3 Simple Reasons You Should Draft Melvin Gordon in 2016

Melvin Gordon struggled as a rookie, but a lot is going right for him entering the 2016 season.

Mehlvin Gordon, MG3YPC, Melvin Gordone.

These are all appropriate nicknames that could have been used for San Diego Chargers running back Melvin Gordon last season.

After all, our own Jim Sannes did call his rookie year a "flaming pile of donkey doo".

However, I think you actually want to invest in Gordon for 2016. Here are three simple reasons why.

He's Still Talented

It's easy to forget that just a year ago Joseph Juan was calling Gordon the next great NFL running back. That talent is still present in Gordon and very real. Take a look at his best comparable players in the RotoViz Box Score Scout App.

Melvin Gordon Box Score Scouting App

The comps for Gordon are pretty impressive, with the top one being DeAngelo Williams, who just had a top-six season at age 32. We also see some other strong players such as Matt Forte, Ryan Mathews, and the legendary Ladainian Tomlinson.

And RotoViz isn't the only site that tells us that Gordon is a talent. Player Profiler likes him also.

Melvin Gordon PlayerProfiler

Again we see some confirmation bias with the best comparable player listed as Forte. With so many favorable comps for Gordon, it is pretty difficult to deny his talent.

He's the Wiz, and Nobody Beats Him

Seinfeld reference aside, a huge reason to be into Gordon this year is the return of Ken Whisenhunt to the Chargers. Take a look at how his running backs performed when he was with the team in 2013.

Player Rush Tar Rec Tot. Yards TD PPR Pts '13 Rank '14 Rank '15 Rank
Ryan Mathews 285 33 26 1,444 7 212.4 17 11 8
Danny Woodhead 106 86 76 1,034 8 227.4 12 10 7

I included the PPR points and how each player would have finished over the past three seasons with their respective totals. Simply put, the 2013 Charger running backs both crushed in fantasy.

Danny Woodhead is coming off of another big year in 2015, one in which he was a top-five fantasy running back, but that shouldn't worry you as a prospective Gordon owner because Whisenhunt has already shown that he can get both Woodhead and another running back both significant volume and fantasy production.

It also doesn't hurt that Mathews was one of the comps previously mentioned for the sophomore out of Wisconsin. If he is a back anything like Mathews, he should fit this system perfectly and be able to put up meaningful fantasy production.

Of course, we also need him to play better than he did last year in order to maximize his opportunities, but Gordon wouldn't be the first runner to bomb as a rookie and excel in his second season.


As with everything else in fantasy, we have to be mindful of price. Fortunately, that is just one more reason to buy Gordon. His ADP currently sits at RB29 on Fantasy Football Calculator and RB33 on MyFantasyLeague.

Going in the seventh and eighth round, respectively, Gordon doesn't cost a premium pick for fantasy owners, yet he could provide RB1 production.

With a now healthy offensive line and a better system in San Diego, I'm expecting Gordon to be a nice fantasy buy this summer.