Head to Head: Two Rashard Mendenhall 2013 Fantasy Predictions

With Rashard Mendenhall signing a free-agent contract with the Arizona Cardinals, let’s take a look at his fantasy prospects in 2013.

From Adam Rainbolt (@adamrainbolt);

As the Cardinals released a disappointing running back with a spurious injury history and proclivity to fumble the ball in Beanie Wells, the team signed a less-disappointing running back with a spurious injury history and proclivity to fumble the ball in Rashard Mendenhall.

Mendenhall, along with the return of third-year man Ryan Williams, Arizona hopes to improve upon their 32nd ranked rushing yards per attempt (3.4) under new head man, and reigning NFL Coach of the Year, Bruce Arians. Mendenhall’s dutiful blocking, coupled with Arizona’s patchy offensive line, should provide plenty of on-the-field action for him, provided he is back to the offensive effectiveness he showed early in his career.

Adam’s Prediction (3/14/2013): 800 yards rushing, 150 yards receiving and 6 total TDs which makes him a flex play in nearly all formats

From Regan Yant (@reganfp);

I seem to be one of the few that was ok with this signing.  Beanie Wells simply did not and could not get the job done in Arizona.  I will forever refer to him as the running back chosen 22 spots ahead of LeSean McCoy.  But this is not about Beanie, this is about Rashard. 

Nevermind his weird beliefs and the crazy things he has said, he knows Bruce Arians offense, he is only 25 years old, he will be over a year removed from his ACL injury, and he can block.  I feel he wore out his welcome in Pittsburgh last year and his rough play was more the fact he was in Coach Tomlin’s doghouse constantly.  I like the fact he is coming to a change of scenery on a relatively inexpensive one year “prove it” deal. 

I feel he can easily reproduce and even outproduce Vick Ballard’s stats last year in Arian’s offense, which were 966 total yards from scrimmage and 3 TDs, ranking him 25th overall in standard scoring for running backs.  Despite Mendenhall’s reputation as a fumbler, he has never had more than 3 in a season, Adrian Peterson has had more than four in four seperate seasons, including twice with more than seven.  Not trying to be a homer here, but I think he may open some eyes.

Regan’s Prediction (3/14/2013): 1060 total yards and 6 TDs, which puts him in Benjarvus Green-Ellis range of 18-21 ranked RBs

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