Travis Etienne 2021 Fantasy Football Tip: Is Rookie Jaguars RB Ready To Make A Splash?

Juan Carlos Blanco offers his Travis Etienne 2021 Fantasy Football Tip And Outlook. See The Game Day’s full 2021 fantasy football draft coverage.

Travis Etienne 2021 Fantasy Football Tip

Travis Etienne 2020 Stats (Clemson)

  • 168 carries
  • 914 rushing yards
  • 14 rushing touchdowns
  • 5.4 yards per carry
  • 48 receptions
  • 588 receiving yards
  • 2 receiving touchdowns
  • 12.3 yards per reception
  • 12 games

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Travis Etienne 2021 Fantasy Football Outlook

Travis Etienne is highly regarded as one of the best running backs to come out of his draft class. Etienne was the 25th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft out of Clemson, and will now join college teammate and No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence in Jacksonville. After an impressive college career filled with accolades and accomplishments, Etienne hopes to bring his versatile skill set to the new-and-improved Jaguars’ offense.

Etienne joins a running back room in Jacksonville with undrafted star James Robinson, whose unexpected breakout rookie season in 2020 will likely make him the team’s top tailback this year. The Jaguars also went out and signed Carlos Hyde to give the backfield a veteran presence.

However, Jacksonville’s willingness to draft a running back in the first round suggests that the trio will share snaps in the offense, as Etienne wasn’t drafted to ride the bench. Given Etienne’s receiving skills, he could operate as more of a passing-down back while Robinson handles more of the carries, with Hyde subbing in for Robinson when he needs a breather. The three backs could see a significant change in snaps week to week depending on the matchup, making them riskier fantasy plays with volatile production.

Accordingly, expect Etienne to be worked in more slowly given his lack of experience. Robinson will likely lead the backfield initially while Etienne learns the offense, but by season’s end it’s possible that they’ll be splitting carries more evenly or that Etienne will surpass him with his superior skills. Hyde is going to turn 31 this year and played sparingly for the Seattle Seahawks last season, so Jacksonville’s running game will likely be more of a two-man show.


Travis Etienne 2021 Fantasy Football Draft Value (PPR)

The Jaguars ranked last in rushing attempts per game last season, but a new head coach in Urban Meyer and offensive coordinator in Darrell Bevell could help invigorate their run game, especially if they’re more competitive this season. With Lawrence under center, opposing defenses will have to respect Jacksonville’s passing game much more, which should create more space for their running backs.

Speaking of Lawrence, he may look Etienne’s way a lot this year. They already have a strong rapport after playing three seasons together in college, and the Jaguars’ receiving corps isn’t the strongest. Meyer spoke about Etienne taking snaps at wide receiver during rookie minicamp, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Etienne is used in that capacity during the regular season.

Despite Jacksonville’s expected timeshare, Etienne is currently going in the middle of the sixth round in fantasy drafts as the RB25, one spot ahead of Robinson. While his long-term potential is likely that of an RB1 or RB2, he’ll realistically be more of an RB3 or RB4 this year depending on how his playing time shakes out. He may not be a weekly fantasy starter at first, but he’s worth grabbing in the middle rounds and should be playing a larger role by the time fantasy playoffs roll around.

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