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Myles Gaskin Fantasy Football Fallout: DeAndre Washington or Patrick Laird?

DeAndre Washington

The fantasy football gods strike again, as Miami Dolphins running back Myles Gaskin landed on the COVID-19 list. Gaskin was one of the greatest out-of-nowhere stories early in the season before suffering an injury back in Week 8. Unfortunately, Gaskin is back on the sideline, leaving a glaring hole atop the depth chart. Should you add DeAndre Washington or Patrick Laird, and what should you expect out of Miami’s presumed starter?

Myles Gaskin, DeAndre Washington, Patrick Laird Fantasy Football Outlook

DeAndre Washington or Patrick Laird

Miami’s running back room has seen better days. Gaskin is the latest running back to miss time, but he’s not the first. Matt Breida is also on the COVID-19 list, while Salvon Ahmed has already been ruled out with a shoulder injury. This leaves DeAndre Washington and Patrick Laird as essentially the only two running backs in town.

Both players will see some portion of the work, but Washington should be the guy to own. While neither player is a particularly gifted runner, Miami seems to have more trust in Washington. In Week 12 against the New York Jets, Washington led the way with 13 carries for 49 yards while recorded two receptions for 11 yards on five targets. It’s worth noting that Laird was active for this game, and he only recorded one carry for nine yards and didn’t see a single target.

Washington has the trust of the coaching staff, and with good reason. It goes without saying that neither player is the second coming of Barry Sanders, but Washington is the better football player. Throughout the course of his career, Washington has demonstrated the ability to fill in for a starter on short notice and perform adequately. He averages 3.9 yards-per-carry over his career, while Laird is down at 2.9. Additionally, Washington’s 55.9 PFF grade is a little bit better than Laird’s 53.8.

Setting Expectations

DeAndre Washington should be the starter and see the majority of the carries and targets. Volume is king in fantasy football, but talent and efficiency does matter. Washington isn’t the most talented back in the world, and probably won’t be as efficient as Gaskin on a play-by-play basis.

Prior to the COVID-19 news, I had Myles Gaskin as the RB14 in PPR formats. This isn’t too hot of a take, as the Dolphins faced a phenomenal matchup against a fantastic Kansas City Chiefs offense. Nobody can consistently slow down this offense, which means that the Dolphins should have plenty of scoring opportunities in a fast-paced affair.

This is still going to happen without Gaskin, although Washington probably won’t command as many carries. Based on volume alone, look for Washington to finish in the RB25-30 range. He’s definitely a downgrade on Gaskin, but you could certainly do a lot worse.

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