Brandon Jacobs, fired up (USAT Images)
On Tuesday, less than 48 hours after David Wilson's nightmare game in Dallas, the New York Giants reunited with Brandon Jacobs. According to Giants head coach Tom Coughlin, Jacobs will be practicing on Wednesday. It sounds like the 31-year-old back could actually be in the mix on Sunday afternoon against Denver.
"Quite frankly, we need him to play," said Coughlin. "He's here to contribute to our team."
Jacobs was added over 19,000 times in Yahoo fantasy leagues on Tuesday, and, as of this writing, he'd been picked up another 55,294 times on Wednesday. Clearly, many of you are expecting Jacobs to play his way into a fantasy-relevant role. Or you're thinking Wilson has fumbled his way out of the fantasy conversation, or soon will.
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Let's all just try to remember that Jacobs was an absolute bust for San Francisco last season, failing to carve out a meaningful role at any point — even after Kendall Hunter went down. Jacobs carried only five times total for the Niners, gaining seven yards. Seven.
And then he was suspended late in the year, essentially for being bad and loud.
Two seasons ago, Jacobs averaged just 3.8 yards per carry for the Giants on 152 attempts. If you're assuming he has something left in the tank now, on the wrong side of 30, after 1083 career NFL carries ... well, that's quite a leap.
When the news broke, I considered the Jacobs signing almost a vote of confidence in Wilson. These are not comparable players; I'm only willing to take the running-backs-are-fungible stuff so far. New York pretty clearly needs to get Wilson right, to repair his ball-security and pass-pro failings, then return him to a significant role.
"He's a marked man," Coughlin has said of Wilson, which is of course true. But he's also the team's most explosive ball carrier, when he manages to successfully carry the ball.
The level of enmity between the fantasy community and Wilson is unusually high at the moment...
Ayy to fantasy participants and pissed Giants fans ur irrelevant to me!!! Nobody wants me to succeed more than ME!!! WATCH US WORK!
— David E. Wilson (@4stillRunning) September 10, 2013
...but this relationship is not beyond repair. Cooler heads, people.
If Wilson can give us, say, a 15-touch performance against the Broncos without coughing up the football, then we're good. I've ranked him, perhaps stubbornly, as a fringe RB2 this week, and I'm sitting him in no leagues. (Own him in three.) I don't yet view either Jacobs or Da'Rel Scott as serious threats. Maybe Jacobs will see some short-yardage carries, if only because he's not capable of long-yardage. (Here's an example of his recent work in those situations, in case you'd forgotten.) And maybe we'll see him on the field when pass protection is the only priority — Wilson is never more elusive than when he's asked to pick up a blitzer.
Bottom line: If Wilson can self-correct, he has to play. I haven't changed my buy-low position on him, and I haven't added Jacobs.
If you're among the tens of thousands who've picked up Brandon, feel free to give us a short-term projection in comments. Maybe tell us who you dropped, too. A crazy number of gamers have kicked Mark Ingram to the curb today (over 47,000 drops). Same story with Lance Moore (31,000+) and TY Hilton (29,000+). Please, please tell us you didn't cut those guys for Jacobs.
Also, if you've traded for Wilson over the past 2-3 days, let's hear what you dealt away...
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