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Zack Moss and Chase Brown: How to approach the Cincinnati Bengals' running backs in 2024 fantasy football drafts



👆 Episode 25 of Inside the 20 discusses what to expect from Tee Higgins, Zack Moss, Chase Brown, Jermaine Burton, Mike Gesicki and the Cincinnati Bengals in 2024 fantasy football! 👆


Smash or pass? Are you drafting Zack Moss and/or Chase Brown in 2024 fantasy football?


What you're about to read is based on data provided in BBFF's 2024 Fantasy Football Draft Guide. We do this for every single player, on every single team. 


Get your Draft Guide while it costs less than a case of beer!


Zack Moss Betting odds as of 6/20/2024

💰 Over/Under 725.5 rushing yards (-112 over, -112 under)

💰 T 28th best odds of leading the NFL in rushing yards (+6600)

💰 +340 to score 10+ rushing TDs in the regular season


Fantasy Football:

After 7 seasons as a workhorse RB for the Cincinnati Bengals, Joe Mixon is gone to the Houston Texans, leaving a gaping hole in Cincinnati's backfield—and plenty of question marks for fantasy football managers in 2024.


The RB 1 role in Cincinnati looks like an appetizing one after Mixon handled 270+ touches in 5 of 7 seasons and averaged 19.8 touches per game over 69 very nice contests under Zac Taylor.


Mixon's finished as a top 13 RB in 4 of 5 seasons under Taylor (he played just 6 games in 2020), including high-mid-range RB 1 finishes of RB 4 in 2021 and RB 6 last year.


BUT...


The Bengals currently don't have a "next Joe Mixon" on their roster.

2023 5th round pick Chase Brown handled 9+ touches in 4 of the last 6 games last year and looks like a formidable option for the Bengals.


But he is NOT Joe Mixon.


Free agent Zack Moss currently touts career highs of 210 touches, 794 rushing yards, 37 targets, 7 TDs, 986 scrimmage yards.


Mixon has crushed each of those numbers in 5 of 7 seasons in the NFL; The only 2 that he didn’t were in 2017 when he split time with Giovani Bernard as a rookie, and 2020 when he missed 10 games.


Zack Moss is NOT Joe Mixon.


In all likelihood, fantasy football managers would be wise to expect a "running back by committee" approach from Zac Taylor's Bengals which, candidly, is nauseating considering Cincinnati's rushing attack has been lowkey terrible at the team level for half a decade, finishing:


🛑 17th or lower in rushing attempts in all 5 Zac Taylor seasons, including 3 campaigns of 24th or lower


🛑 23rd or worse in rushing yards in all 5 seasons, including 29th in 2022 and 31st in 2023


🛑 19th or worse in rushing TDs in 4 of 5 seasons


🛑 22nd or worse in yards-per-attempt in all 5 seasons


Bengals RBs are averaging just 24.9 touches per game over the last 3 seasons combined, which is NOT a lot of volume for fantasy football if this will be a running-back-by-committee approach.


So what EXACTLY should we expect from Zack Moss and Chase Brown in 2024? What does a Joe Mixon-less backfield look like in a Zac Taylor offense.


Thankfully, we have at least SOME data to lean on...


In 10 games that Joe Mixon missed in 2020, Giovani Bernard filled in as the RB 1 and averaged 14.3 touches—including 3.9 targets—and 12.2 PPR points per game.


Meanwhile Samaje Perine filled in as the team's RB 2, averaging 7.3 touches—including 1.2 targets—and 6.6 PPR points per game.


To start the season, BBFF is projecting Moss for 12-16 touches per game and Brown for 9-13 of his own, which potential for those levers to shift as the season wears on.


Beware the tiny sample size, but in 14 career games where Zack Moss landed between 12-16 touches with the Bills and Colts, he averaged 13.4 touches—including 2.6 targets—and 11.9 PPR points per game.


For what it's worth, 11.9 PPR points per game over a 17 game season would theoretically be good enough for an RB 18 finish in 2023.


Of course, that's assuming he'd play all 17 games, which only 9 of the top 18 RBs did in 2023. RB 18 is NOT a likely outcome for Moss.


In fact, Moss' current over/under for rushing yards sits at 725.5, which would have ranked 31st among RBs last year; that's much closer to BBFF's expectation.


It's also worth noting that in those 14 career games where Moss handled between 12-16 touches, he scored fewer than 10 PPR points more frequently (35.7%) than he scored 15 or more PPR points (21.4%).


The biggest area to watch for fantasy football purposes will be near the goal line, especially if Moss or Brown is able to inherit 100% of Mixon's goal line role. In EACH of the last 3 seasons, Mixon had:


🟢 the 3rd or 4th most RB targets inside the 5 yard line


🟢 the 3rd or 4th most RB rushing attempts inside the 5 yard line


🟢 93.8% or more of the Bengals' rushing attempts inside the 5 yard line


But who will serve as Cincinnati's goal line back? Moss has (much) more experience in the NFL and in clutch situations like near the goal line.


But Brown has 10 extra pounds on Moss and, theoretically, a (much) better body for goal line and short yardage situations (for what it's worth, Brown is my bet to be the goal line back).


Ultimately, the Bengals' backfield projects as one that will frustrate fantasy managers with neither Moss nor Brown separating from the other as a Mixon-like workhorse.


For now, expect them to split time and touches, limiting both to RB 3/flex roles to start the season, albeit with some upside if either guy is able to pull away from the other one and/or inherit 100% of Joe Mixon's goal line role.


Of course, BBFF will stay locked on to the situation and continuously update the 2024 Fantasy Football Draft Guide (see below) as new information is discovered!


On Drafters.com Zack Moss is currently being drafted as fantasy's RB 24 around pick 90 overall (mid 8th round).

On Drafters.com, Chase Brown is currently being drafted as fantasy's RB 36 around pick 119 overall (late 10th round).



Are you SMASHING or PASSING on those guys at their respective costs in 2024 fantasy football drafts?


See the screen shot below to see where Moss is ranked in BBFF's Draft Guide!

 

📌 Here are 3 ways to get the competitive edge in your fantasy leagues this season: 👇


1️⃣ Online Fantasy Football Community - a Discord Server of NFL fans and sharp fantasy football brains dedicated to helping each other conquer tough decisions and find success.


A perfect place to ask for a 2nd (or 69th) opinion on tough start/sit, trade, add/drop or life dilemma. Everyone in here is a paid subscriber, so you know it’s good people who take the game seriously and won’t steer you wrong!



2️⃣ 2024 Draft Guide - includes rankings for tiebreaker decisions, tiers for planning ahead, 2024 previews for every player (250 of them), stop lights that suggest the perfect time to draft a player, and an ADP tracker to show you which direction a player is trending in drafts.


It’s like you did 30+ hours of weekly research and 300+ real drafts to prepare!

 

3️⃣ In-Season Cheat Sheets - every week during the season, you’ll get cheat sheets to assist with waivers, start/sit decisions, streamer scenarios, DFS lineups, and more! This includes the weekly “Heat Map,” a lineup-setting resource that offers contextual analysis for every player in every game, every week. This is THE resource that started this entire business!




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