Brandon Bolden: Fantasy Owners Need to Pass on Patriots' Backup

Richard Langford@@noontide34Correspondent IOctober 6, 2012

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 30: Brandon Bolden #38 of the New England Patriots carries the ball during an NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 30, 2012 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

Along with Mike Shanahan, Bill Belichick is the king of the fantasy football running back mirage.

Overt the last few years, the New England Patriots have sporadically turned to the run game for some big results. 

This is a team that has preferred to attack through the air, but they are also a team whose game plans differ from week to week more than any other franchise. 

This has led to some outstanding rushing performances that have driven fantasy owners to the waiver wire. 

For example, Brandon Bolden came out of nowhere to rush for 137 yards and a touchdown on just 16 carries in the Patriots' Week 4 win over the Bills.

According to  ESPN, Bolden was only in 0.3 percent of standard leagues last week. They now have him in 19.4 percent of leagues, which made him their seventh-most added player for the week.

That is a mistake. Bolden is not going to be anywhere near consistent enough to warrant a roster spot.

In the three games leading up to Week 4, Bolden had just seven carries for 15 yards, and he didn't have a reception.

While his performance against the Bills showed he is not without promise, it has to be remembered that the Patriots were doing anything they wanted against the Bills.

Stevan Ridley also went for over 100 yards on the ground in that game, and there is nothing to suggest he will not remain the starter.

Bolden's chances to produce are going to be sporadic. In fact, we don't need to look any further than Ridley to get a feel for how Bolden's season will go. 

It was in Week 4 of last year that Ridley landed on fantasy radars with a 10-carry, 97-yard, one-touchdown performance. 

He did not get more than seven carries or 33 yards in another game until Week 15. 

That is the way life goes for running backs on the New England Patriots. It makes even their lead back a risky proposition. It is also exactly why fantasy owners should stay away from Bolden.