Bishop Sankey, Storm Johnson fail to make big impact


Tennessee Titans running back Bishop Sankey was finally slated to get a full workload of carries for the offense with the underwhelming Shonn Greene out with an injury, and, thus, he became a big storyline in what was otherwise an uninteresting matchup between AFC South bottom-feeders. Ken Whisenhunt frustrated Sankey’s fantasy owners by giving the plodding Jackie Battle a “vulture” TD, and he didn’t use Sankey until later on in the game.

The Washington Huskies rookie finished with 18 carries (a bit disappointing that he didn’t get to the 20 threshold, but he was finally used significantly), and he started to heat up later on in the game when he was able to actually find adequate running lanes. Sankey averaged just 3.4 yards per game overall and didn’t completely seize this opportunity, but he did a credible job considering the circumstances. I mean, only change-of-pace guy Denard Robinson averaged more yards per carry, tough the Jacksonville Jaguars backs had even less running room than the Titans did.

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Speaking of the Jaguars backs, fellow rookie Storm Johnson was also on fantasy breakout watch coming into this game. Before the season, Sankey was a much-discussed fantasy option, as he seemed like the clear-cut starter after the Titans made him the first RB off the board. It frustratingly hasn’t materialized yet for the well-rounded Sankey. Johnson, like his Titans counterpart, also has the ability to make an impact in the passing game, though he wasn’t anywhere near the fantasy radar, buried on the depth chart behind big offseason signing Toby Gerhart, Robinson, and Jordan Todman.

Johnson got his chance this week with Gerhart ruled out with an injury he’s essentially been playing through for the whole year, but his lack of production confirms that Gerhart’s struggles were mostly on an offensive line that might be the league’s worst. He simply had no chance at salvaging much out of this one, but he did impressively fight his way through the pile for a one-yard TD (the first of his career), earning six points for bullish fantasy owners and showing off some nice toughness.

Disappointingly, neither Johnson nor Sankey were utilized in the passing game, as both players caught just one pass on one target for a negligible amount of yardage. Catching passes is a big calling card for both (especially Johnson), and it was especially disappointing to see how little Blake Bortles went after his former UCF teammate.

As a whole, the “Storm” was contained, as he managed just 21 yards on ten carries, as the Jaguars threw the ball often (42 attempts) in an effort to get back into things. Johnson is nothing more than a handcuff for Gerhart at this stage, while Sankey is still worth watching, especially since he’s a superior player to the less talented Greene.