Oakland Raiders FB/RB Marcel Reece continues to impress in wake of injuries to seemingly every running back on the depth chart.
Taiwan Jones is the latest to get hurt after Darren McFadden and Mike Goodson both went down two weeks ago:
RB Taiwan Jones @taiwanjonesnfl has an ankle injury, return is questionable.— OAKLAND RAIDERS (@RAIDERS) November 18, 2012
Reece has been a key cog in the passing game for most of the season, but in the last two weeks he has stepped up in a big way in the rushing game. Against the New Orleans Saints in Week 11, Reece gained 103 yards on 19 carries and caught four passes for 90 yards.
Oakland is still struggling to win, but Reece's efforts have been commendable.
Let's look at his fantasy outlook moving forward
Heading into Week 11, Reece had 33 catches for 328 yards and a touchdown, and had also rushed the ball 14 times for 48 yards.
He has been getting a heavy workload with both McFadden and Goodson out. Couple those injuries with Jones being sidelined and Reece is going to demand somewhere around 18-20 carries and 10 targets a week in the passing game.
The Raiders have been digging themselves into holes early and often in recent weeks, meaning more of those receptions later in contests and fewer rushes for Reece as games wear on.
Still, he can handle carries up the middle or leak out into the flats. Reece is a versatile weapon that can line up just about anywhere, including running back, fullback, wide receiver and tight end. That type of skill set bodes well for him once the cavalry gets healthy, but the only real threat to his numbers is McFadden.
McFadden is the clear No.1 RB despite his struggles this season. Reece will still find ways to get on the field, but don't expect a multitude of rushing opportunities once McFadden returns to the lineup.
As it stands, he is playing at a level worthy of a RB1 or RB2 spot in your lineup. If everyone in your league has somehow missed the Reece train to this point, you must be the one to pick him up through free agency.
Once McFadden returns, Reece's numbers will drop, but he should still be a solid week-to-week flex play.