Don’t Fear The Reaper: Game Theory Behind the RB Dead Zone

Any pick you make in earlier rounds has ramifications for later round selections; this is part of the opportunity cost. If you take Josh Jacobs at pick No. 45 as your RB3, this makes later round options such as Gus Edwards, Zack Moss, or A.J Dillon less impactful to your team. You become more likely to forgo them for receivers. If Jacobs is your first or second running back it’s more justifiable, but it becomes a question of floor vs. ceiling, and you are choosing the wrong answer.

There are several rushers with youth, pass catching and RB1 upside going rounds three through six in 2021. With two elite RB classes, 2017 and 2020, still at peak value, top end talents are being pushed into the dead zone. Gone are Leonard Fournette, Le’Veon Bell, Todd Gurley and Melvin Gordon. Enter explosive options such as Miles Sanders, D’Andre Swift, and Travis Etienne.