need to invest picks in both Doug Martin and LaGarrette Blount if you go after one of them. This is a situation where having just one of them could be very frustrating. Based on ADP data from FantasyFootballCalculator Doug Martin is being drafted as the 20th RB off the board and the 40th selection overall. That means that you need to invest a late third or early fourth round pick on Martin. Blount is the 43rd RB selected on average with tthe 106th overall pick.
Looking at the ADP data you essentially have to invest a 3rd and 9th round pick in the Buccaneers backfield to feel comfortable. We will be watching the camp battle closely. If Martin is able to put LaGarrette “I like to punch people in the face when they aren’t looking” Blount firmly in a back up position by clearly outplaying him then he could have a great season. If Blount cannot be relegated to a back up role or it’s unclear how they will be used then it’s going to a tough call in redraft leagues as to whether it’s worth investing two picks in the first ten rounds on this backfield. Blount looks like a good buy in the 9th round even if you don’t have Doug Martin. It’s too soon to take a strong stance in redraft leagues but in Dynasty leagues we really like Doug Martin much more than Blount.