Kansas City running back Jamaal Charles was a Top 3 pick in many fantasy football drafts last season after his breakout 2010 campaign, but he tore his ACL in Week 2 and owners basically got nothing out of him.
He's back, which is good news for both the Chiefs and fantasy owners, but how much can he be counted on after ACL surgery and with the newly signed Peyton Hillis around to take carries from him?
FakeTeams.com thinks you're safe, listing Charles as the No. 7-ranked running back. One prediction has him projected for 220 carries, 1,250 yards, 12 TD, 30 catches, 350 yards, 4 TD. If you can handcuff him by also drafting Hillis, do so. He's projected 120 carries, 500 yards, 6 TD, and that's if Charles is fully recovered.
Charles looked healthy in the Chiefs' preseason-opening win over the Arizona Cardinals. He's the guy if healthy, but Hillis -- who is also coming off injury but rushed for 41 yards on four carries against the Cards -- isn't a bad option should Charles go down. Both players should push each other and give the Chiefs plenty to work with in the running game.
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