Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 6/7/13
“Phew, Finally!” Those are quite possibly the words Chris Ivory spoke when he realized the job is finally his (to lose) as the lead running back in New York. And that’s really the truth. It’s his to lose.I know what you’re thinking. “The Jets are horrendously awful and won’t move the chains enough to produce a stable running game.” Yes, this is possible if they truly are THAT bad this season. But you aren’t going to have to pay a hefty premium for Ivory in this years draft in most leagues, so why not roll with the guy?  After all, SOMEONE has to get all these carries.Take a chance on Ivory. There’s definitely a silver lining with this guy. He’s proved (when given the brief opportunity in New Orleans) that he has “every down back” potential, and the dude runs HARD and doesn’t go down easily. He’s a 6-foot, 220-pound explosive back who has shown breakaway speed in the open field. If you recall, two seasons ago, he was a lovely surprise to many fantasy owners that picked this guy up on the waivers.Let’s not get it twisted; Chris Ivory is no Shonn Greene (tongue-in-cheek tone). He’s BETTER. Assuming he stays healthy, I think he’s going to be a great, consistent flex play (even RB2 in many leagues) all season long, and he’s not going to give up goal line carries to the fullback vultures of the world. I love Ivory’s odds of a 1000-yard, 10-12 touchdown season. Yes, I’m that high on him (from a fantasy perspective, of course).There are only a few problem scenarios that hinder the success of Ivory:Problem A: Mark Sanchez is just atrocious, has more “butt fumbles,” and simply can’t run the offense or move the sticks, thus hindering opportunities for Ivory to put up numbers.Problem B: Bilal Powell impresses in training camp and pre-season, and earns some sort of a split (of carries) with Ivory at the beginning of the season, making him somewhat of an iffy flex play.Problem C: Ivory gets hurt, which has plagued him in the past, but let’s face it, all RBs are injury risks. Don’t let that get in your head too much.Now, by no means am I saying to bank on Ivory as an RB2 on draft day. Don’t even put all your eggs in this guy’s basket (I’d feel pretty terrible if he fell on his backside and smashed all of your precious fantasy eggs). Draft him as a FLEX guy, (unless you are in a 14-team or deeper league) and let this be a lovely little 2013 fantasy surprise. With this strategy, it allows you to afford to “miss” on a guy come draft day, and also doesn’t leave you in a desperate position if one of your studs goes down with an injury. Let Ivory be the saving grace.
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