Week Seventeen Analysis:
By now we know that if between-the-20s back DeAngelo Williams is going to score, it will have to come from distance. Fortunately, he's broken long ones in back-to-back weeks, meaning seven of his last 10 touchdowns have come from outside the red zone, with the shortest coming from 12 yards. He's averaged 118 combo yards over the last two weeks with Jonathan Stewart out, and he could certainly keep pace this week against Atlanta's 31st-ranked run defense. The Falcons just gave up 148 yards and a score on 24 carries to San Francisco backs.
Week Nine Analysis:
Last week I made fun of DeAngelo Williams' touchdown allergy, so naturally, he scored his first touchdown of the season. The 12-yard score was actually the shortest of his last seven touchdowns. Meanwhile, Cam Newton and Mike Tolbert have combined to score six times from inside the 10-yard line in the last three weeks alone. For that reason, Williams remains heavily dependent on yards, which is bad news for a guy who's battling a quad injury and hasn't topped 64 rushing yards in four straight. The possible return of Jonathan Stewart only further complicates matters for Williams in a favorable matchup with an Atlanta run defense that surrenders 4.7 yards per carry.
Week Eight Analysis:
DeAngelo Williams is averaging a very solid 20 touches for 90 combo yards per game, but the rub is that he couldn't find the end zone with a GPS. Don't expect his first touchdown of the season to come this week, either. Despite giving up a rather charitable 132 combo yards per game to the position, Tampa Bay is one of only two teams that have yet to allow a rushing score. In short, the Bucs are the DeAngelo Williams of fantasy run defenses. Expect more of the same from Williams this week.
Week Seven Analysis:
Although he's yet to score a touchdown, DeAngelo Williams is averaging a very respectable 96 combo yards per game. Moreover, his low water mark has been 69 yards, which is a pretty high floor for a guy you probably drafted as your third running back. He'll have a great opportunity to keep piling up the yardage this week against the bottom-ranked St. Louis run defense that's giving up over 170 combo yards per game to the position. The Rams have also surrendered over a touchdown per game to opposing backs, so this could finally be the week that Williams breaks loose for a mid-range score. Trade DeAngelo this week, on the prospects of a good game here. It could be one of his last.
Week Six Analysis:
DeAngelo Williams is who he is. He offers minimal value as a touchdown scorer or pass-catcher, but he's typically going to give you somewhere in the neighborhood of 70-to-90 total yards. While Minnesota has been a very favorable matchup for fantasy backs, they're actually a bad matchup for Williams in particular. They've given up a charitable 625 combo yards to opposing backs through four games, but 49 percent of that has come through the air, where Williams is worthless. The five touchdowns they've surrendered are also irrelevant to Williams. What matters here is that the Vikings give up just 3.9 yards per carry and 80 rushing yards per game.
Week Five Analysis:
DeAngelo Williams offers nothing in terms of scoring or receiving potential, but through three weeks, he's averaged a robust 21 carries for 97 yards. He'll come out of the bye this week to face Arizona's surprising top-ranked run defense. The Cardinals are holding opposing backfields to 53 rushing yards on 2.7 yards per carry, and they've yet to allow a touchdown to the position. It's a bad matchup for Williams, but considering the miserable state of the running back landscape, you could do a lot worse than a guy who's going to approach 20 touches.
Week Three Analysis:
While DeAngelo Williams has caught just three passes and has yet to score, his 39 rushing attempts rank sixth in the NFL, and his 171 yards rank fifth. He's now eclipsed a respectable 85 combo yards in five of his last six games, and he has an excellent chance of extending the streak against a reeling Giants defense. One week after allowing DeMarco Murray to amass 125 combo yards, New York surrendered 107 combo yards and a pair of scores to Knowshon Moreno. Williams' receiving and scoring deficiencies cap his upside, but the rushing volume makes him a solid No. 2 fantasy back this week.
Week Two Analysis:
DeAngelo Williams finished hot last season, and he had a quietly impressive opener, save for a costly fourth quarter fumble. He managed 90 combo yards on 19 touches against an imposing Seattle defense, so it stands to reason that he'll fare even better this week in Buffalo. The Bills' bottom-tier run defense of a season ago picked up right where they left off, surrendering 220 total yards to Patriots backs in the opener. Mike Tolbert got just four carries for Carolina last week, so Williams is clearly locked in as the main man in a prime matchup.
Week One Analysis:
We have a rare moment of clarity in the Carolina backfield! With Jonathan Stewart sidelined, DeAngelo Williams will have a nice opportunity pick up where he left off at the end of last year. Over the final five games of last season, with Stewart out of the picture, Williams scored four touchdowns, while posting averages of 18 touches and 117 combo yards. Unfortunately, he gets a tough draw against last season's 7th-ranked Seattle run defense. The Seahawks added even more defensive line talent this offseason, and considering the goal line prowess of Cam Newton and Mike Tolbert, Williams feels like a low-upside option.
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DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart have been canceling each other out for years, but Stewart's slow recovery from a pair of offseason ankle surgeries has swung the pendulum in Williams' favor. Although he recently turned 30, Williams has only eclipsed 220 carries once in his seven-year career, and down the stretch last season he proved that he has plenty of tread left on the tires. With Stewart missing Carolina's final five games, Williams erupted for four touchdowns, and averages of 18 touches and 117 combo yards. If Stewart's progress doesn't speed up, Williams has a great chance to be a draft day steal.