How to Treat Broncos RB Mike Boone as Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Target

How to Treat Broncos RB Mike Boone as Fantasy Football Waiver Wire Target article feature image

Photo by Tom Hauck/Getty Images. Pictured: Mike Boone.

With Broncos star RB Javonte Williams suffering a season-ending torn ACL against the Raiders, Melvin Gordon is the next man up.

Gordon, however, is already 79% owned in fantasy leagues so he’s not a realistic add for most people. But what about his backup, Mike Boone? Or the recently signed Latavius Murray?

Our experts weigh in below.

Sean Koerner: I wouldn’t go overboard trying to obtain Boone. He may offer some short term value if Gordon’s fumble issues prevent him from seeing many touches over the next couple of weeks. But this could be a murky two-way committee, maybe even a three-way committee after the Broncos recently added Murray.

The one positive about investing in this situation is that Williams' injury is a season-ending one, meaning either Gordon or Boone could potentially have RB2 value the rest of the season. This backfield has a tough matchup this week and my initial ranks are:

  • Gordon RB33
  • Boone RB35
  • Murray RB67

Samantha Previte: With Williams out for the season, next up on Denver's RB depth chart are Gordon, Boone, Devine Ozigbo and Murray, who the Broncos poached from the Saints’ practice squad on Monday.

Gordon is the obvious beneficiary of Williams’ absence, though ball security has been a major pain point all season.

Per Adam Schefter, the veteran back has fumbled five times in his past 44 carries over five games. Gordon’s fumble on Sunday was costly, as it led to a 68-yard scoop and score for the Raiders – it’s the third time one of his fumbles has led to a fumble-six (is this a thing?) in Denver’s past 12 games.

Nonetheless, Gordon is rostered almost everywhere, so most managers will have to turn their attention elsewhere.

Boone, Murray and Ozigbo are widely available. Boone tallied a season-high four touches for 29 yards on Sunday while Murray recorded 11 carries for 57 yards and a touchdown — with one catch for eight yards — against the Vikings in London.

Per Broncos insider Benjamin Allbright, he expects Ozigbo to be the RB3 on the short week for Thursday Night Football against the Colts, but expects it to be a split between Murray and Gordon — with Boone as the RB3 — after that.

As such, Murray would be my preferred add over Boone, though I expect both to see a significant uptick in work, as I seriously doubt Denver just hands the backfield over to Gordon alone.

Chris Raybon: How fast can a player get out of Nathaniel Hackett’s doghouse? Because Gordon was surely deep within it Sunday after fumbling for the fourth time this season.

Even with Williams going down, Gordon got out-snapped by Boone (19-10). The formerly seldom-used Boone also played 14 snaps in Week 3, a game in which Gordon fumbled twice.

Hackett refused to endorse Gordon after the game, and unless we get information indicating otherwise by Thursday, I think it's fair expect Boone to lead the backfield.

Boone had his own issues in Week 4, dropping a fourth-down pass in the fourth quarter that would have kept the Broncos' slim hopes alive. But he's averaging 6.2 yards per touch to Gordon’s 4.2 this year, and coaches will always frown more upon fumbles than drops.

The Hackett doghouse is nothing to play with: Albert Okwuegbunam, who is clearly the Broncos' most talented TE, played one snap in Week 4.

Gordon is their most talented runner after Williams, but he’s been fumble-sixed three times in his past 12 games. Ideally you would leave both Boone and Gordon glued to your bench Thursday, but if you need a desperation flex, Boone is the safer play.

Murray’s signing further complicates matters. He proved he is in game shape after handling 12 touches fresh off the practice squad for the Saints last week in London. It’s possible we see a three-way committee. I have all three ranked outside the top 40 RBs.

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