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Sean Tucker

2023 Dynasty Rookie Post-Draft Update: Sean Tucker

We focus on each rookie’s situation, talent, opportunity, risk, and market to provide post-draft analysis for dynasty managers.

Sean Tucker

The NFL Draft is behind us, rookie drafts are taking place, and as dynasty managers, we are looking ahead to the upcoming season. In our Dynasty Rookie Post-Draft Update series, we break down all the incoming fantasy-relevant rookies, looking at their profiles and where they fit. The basis of the rookie profile involves the usage of STORM analysis, focusing on five key components: Situation, Talent, Opportunity, Risk, and Market.


Name: Sean Tucker

Position: Running Back

Pro Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

College Team: Syracuse

Draft Status: Undrafted

Sean Tucker is the highlight of the undrafted free agent class after he didn’t hear his name called at this year’s NFL Draft. Out of Syracuse, Tucker became a sleeper for draft and fantasy analysts because of his electric game tape. Still, an injury, and a reported heart condition, popped up that forced him to sit out of the Combine and Syracuse’s Pro Day (he held a personal Pro Day in late April following medical clearance). Health pushed him off of team draft boards, but at the end of the draft, he was quickly scooped up by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, earning a 3-year, $2.7 million contract.

Finding success in an undrafted free agent is more challenging than finding a needle in a haystack. There are several success stories: Kurt Warner, Warren Moon, Priest Holmes, and Antonio Gates, to name a few. Austin Ekeler is an undrafted free agent who went on to be a first-round pick in fantasy football year in and year out. But, for every success, plenty of players never moved the needle.

In today’s NFL, running backs are valued less than ever. Because of that, backs with low draft capital can be useful in fantasy football. Looking back at last season, some of the best rookie running backs were day three picks: Dameon Pierce (fourth round), Tyler Allgeier (fifth round), and Isiah Pacheco (seventh round). Can Sean Tucker be the player to take that one step further as an undrafted free agent?


Sean Tucker Combine Results:

Height: 5’ 9”

Weight: 207 lbs

Arm: 30”

Hand: 9 ½”

40-Yard Dash: Did not participate

10-Yard Split: Did not participate

Vertical Jump: Did not participate

Broad Jump: Did not participate

Sean Tucker certainly earned some high-end comps before his health concerns became common knowledge and before he went undrafted in the NFL Draft. Nobody can expect Jonathan Taylor-type production from Tucker, but when you watch them side-by-side, you can certainly see some similarities in their running styles.

Tucker has good size and speed to succeed as an early-down back at the NFL level. He excelled in zone run concepts, both on the inside and the outside. He can catch the ball out of the backfield, but that certainly isn’t a key piece to his game. He runs downhill through contact and consistently falls forward to finish off his runs.

He’s a patient runner but often too patient, waiting for a hole to open up. He isn’t very elusive and struggles to make defenders miss. PFF graded Tucker at just 56.2 as a receiver last year and 64.2 as a pass blocker.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers Depth Chart:

Chart courtesy of 4for4.com.

As a rookie UDFA, Tucker is buried on the depth chart to start the summer off in Tampa. Despite that, Tucker remains a pick in dynasty rookie drafts because of the talent ahead of him on the depth chart. Tucker shouldn’t have too much trouble climbing this depth chart if healthy and earning some touches early on in the Bucs offense.

The running game in Tampa Bay was atrocious last season. They were dead last in team yards per carry, earning just 3.4 yards per carry and five rushing touchdowns, despite having a top-10 offensive line per PFF. Fournette is gone for now, and the team didn’t address the position much in free agency or during the draft. Rachaad White is the lead back unless they decide to sign someone else to handle more of the early down work, like Ezekiel Elliott or Fournette. Fifty players ran the ball at least 100 times in 2022; White was tied for 44th in yards per carry with just 3.8. Nobody in Tampa has total control of this backfield, and if Sean Tucker is healthy and impresses in camp, he could quickly climb up this depth chart.


Data courtesy of Sports Reference. 

The risk for Tucker is obvious; every team in the NFL decided to pass on him 259 times. Eighteen running backs, three kickers, three punters, and even a fullback were selected in the NFL Draft; Sean Tucker was not. He can overcome those odds, but they’re steep. He also has this mysterious heart condition that popped up. That condition could limit his long-term value, giving him a shorter window to make a name for himself in the NFL.

If he is able to overcome the health concerns and the draft capital, Tucker truly is an impressive player. A track star in high school, Tucker set the single-season Syracuse record with 1,496 rushing yards in 2021. He’s an explosive runner who can win in short-yardage situations and break away from defenders if they don’t bring him down. There is a reason there was so much hype around Tucker in the pre-draft process, so if he does get an opportunity, he could be well worth the risk.


Data courtesy of MFL May ADP on DLF. 

As one would expect, Sean Tucker’s rookie draft and dynasty market has plummeted since he was not selected in the NFL Draft. In February, Tucker’s ADP in dynasty startup leagues was 113.67. In May, that number dropped over 80 spots to 194.5. He went from being a 10th-round pick to a 17th-round pick in just a few short months.

In rookie superflex drafts, Tucker is a fourth-round pick, RB15 off the board. That has him after Eric Gray, Deuce Vaughn, and DeWayne McBride and right before Evan Hull, Cam Peoples, and Lew Nichols. Sean Tucker seems like a good value at that point in the rookie draft. While he may not last long in the NFL because of health concerns, there is a path to volume for him very early on in his career, similar to the path Isiah Pacheco had last season. If he’s on the field for training camp, and the Bucs don’t bring in another back to compete for early-down touches, Tucker’s value should rise in the dynasty community.

Data courtesy of DLF Trade Analyzer.

The trade market for Tucker is going to need some off-season hype to help stir things up. Right now, he’s an undrafted running back on a bad team who is buried on his team’s depth chart, not the most attractive trade piece. Follow along with the DLF Dynasty Player News updates over the next couple of months to see if any coaches or beat writers are hyping him up!

Sean Tucker is a talented running back carrying a load of baggage into his NFL career. He has the skills to overcome all of that baggage, but a lot will need to go right for him to become a valuable player in dynasty fantasy football. He’s worth a late-round draft pick but could find himself back on fantasy waiver wires before the season starts.

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2023 Dynasty Rookie Post-Draft Update: Sean Tucker
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Ed Geis
3 months ago

Just read the Chase Brown article from June 1st. At 5’9” 209lbs, he was considered undersized. You’ve got Tucker at “good size and speed”. I’m wondering what made Tucker stand out to you.

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