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There’s no replacing Derrick Henry. The King was perhaps the most feared running back in the league over the past half-decade, and now the Titans have the unenviable task of trying to fill his shoes. They wasted no time, signing Tony Pollard less than an hour after the tampering period opened on Monday afternoon. Pollard, fresh off a fairly disappointing season, will team up with Tyjae Spears to form a dynamic RB duo for Tennessee. Let’s dig into the fantasy implications.



Old ranking: 74th overall on Underdog

New ranking: 74th overall

  • After averaging at least 5.2 yards per tote in three of his first four professional seasons, Pollard’s YPC sunk to 4.0 in his first year as a full-time starter last season. His -0.16 Rush Yards Over Expectation per attempt was one of the worst marks in the NFL. He also struggled mightily as a receiver to the tune of 4.6 yards per target and a terrible 50.2 PFF receiving grade. In short, Pollard was one of the least efficient backs in the league in 2023.
  • With that being said, Pollard noted he didn’t feel like himself early last season after suffering a fractured fibula in January of 2023. He showed better explosion down the stretch and now has another offseason to get fully healthy.
  • Three years and $24 million is a strong contract for a running back. Pollard has also shown the ability to handle an elite workload at the NFL level, something backfield mate Spears hasn’t shown yet.
  • The Titans’ offense could be pretty rough in 2024. Still, Pollard should be the primary back on early downs for Tennessee with a passable pass-catching role as well. Furthermore, a Spears injury (and there were concerns about his longevity coming into the league) would thrust Pollard into a workhorse role.



Old ranking: 77th overall on Underdog

New ranking: 133rd overall

  • Spears was terrific as a pass catcher during his rookie campaign, commanding an elite 14.2% target share despite playing just 53.1% of snaps on the season.
  • The departure of Mike Vrabel complicates Spears’ role, but one would think his pass-catching ability catches the eyes of the new staff. However, Brian Callahan and Co. have no connection to Spears, and one of the new regime’s first moves was to invest real capital into a free-agent running back. That doesn’t exactly bode well for Spears’ outlook.
  • Still, Spears was legitimately good as a rookie, and Pollard is far worse competition as a rusher than Henry. Pollard is likely the RB1 to start, but Spears could ascend if he simply outplays Pollard.
  • Spears is also one injury away from potentially a three-down role, and we know he’s a strong receiver. That’s the exact prototype we want from a Zero RB candidate. The only hang-up is the Titans’ offense looks like one of the worst in the league, but the second-year pro’s contingent upside should be highly attractive to fantasy gamers shooting for upside at RB in the late single-digit rounds.