David Wilson: Impact of Rookie RB in Giants Offense and Fantasy Football
Running back Andre Brown suffered a broken fibula in Sunday night’s win against the Packers, which means one thing for Wilson: “It’s his time,” coach Tom Coughlin said.
Brown will be placed on injured reserve, with the designation to return.
As a result, Wilson's potential impact to the Giants offense also makes him more appealing regarding fantasy football. We can certainly expect Wilson to produce also, because the Giants for a while now have been a prime example of the next guy stepping in and contributing quite well.
So, let's break down Wilson's current opportunity and see how Big Blue's offense can utilize him moving forward.
Contributions Thus Far
Wilson has primarily impacted New York on kickoffs to this point. Then again, the guy is averaging 25.3 yards per kickoff return and has totaled 1,011 yards on special teams in the process.
His acceleration, top speed and ball-carrier vision all tie into his success as a returner. After all, he's ranked No. 1 in the NFL in kickoff return yards and No. 18 in average per return. Offensively, Wilson has only carried the ball 24 times for 102 yards with one score.
That said, since fumbling in Week 1 he has been gradually given an expanded role in the offense.
And the Giants need his potential, because the two-back system with Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs got New York two Vince Lombardi Trophies over the New England Patriots. With Jacobs gone, Wilson can be expected to now take over that No. 2 back role after being a first-round pick.
Where He Fits in New York's Offense
Although Wilson is the smallest back for New York, his overall athleticism bodes well between the tackles, off tackle and around the edge.
Just as a runner he's good for counters, traps, tosses, sweeps and stretch plays because he can change directions well while maintaining a low-center of gravity. Plus, for as reliable as Ahmad Bradshaw has been, when he needs a break a guy such as Wilson must fill in and keep the offense moving.
If anything, as the Giants look to Wilson more, third down and occasionally on first down are his best areas. The jolt of speed going off tackle on first down can get Big Blue in manageable second and third-down situations.
Courtesy of his agility, that results in being reliable on screen passes and acting as a checkdown target as well. Bradshaw is without question New York's best and most complete back. Nonetheless, allowing Wilson to receive more snaps will enhance the offensive balance and take additional pressure off Eli Manning.
How much do you expect David Wilson to contribute? (1=Least, 5=Most)
What Remaining Schedule Dictates
Sitting at 7-4 and atop the NFC East, New York's remaining schedule is quite difficult.
In Week 13, the Giants play at the Washington Redskins and then host the New Orleans Saints thereafter. Even though both of those defenses are suspect against the pass, each have vastly improved as the 2012 season has progressed.
Still, Wilson will get solid production here provided Manning dices well through the air and the defense gives Tom Coughlin's offense additional possession from shutting down the explosive offenses: Just as Big Blue did vs. Green Bay.
Each are vulnerable defensively against the run despite sporting impressive records. For the Giants to gets wins there, relying more on the Bradshaw-Wilson duo will be required.
Week 17 is at home vs. the Philadelphia Eagles, which can be an expected blowout. Philly has dropped seven straight and New York can steamroll the Eagles.
Combine all the elements of Wilson's talent, potential and opportunity regarding the remaining schedule and he can be a flex option in fantasy. His complete athleticism makes him a dual-threat and his proven success as a returner will transition nicely from special teams to offense.
The end result is added confidence as part of New York's efficient attack.
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