Zac Stacy has exploded in the past two weeks, making him a waiver-wire gem and a must-start fantasy running back for the rest of the season. Without Sam Bradford, Stacy will be a workhorse for the St. Louis Rams moving forward, and he’ll have plenty of opportunities to deliver the fantasy goods.
The running back position was uncertain for the Rams entering the season without Steven Jackson, but Zac Stacy has made things quite clear for head coach Jeff Fisher.
Daryl Richardson was handed the starting running back job to start the year, but he failed to impress and eventually lost his spot on the depth chart.
In his stead, Stacy has been excellent.
Stacy picked up 134 yards on 26 carries (5.2 YPC), consistently ripping off big chunks of yardage. He then followed it up with a monstrous performance against the Tennessee Titans in Week 9, accumulating 178 total yards and two scores.
His usage has increased every week, and while he probably won’t get much more than the 33 touches he received against Tennessee, he will be good for 20 to 30 touches each game for the rest of the year considering the ineffectiveness of Kellen Clemens at quarterback.
In addition, Stacy is also a capable receiver out of the backfield. He won’t put up huge numbers in the passing game, but it’s an added bonus in PPR leagues and it means he’s a three-down back for St. Louis.
Furthermore, he’s still a hidden gem in some leagues. He’s owned in only 64.3 percent of ESPN leagues and 71 percent of Yahoo! leagues. If he’s available in your league, stop reading this and scoop him up off the waiver wire (and then come back here).
There has been little running back depth this year, and getting a starter who will get more than 20 touches every game is a rare find. Moreover, he's a punishing back with the ability to break tackles so he should be able to find the end zone with some consistency over the coming weeks.
Stacy will have every opportunity to end his rookie year strongly, with some inviting matchups coming up on the schedule—none of which are more promising than his Week 15 clash with the New Orleans Saints and their defense that has been vulnerable against the run, giving up the 12th-most fantasy points to running backs each week.
The one factor working against Stacy is that the Rams will probably be playing from behind in all of his remaining games. Despite that fact, Stacy has been the best offensive player for St. Louis in recent weeks and his touches shouldn't suffer.
The worst-case scenario is that Stacy is a mid-level RB2, but if he continues this level play he’ll be an RB1 in some weeks—like Week 15 when it’s the fantasy playoffs for most leagues.
You should feel confident starting Stacy for the rest of the year as he makes his case to be one of the breakout fantasy players of 2013.