Sony Michel, New England Patriots (RB32, ADP #87)
- 9th in NFL with 247 carries in 2019; 14th w/ 209 carries as a rookie in 2018
- C David Andrews is expected to return after missing the entire 2019 season
- The Patriots should be one of the most run-heavy teams in 2020 following the departure of Tom Brady
Statistically speaking, 2019 was not a great year for Sony Michel. Of all the running backs with 245+ carries, Sony was the only one who failed to reach 1,000 rushing yards, ending the year with a 3.7 YPC average. As a rookie, Sony Michel showed a lot of promise after averaging 4.5 YPC and 6 TDs. So what was up with Sony last year? In my opinion, the loss of Tackle Trent Brown to Oakland via free agency and a blood clot that ended Center David Andrews season were the main reasons why Michel was so inefficient as a runner last year. Fortunately, Andrews seems to have recovered and is expected to be active on week 1. Former 1st round pick Isaiah Wynn showed promise last year replacing Trent Brown, but injuries derailed his season. If Wynn and Andrews can remain healthy in 2020, the Patriots will feature a top-5 offensive line in the league. With improved offensive line play, Michel should be closer to his rookie year YPC of 4.5.
In 2019, the Patriots threw the ball 620 times, good for 5th in the league. With Tom Brady migrating south for the winter, I expect New England to become a much more run-heavy offense. Michel stands to gain the most from potential switch. 300 carries is not out of question, and with the potential for improved o-line, I predict Michel will set career highs in yards and touchdowns while cracking the top 20 of all fantasy running backs.