Ito Smith, RB, Atlanta Falcons

With Devonta Freeman suddenly moved to the injured reserve, it’s time to start getting serious about rookie fourth round draft pick, Ito Smith. While Tevin Coleman has been the leader in the backfield this season proving his worth in a contract year, he is getting some serious competition from Smith.

Neither Coleman nor Smith is really lighting it up on the ground. Coleman has the edge this season with 3.7 YPA and 8.1 YPR over Smith’s 3.2 YPA and 6.6 YPR. Where Smith does have the edge interestingly is in the red zone. Smith leads all Falcons players with 16 red zone opportunities (29% market share) per DailyRoto. This is especially impressive considering Smith has only been on the field for 24% of the team’s snaps this season. Smith also out-touched Tevin Coleman 13-11 just last week.

The Falcons don’t have a great rest of season schedule when looking at their upcoming opponents, but their offense is powerful enough to keep both backs busy and as long as Smith stays somewhere on either side of a 60%-40% workload split, he will be flexworthy more weeks than not. Smith is a must grab for me even in standard 12-team leagues who is only owned in 51% of Yahoo! leagues at the moment.