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Why I Like Lacy Over McCoy, And Have Him Ranked As My #2 RB

devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers
edited August 28 in User-Submitted Analysis

Eddie Lacy in 2013: 284 carries 1,178 yards, 11 rushing TDs.

35 receptions, 257 yards, 0 TDs

Totals: 1,435 yards and 11 TDs

After the Packers bye week in Week 4, Lacy put on a show. From week 5 through week 9, he rushed for 545 yards and 3 TDs. He didn’t rush over 100 yards each game, but that’s an average of 109 yards per game, and about .60 TDs a game, as he didn’t score a TD in 2 of those 5 games. Why is Week 9 so important? That’s when Aaron Rodgers went down with the broken collar bone.

From Week 10 through Week 16 (assuming majority of leagues playoffs are 14-16 in some fashion), he ran for 516 yards (74 yds/game) and 6 TDs (almost 1 TD/Game). Not that week 17 matter for fantasy, but just in case it does, he had 66 yards and 1 TD.

What happens when you put it all together? From week 5 through week 16, Lacy rushed for 1,061 yards, and 9 TDs, getting less than 20 carries only 3 times during that span, where he scored less than 9 points in each of those games. The remaining 9 games, he scored 10 points or better.

For 5 weeks prior to Rodgers getting hurt, Lacy ran the ball no less than 22 times, he was THE “bell cow” RB for the Packers, so don’t buy into the “because Rodgers was hurt, his load was increased” excuse. The Packers decided to do that well before that injury happened.

Lacy is in probably in one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL, and only behind the Broncos and the Saints. I hear the argument “Packers are a passing team, not a running team.” Please see Knowshon Moreno and the 2013 Denver Broncos. Can I compare the Packers to the Denver Broncos? Why not? Rodgers is arguably one of the best QBs in the league, with weapons like Nelson and Cobb, and emerging stars in Lacy and Boykin. The Broncos have a much better offensive line, but if Moreno can put up those kind of numbers with Manning, imagine what a full season for Rodgers AND Lacy may produce.

This offense is set up for tons of success this season, the only thing really holding them back, would be their offensive line that often plays like chicken wire. Packers camp has talked about running more offensive plays, and having Lacy more involved in the passing game this year, and you can’t ignore that. Lacy will most certainly improve on his numbers from last year, and has the potential to give AP a run for his money as the top fantasy RB in 2014.

My projections for Lacy: 1,250 Yards Rushing, 11 TDs, 350 yds Rec, 2 TDs


LeSean McCoy in 2013: 314 carries, 1,607 yards rushing, 9 rushing TDs

52 receptions, 539 yards, 2 TDs

Totals: 2,146 yards, 11 TDs

Those numbers for McCoy above are exactly why most people, including myself, often feel he should be the #1 RB of the board in any fantasy draft this year. Far and away one of the most explosive RBs in the NFL right now, and being a dual threat RB, running and catching, he has every right to be labeled as the #1 fantasy player.

It’s absolutely hard to argue against it, but I’m going to try.

In 2012, a certain RB burst on the scene and shot up the draft boards. Finished the season with 319 carries, almost 1500 yards rushing with 11 TDs and 49 receptions, 472 receiving yards and 1 TD. Can you guess the RB?

Doug Martin is the answer. Why in the world would I bring up Doug Martin when I’m comparing Lacy and McCoy? I’ve heard one big argument that people put down Martin, all his points came from a just a handful of games. Why not use the same argument for McCoy?

In week 1 McCoy had 31 carries for 181 yards. Week 2 he rushed for 53 yards, but caught 5 passes for 114 yards (only 100 yard rec game). Week 14 he had 29 carries for an unreal 217 yards while scoring 2 TDs. That accounts for about 82 of his 273 points (non ppr) last year. Now answer this, what is the difference between what Martin did in 2012 and what McCoy did last year? Now before jumping down my throat, I feel that McCoy is far and away the more talented back between him and Martin, but wanted to put what McCoy did into some perspective.

There were 6 games last year McCoy rushed for 55 yards or less, and scored 9 points or less in 4 of those games.

Eddie Lacy had 4, all season. He scored no less than 10 points in all other games. Side note, 1 of those 4 games he left the game after 1 carry because of a concussion.

During the offseason, Chip Kelly went out and got him a used, but still dangerous toy in Darren Sproles. To think that McCoy is going to get 52 receptions again this year to me is unrealistic. The Eagles didn’t pay Sproles to sit the bench and just back up McCoy. He also traded for Kenjon Barner, another Sproles like RB, that MIGHT compete for some receptions. Do I think that Sproles will cut into his carries, no. But I do think there will be a larger drop in the number of receptions he gets this year.

