All offseason, the NFL community has speculated that the gap between former first-round running back Najee Harris and UDFA Jaylen Warren was closing. Now, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports there is a plan for the two running backs to split carries, perhaps more in favor of Warren than fans might have been expecting.
“Of course, Najee Harris is going the starter, going to get first and second-down snaps, Jaylen Warren [will get] third down snaps. Warren is expected to get a little more first and second-down snaps than usual, splitting carries today,” Rapoport noted.
Fantasy managers may be cautious rolling out Najee Harris right out of the gate, even if he were to see a significant workload, particularly given the presence of Nick Bosa and Javon Hargrave. In 2022, the 49ers allowed just 13.76 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs (the fewest in the league), having
allowed fewer than 60 rushing yards per game to the position over the course of the season.
Considering inefficiency has already been a struggle for Harris over the course of his career, averaging just 3.9 yards per carry in his first two seasons, don’t be surprised if he disappoints in a big way for fantasy football managers to start the season.
Before the news, Behind The Steel Curtain readers were polled on their expectations for the Najee Harris-Jaylen Warren workload split in Week 1. See how they voted.