If you felt a great disturbance on Sunday, as millions of voices suddenly crying out in terror before being suddenly silenced, it was because Aaron Jones re-signed with the Green Bay Packers. The screams you heard were A.J. Dillon fans and everyone that sold their dynasty shares of Myles Gaskin for pennies on the dollar. I pointed out last week that Aaron Jones to Miami didn’t make a whole lot of sense, given the RB room expenditures. But, it was what we wanted for fantasy football, freeing A.J. Dillon and moving an RB1 down to Miami, creating two top-twenty running backs out of thin air. While I got the contract details wrong, the signing bonus was almost spot on, as was the annual salary. I’ll take it.
So, what does this mean for fantasy football purposes? What are the downwind ramifications of Aaron Jones staying with Green Bay? Let’s take a look at the fantasy football fallout of Aaron Jones re-signing with the Packers.
First, the Packers. Not a lot changes there; Aaron Jones is one of eight running backs to have over 500 touches in the last two seasons. The former fifth-round pick really turned it on for the Packers, averaging over 100 yards per game over the last two years on 14.6 carries and 3.2 catches per game. Jones’ 30 touchdowns over the last two seasons also solidified him as a locked-and-loaded fantasy football RB1. So… not much should change there.
Behind Jones, however, lurked former second-round pick, Quadzilla A.J. Dillon, who everyone hoped would take the NFL by storm this season. After all, he had a one-game audition last year and turned that into 22 touches for 134 yards, in the snow (up-hill, both ways). That had Quad Enthusiasts hooting, hollering, and doing that thing where the cartoon wolf has to roll his tongue back up and/or push his eyes back into his head. The A.J. Dillon breakout season is now on hold… or is it?
By re-signing Jones, the Packers signaled that they would let Jamaal Williams go off to greener pastures (like blowing up the Ravens’ whole backfield situation). We will address J-Will when he signs somewhere, but for now, we should recognize that the Packers gave Williams an average of 166 touches over the last four seasons. They used Williams a decent amount, and there’s no reason to believe those looks won’t go Dillon’s way.
As for the Miami Dolphins, they likely turn to the draft to take one of your Najees Harris or Travises Etienne to fill their running back room hole. Or, they caught wind of my article and realized they don’t actually have a hole in their running back room! Or maybe they sign Jamaal Williams! One GB running back is just as good as another, isn’t it?
For fantasy football purposes, Aaron Jones remains a locked-and-loaded RB1, and his certainty could bring him into the top-five discussion for some people. I am not some people, but I understand the impulse. A.J. Dillon is a draft-and-stash in the RB35 range (gut reaction) and should return some fantasy football value this season… just not as much as we had hoped. And if that doesn’t work out, he could always switch careers.
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