Derrick Henry is an outlier RB in fantasy PPR leagues

Fantasy Football, Tennessee Titans

Derrick Henry proved in 2019 fantasy football that you don’t need a pass-catching running back to succeed in a PPR league. Henry is clearly an outlier.

Running backs usually are the reason you either win your fantasy football league or you don’t. There are so many reasons running backs typically end up being selected in the top-three rounds of a fantasy draft. These guys not only can run for points but can also catch passes out of the backfield. However, not all bell-cow backs are great for PPR. Derrick Henry is not one of them.

The Fantasy Footballers discuss how Henry is a bit of an anomaly in PPR leagues. While we all know how dominating of a runner he is, the Tennessee Titans tailback only had 18 receptions this past season. For many running backs, that would present a serious problem in PPR leagues, but not Henry. He is the outlier heading into the 2020 NFL season.

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Should Henry return to the Titans on a new deal in 2020, as he is an impending free agent, we can probably expect more of the same out of the running back. Look for Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith to continually pound the rock with his superstar running back, fresh off inking a new contract with the team that drafted him in the second round out of the University of Alabama.

If Henry were to sign with any the other 31 NFL teams, his fantasy value may not be the same, as we won’t know how much of a factor he will be in that new team’s offense. We’d expect him to be a big part of it, but what if he goes to a situation where he’s playing alongside a perennial Pro Bowl passer and not Ryan Tannehill? Could Henry be a candidate for more catches out of the backfield?

Probably not, as Henry is more of your traditional throwback power backs. He might nab a few extra catches out of the Titans backfield due in large part to continuity in Smith’s offensive attack. That being said, we’re not all planning to draft Henry in the first round of our 2020 fantasy football drafts because he can catch passes out of the backfield. We want Henry to run the dang ball!

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For most other fantasy football running backs, not being a factor in the passing game would be detrimental in PPR leagues. There have been running backs in the past where this isn’t an issue, like Adrian Peterson in his prime and briefly Michael Turner with the Atlanta Falcons. Ultimately, you would have to feel great about drafting Henry in fantasy no matter what heading into 2020.

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