2024 Dynasty Rookie Post-Draft Update: Jase McClellan

Peter Lawrence

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.

Situation

Name: Jase McClellan

Position: Running back

Pro Team: Atlanta Falcons

College Team: Alabama

Draft Status: Round six, pick 186

Coming out of Texas in the 2020 recruiting class, there were plenty of reasons to be excited about McClellan when he signed his letter of intent to play at Alabama. Many thought he was going to be the next in a line of RBs coming out of Tuscaloosa.

He was initially a bit-part player for the Tide and in his freshman COVID season, he struggled to make a name for himself with consistent playing time. But in those limited snaps, he flashed athleticism. There was a lot of potential to get excited about as he was only 18 years old during his freshman season. A knee injury cut short the breakout 2021 sophomore season many in the devy community were hopeful of witnessing.

Even after being stuck behind Najee Harris, Brian Robinson, and Jahmyr Gibbs and never going over 1,000 rushing yards in a season, the Falcons saw enough in McClellan to draft him in round six.

Maybe with a new coaching staff, we will see some competent use of last year’s eighth overall pick Bijan Robinson. McClellan has some tough competition coming into the league behind Robinson and even Tyler Allgeier. It is still interesting to see the Falcons add depth behind Robinson with other needs on the team.

Talent

Jase McClellan Combine Results:

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Courtesy of MathBomb/Kent Lee Platte.

McClellan was dealing with a foot injury throughout his final collegiate season. This injury has continued into his first pro practices in Atlanta. He did not participate in any events at the NFL Combine except the bench press and basic measurements.

McClellan has the build you want to see. At 5-10 and 220 pounds, he looks the part of a bell-cow back and adds in an ability to flex outside and be utilized as a receiving threat. He has a balanced skill set. With those receiving skills come an ability to be utilized as a tough interior runner who churns out yards. The top-end speed never flashed at the collegiate level and he isn’t going to consistently hit home runs out of the backfield.

Opportunity

Atlanta Falcons Depth Chart:

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Courtesy of 4for4.

This is a rough landing spot for the former highly regarded prospect. He is behind one of the top young backs in the league. Yes, the coaching staff misused Kyle Pitts and the entire offense by thinking they had their QB secured in a post-Matt Ryan offense. However, the offense should be much improved with the new coaching staff and with Kirk Cousins running the offense.

Again, McClellan at this point is still dealing with a foot injury and is off to a rocky start in any attempt to steal snaps from Allgeier. He is going to need time in the offense and needs to show his skill set to climb the depth chart.

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Courtesy of Sports Reference.

Risk

The biggest risk in drafting McClellan is burning a roster spot where unless Bijan Robinson gets injured, you are simply rostering a sideline body. With his current ADP, you can likely add him as some depth in rookie drafts if you have rostered Bijan.

I don’t want you to think McClellan is just a guy in this offense. He doesn’t have Jahmyr Gibbs’s home run speed, but that doesn’t mean he can’t break a longer run with his running style and vision. It is a much tougher game at the NFL but his skill set will translate well enough.

Market

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Courtesy of May 2024 Rookie Dynasty ADP.

McClellan is currently going undrafted in superflex rookie drafts in ADP. He is being taken at the end of rookie drafts in 1QB leagues. This is mostly a lottery ticket in case of an injury to Robinson. He is not currently being drafted in either superflex startup drafts or 1QB startups.

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Courtesy of DLF Trade Analyzer

The DLF Trade Analyzer sees McClellan holding essentially no value as an asset. He likely is not going to be drafted in some of the more common league rookie drafts. Even in the devy crowd, it got a bit disheartening over the last few years. McClellan was ranked as the seventh running back in the 2020 class behind current NFL players Robinson, Gibbs, Zach Evans, and Tank Bigsby but has fallen off the map.

Very few players are a zero value. As we have seen with injuries, a backfield can drastically change a player’s value. Jerome Ford had a spike in value when Nick Chubb went down to a brutal knee injury last season. McClellan could be a value as an end-of-your-rookie draft dart throw. If he secures an offensive role, then look to flip him mid-season to the owner with Robinson in hopes of better draft capital in a year or two.

peter lawrence