Former fantasy superstar LaDainian Tomlinson will be back with the Jets next season, according to a report in the New York Daily News via Twitter, but he’s not expected to be their starting running back.
In fact, the Newark Star-Ledger suggests (via a person with direct knowledge of the team’s plans) that Tomlinson will become a third-down back behind Shonn Greene, who is slated to see “more of a featured role.”
That will be a switch from the 2010 campaign, when Tomlinson surprisingly started 13 games and led the team in carries, rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. L.T. did slow down at season’s end, though, and at 31 (he’ll be 32 in June) he’s clearly better served in a complementary role. That means more carries, more opportunities and more value for Greene both on the field and in fantasy circles.
The Iowa product has shown flashes of potential in his short time in the NFL, and sharing the workload with Thomas Jones and Tomlinson has kept his numbers of carries low. With fresh legs and in an offense that will run the football, Greene is a good bet to see 225-250 rushing attempts as the lead back for coach Rex Ryan.
Sure, the presence of Tomlinson will limit his overall statistical upside. But at a time when most teams are utilizing two or more players in the backfield, Greene can still develop into a viable No. 2 fantasy runner in 2011.
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