Advice

3 Reasons Lamar Miller is a Bargain in the 3rd Round

According to the Best Ball ADP App, Lamar Miller is currently being drafted halfway through the third round as the 15th running back off the board in fantasy drafts. Perfect. That makes Miller not only cheap enough to be a bargain, but it makes him a bargain at a point in the draft where talent tends to drop off. Here are three reasons why you should target Miller:

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By Justin Winn | @TheHumanHuman | Archive

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  1. I think Miller illustrates why picking RBs in fantasy can sometimes be maddening. He already showed he can play well. But we still have to sit back and sweat whether a coaching staff will (seemingly) arbitrarily decide he's not their guy.

  2. Agree completely with the point about Ajayi....everyone seems to take it as a given that he slipped in the draft because of his injury, but I think teams also just don't think he's that good. That being said, I think Damien Williams could factor in there, and/or someone else could emerge to fill the "Knowshon role."

  3. I guess my counter to that is just that Ajayi's knee is so well documented that it looks like a clear issue. Draft position is absolutely a powerful predictor, but sometimes it is wrong. While I certainly wouldn't make a habit of it, I think there is a better chance Ajayi is an outlier than not. Admittedly, that only qualifies as an opinion.

    The bigger issue to me is just the Dolphins trust of Miller as we've been talking about. When Moreno was healthy, he got all 4 goal line carries for the team. A small sample of course, but the fact that they let him touch the rock so many times in week 1 over Miller speaks volumes. Him receiving touches over guys like Damien and Thomas isn't particularly impressive to me, and they still took him off the field quite a bit. I know you mentioned the situational touches as a positive, but isn't at least a little troubling that his percentage is so low in that area?

    Again, this is coming from a person that is on Team Ajayi and has sworn off Miller a little bit, so I'm clearly looking for reasons to question him. I just think its much more likely that his efficiency and/or usage take a hit than he sees consistency or a bump in either area.

  4. This is an awesome piece. On Ajayi: it's possible that his fall was some weird combination of talent, injury, and perceived lack of scarcity. If NFL teams were as high on Javorius Allen, Mike Davis, and David Cobb as many believe, then there was no need to select Ajayi and take on the injury concerns when those other players also lasted deep into the draft. (Of course, this is a trickier argument when you only have 1 of every 32 picks in most cases.)

    My only concern with Miller would be that when you select a player in R3, you really want a league-winning finish to be within the range of his reasonable outcomes. And Miller seems to lack that unless the usage pattern changes quite a bit. In that case, you could argue that the risk/reward isn't in your favor even if he is discounted relative to 2014 finish.

  5. That last point is a good one. I can see a few paths to him getting more touches, though I'm not sure I'd necessarily bet on any of them individually. For one, his touches have increased every year. Coachspeak can be unreliable, so why are we so sure 2014 was the apex? He's reportedly put on a little weight (which I actually dislike in terms of efficiency, but if it makes the team give him more touches I'll take that tradeoff). As I mentioned in the article, depending on what their incentive for limiting his touches is, they may not do so in his contract year. And then there's the real outside possibility that they're trying to trade Miller because they have Ajayi now.

    On that last point, this wasn't really a dynasty article, but I think Miller's a strong buy in dynasty leagues. Everyones's short-term pessimism is driving his price down and he's going to be one of the best young RBs to hit free agency in recent years.

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