Now that Washington Redskins running back Tim Hightower is out for the season after tearing his ACL in his team's Week 7 loss to the Carolina Panthers, Ryan Torain is his likely replacement for the feature back role.
While fellow Washington running back Roy Helu will have an increased role in his team's offense, and thus has increased fantasy football value, it's Torain who gets the biggest boost.
Torain, who has 31 rushes for 152 yards and a touchdown, was active for just the most recent three games for the Redskins, with Hightower and Helu responsible for the bulk of Washington's rushing yards so far this season. While he had just two carries for negative five yards against Carolina, the game was primarily Hightower's; Helu also had a poor outing, rushing once for a loss of one yard.
But now Torain will be vaulted into Hightower's role as a feature back for the duration of the season. While head coach Mike Shanahan might activate practice squad back Evan Royster, at this point, he will likely be used to spell Torain.
Shanahan's approach to the running game has been nothing but frustrating to fantasy GMs with a Redskins running back on their rosters, and that should remain a concern even if Torain is confirmed as the starting back.
However, that doesn't mean that you should avoid adding Torain if he is available in your league. He is owned in 58 percent of Yahoo! leagues as of today, and that number is going to rise significantly. If he's on your waiver wire, it's in your best interest to add him. Just keep your eye on what Shanahan does going forward and plan accordingly.