Willis McGahee: Why Broncos' RB Is a Bad Week 4 Fantasy Football Pick

Jeremy FuchsCorrespondent IIISeptember 29, 2012

DENVER, CO - AUGUST 26:  Running back Willis McGahee #23 of the Denver Broncos in action during a pre-season game against the San Francisco 49ers at Sports Authority Field Field at Mile High on August 26, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

Willis McGahee has long been a reliable fantasy performer. But don't make the mistake of looking at his past performance as an indicator of future results.

In fact, McGahee would be a bad pick to start this week. Here's why.

McGahee is coming off a rib injury. He is probable, but not at 100 percent. The first time he takes a hit, it's going to hurt a bit more than usual. That might make him a bit more hesitant than usual. It's understandable, but it's not going to help your fantasy team.

Additionally, McGahee just has not had a great year. He has 213 yards on 50 carries, good for a 4.3 yards-per-carry average. Not terrible, but there are better options out there. 

With Peyton Manning now on board, this is a passing team. The Broncos have accumulated some nice weapons, led by Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker. This is not the option-based, Tim Tebow offense anymore. It's a pass-first, pass-second, pass-third offense.

Despite their game against the Dolphins and Reggie Bush—which might have been an anomaly—the Raiders, the Broncos' Week 4 opponent, have a pretty solid run defense. They held Issac Redman to 27 yards on nine carries. They also held the Chargers to only 32 yards rushing, spread out across five players. 

McGahee is also pretty up and down. He had a nice performance against the Falcons, with two touchdowns and 113 rushing yards. But he's had two clunkers as well. It's hard to trust him to give you a reliable performance. 

Between the injury, the nature of the Broncos offense, the underrated performance of Raiders run defense and his unpredictable nature, McGahee is a pretty bad fantasy option this week.