Another factor for concern is Nick Foles. He’s entering his 3rd year in the NFL, and his second as a starter. Guy had an amazing year after coming off the bench. But there is still a lot of unknown with him, and he’s not a “proven” QB..yet. Not to mention he lost DeSean Jackson this off season, leaving him with Maclin and Cooper as his familiar WRs. Could this be the year he proves he’s the real deal, even with less assets? Quite possibly, but on paper, to me it’s not promising, and that will surely hurt McCoy’s numbers.

Chip Kelly brought in a fast paced offense that defenses just had issues planning for and defending. To think that defenses this year won’t be ready for that is a bit ignorant. It didn’t take long for the rest of the league to catch on to Cam Newton and RG3 read option offense, and I believe it’s safe to say the same for Chip Kelly’s fast paced O.

Finally, where does McCoy go from here? How does he possibly improve on last years numbers? There are just too many factors that would point in a drop from last year’s totals. Even Peterson regressed the year after he ran for 2,000 yards. Just for situational awareness, AP broke 2K with 348 carries, Chip Kelly’s offense isn’t built for that. He’s still a top 5 RB, just not ahead of AP or Lacy.

My projections for McCoy: 1,075 yds rushing, 8 TDs, 375 yds Rec, 3 TDs

Some food for thought info on both guys:

Eddie Lacy toughest games for 2014: @ Sea, vs CAR, vs NE, @ TB

Playoff run (week 14-16): @ Buf, @ TB, vs DET

LeSean McCoy toughest games for 2014: vs Jax, @ SF, vs STL, @ ARZ, vs CAR,

Playoff run: vs SEA, @ Dal, @ Was

My Top 5 RBs:

AP, Lacy, McCoy, Forte, Charles

Love to hear your questions or comments!

Comments

  • Texas_Two_StepTexas_Two_Step Posts: 406Member, Expert Writers ✭✭

    I love the article. I don't exactly agree with it in the sense that I would take McCoy over Lacy at this point.

    I have however said in many threads on this site that I wouldn't be shocked if statistically Lacy was the top RB in the league this season. Great info and nice work.

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    Thanks brother, I really appreciate it!

  • Texas_Two_StepTexas_Two_Step Posts: 406Member, Expert Writers ✭✭

    For more Green Bay homer articles please go to: http://www.packers.com/

    LOL , JK

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    Hahaha yeah yeah yeah....

    This actually came about over a conversation I had with another buddy of mine, and how we ranked the RBs. The deeper I got into the stats and info, the more intrigued I got with the idea of taking Lacy before McCoy. Then boom...wrote this last night haha

  • murphysxmmurphysxm Posts: 165Member, Moderator mod

    very well written, but I think you've been drinking too much Green Bay beverages. So are we just going to gloss over the very real injury history Lacy brings to the table?

  • Texas_Two_StepTexas_Two_Step Posts: 406Member, Expert Writers ✭✭
    edited August 28

    If my opinion has any validity , and I'm not sure it does. I have Charles ahead of everyone. I understand injuries in the past and such, but here is my reasoning.

    It has zero to do with the talent gap between Charles, McCoy, Peterson, Lacy and Forte. I don't think there is much of one in this group. It has more to do with the fact that Alex Smith doesn't throw the ball downfield well at all. Charles is his safety blanket and will continue to be. Especially with the inconsistency of Bowe. I would also say that it isn't inconceivable that Travis Kelce becomes the #2 target in that offense behind Charles.

  • BleedGr33nBleedGr33n Posts: 200Member

    First i must diclose i am a die hard eagles fan, hence my name, so im a little bias.

    Regardless, good write up sir, I agree in the skill of Lacy and i think he is a top 5 back this year. I have him ranked at #4 ahead of Forte for example. However, i think the ONLY way Shady rushes for the 1000 or so yards you quoted is if he is hurt. Lets not forget his 20 touchdown year a few years back(albeit under andy reid) followed up by an injury laden year and then burst back onto the scene last year as expected.

    Chip Kelly is going to use the hell out of mccoy and think with the amount of plays the eagles run there is more than enough offence to feed the mouths in philly, even with the addition of sproles. Also no one else will comptete for red zone touches with mccoy, i know sproles wont be getting ball inside the 10.

    Also Chips Zone-Read running schemes are top notch and a great fit for mccoy which he proved last year with over 5 YPC avg.. this team is going to put up CRAZY points, i think they averaged something like 30+ the 2nd half of last year and will have to do so again since the D is still questionable and young. The more tape teams got on the eagles the more points the eagles scored! As the most skilled player on the team Mccoy is going to be a very large % of the points they are putting up.

    Regarding Nick Foles, i think his inexperience is going to help McCoy in the sense that Chip knows he has to try to limit the pressure on his QB somehow. how can he do that? Give the rock to one of the most explosive players in the league.

    The other thing i Like about McCoy's situation as a fantasy player is that if hes not getting the ball he will voice it. while this may be annoying in general its GREAT for fantasy purposes. Ive actually based some of my picks on whether or not i feel like a player will **** and moan if hes not getting the ball( why i love DEZ for fantasy). I want that from my fantasy players. I don't see Lacy as a 2nd year player doing this. Mccoy is a cocky SOB right now and i see him backing it up. Only time will tell.

