Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones is a sleeper in dynasty leagues, and should be a target in fantasy football drafts.
Aaron Jones is the Green Bay Packers running back to own in fantasy football. This year and beyond. I’ve believed that all offseason, and until proven otherwise, will continue to.
But for a number of reasons, Jones is slipping under the radar.
Maybe it was because he got hurt midway through the season. Perhaps it was the Packers’ struggles, and the fact they finished 7-9 and out of the playoffs. A more likely reason is how well Jamaal Williams played when Jones was hurt.
But as I’ve written before, Jones played much better when Aaron Rodgers was on the field.
Williams is a power back, and he ran hard all season, but his best days came when he was given the football time and time again.
In a four-game stretch between Weeks 10-13, Williams had 80 carries. In that time he put up 303 yards and two touchdowns. It was the best stretch of the season for Williams, as he improved with more carries.
But that number of carries is unsustainable over a season, especially when the Packers become a pass-first offense with Rodgers in at quarterback. In that four-week run, Williams was averaging 20 carries per game, which works out at 320 carries over a 16-game season.
That’s not happening. The last Packer to have that many carries in a season was Ahman Green in 2003, when he carried 355 times for 1,883 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Jones is almost the complete opposite. The fifth-round pick hit big play after big play when given opportunities last year, and looks to be a much better fit in a Rodgers-led offense than Williams.
So, what does this all mean for dynasty leagues?
It means Jones is a player slipping under the radar who could provide tremendous value for your team.
Rob Wilson of Fantasy CPR ranked the top five running back sleepers in dynasty leagues, and he put Jones at No. 1:
"“Given what we saw last season, it’s hard to guarantee who will come out on top of the….’pack’, but I think Jones has a better chance than anyone. He flashed on the field, he was efficient when healthy, and he has the best collection of tools on the roster to be a workhorse.”"
I couldn’t agree more with Wilson’s assessment.
Whoever leads the way in the Packers’ backfield will have a ton of fantasy value. That’s why it makes sense to pick up Williams where you can, too.
But if it’s a pick between the two, Jones should be the choice.
Alex Gelhar of NFL.com listed the Packers’ group of running backs as a sleeper backfield to watch this season. Gelhar also believes Jones is the pick of the top three backs on the roster.
“My money is on Jones to assume close to a lead role, as he had the most visible impact on the offense,” Gelhar wrote.
A lot can change between now and August, which is when a number of fantasy drafts will take place.
As you prepare for the new league season, keep a close eye on Jones’ ADP.
In all likelihood he’ll continue to be overlooked, and it could make him one of the top draft-day bargains, both in standard leagues and dynasty.