The Denver Broncos are heading to Detroit to face the Lions on Sunday Night Football this week and they are hoping that running back C.J. Anderson can figure out his struggles. He was a major fantasy football selection this year and there are quite a few owners that are in desperate need of him figuring things out moving forward.
So far this season, Anderson has carried the football 24 times for just 56 yards and no touchdowns. Looking back at last season, Anderson was one of the best running backs in the NFL down the stretch of the season. It is a mystery as to why he has been struggling so badly so far this year and there doesn’t appear to be an end to it in sight.
That being said, what should fantasy football owners expect to see from Anderson this week and can he turn things around against the Lions?
At 24 years old, Anderson is still a very young player and it doesn’t appear like he took this past offseason very seriously. He may not have worked hard enough to watch tape and figure out ways to improve his game. That may not be the case, but there are simply no answers to the struggles that he has had this year.
Anderson is expected to split carries with Ronnie Hillman this week, which will eat into his fantasy impact in a big way. Denver is obviously unhappy with the slow start that Anderson has had, but part of the issue could be that he is not picking up Gary Kubiak’s system. Switching systems is never easy for any player, but some take it better than others.
Detroit gave up a huge day to Minnesota Vikings’ superstar running back Adrian Peterson last week. They don’t have the dominant run defense that they have had in years past and there are major concerns surrounding it this year. Anderson could very well have a chance to break out of his slump and get some momentum moving forward.
If Anderson does get off to a quick start, there is no question that the Broncos will stick with him and give him the majority of the carries ahead of Hillman. His upside is much higher than Hillman’s looking ahead at the long-term picture.
Expect to see Anderson have a fairly good game, although he isn’t going to be a superstar this week. There is a good chance that he could end up scoring a touchdown or two, but that will all depend on what the Broncos do with the running back rotation. Predicting Anderson’s stats this week isn’t easy, but you can expect them to look something like the following.
C.J. Anderson Fantasy Football Week 3 Projection: 15 Carries, 65 Yards, TD