Changing Directions: LeSean McCoy

smitty fantasy football advice

LeSean McCoy a fantastic 2nd-Round RB?

I admit, I am changing my stance on LeSean McCoy entering 2016… if you can handcuff him up, of course. Look, one thing that makes a fantasy football owner a good owner is being able to change directions. I have been so caught up worrying about a LeSean McCoy injury, I feel I could have missed out on much of the upside he still retains down in the 2.08-2.12 range in current fantasy football drafts. With an ADP in that late second-round, there is so much to like if you can back him up. I did just recently write about this during an on-going live Expert Draft, so many of you already know I’ve started to like McCoy’s current draft value, as it has even dipped into the third-round range; however, I’m liking it more and more as we enter the biggest draft week of fantasy football. Third-round value is an absolutely steal for McCoy (if backed up) and the late second-round is still full of upside (if backed up).

Now, who is the back-up? As it stands, Mike Gillislee by a small margin (according to the team), but Reggie Bush and Jonathan Williams are still both very much in the running. Talent-wise, though, I think Gillislee doesn’t miss a beat should Shady ever go down for an extended period of time, as he averaged 5.7 yards-per-carry last year when called upon. He is explosive, dynamic, can catch passes, and he’s a play maker. He even cracked the Bold Predictions List this year… Still, if I own McCoy this year, and I just drafted him in 2 out of 3 leagues that I’m currently drafting in, grab Bush and Gillislee (and keep an eye on Jonathan Williams). I know, rostering two backups is tough, as rostering one is often tough, but it’s a productive RB slot in Buffalo!

Bottom Line

The Bills run the ball 30+ times per-game, so the lead dog in Buffalo is going to have a big 2016 fantasy football season. Shady looks good so far in the preseason, and I expect big numbers out of that Buffalo RB starter in 2016! Again, I am wrapping up three expert drafts right now, and I own LeSean McCoy (and backups) in two of those three leagues. I got Shady in the third-round in one of those drafts, and I took him in the second-round in the other. I love both teams, as he feels like a RB1, however, he cost much, much less (and is secured up with the backups).


  1. Smitty on August 23, 2016 at 2:03 am


  2. The Don on August 23, 2016 at 3:20 am

    Love it, I’ve been all over him in redraft in the third round. As a team in the IBL league we got a ton of shares of McCoy and even saw him creep into the 4th!. He was often there in the late 3rd range meaning if you were slotted in the back half of the 1st round, you could easily go WR/WR and still get McCoy! Not a bad start to a fantasy draft. I agree it’s more likely when then if with a McCoy injury. I’m currently holding Gillislee as the handcuff, but admit the backup situation looks extremely fluid. I’m going to play it risky and avoid Bush myself. 3 spots is too much to hold onto for one backfield unless you have deep rosters. Besides, when has Bush ever stayed healthy when asked to be the primary ball carrier?

    • Smitty on August 23, 2016 at 4:14 am

      Yep. The backup is up in the air according to the team, I hope Gillislee gets his shot if ever the job is needing a starter. Until then, McCoy should be super productive!

  3. rabidbucfan on August 23, 2016 at 8:26 am

    I’m all in as well on Shady. Just hate to roster J. Williams and Gillisee to reload if he goes down.

    • Smitty on August 23, 2016 at 4:52 pm

      Yeah, i hate having 3 RBs for one slot, but in a way, it’s security, especially when that team runs 30+ times per game. Worth it.

  4. Hawk12 on August 23, 2016 at 10:39 am

    big fan of Shady, he has got some great moves and is in another run first system that fits his style. I like him getting big work loads, as he handles it well and wears teams down.
    I recall a game (think Monday night, at Philly, where i had row 3 seats) when it snowed over 8″ DURING the game. Passing was out the window early on, and Shady just rolled over Seattle. And I mean rolled them for like 200+ yards. He was so dominant, I’ve been a fan since that epic game that is part of Eagles lore now.

    His ability to take hits wisely, get up and bounce back and run over the same defender is awesome. He’s getting older now, so that’ll be less, but he’s getting wiser, and making better choices behind the line also.
    Big fan of round 2 value here. Going top WR and and Shady might give you a top 3 player at both WR and RB this year

  5. iceman on August 23, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Nice article Smitty and spot on, Shady is being under drafted, they are going to feed him the ball both on the ground and in the air, hopefully they don’t burn him out before the Fantasy playoffs.

    • Smitty on August 23, 2016 at 4:53 pm

      Yeah, well, as stated, if they use Gillislee (if McCoy does burn out or go down), I think he shines. Teams don’t always start who they should, though.

  6. Noah Blum on August 23, 2016 at 4:08 pm

    I also have been on shady this summer, his price is going up the last few weeks, and still low…………

    • Smitty on August 23, 2016 at 4:53 pm

      Yeah, still low considering he can be a top 5RB.

  7. marcusareolas on September 1, 2016 at 10:21 pm

    Karlos certainly got opportunities last year and ran with them. Hopefully Gillislee does the same if Shady goes down.

    • Smitty on September 2, 2016 at 5:22 am

      Yep. I like Shady this year at the value, so having both seems safe.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.