Two running backs who are sure to get a lot of attention as second or third tier guys in 2011 fantasy football drafts are Tampa Bay Buccaneer LeGarrette Blount and New York Jet Shonn Greene.


I have already gone on record saying I think Greene is a prime bounceback candidate and reclaim a spot high on 2011 fantasy football rankings. But what if both players are available when your pick comes up in round 3 of your fantasy draft? Which one should you take?  


That's the latest topic for the Roundtable panel at FFTrader.com. The complete list of what the other experts thought should be up soon. Below is my submission for the topic.


Both Blount and Greene have a lot going for them in both re-draft and dynasty style leagues. Both are young RB's who should be their team's primary RB for the next few years. Both are big RB's (Blount is 6'0", 241 lbs, Greene is 5'11", 226 lbs) who are a load to bring down that should excel in goal line situations. Neither is an accomplished pass catcher so neither figures much into their team's 3rd down role when it's a passing situation.


But whereas we are still waiting to see what Greene would do in a feature role, Blount took off in 2010 as the feature RB for the Bucs the last 11 games. His 2010 rise to fantasy stardom was amazing considering he went undrafted. Teams shied away from drafting him due to his infamous punching incident in college and he was signed by the Tennessee Titans as an undrafted rookie free agent. He was cut by Tennessee before the season began and Tampa Bay picked him up. He was either inactive, or saw very limited action the first 6 weeks of the season (getting a total of only 10 carries in only 2 games). But then the Bucs started getting him more carries starting week 7 and he took off from that point on. Maybe it was being snubbed in the draft, but he played every week after that with a chip on his shoulder, punishing opponents with his bruising style.


Tampa Bay has a young, blossoming passing attack with emerging star and 2011 fantasy football sleeper QB Josh Freeman and WR's Mike Williams, Arrelious Benn, and Dezmon Briscoe. It will prevent opponents from stacking the box against Blount in 2011 and beyond. The Bucs also have very little competition for Blount in terms of a RB who would take carries away from him. Between 3rd down RB Kareem Huggins, FB Earnest Graham, Kregg Lumpkin, and rookie 6th round draft pick Allen Bradford, there isn't any other talent at the position like Blount or a serious threat to force a slit RB situation. From week 7 until the end of the season in 2010, Blount had 191 carries for 977 yards. While I question whether he would maintain a 5.1 yards per rush attempt average, it certainly is realistic to project him for around 4.4. Just taking his carries from those last 11 games and averaging it out for a full 16, he'd have 277 rushing attempts. At 4.4 yards per carry, that would be 1,219 yards. Double digit touchdowns are a definite possibility, but even the low end of 8 TD's would still make him a strong #2 RB in fantasy football. Double digit TD's would make him a good fantasy RB #1. And it's kind of easy to see Blount getting closer to 300 carries than 277.


Greene on the other hand is still unproven at carrying the load. He looked like he was going to explode heading into 2010 after a great 2009 playoffs showing. But instead, the Jets chose to keep him in a platoon with LaDainian Tomlinson. They say they are turning to Greene as their primary RB in 2011, but Tomlinson is still there. Joe McKnight showed well in the one game he got to be featured, and the Jets drafted Bilal Powell in the 4th round in April's NFL draft. The Jets are expected to only use LT as a minor change of pace and 3rd down RB this year. But McKnight brings speed and has fresh legs and could get some playing time. Powell isn't nearly as big as Greene, but has enough size and is well regarded as a potential candidate to be used often as part of a rotation.


The real question is whether you believe the Jets are going to turn to Greene to be their primary RB and give him at least 16 carries every game (a mark he only surpassed 3 times in 2010). And while I think they should, there are other potential capable RB's who could take some of the load away from Greene. Not just this year, but also for the future.


I like Greene; he was my choice for 2011 Bounceback Fantasy Player before the draft. I think the Jets should be riding him as he is a big punishing RB, but I don't know if I trust the Jets to ride him as much as I trust the Bucs to ride Blount as their primary RB. If I was drafting and both RB's were available, I'd take Blount. Both in re-draft and dynasty style leagues."