2014 Outlook: The NFL's offensive rookie of the year in 2013 was this 230-pound ball of thunder with soft receiving hands who carried the Packers while Aaron Rodgers was out with a broken clavicle. Lacy's running style is reminiscent of Larry Johnson's, and you'll recall that LJ had a dominant fantasy stretch in the mid-2000s. In truth, Lacy has a combination of talent and every-down opportunity that could make him the No. 1 player in fantasy by season's end. The reason we don't quite rank him there? He's done it for only one season.
2014 Outlook: Starks is a less agile, less explosive version of Eddie Lacy, so it makes sense that the Packers re-signed him this winter to back up their second-year star. More than anything, this transaction signals Green Bay's lack of faith in Johnathan Franklin, despite his potential as a nice change-of-pace receiving back. So if you make a first-round investment in Lacy, the handcuff you want is Starks, a more consistent player who's lost only one fumble in four seasons.
2014 Outlook: It was Week 3. Eddie Lacy was out with a concussion, and James Starks suffered a knee injury before halftime. Suddenly, the Packers' lead RB was Franklin, a fourth-round rookie. And Franklin was awesome! His first series, he touched it on five of eight plays and crunched in a two-yard TD. His very next carry, he broke a 51-yarder around the left edge. It was going so well! And then in the game's biggest moment, he fumbled, the Bengals returned it for a TD and Franklin got eight carries the rest of the year. What a buzzkill! He'll be third on the depth chart again this year, behind Lacy and Starks.