Fantasy Football: Which handcuff is ruining our favorite backs?

Fantasy Football
Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Running backs rule the fantasy football game.  Usually, the top picks in every draft (assuming it is a 1 QB league) are running backs.  However, not all backs are created equal, some of them have the dreaded ‘cuff, the backup that has way too much of a share in the offense and it totally bums us out.

Now, there are a few backs who don’t share time.  They are few and far between: Derrick Henry, Christian McCaffery, and Dalvin Cook.  End of list.

Taking a look at my own leagues I hear myself on a weekly basis cursing some guy who dared to exist in the same backfield as my player.  Today I want to personally call them out and let them know they are ruining everything.  Okay, that might be a bit dramatic, but they certainly make winning fantasy matchups much harder.

Let’s get started, and be warned, this might sting a bit.

1) J.D. McKissic – RB Washington Football Team, Handcuff to Antonio Gibson

Oh, this man is the bane of my fantasy existence.  If you have read any of my previous fantasy football articles you know there was a few guys that I screamed from the top of my lungs about.  One of them was Antonio Gibson.  I stand by it, but boy has McKissic made that difficult.  He is the 3rd down back in Washington and takes up most of the passing targets to the RB’s.   Watching him and Gibson truly makes my blood boil as the talent gap between them is like a canyon, yet Ron Rivera insists on rolling him out there.  Gibson is averaging 2 catches a game, let me remind you he took a pass 73 yards by weaving through a very good Bills defense.  McKissic makes one good play every 4 games and steals the passing work.  Frustrating isn’t the right word, but this is a family site, so we’ll stick with it.

2) Tony Pollard – RB Dallas Cowboys, Handcuff to Ezekiel Elliot

This is a guy who, I believe, if the guy in front of him wasn’t paid so much would be the starter.  Tony Pollard is at least as good as Zeke at this point.  The years and hits have taken a bit out of Zeke and now Pollard is showing that flash and burst that starting backs have. Zeke has survived the ‘cuff so far, but it’s been boom or bust. Rostering Zeke comes with the annoyance of seeing a guy steal his touches, and often does more with them.  This past week the Cowboys thumped the Panthers.  Zeke shined in this game, but so did Pollard.  Pollard has looked good in every game, Zeke has not.  Roster Pollard ASAP, because he is a Zeke injury away from being a top 5 back.

3) Nyheim Hines – RB Indianapolis Colts, Handcuff to Jonathan Taylor

FEED JT! Why on Earth is Frank Reich trying so hard to make this a mess?  Committees work when the lead back isn’t talented in a certain area, but Jonathan Taylor is a workhorse guy being forced into a committee. JT can run, catch, block, and probably play the ukulele better than 99% of the guys in the league.  Yet, here we are looking at Hines stealing half the work from him.  Roster Hines because this committee doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.  A guy who would be best used in specific 3rd downs, Hines is strangely receiving early down work.  It hurts my soul to see it. 

There you have three guys who are killing elite level backs.  Who did I miss?  Let me know! Reach out through Twitter for Fantasy Football questions!


Here at Championship Sports Media, we like to have fun, write from the heart, and give you the best that we have in terms of content and effort.  That being said, we appreciate your time.  I truly appreciate your time, if you want more fantasy input or advice from me be sure to check out the site frequently.

My teammates here at CSM are amazing as well.  Look for their newest posts on various topics, give the site a follow as well: Twitter linked here, take a look at the shop which is linked here.  Be good, be good to each other. It’s not goodbye, it’s just ’til next time!

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