Throughout the season, the Rookie Report Card has covered some of the biggest rookies and not only looked at their performance to date – but also their long term upside. Now that the regular season has wrapped up and fantasy owners are looking towards the future, we have an opportunity to take one last look at the 2018 season and assess the rookies – A final report card if you will.
We covered 34 rookies throughout the season, including 13 running backs. Let’s put a bow on the season by taking one more look at those ball carrier’s first season, as well as a quick glimpse into their futures.
Saquon Barkley, RB NYG
Season Stats: 261 carries, 1,307 yards, 11 touchdowns, 91 receptions, 721 receiving yards, four touchdown receptions
Rookie Report Card: Week 11
Barkley finished his rookie season as a top-five scorer no matter your league’s settings. Showing everything we loved about him coming out of Penn State, he displayed great vision, an incredible burst, the ability to cut back in a blink and tackle breaking that rivals anybody to enter the league over the last 20 years. What’s most impressive about his performance is probably that he did it behind a bottom-five offensive line (according to Football Outsiders).
There’s no question that Barkley belongs as one of the top players to own in dynasty. He’s nearly untradeable due to his elite upside and age (soon to turn 22.) If New York is able to make an improvement across its offensive line and the team continues the progress it made in the second half of the season, 2018 could prove to be only a preview of what Barkley could produce for fantasy owners going forward.
Kalen Ballage, RB MIA
Find Dan on Twitter at @dmeylor22
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