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Finding 2022's Fantasy Breakout Running Back: Trey Sermon, San Francisco 49ers

Santa Clara, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Trey Sermon (28) carries the ball as Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Riley Cole (46) attempts a tackle during the second quarter at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

  • Sermon hasn’t shown receiving ability in college or the NFL, which lowers his potential ceiling in PPR formats.
  • Sermon likely will have a chance to play material snaps this season as a former third-round pick.


Sermon's numbers were a little light coming out of college, but an intense production streak to end his final season shot him up draft boards into the third round.

The 49ers traded up for the Ohio State product and then left him buried on the depth chart for most of the season. He finished his rookie season with only 41 carries and four targets, well behind the workload for sixth-round pick Elijah Mitchell.

While a disappointing rookie season isn’t a good sign for future production, it also isn’t a death sentence, especially for a third-round pick.

Two of Sermon’s top-10 comps, Stevan Ridley and Devonta Freeman, not only improved their second seasons, but they also thrived. Ridley finished at the RB15 in PPR leagues and RB10 in standard formats. Freeman was the No. 1 overall running back in all formats in his second season.

While finishes on that level are unlikely for Sermon, they’re not out of the question.

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