Yahoo Sports' Andy Behrens and Scott Pianowski explain why the Atlanta RB/WR has been one of the biggest suprises of the season.
ANDY BEHRENS: I want to talk about the waiver out of the year a little bit because I was having some conversations over the past few days about Cordarrelle Patterson. He scored his 10th touchdown of the season on Sunday. He is now over 500 rushing and 500 receiving yards. He is the overall RB6 and the overall wide receiver 7, which is not a thing that we typically expect or see from any player.
He's also 30 years old. He is in his ninth NFL season. He has literally never done anything like this before. And I believe he's an unrestricted free agent. I think he's just on a one year deal with Atlanta. Assuming he comes back to Atlanta, what on Earth are we doing with him next year?
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: Yeah, fun story, unforeseen story. I think what's going to happen next year is he's going to be the very convenient push button here. Industry analysis is going to be OK, career you're out of nowhere, you fade this, regression is going to hit. You don't go near Cordarrelle Patterson. And then the pushback is going to be, well, in my draft nobody wants to take this guy, at what point do I have to shrug and say, well, maybe you know.
I think what's going to happen is everything can be so afraid of being the sucker of getting Cordarrelle Patterson. That he's actually going to slide to like round 5 or round 6 and yet I still think he's going to be disappointing. This is just so unusual to see a player pop this late in this stage of the career. And next year you would think they'd have a better idea what to do with Kyle Pitts. You would think the Calvin Ridley hopefully will come back and have a fruitful season.
There's going to be more competition for the ball, especially because I think the emergence of Pitts is inevitable. And also notice that Patterson, the shape of his touches have changed recently. He's been more of a running back. He's much more valuable in fantasy if he would get more routes and more catches. He's been more of a traditional running back of late.
It's an unbelievable story. It's no fun to say faith things. And you know me, one of my cores of my fantasy ethos is you just can't scream regression and leave the room. It's going to be your regression to what? At What point does Cordarrelle Patterson become a value because everybody is afraid to touch him. But I'm just afraid that he might regress to a season where he's getting dropped. We just look back and think. It's like a Brady Anderson 50 home run season. Like, oh, that's cool if that happened. It never was going to happen again.
ANDY BEHRENS: Yeah. It's wild. I can't think of a good comp for it, especially at running back. We had the Brandon Lloyd eighth year breakout, which basically never happened.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: NFL receiving title, 14-48 if I remember correctly.
ANDY BEHRENS: Yeah. But Patterson's not even really a receiver. You get to play him there, but he's not even really a receiver anymore. He doesn't have all this value because of all the routes he's running and all the targets he's seeing. It's mostly as a runner now. He's still not even playing 50% of the snaps most weeks. It's just a while.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: He runs upright. You would think just taking that many hits would be not ideal for Patterson. I still like him more as a receiver. I'd be more in on this story if it had stayed where he was a receiver who got running work, not that he's basically a primary running back now. I don't think that's actually a sustainable business model for him.
And let me make it clear it's no fun to pooh-pooh this. I love stories like this. I think fantasy is much more fun when guys come out of nowhere. And I have some Patterson shares. If this story does turn into a pumpkin, I hope it's next year because I need him for another solid two or three weeks so I can rampage towards fantasy glory.
Again, I want to make this point clear everybody's going to say don't touch him, don't touch him, don't touch him and then you're going to get a really good price on him and you're going to be tempted. What round would you be a standard 12 team league, what round do you think you'd be tempted to push the envelope on Patterson?
ANDY BEHRENS: If they don't do anything at running back except resign Patterson, I don't see why he shouldn't go where Mike Davis mistakenly went this year.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: Well, they're going to draft somebody in the second or third round. You're going to figure they're going to add a running back.
ANDY BEHRENS: Probably, you wouldn't think that Patterson entering an age 31 season would be a long term plan for them. He's just been so good. He's just been so crazy good.
SCOTT PIANOWSKI: We're at a point now where we're getting afraid of running back to our 26, 27, 28. The running back on the second contract has become the dead zone. I've got to believe they add in somebody who's going to be somebody you would think could play right away.