Potential 2020 Fantasy Football Busts
5. Melvin Gordon, RB, Denver Broncos
While there’s some debate how how much his holdout affected his play, 2019 was Melvin Gordon’s worst season as a pro. He rushed for 612 yards on 162 carries and notched just 296 yards on 55 targets. He is in line to be the Denver Broncos’ lead back, but he will have plenty of competition for touches from Phillip Lindsay and even Royce Freeman. Going as the 17th running back off the board according to FantasyPros’ average draft position (ADP) data, Gordon is really being drafted as if he’s already locked in for a workhorse role. The risk of a committee approach in Denver makes Gordon a prime candidate to completely underwhelm relative to his ADP.
4. Raheem Mostert, RB, San Francisco 49ers
Raheem Mostert has only two 100-yard rushing games in his entire five-year NFL career. He has played for more teams (four) than he has games with multiple touchdowns (three). To gamble on Mostert is to bank on a small sample of success that was driven largely by touchdown production down the stretch in the 2019 season. The San Francisco 49ers backfield is still crowded, with Tevin Coleman fighting for work and Jerick McKinnon returning from injury, and it’s not likely that Mostert sees the workhorse volume he would need to continue on the tear we saw in the second half of the 2019 season.
3. Tyler Higbee, TE, Los Angeles Rams
Tyler Higbee is another late-season breakout that is carrying altogether too much hype into 2019. Finishing the year with 100-plus yards in four of five games was impressive, no doubt, but he also didn’t even eclipse 50 yards (or catch more than 4 passes in a game) until Gerald Everett got hurt in Week 12.
2. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Indianapolis Colts
Jonathan Taylor is another running back being drafted as if he’s already his team’s clear No. 1 option. With an ADP of RB25, he’s even going ahead of Indianapolis Colts incumbent starter Marlon Mack (RB27). Taylor will have big upside if he steals the starting job, but it’s far from a guarantee that the rookie gets the opportunity to start over Mack, who handled a career-high 247 carries in 2019. Taylor will also be fighting an uphill battle to earn passing volume away from Nyheim Hines.
1. Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers
It’s easy to get excited about Aaron Jones after he finished second among all running backs with 314.8 fantasy points in 2019, but drafters should pump the breaks. That production relied heavily on his league-leading 19 touchdowns (16 rushing and 3 receiving), which helped cover up a relatively modest workload. Jones ranked just 15th in carries and 11th in targets among all running backs, and if anything we could see that volume drop in 2020. In 2019 he averaged just 13.7 rush attempts and 3.9 targets per game in the 14 contests stablemate Jamaal Williams played, and the Green Bay Packers even drafted another running back in Boston College’s A.J. Dillon.