| Running Back, New Orleans Saints
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|Draft: 2010 Round 1 (9)
Ht: 5’11” Wt: 200 DOB: 1987-08-15 Age: 28
|Spiller spent the first year and a half of his career making Bills management look like fools for using the 9th pick in the 2010 rookie draft to acquire him. However, Fred Jackson’s season-ending leg injury thrust Spiller into the starting lineup and he played far better than anyone could have anticipated over the balance of the season. After a poor performance in his first game as a starter, Spiller accumulated 446 yards rushing, 187 receiving yards and scored five touchdowns over his last six games, hitting double-digit fantasy points four times. That means Spiller has solidified his standing as the Bills running back of the future. What it doesn’t mean is that he has earned a huge role in 2012. Jackson was a beast when healthy in 2011 and signed a two-year contract extension in the offseason. The expectation is that he will get the majority of the touches in the Bills backfield but that Spiller’s use won’t be as minimal as it was when Jackson was healthy. Consider Spiller a high-end RB4 with upside.
| Drew Brees to test shoulder today -- Tue Sep 29 9:35 am --|
Saints QB will throw for first time since Friday
|Ed Werder reports on Twitter that Drew Brees plans to test his injured shoulder today, the first time since Friday he's thrown a football. (Ed Werder (Twitter))|
FF Today's Take: As of right now, Brees isn't a great fantasy option for a team that's struggling to get its passing game clicking. Mark Ingram remains a solid RB2 and Khiry Robinson/C.J. Spiller are deep flex options, but most of the receivers will need Brees to be healthy to realize their full potential.
|HC: "I've got to find opportunities for Spiller" -- Mon Sep 28 6:00 pm --|
Health, offseason knee surgery no longer an issue
|Sean Payton said New Orleans Saints RB C.J. Spiller is “100 percent healthy” and that he needs to find ways to get him more touches. Payton said Spiller’s snap count was not limited by his recovery from a recent minor knee surgery. That was the case when Spiller returned to the field in Week 2 and played just seven snaps. But it wasn’t an issue in Week 3.
"I’ve got to keep finding opportunities for his touches,” Payton said. “I've got to get him more opportunities. He's healthy and, shoot, he needs more than anything to stay actively warm as opposed to play every 12 or 14 plays.” (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: In an offense that appears to lack playmakers in the passing game after Brandin Cooks, it would be wise for Payton to manufacture touches for a big-play threat such as Spiller. When coaches call themselves out in regards to usage of a certain player, it usually bodes well for that player the following week. Expect that to be the case next week when New Orleans hosts Dallas on Sunday Night Football.
| Spiller shaping up to be a game-time decision -- Thu Sep 17 6:25 pm --|
Continuing to make his way back from August knee surgery
|C.J. Spiller missed the first week of the regular season as he continues to make his way back from August knee surgery, but things are looking a bit better for this week. Saints coach Sean Payton said Thursday that Spiller is doing well and that he doesn’t think there will be any issues getting him ready to play despite his recent inactivity. Spiller said that he feels good, but neither man was willing to say whether Spiller would be in the lineup against Tampa Bay. (Pro Football Talk)|
FF Today's Take: Despite his absence last week, Spiller's owners had to be thrilled with just how involved Saints' running backs were in the passing game against Arizona as Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson combined for 13 catches and 149 yards receiving. The ex-Buffalo Bill's upside in PPR leagues is enormous in this offense. Even if he is limited or sits out in Week 2, he is still a very good bet for 100-plus carries and 70-80 receptions.
|Mark Ingram wants to be "three-down" back -- Tue Aug 25 10:40 am --|
Saints RB talking up role as receiver and pass protector
|Mark Ingram has been angling to be used more as a receiver and every-down back since he arrived as a first-round draft pick and Heisman Trophy winner out of Alabama in 2011.
"I know I'm a three-down back," said Ingram. "I could do first down, second down, third down, run the ball, catch the ball, pass protect. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Coach Sean Payton said he thinks both Ingram and Khiry Robinson have become "a little more accomplished" in the passing game, which gives the offense more flexibility when they're on the field.
It's great to hear Ingram embracing what should be an expanded role this season for the Saints, and since C.J. Spiller has been far from reliable in his career thus far, it makes sense to bump Ingram up a bit on your cheatsheets.
| Spiller had arthroscopic knee surgery Friday -- Sat Aug 15 3:09 pm --|
Expected back for Week 1
|Saints' C.J. Spiller underwent arthroscopic knee surgery Friday in Pensacola, Fla, but is expected back for regular-season opener, per source. (Adam Schefter on Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: It's never a good thing to hear the word "surgery" but it sounds like this was a clean up procedure on the knee which shouldn't keep the Saints running back out for long. Spiller however has a significant injury history and as a result his early 4th-round ADP in PPR leagues is likely to slip in the coming days which could represent a nice buying opportunity in re-draft leagues next weekend.
|Cooks, Spiller should be Saints' top targets -- Thu Jul 23 6:45 pm --|
Ex-Bill RB "should catch 60-plus passes"
|Even though the Saints traded away their top two pass-catchers from last season (Jimmy Graham and Kenny Stills), the cupboard is far from bare. Brandin Cooks and C.J. Spiller are the two players who will likely generate the most buzz this summer. Both have dynamic speed, which allows them to bust big plays in the open field. Cooks should emerge as New Orleans’ No. 1 receiver on deep throws and short stuff like screens and end-arounds, while Spiller should catch 60-plus passes out of the backfield in the mold of Darren Sproles and Reggie Bush. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Cooks could challenge the 100-catch mark in his second year; he was on an 85-catch pace through 10 games as a rookie last season before a thumb injury derailed his season. It'd be a shocker if Spiller finishes with only 60 receptions, however, since Drew Brees has peppered his running backs with targets for years. Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson are not high-volume pass-catchers and Graham is gone, so Spiller could easily push 80 catches if he can stay on the field.
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