The Miami Dolphins were in search of a veteran presence in their backfield after losing Damien Williams to Kansas City and have now found it in the form of Frank Gore, who signed a one-year deal with the team. The signing is a homecoming of sorts for Gore, who played collegiately at the University of Miami. Gore had flirted with the Detroit Lions and a few other teams but ultimately wanted to play close to home and will now suit up for just his third team in his illustrious 13-year career after successful stops with San Francisco and Indianapolis. The move has some dynasty impact, so it’s only fitting we take a look at the players involved and the subsequent changes in their respective values.
The soon-to-be 35 year old Gore has been able to post an amazing 14,026 career rushing yards in 13 NFL seasons and needs just 76 yards to pass the legendary Curtis Martin for fourth all-time on the NFL rushing list. What’s more impressive is the fact he hasn’t missed a single game due to injury in over seven years, which is next to impossible for a young running back, no less than one in his mid-30s. Long-time dynasty owners have to laugh as they look back to when Gore entered the league. There were major injury concerns with him and many red flagged him in dynasty drafts, believing he wouldn’t hold up. Yep, that was a mere 13 years ago. Last year in Indianapolis, the ageless wonder rushed for 961 yards, just missing his tenth 1,000 yard season. You could clearly say those worries were just a tad unwarranted.
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Gore will join Kenyan Drake in the Miami backfield and will undoubtedly have a hard time duplicating his recent numbers, especially considering the fact he hasn’t cracked four yards per carry since 2014. It will be very interesting to see if Miami adds more help to the backfield through the draft, though. As for Gore’s value, he remains a hold, though it’s a tenuous one. It’s going to be tough for any non-contending team to justify a roster spot for him. Teams like that in dynasty leagues should be looking to add some late round rookie picks from the Drake owner in exchange for the services of Gore. His ADP has been falling and while this move will help stop the bleeding, it won’t cause it to spike back up, either. As good as he is, Gore’s best days (and days as a starter) are likely over.
While some may look at the Dolphins adding Gore as a roadblock to Drake’s value, savvy owners are likely thinking the opposite. After sending Jay Ajayi to Philadelphia, Drake shined in the featured role for Miami, averaging 89 yards rushing per game and adding 17 receptions over Miami’s final five games, while averaging nearly five yards per carry in the process. There is justifiable excitement from dynasty owners who have held on to Drake the past two seasons in hopes he’d get a chance to truly have a backfield to himself. As it stands now, it looks like Drake is going to be the starter and Gore will simply provide a change of pace. Owners of Drake shouldn’t really be threatened by the prospect of Gore taking his job. Instead, they should be on pins and needles wondering just what Miami will do in the upcoming NFL Draft. If they fail to add more competition in the backfield, it’s looking like Drake will have a year to truly prove he has what it takes to be a full-time starter in reality and fantasy. As such, his ADP won’t be affected until the draft is over, regardless of this signing.
Senorise Perry and Brandon Radcliff, RBs MIA
Well, if you had one of those two in hopes they’d somehow develop into a handcuff in Miami, that balloon just popped.
Owners of Mack could be salivating now that Gore is out of the way for the Colts. Ironically, I’d say, “hold your horses.” Mack showed some nice things for the Colts last year but also looked very much like a rookie at other times. On the year, he was only able to average 3.8 yards per carry and really never truly showed the promise many had expected. As such, the Colts are undoubtedly looking for help at the position through free agency or the NFL Draft. Personally, I’d be stunned to see Indianapolis come out of the draft without adding a player like Derrius Guice, Ronald Jones, Nick Chubb, Sony Michel or another of the highly regarded running backs in this class. If you own Mack and other owners are somehow offering you deals as if he’s going to be the 2018 starter, I’d seriously consider taking advantage of the situation.
Other Colts Running Backs
I feel like I’m simply running out of years to be able to type the names of Jonathan Stewart and Christine Michael, the two most popular dynasty punching bags of the last decade. Lucky for me, Michael signed with the Colts yesterday. Realistically, if you somehow own Robert Turbin, Matt Jones, Michael or Josh Ferguson, hoping they emerge as the starter for the Colts this year, I wish you luck – you are clearly going to need it.
The signing of Frank Gore will put a nice little ribbon on what has been an amazing career for him in dynasty leagues. However, don’t overreact and read too much into it. If you do, another owner is likely going to take advantage of you.