Felix Jones: What to Expect from Dallas RB in Relief Duty This Week

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistOctober 17, 2012

ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 25:  Felix Jones #28 of the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium on August 25, 2012 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

I have to tell you, folks, I'm really torn about what to think in regard to the fantasy value of Felix Jones while in relief of DeMarco Murray for the Dallas Cowboys this week.

Let's just say Mr. Jones has burnt me in the past.

There are reasons to love Jones this week, of course. His opponent, the Carolina Panthers, is giving up 127.4 rushing yards per week (23rd in NFL) and 24.1 fantasy points to opposing running backs per game (28th in NFL).

Plus, after Murray left the game after getting injured against the Baltimore Ravens, Jones rushed 18 times for 92 yards and a touchdown.

So I understand the rush to add Jones this week. Heck, I recommended it (and added him in a league myself). But can we really trust Jones to perform?

After all, this is the same guy that was drafted by many last season as a breakout candidate. He wasn't exactly a sleeper, but many of us expected big things from him and figured we could get amazing value if we drafted him in the middle rounds.

Instead, he finished 45th in fantasy points among running backs in 2011, behind his teammate DeMarco Murray (who started just seven games) and an assortment of mediocre backs like Marion Barber III, Ryan Grant and Kevin Smith.

We're talking about a guy who has rushed for over 100 yards in a game just four times in his career. A guy who has nine career rushing touchdowns. A guy who, before Sunday, inspired tweets like the following one from Tim MacMahon of ESPN:

Felix Jones apparently made an appearance on the FX show The League tonight. I hear he played an NFL-caliber running back.

— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) October 12, 2012

In other words, Jones has been a major disappointment when folks relied on him in the past. You'll have to forgive me if I'm a little gun-shy this time around.

But as I mentioned before, the matchup is too juicy to keep him out of your lineup if you were able to land him on waivers this week. So I'm going to project him for 75 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown on Sunday.

Hardly phenomenal stuff, I know, but you'll gladly take the 13.5 points. Think of this projection as his performance last week compromising with his disappointing past.

Don't burn me again, Felix Jones. You only get one second chance.


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