Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Jaguars' Gerhart Poised to Have Breakout Season

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Jaguars' Gerhart Poised to Have Breakout Season

Article excerpt

Welcome to the end of preseason football. Week 1 of the NFL is upon us.

I hope everyone had a great draft. Hey, we're ALL undefeated, right? Let's see what we can do about keeping you that way.

After a four-year stint as understudy for one of fantasy's greatest running backs, Toby Gerhart has moved out of Adrian Peterson's shadow and will now have his own spotlight as Jacksonville's feature back. Entering his fifth year with very little wear on his body, Gerhart has the speed, the size and the opportunity to carve himself a significant place in the fantasy realm.

This week he will face a Philadelphia defense that allowed an average of 104 rushing yards (10th in the league in 2013), but when looking at the Jaguars' offense, Gerhart is the one player who resembles any type of fantasy option. Their quarterback is Chad Henne, and their best receiving target is tight end Marcedes Lewis, so a steady diet of Gerhart up the middle should not come as a shock to anyone.

I consider Gerhart a quality RB2 and could be even more valuable as the season progresses. Get him in the game.

I realize that advising you to start Panthers tight end Greg Olsen makes me a fantasy Captain Obvious, so I will tell you why you should really, REALLY start him this week.

Sure, Olsen has been a top 10 fantasy tight end for the last few years, but this season he has a chance to be a particularly important cog in the Carolina offense. The departure of wide receiver Steve Smith left the Panthers with one of the NFL's worst receiving corps. Smith was targeted 87 times in 2013, and Olsen will likely be the guy to take up the slack in the passing game.

Face it, when Panthers quarterback Cam Newton drops back to throw, he will see targets such as Kelvin Benjamin (a talented, but inexperienced rookie), Jerricho Cotchery (posted a career-best 32 receiving yards in 2013), Jason Avant (has never scored more than three touchdowns in a season) and Olsen. …

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