Despite not being chosen until the fifth round, Atlanta Falcons running back Tyler Allgeier, the 12th of 23 RBs selected, drew some offseason buzz from fantasy football owners because he was stepping into a potentially advantageous situation. Now that training camp and the preseason are in the rearview mirror, however, it’s time reexamine Allgeier’s outlook for 2022.
One of the things that jumped off the page for fantasy owners was Allgeier’s role at BYU as a true workhorse type of back — to that end he carried the ball 276 times as a senior and led FBS in rushing touchdowns with 23. He’s also strong in pass protection, which should make him a viable option in the Falcons backfield regardless of down and distance. Allgeier is a tough, physical runner that drew some comps to Arizona Cardinals running back James Conner.
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The rookie didn’t exactly shine during camp or the preseason, however, carrying the ball 17 times for 68 yards and a touchdown. That included an eight-carry stint in the finale against the Jacksonville Jaguars when both Cordarrelle Patterson and Damien Williams were held out. If the Falcons had seen what they felt they needed to see of out Allgeier to that point, he likely would’ve joined them on the sidelines, which is what we saw with the Houston Texans and fellow rookie running back Dameon Pierce.
At this point, the depth chart has Patterson, who converted from receiver to running back last year, at the top. That was always to be expected, but the team’s most versatile weapon is never going to be a down-in, down-out grinder who runs between the tackles. He had 1,166 offensive yards and 11 combined TDs on 205 total touches a year ago, and it’s hard to imagine they’ll ask much more than that in 2022.
Where Allgeier disappointed is in failing to surpass Williams, a legit journeyman playing for his fourth team in the last five years, for the backup job. By far Williams’ best years came with the Kansas City Chiefs, which included 2019 when he set career highs in carries (111), yards (498), and touchdowns (five), but the 30-year-old did little with the Chicago Bears a season ago. This figures to be one of those occasional situations in which the depth chart won’t match the fantasy depth chart should Patterson get injured. Allgeier is physically better equipped to handle a larger load than Williams.
Fantasy football outlook
Expect the Falcons to mix and match will all three of their top backs, at least initially, with Patterson getting the majority of the touches, while Williams and Allgeier divvy up the more physical work. The BYU product could move into a more advantageous spot if either of the backs ahead of him, both of whom are on the wrong side of 30, break down. Whether that possibility is enough to justify carrying the rookie on your bench depends on the size of your league. He is worthy of an RB4 or No. 5 spot in any design of at least 12 teams and 16 players on a roster.