DeMarco Murray's Injury Outlook for 2015

By Jake 5:07am EDT 7/20/15

With a current ADP of 2.03 (http://fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp.php) Murray is clearly the biggest undervalued bargain out of the top tier of RBs and potentially within the entire draft if his ADP stays so low. The assumption is that the reason for his depressed market value is due to concerns around his injury risk as well as his role within the Eagles with Ryan Mathews being signed in the offseason.

As far as workload goes all signs point to Murray being the main guy in Philadelphia. He was given a bigger contract and has played at a much higher level than Mathews has throughout his career. Even if he is not given his historic workload of 2014, the pace the Eagles play at along with the emphasis on the running game he is in line for a high enough volume to give him great upside.

As far as injury risk goes there are two arguments you’ll often hear against Murray being able to maintain health. The first is that because of his huge workload last year there is a concern that he will “break down” in 2015. The second is that he is “injury prone” and therefore highly likely to get injured this year.

Previous workload is not a predictor of future injury. It’s one of the biggest myths regarding a player’s likelihood of injury in the upcoming season. We did a deep dive into that and several other injury myths here.

The definition of “Injury prone” according to the Collins Dictionary is “often sustaining injuries”. However, it is a term often used out of context and spoken of as this imaginary force field that surrounds a player who has suffered from injuries in the past. It’s a fire and forget mechanism that really helps the part of our brain where recency bias lives, by assigning a label to a set of events surrounding a player as a means to predicting a future outcome. The problem with using only previous injuries (injury prone) as a predictor is that you remove the two key factors that decreases injury risk. Experience and work load.

If you refer to our article here about injury myths and facts you will see that older players get injured less. You’ll also see that with a reduced workload players are exposed to less risk of injury. That’s why Chip Kelly needed another first tier running back in Ryan Mathews. Sproles would not be able to give Murray the kind of rest he needed to avoid injury. Mathews can carry the offense for a few series at a time without affecting the game flow.

This is not to say that he does not have injury risk. He does. But compared to his production and how much he costs right now it is clear the market is over emphasizing the injury risk.

All signs point to Murray having another monster year and he is a bargain at his current ADP.

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