    Another interesting aspect to this argument would be their schedules which i haven't looked into. I wonder which of the 2 has the softer schedule for running backs.

    In conclusion, i see 2000 all purpose yards again this season and 15 touchdowns isnt out of the question. That would be 290 fantasy points less any fumbles, probably good for either #1 or #2 back in the league.

  • m16am16a Posts: 35Member, Moderator mod

    Good read Doc. I don't know if I agree with you, but I certainly think it's sound reasoning and I follow you. Either way, thanks for contributing something that is entirely off beat in this year's fantasy realm.

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    The reason I rank Charles so low is the brutal schedule he has this year. Denver twice, @ SF, vs STL, @ ARZ, vs SEA, those were some of the better run defenses last year. I think Peterson has the easiest out of all the backs mentioned here. McCoy and Lacy are probably about even, Forte from a quick look has @ SF, @ Car, @ NE, vs TB...and those last two could go either way.

  • robotninjarobotninja Posts: 96Member

    Good article and a lot of thought. I personally have them ranked McCoy, Charles, Lacy, Peterson, Forte

    There is some bias in there but I think Charles has a hard time repeating what he did last year with the beating that KC took in free agency this year. The offensive line is much different. The upside remains though. Lacy does have injury history but McCarthy wants to run him into the ground. I thought in the 3rd preseason game when Lacy had 1 drive, dominated, (6 carries, 36 yds, 6.0 per carry and a TD) then McCarthy immediately pulling him from the game spoke volumes about his plans for Lacy.

    Peterson has to break down eventually although I would be perfectly happy with him at 4. Vikings have a lot of potential but no real qb. But if Cassel, Ponder (god forbid), or Bridgewater can even make a handful of plays a game they do have some potential as an offense as a whole which is great for Peterson because the gameplan will still be "Give the ball to AP" every week.

    Forte is a combination of injury history, risk, and age. Cutler is going to love chucking the ball to his gigantic receivers and has never been known as checkdown machine....

    The bottom line is that all i want is a top 5 pick in any draft and I am happy.

  • ironcityboy88ironcityboy88 Posts: 53Member

    Excellent article and I wholeheartedly agree!!!! (Probably because L.Mccoy was selected one pick before me and I "settled" on Lacy)

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    @BleedGr33n‌ I did some research on the schedule, and appears that McCoy has the easier schedule between the two.

    One thing I sort of hinted on with Lacy was his horrible offensive line.

    McCoy on the other hand, has one of the BETTER offensive lines in the league.

  • Texas_Two_StepTexas_Two_Step Posts: 406Member, Expert Writers ✭✭

    I disagree on the O-lines . McCarthy said this is the best line he has had since being in Green Bay. The line for the Eagles is decent, the scheme is what opens holes for McCoy, not so much an over powering O-line.

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers
  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    Packers lost their starting Center for 5-6 weeks and their starting right Guard for the season. Not a good start. Rodgers has been sacked ALOT over the last few years, hopefully its better this year because defenses will have to plan for Rodgers and Lacy.

  • fuzzeemonkeyfuzzeemonkey Posts: 26Member

    I think this is well written and nice try and selling your point of view. My biggest issue with it is you randomly make a low ball projection for McCoy this year that isn't backed up by your writing. You are saying Lacy will rush for more yards than last season and McCoy will get 600 less? Based on what? Ok, maybe he gets a few less receptions due to Sproles but 600 less rushing yards just because AP regressed one year? That's quite a stretch for me to agree with.

  • devil_docdevil_doc Posts: 186Member, Community Writers

    @fuzzeemonkey‌ thanks for your response.

    I tried to hit on that with the QB inexperience, defenses better prepared for that offense, and some possible regression.

    Both projections were what I believe are floors for each guy, and maybe I should have made that more clear. Because I was very shallow on yards with Lacy as well. My projections have him just over 75 yards more than what he got last year, but speak how he'll exceed this year, and improve last years numbers.

    Now I'll give you that my projections for the loss in rushing yards for McCoy vs the gains for Lacy are much greater, but I stand by them.

    Thanks again for your input brother, I appreciate it!

  • MattyNMattyN Posts: 997Member, Expert Writers ✭✭
    edited August 30

    Some good points.

    I, too, prefer players who are in strong offenses. This makes me frown on Charles more than McCoy, as I expect the Eagles to move the ball very well. Also a reason for concern with AP (rookie QB), although his entire career seems to be the exception the "strong offense rule."

    Forte also gets the benefit on an offense that can stretch the field and will see a lot of nickel defenses.

    I don't think it is reasonable to compare the Packers this year to Broncos last year. Expecting any team to be historically good seems like a setup for disappointment. The NFC is also a better division although the defenses in the NFC North aren't exactly amazing.

  • LurkerLurker Posts: 11Member

    Interesting but I don't buy it.

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