• Stat Guy: Bergeron stacks up well with other backups

    Texas true freshman Joe Bergeron’s 191 yard three touchdown performance on Saturday was one of the best games by a Texas backup or for that matter a backup in NCAA history.
    Texas true freshman Joe Bergeron’s 191 yard three touchdown performance on Saturday was one of the best games by a Texas backup or for that matter a backup in NCAA history.

    Texas running back Joe Bergeron’s 191-yard, three-touchdown performance certainly solidified his place in the Longhorns’ offensive rotation, as evidenced by him being named a co-starter at tailback alongside Fozzy Whittaker for the Missouri game this Saturday.

    It’s not often that backup running backs get to showcase their talent — even when they do, the game is usually already decided. But with Malcolm Brown sidelined for the Texas Tech game with turf toe, Bergeron got an opportunity, put the Texas offense on his back and turned in a game for the ages. How does that performance stack up against past second-string running backs in college football? Let’s take a look at — what else? — the stats.

    Former TCU and current New York Jets running back LaDainian Tomlinson split time with Basil Mitchell in the ’97 and ’98 seasons posting respectable numbers. When Tomlinson got his chance to start a game in 1999, he rushed for a single-game NCAA record 406 yards versus UTEP. Tomlinson carried the ball 43 times and registered six touchdowns in his record-breaking performance.

    In 2001, Auburn running back Carnell “Cadillac” Williams entered the season as the No. 3 option on the depth chart. Similar to Bergeron, Williams got a chance to start the eighth game of the season against Arkansas. Williams carried the ball 19 times for 177 yards and one touchdown. Cadillac went on to becoming one of the most prolific running backs in Auburn history, rushing for 3,831 yards and 45 touchdowns.

    In 2005, Arkansas running back Darren McFadden entered his freshman season third on the roster behind senior De’Arrius Howard and sophomore Peyton Hillis. After McFadden carried the ball 31 times for 190 yards versus Georgia, he never relinquished the starting role at Arkansas. McFadden finished his career with 4,590 yards, second-most in SEC conference history (Hershel Walker, 5,259 yards).

    Also in 2005, Texas running back Jamaal Charles got his first career start in the Longhorns third game versus Rice. Charles rushed for 189 yards and three touchdowns in Texas’ 51-10 victory. Charles ended his career as the fourth-leading rusher in school history with 3,328 yards.

    And recently, in 2009, Virginia Tech’s Ryan Williams took over for an injured Darren Evans and posted sensational numbers: 1,655 yards and 21 touchdowns.

    Bergeron’s performance against the Red Raiders on Saturday is similar to many great college running backs first performances. With Malcolm Brown still hobbling, Bergeron has a great opportunity to solidify himself as the go-to-guy the rest of the season. 

    Printed on Wednesday, November 9, 2011 as: Bergeron's day stacks up with greats

  • Fantasy Frenzy: Rookies Jones, Dalton proving to be productive fantasy options

    After a hamstring injury kept Julio Jones from playing for nearly a month, the No. 6 pick from this year’s NFL Draft caught three passes for 131 yards and two touchdowns in a 31-7 Atlanta’s win over Indianapolis. The Falcons traded five picks, including two first-rounders, to Cleveland so they could move up 21 spots and pick Jones, who has already notched three 100-yard games this year.
    After a hamstring injury kept Julio Jones from playing for nearly a month, the No. 6 pick from this year’s NFL Draft caught three passes for 131 yards and two touchdowns in a 31-7 Atlanta’s win over Indianapolis. The Falcons traded five picks, including two first-rounders, to Cleveland so they could move up 21 spots and pick Jones, who has already notched three 100-yard games this year.

    Here’s a list of who’s hot and who’s not after Week 9 of fantasy football.

    HOT

    Julio Jones,
    Atlanta Falcons

    After the Falcons traded a bounty of picks to move up and select the talented Alabama star, people everywhere praised the move that gave Matt Ryan a much needed second option. But up until this week, the trade hadn’t worked out. Jones has been injured much of the season and had yet to produce. On Sunday, however, he made the Falcons management look like geniuses as he went off for 131 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Jones gives Atlanta the deep threat they need to complement Roddy White. Expect solid fantasy numbers from him the rest of the season.

    Andy Dalton,
    Cincinnati Bengals

    Cam Newton has stolen all the headlines this season as far as rookie quarterbacks go, but Dalton is quietly having a very good year for the 6-2 Bengals. He is hitting open receivers and showing a poise that some veteran quarterbacks struggle to find and he also puts up solid fantasy numbers. This weekend against the Titans, he threw for 217 yards and three touchdowns, good for 20 fantasy points in ESPN leagues. If you’re in a two-quarterback league or just need a bye week fill-in, look for Dalton to be a solid option the rest of the season.

    Laurent Robinson,
    Dallas Cowboys

    He had another solid week for Dallas with nine fantasy points in ESPN leagues. This is after being signed off the couch seven weeks ago to give the team some receiver depth. Now he is Dallas’ established third string wideout and, on the heels of another Miles Austin injury, he should see even more balls thrown his way. Expect Robinson to be a top-20 fantasy receiver until Austin comes back. He is available in 98 percent of ESPN fantasy leagues, so he is also an easy wavier pickup.

    COLD

    Indianapolis Colts
    The race for Andrew Luck seems to have a front-runner in the Colts as they are off to a 0-9 start. Without Peyton Manning, they have struggled mightily on offense and there is no reason to ever start a Colts player on fantasy at this point. This was exemplified in a 31-7 loss to the Falcons, where they just looked inept on offense. Sadly for the Colts, this kind of performance is now the norm. Stay away from playing any Colts player the rest of the season.

    Ryan Torain,
    Washington Redskins

    He was the starter in Washington at the beginning of the year but only received one carry Sunday as he falls farther and farther into Mike Shanahan’s doghouse. Roy Helu got the bulk of the work with 10 carries and 14 catches out of the backfield for over 150 yards from scrimmage. Helu has earned the starters job for now, so if you have Torain on your roster you might want to consider dropping him in favor of the first-year back.