Malcolm Brown will bring his physical rushing style to Miami where he'll attempt to work his way into the Dolphins offense. With the Rams, Brown posted career-highs in touches and total yards last year, but it was front-loaded with 11.1 touches per game through the first half of the season before fading to 4.4 touches per game in the second half. Notably, Brown was serviceable in both passing situations (69.7% catch rate) and short-yardage roles (69.6% conversion rate on downs of three yards or fewer). It will probably take a strong preseason and at least one injury to a teammate for Brown to command a lot of work in the Dolphins offense. Taking him with a very late pick isn't necessary.
Dolphins head coach Brian Flores recently said he feels confident in Brown handling "a variety of roles: short yardage, third down, goal line" during the upcoming season, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports. The Dolphins didn't add another running back until the seventh round of the 2021 NFL Draft, when the team grabbed Gerrid Doaks. That speaks to the team's confidence in its current three-man committee, which includes Brown along with Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed. Gaskin still appears primed for the lead role, but it seems possible that Brown, whom Flores praised as "reliable" and "dependable," could beat out Ahmed for No. 2 duties. During his time with the Rams, Brown found his most success in situations where the team only needed to pick up between one and three yards.
Brown agreed to a contract Tuesday with the Dolphins, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports. Brown was serviceable when called upon during six seasons with the Rams, averaging 4.0 yards per carry overall and scoring 10 touchdowns the past two campaigns. Miami may continue to upgrade its backfield as the offseason goes on, but for the time being Brown slots in as the primary backup to current No. 1 option Myles Gaskin.
Brown isn't expected to sign an extension with the Rams, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic reports. Brown spent six years with the Rams after signing as an undrafted free agent in 2015. 2020 was his most productive season with 419 rushing yards, 162 receiving yards and five touchdowns. He was utilized primarily in obvious passing and third-down situations late in the season and during the playoffs, as rookie running back Cam Akers ascended to the top of the depth chart and proved capable of handling the majority of the workload. Brown's fantasy value will obviously depend on where he signs, but he's capable of being a valuable complementary option in a real-world backfield because of his versatility and ability to pass block.
Brown rushed nine times for 30 yards and caught his only target for nine yards during Saturday's 30-20 win over Seattle. He played 20 of 73 offensive snaps. The Rams leaned on rookie Cam Akers early and often Saturday, so there wasn't much work left over for Brown. It's worth noting that while Brown didn't receive a carry until the third quarter, he out-touched Akers, 8-3, in the fourth quarter. Head coach Sean McVay trusts Brown, and the sixth-year running back has been involved consistently in the offense all season. Still, Brown hasn't been receiving enough opportunities -- just 29 carries and 11 targets over the past eight games -- to make a major fantasy impact, and it will likely be Akers in the lead-back role again versus the Packers in the divisional round Saturday.
Brown rushed three times for 20 yards and caught his only target for negative two yards during Sunday's 18-7 win over Arizona. The veteran running back was limited all week in practice with a shoulder injury, so it was encouraging to see him suit up for the regular-season finale. However, it was rookie Cam Akers who started and saw most of the work out of the backfield. Akers played 48 offensive snaps to Brown's 23, and it wouldn't be surprising if a similar timeshare continues against Seattle in the wild-card round. Brown's unlikely to make a major fantasy splash as long as Akers is healthy.
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|1||09/12||@New England Patriots||21||18.88|
|3||09/26||@Las Vegas Raiders||29||22.38|
|5||10/10||@Tampa Bay Buccaneers||1||12.30|
|11||11/21||@New York Jets||20||18.00|
|13||12/05||New York Giants||17||17.50|
|15||12/19||New York Jets||20||18.00|
|16||12/27||@New Orleans Saints||2||13.00|
|18||01/09||New England Patriots||21||18.88|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||71||295||3||10||77||0||54|