As the midway point of the season approaches, fantasy owners and NFL teams alike will be looking for that one player that may push them into the playoffs. For fantasy owners, the answer may lie in one of these three big name running backs who are nearing their returns from extended injury absences.
David Wilson, New York Giants
Giants running back David Wilson was injured during Week 5 against the Eagles, but avoided season ending neck surgery and is now expected to miss around 2-3 more weeks. With the Giants bye coming in Week 9, Wilson may be ready to suit up by Week 10. Before injuring his neck, Wilson was finally showing the type of talent that had caused owners to draft him in the second round of many fantasy drafts. If he can retain his lead back role when he returns, Wilson can be a sneaky pickup in leagues where he is available.
Andre Brown, New York Giants
Staying in the New York backfield, Andre Brown’s stint on the Physically Unable to Perform list is almost over. A back that was expected to play a very big role in the Giants offense, Brown broke his leg during the preseason and has yet to see the field this season. That will change soon as Brown has begun practicing with the team and is expected to return as soon as he is eligible to come off the PUP list on November 10th against the Oakland Raiders. Brown is one of the most trusted backs on the team and may see extended work due to the team’s lack of production out of the backfield so far. A monster at the goal line, Brown has top 20 upside when he returns.
Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons
Jackson is the closest of the three backs to returning as he is expected back at practice on Wednesday after a 5 week absence. Jackson injured his hamstring in Week 2 and has had lingering issues which has caused him to miss much more time than originally expected. Even though he may practice this week, he will likely be less than 100% by Sunday and may need one more week of rest. When he returns, Jackson should be counted on as a number 2 back once again, but faces stiff tests against Carolina and Seattle in Weeks 9 and 10.