As the 2019 fantasy football season nears, it's time to examine players who could make or break your fantasy team. Here's a look at Detroit Lions running back Kerryon Johnson and his fantasy outlook for the season ahead.
Detroit is trying to run the ball more. The offensive line went from 31st and 32nd the previous two years in Football Outsiders’ adjusted line yards to 20th last season. Then the Lions picked Darrell Bevell as the new offensive coordinator. His 12 NFL offenses have averaged a 47.2 percent rushing share. That would have ranked fourth-most run-heavy last year. Johnson stands to lead this year’s backfield, but he’ll face competition from C.J. Anderson and Zach Zenner.
Size: 5'11", 206
Age: 22 (at the start of the season)
Bye Week: 5
We likely won’t know the workload split here until we’re into the season. But Johnson’s easily the best total package among Detroit backs.
What are the expectations for Kerryon Johnson coming off an injury last season?
Johnson, who missed the final six games with a knee injury, was fully healthy for the start of offseason workouts. And while the Lions won’t be expecting him to handle 250-plus carries, the plan isn’t to baby him, either. He averaged 15 touches a game as rookie, so expect 20 per game in what should be a run-heavy offense under new coordinator Darrell Bevell. Johnson ranked second in the NFL in yards per carry (5.4) and also caught 32 passes, proving himself as an every-down back. He’ll likely find the end zone more, too, though the Lions replaced last year’s goal line vulture, LeGarrette Blount, with another big back in C.J. Anderson.
Season Projections for 2019
202 carries, 949 yards, 6 rushing TDs; 44 receptions, 308 yards, 1 receiving TD