It’s that time of year once again! Football Absurdity will bring you a breakdown of every notable fantasy football-relevant player throughout June, July, and August. We continue with the running backs. Today, we look at a man called King Henry, who was the most prolific fantasy football running back in all of the lands. That is, until the Foot of the King fell him, leading to the rise of Ser Jonathan of Clan Taylor. Now, is Derrick Henry someone that we should lean into in our fantasy football drafts, or will that be putting a (formerly broken) foot in our mouths? Let’s take a look at the Derrick Henry fantasy football draft profile!
Derrick Henry ADP and AAV:
Average Draft Position: RB3, Pick 3
Average Auction Value: $64
Derrick Henry Statistics:
|Year||G||GS||Rush||Ru Yds||Ru TD||Tgt||Rec||Yards||TD||Touches||Opp||Total Yards|
|Year||Std Pts||HPPR Pts||PPR Pts||Pts/G||HPPR Pts/G||PPR Pts/G||Pts/Tch||HPPR Pts/Tch||PPR Pts/Tch|
2022 Derrick Henry Fantasy Football Overview:
From the beginning of 2019 until eight games into 2021, few running backs were as dominant as Derrick Henry. He averaged just over 115 rushing yards per game on just over 23 carries per game. Henry is a throwback to powerful backs of the past who would run through a [dude’s] face over and over and over until he didn’t want to tackle Henry anymore. Then, disaster struck.
Henry broke his foot in week eight, and we didn’t see him again until the playoffs, where he played like a guy who hasn’t carried a football in two months thanks to a broken foot (20 carries for 62 yards). I am of two minds when it comes to Derrick Henry and his foot injury. First, he’s Derrick Henry, and a broken bone is a relatively straightforward injury. Granted, broken foot bones complicate matters, but Henry already make it back onto a football field with his injury. That part of my mind thinks that we shouldn’t worry about Henry and his foot.
On the other hand, Derrick Henry is 247 pounds, and his job is to get knocked down by the few men on earth bigger than him. It makes me worry that Henry’s weakened injury area has a high chance of recurrence because the little foot bones aren’t built for his weight or those hits.
Still, it’s hard to fade Derrick Henry since he’s Derrick Henry, and was on pace to average the most fantasy points per game in each of the last two seasons when he got hurt.
There is a rub with Derrick Henry that has nothing to do with his foot, either. It has to do with his 55 receptions in his last 3 seasons (39 games). That’s not great at all and is a reason for caution with Henry. For a lot of backs, the rushing fantasy points are buoyed and smoothed out by receiving points. Unfortunately, Henry doesn’t really have that luxury. But, much like Henry’s foot, I am of two minds about how to think of this. While Henry doesn’t get the targets that most backs get, most backs also don’t score as many touchdowns as Derrick Henry. Henry, over the last three years, is averaging more than a touchdown per game. That more than offsets the lack of targets by buoying his floor, but by offsetting his targets, it also caps his upside.
2022 Derrick Henry Fantasy Football Draft Strategy:
All of this is to say that Derrick Henry is really, really good, but he has really real concerns. He’s currently the RB3 in fantasy drafts, and the third-priciest running back. All of that feels… valid. Very few backs have as much upside as Henry (though one of them—Christian McCaffrey—is $4 cheaper in salary cap drafts, and goes as RB5 in snake drafts). With this in mind, it’s looking like I will have very little (if any) Derrick Henry this year. He’s in that sweet spot where I fully acknowledge his upside, but if Christian McCaffrey and Derrick Henry are both there, I am going to take CMC every time.
Best Case Scenario:
Derrick Henry comes back and averages over 110 rushing yards and a touchdown per game. His lack of pass-catching skills keeps him from finishing as RB1, as Christian McCaffrey and Jonathan Taylor put together a full season of multi-faceted work.
Worst Case Scenario:
King Henry gives the King Henry’s Wives treatment to his foot out of spite, and never plays in the NFL ever again.
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[Statistics are sourced from pro-football-reference.com, airyards.com, and ftnfantasy.com]
[Header Image Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5f/RB_Derrick_Henry_Titans%2C_2016.jpg under CC SA 4.0]