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Impact Rookie: Knowshon Moreno 07/17/2009

Posted by sportretort in denver broncos, NFL, Sports.
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
(Note:  from time to time until the season begins, I will spot light rookies that have a chance to make an impact in the NFL this season from a fantasy football perspective.)

It has been an interesting off season in Denver.  First, long time coach Mike Shanahan was let go, only to be replaced

Fans in Denver and fantasy owners alike will love Moreno's effort

Fans in Denver and fantasy owners alike will love Moreno's effort

by a rookie head coach, Josh McDaniels from New England.  Then McDaniels hurt pro bowl quarter back Jay Cutler’s feelings by listening to a trade offer and Cutler forced his way out of town, traded to Chicago for, among other things, quarterback Kyle Orton.  Then pro bowl wide receiver Brandon Marshall demands a trade.  (He will be in Denver this season.)  While this ongoing soap opera has been playing out, has any one even remembered that the Broncos drafted a running back in the first round?  Denver made Knowshon Moreno out of Georgia the 12th pick overall in the draft.

The Broncos went through, what was it , 150 running backs last season?  The injury bug hit Denver hard last season, and none of the seven or so running backs used in Denver made much of an impact.  During the off season, Denver acquired veterans Correll Buckhalter, from Philadelphia, and LaMont Jordan from the Raiders, but it is Moreno who will be asked to re-establish Denver’s rushing prowess.

In two seasons with Georgia, Moreno amassed 2730 rushing yards and

Moreno may find it less advisable to attempt to hurdle tacklers in the NFL

Moreno may find it less advisable to attempt to hurdle tacklers in the NFL

30 rushing touchdowns.  He also added 700+ receiving yards and 2 more scores through the air.  He is quick to and through the hole, and can also get the tough yards between the tackles when needed.  Lauded for giving maximum effort, his leaping ability made him a u- tube sensation on many occasions, but if he wishes to remain healthy in the NFL he will need to limit his attempts at hurdling tacklers.  He is also considered a good pass route runner.  When the formation calls for it, he can split out and run precise routes, not just be used as a check down receiver.  This will make him a valuable weapon in Denver’s arsenal.  Some question his breakaway speed and others consider him undersized for a prototypical NFL rusher, but he should do well with Denver’s offensive line opening holes for him. 

Moreno will probably not open the season as the number one running back on the depth chart for the Broncos.  But look for him to share carries from the get go, and become the featured back in Denver early in the season.  While offensive coordinator in New England, McDaniels opted for a running back by committee approach.  If Denver takes the same approach, Moreno’s value may diminish some.  Having said that,  expect good things from Moreno after a slow start from a fantasy perspective.  He will be a solid 3rd draft choice at the position.  Some may gamble on him as a number two back.  He will be gone before the mid way point in most fantasy league drafts.  Look for 900 plus rushing yards and another 300 receiving yards and 15-20 touchdowns.



1. Chris Benassi - 10/06/2009

I think Moreno is on track to break out. Denver is committed to running the ball and Moreno’s hands out of the backfield will make him a valuable asset as well.

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