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Why I’m Low On Bills RB Zack Moss For Rookie Dynasty Drafts

Why I’m Low On Bills RB Zack Moss For Rookie Dynasty Drafts article feature image

Jeff Halstead/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Zack Moss

Zack Moss Dynasty Rookie Analysis

  • Position: RB | School: Utah
  • Height: 5’9″ | Weight: 223 pounds
  • 40-yard dash: 4.65 seconds
  • 2020 Age: 23 | Class: Senior
  • Recruitment Stars: 3
  • Draft Position: 3.86 (Bills)

Zack Moss’ Fantasy Fit with Bills

Given his draft position, Moss might carve out a significant role as the thunderous touchdown-scoring complement to starter Devin Singletary’s lightning. As electric as he was last year, Singletary scored just four touchdowns.

But Singletary really flashed last year, especially in the second half of the season, when he put up 639 yards in the final eight games. There’s a real chance that Moss is just the Alexander Mattison to Singletary’s Dalvin Cook.

Moss is an upside backup, but he probably won’t be a fantasy-relevant player in 2020 unless Singletary suffers an injury.

Zack Moss: Dynasty Analysis

There is significant enthusiasm around Moss in the scouting and draftnik communities, but I’m skeptical.

I appreciate that he was a strong producer for his three final collegiate campaigns (per Pro Football Focus).

  • 2017 (13 games): 214-1,1173-10 rushing, 29-243-0 receiving on 35 targets
  • 2018 (nine games): 179-1,096-11 rushing, 8-50-1 receiving on 10 targets
  • 2019 (13 games): 235-1,416-15 rushing, 28-388-2 receiving on 31 targets

And based on a combination of his PFF rushing and receiving grades, missed tackles per carry, yards after contact per attempt and yards per route run, Moss is the No. 1 backfield prospect from the 2017-20 draft classes.

Top 10 in Average Ranking:

Zack Moss* – 2.5!🧐
Jonathan Taylor* – 7.75
Darrell Henderson – 8.25
Dalvin Cook – 8.75
Joe Mixon – 11.75
Kareem Hunt – 12
Josh Jacobs – 13
Rashaad Penny – 14.5
AJ Dillon* – 15.5
Saquon Barkley – 16.5

* = 2020 RB Class
# = Average ranking per metric

— Michelle Magdziuk (@BallBlastEm) April 17, 2020

PFF has him ranked as the most elusive back in the class and the No. 2 back overall. His profile in the PFF NFL Draft Guide is glowing:

Moss has been one of college football’s best running backs since his emergence as a true sophomore back in 2017. In each of the last three seasons, Moss has produced a PFF rushing grade that ranked among the 15 best at his position. He’s been one of the more elusive backs in that stretch, breaking 0.33 tackles per rush attempt, which was the third-highest rate. That’s very promising for his NFL future considering that trait translates from college to pro more than any other for ball carriers. He’s also produced the fifth-most explosive rushes of 10 or more yards since 2017, with 103 on his 626 carries. …

Moss ticks pretty much every box you’d like to see at the running back position except for speed. He’s got the size, vision, hands, and especially elusiveness.

The player to whom PFF compares him is Kareem Hunt.

Ugh. I don’t know.

I hate to go against the professional tape-grinding experts, because I openly admit that they know more than I do about what’s happening on the field.

Moss and Hunt are physically comparable, and they probably have similar playing styles, but Moss is unlike Hunt in some significant ways.

Hunt was younger as a rookie (22 years old), a four-year contributor (5,500 yards, 45 touchdowns) and a better pass-catching back (41-403-1 receiving in senior season).

In other words, Hunt was simply the superior prospect entering the league.

Without question, Moss is an above-average, well-rounded back who runs with balance, vision and physicality and catches the ball with adequacy. But that’s what is always said about every over-hyped run-of-the-mill running back who gets drafted one year merely to be replaced the following year by yet another league-average back, who happens to look exactly like him.

Moss might look like Hunt — but he also is pretty similar to Royce Freeman, Kenneth Dixon, Mike Davis, Robert Turbin and a whole host of backs people tend to forget.

And with backs who look like that, no one is very good at predicting which ones will have NFL success and which ones won’t.

Moss might be an effective starter and fantasy contributor one day — but he’s someone I will strongly consider fading in rookie drafts.

If I’m wrong, I can live with it.

NFL Prospect Comp: Montee Ball with a thicker, more compact frame and less production and pedigree

More Dynasty Analysis For Freedman’s Top Rookies

  1. RB D’Andre Swift
  2. RB Jonathan Taylor
  3. WR Jerry Jeudy
  4. WR CeeDee Lamb
  5. WR Justin Jefferson

Matthew Freedman is the Editor-in-Chief of FantasyLabs, part of The Action Network.

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