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News: 4 days agoHead coach Brandon Staley suggested Wednesday that Kelley could see increased opportunities out of the Chargers backfield in the weeks to come, Daniel Popper of The Athletic reports. "Competition for carries is going to be something that you can see happening," Staley said. "We're going to keep exploring, making adjustments so that we can find that rhythm I've been talking about. That's certainly one way to do it."
Spin: Austin Ekeler has struggled badly since his Week 6 return from a high-ankle sprain, and he's averaging a career-low 3.5 yards per carry on the season, a full yard below his 2022 average. Kelley has seen just 5.1 carries per game since Ekeler returned to the lineup, but the Chargers badly need an offensive spark, and upping Kelley's usage could be a way to improve the overall efficiency in the run game.
ESPN Fantasy Projection: Kelley is entering his fourth NFL season in a situational/backup role behind Austin Ekeler. The 2020 fourth-round pick has yet to clear 134 touches in a season, but he took a leap forward as a rusher last season, posting career-best marks in yards per carry (4.16) and yards after contact (2.07). Kelley's overall efficiency hasn't been great (which aligns with his collegiate profile), but he could slide into 15-plus touches per game in a good offense if 28-year-old Ekeler were to miss time. The 25-year-old is without standalone fantasy value but is a fine bench hold in deeper leagues.