For years Arian Foster has been one of the top running backs in the national football league. For years he has been plagued with injuries. Foster is yet to play in 2015, but it appears more likely every day that he will be able to suit up in Week 4 for the Houston Texans matchup with the Atlanta Falcons.
Texans TV’s Drew Dougherty said Foster looked good in practice on Thursday, and that’s certainly a good sign for any foster owners out there:
But the question still remains: will Foster play? And if he does play, is he worth a spot in your starting lineup?
As a Bill Belichick disciple, Houston head coach Bill O’Brien is expectedly noncommittal when it comes to telling the media whether or not his players will play, so your guess is probably as good as mine as to if Foster will play. That being said, the Texans need all the offensive help they can get, and if Foster is medically cleared I expect him to be in the starting lineup.
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Foster has shown his ability to be a dominant fantasy performer, and the Atlanta defense just gave up 127 yards and 4 touchdowns to the Dallas running backs, which provides a very interesting matchup. Foster has faced the Falcons once in his career, a game in which he ran for 111 yards and 1 touchdown.
However, Foster’s replacement Alfred Blue had an excellent breakout game last week against Tampa Bay, running for 139 yards and a touchdown. This may be a little bit frightening for any owners of Houston running backs, as Blue’s great performance could lead to more of a running back by committee than we have seen from the Texans in the past.
If Foster does play though, it will be tough to keep him out of your lineup. You never know how many games you’ll get out of Foster in a season, so if you spent a draft pick on him you want to make use of it. I’m probably starting Foster if I have him, but I also probably don’t feel great about it.
If I have Alfred Blue, I’m equally nervous about him, and I’m not playing him in any but the deepest of leagues if Foster starts. If Arian can’t play though, Blue has a top-10 matchup against Atlanta, and he could end up having an outstanding week like Joseph Randle did for Dallas last week. My only fear is that Matt Ryan and Julio Jones will score so many points that Houston has to throw the ball to keep up, and the running backs don’t get many carries.
If Foster does explode though, I’m looking to trade him quickly, as I simply can’t trust him to stay on the field. In daily fantasy, I’m staying away from Foster as his price is still fairly high, and I’m only putting Blue in my lineup if I’m certain Foster won’t play. Hopefully after this week we’ll have a much clearer image of what Houston’s running back situation will look like.