Roy Helu: Complete Fantasy Profile & Draft Strategy

Alex BallentineFeatured ColumnistSeptember 2, 2012

LANDOVER, MD - AUGUST 29: Running back Roy Helu #29 of the Washington Redskins drags Jacob Cutrera #51 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as he scores during the second half at FedExField on August 29, 2012 in Landover, Maryland.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Roy Helu showed flashes of being a reliable fantasy football running back in 2011. After seeing limited playing time throughout most of his rookie season, Helu become a hot commodity on the waiver wire when he ran for more than 100 yards in three straight games starting in Week 11. 

Entering his second year in the league, Helu is sure to be on many fantasy players' radar. Here's everything you need to know about the Redskins' running back when considering if and when you should take him.


Draft Info

Helu's average draft position in ESPN fantasy leagues is 75.2. That ranks him 28th among running backs. The slotting seems like a good fit, considering his upside and downside as a boom-or-bust option.

You could do worse than taking Helu in the seventh or eighth round, but anything earlier than that could make for a disappointing selection.


Latest News

Helu missed the team's second and third preseason games with tendinitis in both Achilles' tendons, but he came back strong in the team's final preseason game against Tampa Bay.

Helu reminded fans why he is an appealing option, looking explosive in a 15-carry, 90-yard performance that saw him score two touchdowns and catch two passes for 34 yards.


Season Projections

600 rushing yards, five touchdowns, 400 receiving yards.


Bye Week: Week 10


Splits Situation

As with any Mike Shanahan running back, predicting Helu's workload from week to week will be a chore. Helu has plenty of upside, but Shanahan has always loved to rotate his running backs, and he has Evan Royster and impressive rookie Alfred Morris at his disposal. 

Helu's value will be hampered by the running-back-by-committee approach. Some weeks he will get around 60 percent of the carries, but there will likely be weeks when he takes a back seat to either Morris, Royster or both.


Similar Players to Take Before Helu

Beanie Wells, Kevin Smith and Jonathon Stewart figure to be taken around the same time as Helu and are safer bets to be productive.


Similar Players to Take Helu Over

Michael Bush, C.J. Spiller and Peyton Hillis figure to be taken around the same time as Helu and are slightly more risky.



If you already have two proven backs on your roster, Helu makes a great risk/reward pick. The skills and scheme are there for him to put up great numbers, but Shanahan's penchant for frustrating fantasy owners makes Helu a true boom-or-bust option. He's not for the faint of heart.