The dynasty debate series has made a triumphant return! The series works like this: We take two Dynasty Nerds writers and have them argue over two players at each position they prefer in a dynasty league format. In this article, Corey Easterday and Mychal Warno debate which running back you want on your dynasty roster moving forward, Javonte Williams or Travis Etienne?
Weekly ridiculous Javonte Williams chunk runpic.twitter.com/oQtQTvEjZm— Ian Hartitz (@Ihartitz) November 7, 2021
Let’s jump right into this debate over these third-year backs. For the sake of this year, I feel Etienne is the safer option for this year; however, this is a dynasty debate. Both running backs had a season cut short due to an injury, with Williams suffering a season-ending injury just four games into his 2022 sophomore season. Media reports have been mixed on whether Williams will be available for the start of the 2023 NFL season. I am leaning toward Williams not being ready with the recent signing of Samaje Perine.
So about last year
Williams finished the 2022 season with 204 rushing yards and 16 receptions for 76 receiving yards while splitting the workload with Melvin Gordon. Williams’s rookie campaign saw him rush for 903 rushing yards, four rushing touchdowns, 43 receptions, 316 receiving yards, and three receiving touchdowns while also sharing reps with Melvin Gordon before Gordon was released.
Let’s not try to sugarcoat the 2022 Denver Broncos offense. It was terrible. First year head coach Nathaniel Hackett only lasted 15 games into the season before Denver terminated his contract and replaced him with Super Bowl winning coach Sean Payton. Payton brings with him an offense that was consistently in the top 10 in overall production.
I’m optimistic about Williams’ outlook due to his possible role in the offense. In Payton’s offense during this time in New Orleans, Alvin Kamara had five seasons of 81, 81, 81, 83, and 43 in receptions. Running backs under Payton have generally yielded reception numbers going back to the days of Reggie Bush and Darren Sproles. Payton’s running backs account for over 30% of the team’s receptions during this time in New Orleans.
Let’s wrap this debate up by saying if I were a Javonte Williams manager, I would not be accepting those lowball offers you are receiving for him. The season may start off rocky with the possibility of starting on the PUP list, but once Williams hits the field, you will be pleased that you held onto the 22-year-old running back.
Thank you, Corey, for another great debate. I hope readers enjoy this series as much as I enjoy debating it. Please follow me on Twitter @dynastydadmike, where I love to chat about all things football. Make sure you are signed up for the DynastyGM, which is becoming the #1 fantasy tool for all dynasty players! USE PROMO CODE “DYNASTYDAD15” to save 15% off your membership.
The Dynasty Debate series on @DynastyNerds continues as @DynastyDadMike and I discuss which running back we would prefer to roster for the long haul: Travis Etienne or Javonte Williams. 🏈— Corey Easterday (@CoreyEasterday) February 27, 2023
If you had to pick, which RB do you prefer in dynasty leagues? #NerdHerd
Mychal and I wanted to debate Javonte Williams and Travis Etienne because they are both great long-term dynasty assets. Picking one of these running backs is tough, but I lean toward Etienne. As Mychal said, Etienne also suffered a season-ending injury early in his career, but he bounced back in a big way last season.
JRob we hardly knew ye
It seemed like the Jaguars backfield belonged to James Robinson during the start of what was, essentially, Etienne’s rookie campaign, but that changed quickly. Etienne’s talent began shining through, and he never looked back. He played in all 17 games and tallied 1,125 rushing yards and 5 rushing touchdowns. He also had 35 receptions on 45 targets, 316 receiving yards, and 0 receiving touchdowns. In PPR, he averaged 12.1 FPTS/G and turned into a reliable RB2 each week. The Jaguars eventually traded Robinson to the Jets, giving Etienne a big vote of confidence.
No one expected Etienne to finish last season 8th in rushing yards coming off his injury. His 5.1 Yards per Carry showed his ability to be highly effective with each opportunity. Reuniting with his college quarterback Trevor Lawrence and operating under Head Coach Doug Pederson helped a lot. Last year’s Jaguars offense was a big step up and should only improve this coming season.
Etienne’s the top cat
One person I’m confident to explode in 2023 is Travis Etienne.— Snoog’s Dynasty Society 📖(Alex) (@FFSnoog) February 22, 2023
Going to play in a great offense with plenty of red-zone opportunities to score double digit TDs.
You cannot deny his elite contact balance and explosiveness, along with the power he has molded into his game. pic.twitter.com/Jw797sNcnX
Unless the Jaguars acquire more running back help, Etienne should have a clear path to more opportunities in 2023. JaMycal Hasty, D’Ernest Johnson, and Snoop Conner are all talented backs, but I don’t see them competing heavily with Etienne for lead duties. Etienne does have room for improvement in the passing game, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Jaguars get him more involved there as well.
Etienne is in a great offensive system, has loads of talent, and when you combine that with increased opportunities – the sky is the limit. I believe he will continue to evolve into a star RB1, who you can build the core of your dynasty team around.
Thank you, Mychal, for another great debate! Be sure to follow me on Twitter @CoreyEasterday and become a member of the #NerdHerd. Exclusive Content, Rankings, DynastyGM, and more! USE PROMO CODE ‘EASTERDAY’ for 15% off ANY SUBSCRIPTION – CLICK HERE to sign up today. Dynasty Nerds has all the tools you need to dominate your league!
*All Stats from Fantasy Data unless otherwise noted