The 2021 fantasy football the season is officially in the rearview mirror, but the grind never stops! As soon as one season ends, we immediately start planning the next one. With Los Angeles Rams RB Sony Michel set to be an unrestricted free agent, let’s take a look at some potential landing spots and analyze the fantastic impact his arrival would have on those teams.
Sony Michel landing spots
Michel ended the 2021 season strong after taking over from an injured Darrell Henderson. Over the final six weeks of the season, Michel averaged 21.5 carries for 90 yards with a 90% snap share. He’s certainly done enough to earn himself a relevant role somewhere in 2022.
It is unlikely that Michel will find himself in a three-way role. He established himself as a two-down crusher. However, he can still find himself in a fantasy-relevant role as the lead rusher and goal-line guard.
Los Angeles Rams
There’s always a chance the Rams will bring Michel back. We can safely assume they want to cede their backfield to Cam Akers, but that will heavily depend on how he looks during this post-season run and whether they feel he can get back to his pre-injury form. .
It is entirely possible that Michel will return to form a duo with Akers. However, that would conflict with head coach Sean McVay’s general approach to his backfield, where he has a lead.
Earlier this season, Henderson was clearly the guy, dominating snaps and touches. Henderson is under contract for another year, but he only costs the team $1.3 million. They can easily go back to pushing Henderson back as they’ve done his entire career since he was drafted in 2019. The only scenario in which Henderson has seen significant work is when the Rams have literally run out of alternatives. He is not a threat to Michel.
If Michel returns to the Rams, his fantasy value will depend on his role alongside Akers. We could see Akers as the main full-back and Michel as a substitute like he was earlier this year. Akers could also struggle to regain his previous form, and Michel could check in as a high RB2. Ultimately, Michel is even more likely to leave the Rams, but it’s worth discussing what his return would look like.
The Dolphins enter the offseason with the most cap space in the NFL. They also have a fairly uncertain backfield. At various times this season, we’ve seen Myles Gaskin, Salvon Ahmed, Duke Johnson and Phillip Lindsay count. The Dolphins aren’t committed to any of them long term and can easily replace them with a guy like Michel.
Additionally, the Dolphins are more likely to try to approach their backfield through free agency than through the draft. They haven’t drafted a running back until Round 7 since Kalen Ballage in 2018. The last time they took a running back from Day 1 or 2 was Kenyan Drake in 2016. is simply not a team that writes RBs.
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In Miami, Michel would immediately become their main runner. I wouldn’t expect him to be a three-man back, though. We should always have someone else handle the transmission work.
As a result, Michel’s fantasy value would be capped at a touchdown dependent RB2. It’s still a useful asset and far better than where his career was heading after his 2020 campaign.
With the sixth-smallest cap space available, the Falcons aren’t necessarily in the best position to sign a running back. Nevertheless, they may still need to address the position.
Mike Davis has only 762 yards on 182 touches this season. He comes with a cap of $3.25 million hit in 2022, but would only cost the Falcons $750,000 in dead cap if they released him. I would say it is more likely to be cut than not. Would they sign a guy like Michel rather than spend a third- or fourth-round pick on a running back?
The last time the Falcons signed a former running back from the Rams, it didn’t go so well. Fortunately, Michel has a lot more in the tank than Todd Gurley.
If Michel joins Atlanta, his value will heavily depend on what the Falcons offense looks like. Matt Ryan is coming off the worst season of his career and has no guarantee of returning in 2022. Luckily, we have plenty of time to wait and see how things play out and figure out Michel’s value for the season. 2022.