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Arian Foster has rushed for over 2,800 yards and 26 touchdowns in the past two years and is in his prime at age 25, so why is he on this list? Injuries, a new diet and a running back counterpart that will likely prolong his career, but hurt his overall fantasy value.
Foster battled through a strained hamstring last season, and eventually missed three games. He may start the season 100 percent, but hamstring injuries typically do not go away forever.
Foster also started a new diet this offseason. He has become a vegan. While this may be great for his overall nutrition, it likely is not good for him as a football player. Hugh Douglas had this to say on the topic on ESPN First Take:
You’re going into a football season; there’s a lot of strenuous activity. There’s a lot of dehydration. It’s gonna be hot. And, to deprive your body of that protein that it’s been used to getting, that’s going to be a tough spot to be in. I just think this is a bad time for him, and he had hamstring issues last year.
What Douglas had to say should be concerning to fantasy owners. Animal protein is what helps repair muscles after strenuous activity. It is essential to every professional athlete’s diet, so cutting that out could be damaging to his football career.
Last, Foster will be sharing the backfield with third year running back Ben Tate. Tate broke out last year by averaging 5.4 yards per carry on his 175 attempts for 942 yards and could see an increased work load this year to keep Foster fresh. It seems likely that the days of Arian Foster getting 300-plus carries are over, and I would expect his numbers to dip as a result.