Seahawks vs. Broncos: RB Rashaad Penny to Star – & Fantasy 'Must Start'? – Sports Illustrated

The headlines of Monday night's matchup between the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos primarily center around Russell Wilson. After one of the largest blockbuster trades in recent history, Seattle's former Super Bowl-winning quarterback will now be on the opposite sideline Monday night.
One other name to watch … Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny.
Over the final five weeks of last season, Penny averaged 22.04 fantasy points per game in PPR formats. Additionally, Penny scored 25+ fantasy points in three of those five games while scoring single-digit fantasy points just once. By all means, he was the hottest running back in fantasy.
Now, Penny is expected to lead the charge once again for the Seattle backfield after being listed ahead of rookie running back Kenneth Walker on the depth chart. Even more promising for Penny's value is that Walker is questionable to play Week 1 after not practicing all week.
Penny averaged an unfathomable 8.0 yards per carry last season and now seemingly has no competition for touches in the season-opener. Denver was also a middle-of-the-pack run defense last season, giving up 4.3 yards per carry to opposing backs.
The most worrisome threat to Penny's fantasy value in this game will be the game script. ESPN's Football Power Index gives Denver a 65.5% chance to win, while the Broncos also are favored 6.5 points against the spread. 
Penny had just eight targets in six starts last season, so if Seattle has to throw their way out of an early deficit, Penny could become a non-factor.
Nonetheless, the upside is far too enticing to pass up. Consider Penny a must-start in all fantasy formats for Monday Night Football, with a boost in standard scoring leagues. … and if you are a Seattle fan, consider him a foundational reason for hope against the visiting Broncos.
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