Blair Andrews revisits his research on running back draft age. Do younger RBs still provide an edge? Where does that edge come from? And which RBs should we be targeting in redraft and trading for in dynasty?
We know, when looking for fantasy wide receiver prospects, younger is generally better. Does this hold for running back prospects? In the Wrong Read, No 30, I found a strong advantage to chasing younger RB prospects. Is this still the case, or has the NFL caught up?
Draft Age and Early Career Running Back Fantasy Production
In our look at WRs, we compared average PPR points per season based on draft age. In at least one way, that method biases the results, because players with more seasons have a greater impact on the averages. Of course, that might not be a bad thing. If players who are drafted at a younger age go on to longer (and more productive) careers, we want to know that. But it’s not the exact question we are trying to answer.
Instead, let’s focus on early career productivity — how does draft age impact fantasy scoring over the first two years of a player’s career? My dataset includes every RB who entered the NFL between 2000 and 2019 (to ensure we have two years of data) and recorded an offensive stat in at least one game. The results, as at WR, are striking.