Fantasy Football
August 2, 2012 posted by Dan Stack

2012 Fantasy Football: Blair Thomas Award-Running Back Busts (Second Edition)

2012 Fantasy Football: Blair Thomas Award-Running Back Busts (Second Edition)
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Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons, RB

You’re all familiar with Blair Thomas right?

Well, if you weren’t aware of him, Thomas was a celebrated running back out of Penn State who was drafted by the New York Jets with the second overall pick in 1990.

Thomas’ hype was off the charts (think Trent Richardson of today), but he never lived up to his billing, only rushing for 2,236 yards and scoring seven touchdowns in six seasons.

When it comes to fantasy, you always want to stay away from busts (like the infamous Blair Thomas) and in this column I will evaluate three running backs with enough red flags to be considered busts.

Michael Turner: Atlanta Falcons

There are several warning signs suggesting the demise of Turner.

Now 30, Turner has logged a lot of carries over the last few years as the Falcons workhorse.  While Turner did not get a lot of carries when he was LaDainian Tomlinson’s understudy in San Diego, he has been overworked in Atlanta the last couple of years.

With the Falcons once again having playoff aspirations, they will want to keep Turner fresh. Falcons’ running backs coach Gerald Brown has already stated that the Falcons want to get more use out of their second-year back Jacquizz Rodgers.

Rodgers will undoubtedly get the majority of the third-down snaps and with the Falcons morphing into more of a passing team with Roddy White and Julio Jones at their disposal, Turner and the running game will be a secondary weapon as opposed to a primary weapon, as it has been in the past.

Turner will still get the lion’s share of the carries and he has proven to be durable, but Turner is no longer a draft pick worth investing in the first two rounds.

Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams, RB

Steven Jackson: St. Louis Rams

Much like Turner, it appears Jackson could also be slowing down at 29.

While trying to carry the pathetic Rams’ offense, Jackson has been showing some cracks in his game and the burden of trying to carry the load is starting to show.

In the last three years, Jackson has never been good for more than six total touchdowns in a season and last year he saw a significant drop in carries (330 in 2010 to 260 in 2011).

Although Jackson is still the unquestioned No.1 back for St. Louis, the Rams felt compelled to draft running back Isaiah Pead in the 2nd round of this year’s NFL Draft. With the selection of Pead, the Rams will likely want to lessen the load for Jackson.

Jackson should be targeted as a low-end No.2 running back.

Shonn Greene, New York Jets, RB

Shonn Greene: New York Jets

Now entering his fourth year with the Jets, Greene has done nothing to separate himself from the running back pack.

For the last two years, Greene was given every opportunity to be the lead Jets’ running back, but he continually underachieved and lost carries to LaDainian Tomlinson.

In his first three years in the league, Greene has only three more touchdowns (10) than he has fumbles (7).

With the Jets’ offense a jumbled mess and with Tim Tebow possibly playing his way into their red zone offense, Greene is about to become even more of an afterthought.

Greene should be targeted as nothing more than a No.3 running back or flex play.

Follow me on Twitter @Stacdemon


My name is Dan Stack and I live in Nyack, New York, which is about 20 miles north of New York City. I am a writer/blogger who is passionate about many things, namely sports. I am also very passionate when it comes to fantasy sports, whether it be baseball, football or basketball. You can find me writing/blogging here at,,, and I have also been the Managing Editor of my county's weekly newspaper (Rockland County Times). I hold a BA degree in Journalism/Broadcasting from C.W. Post University in Brookville, New York. I have other passion besides sports as I am big in to music, pop culture, dogs and and other fun stuff. I love New York and all that it has to offer. You can often find me writing/blogging, watching TV, attending movies or at a ballgame. E-Mail if you have any questions or comments.

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