It is interesting days in Indianapolis. The dawn of a new era has come with rookie sensation Anthony Richardson getting ready to take the helm as the new starting quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts. He’ll have some big shoes to fill with Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck still in the recent memory of Colts fans.
But while the excitement is building on Richardson, it is more like dread building in the running back room. Superstar running back Jonathan Taylor is out the first four weeks of the year with an ankle injury. The team and Taylor have already gone through contract bickering and one round of searching for a trade partner this past month.
With Taylor out for weeks (and possibly longer if the Colts and he can’t come to contract terms), Indy needs another back to step up in his stead. Could that back be rookie Evan Hull? Let’s dig in and find out if Hull is worth a fantasy football waiver wire add prior to Sunday’s Week 1 action.
Should Evan Hull Be a Fantasy Waiver Wire Add in Week 1?
Hull was taken by the Colts in the fifth round of the 2023 NFL Draft with the 176th pick. He was the 12th running back to be selected in the draft.
Being back No. 12 taken, it is understandable that Hull would be available on your waiver wires. There wasn’t enough hype around him or high enough draft capital to warrant many rookie picks on the former Northwestern Wildcat.
But Hull is not a completely useless prospect. Looking at his PlayerProfiler scores, Hull has strong numbers in speed, burst, and agility. Standing at 5’10” and weighing 209 pounds, he isn’t the biggest back in the league, but he certainly isn’t the smallest either.
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Hull was also successful out of the backfield at Northwestern, catching 88 passes for 810 yards in his final two seasons in Evanston, Ill. When the Colts selected him in the fifth round, it appeared to be another option for the team after trading away Nyheim Hines a year ago.
But now, Taylor is out the first four weeks and the Colts may be without Zack Moss in Week 1 as he recovers from a broken arm. This would leave Hull and Deon Jackson as the top-two running backs on the Colts’ depth chart.
This is where the question arises of whether or not Hull is a good stash on your fantasy rosters. If you are thinking about putting in a bid on Hull, there are a couple of things to consider.
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First, how big is your league size and your roster size? If you are in a 10-team fantasy league and have 14 to 17 total players on your roster, there are probably some stronger options for you to hold than Hull as of right now. I don’t think I would rank him in the top 140-170 player options at the current moment.
But as the number of teams in your league increases and roster sizes increase, Hull becomes an interesting option. In a 12-team league with 20 players rostered on every team, a shot at Hull is one that might be worth taking.
Secondly, while Jackson is said to be the starter going into the Colts home opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, Hull may get his opportunities. Even new head coach Shane Steichen alluded to the Colts going with a “running back by committee” approach.
— Andrew Chernoff – WISH-TV (@ADChernoff) September 5, 2023
If the Colts are playing the hot hand, anything could happen. If Hull is able to find some space and make some plays on Sunday, he could be utilized as one of the Colts’ go-to backs while they wait for Taylor to return to game action.
In fantasy, opportunity is just as important as talent. If Hull is getting the opportunity to make an impression, he could pay off for your fantasy teams. His path to points is much higher than many of the backs taken before him in the 2023 NFL Draft. And for that reason, I am putting in a claim on Hull in any league where I have deep rosters.