LeGarrette Blount Injury: Why Fantasy Owners Must Add Earnest Graham

Jon Dove@https://twitter.com/#!/Jon_Dove42Contributor IOctober 23, 2011

TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 16: Running back Earnest Graham #34 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rushes upfield against the New Orleans Saints October 16, 2011 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Tampa Bay Buccaneers' LeGarrette Blount has been ruled out for today's game against the Chicago Bears. Blount is dealing with a knee injury, the extent of which is unknown. This injury is a major blow to many fantasy owners.

Prior to his injury, Blount was starting to find his stride, coming off of a big performance against the Indianapolis Colts. Blount was likely a player you drafted early in your fantasy draft, making his injury sting a little more.

He was likely one of the few players on your team who could be counted on each week. Blount may not always put up big numbers, but he was at least given the opportunity.

The Tampa Bay Bucs are not considered a high-flying offense, usually playing a conservative brand of football. This playing style puts a lot of emphasis on the running game.

With Blount ruled out, Earnest Graham figures to get the majority of touches at running back. Last week versus the New Orleans Saints, Graham rushed for over 100 yards. Graham is a must-add fantasy running back, especially for Blount owners.

So much of a running backs fantasy value is tied to the amount of carries he receives. Graham will be the starter this weekend, likely getting around 20 carries. He is not only getting a good number of touches, but he has also shown some success.

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Graham is in a good situation, as he plays on a team who likes to run the football. Tampa doesn't only like to run the ball, they are productive. The Buccaneers running game gets a boost because of the presence of quarterback Josh Freeman.

Freeman is a quarterback defenses need to respect, meaning their will be less men in the box.

The Chicago Bears defense is typically strong against the run. However, this season they are allowing nearly 100 yards per game. Graham has an opportunity to have a strong performance this weekend.