James Conner
James Conner
25-Year-Old Running BackRB
Pittsburgh Steelers
2020 Fantasy Outlook
The Pittsburgh offense was a disaster throughout last season due to injuries, and while quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's elbow surgery was the biggest blow, Conner's inability to stay on the field didn't help. The Pitt product struggled out of the gate, but he seemed to have found his rhythm by Week 4, piling up 449 yards from scrimmage and five touchdowns over the next four games. A shoulder injury suffered in Week 8, and then a quad strain in Week 16, ruined his second half, and Conner managed to suit up for only 56 snaps in the Steelers' final nine games. When he's healthy, Conner combines a rugged, physical running style with strong receiving skills, but that accumulation of violent contact took its toll last year, and even when he was in the lineup he wasn't as effective as he had been the year before, dropping to 34th in yards per carry and 43rd in broken tackle rate. Roethlisberger's return should take pressure off the whole running attack, but given his already extensive medical file, Conner could find himself losing backfield touches to some combination of Benny Snell, Jaylen Samuels and rookie fourth-round pick Anthony McFarland. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
#49.53
ADP
$Signed a four-year, $3.16 million contract with the Steelers in May of 2017.
Dominates backfield production
RBPittsburgh Steelers
September 20, 2020
Conner carried 16 times for 106 yards and a touchdown while catching both his targets for an additional 15 yards in Sunday's 26-21 win over the Broncos.
ANALYSIS
Conner dealt with an ankle injury throughout the week and was rumored to be in for a timeshare with Benny Snell Jr., but he out-touched his teammate by 14 and scored a two-yard touchdown run to get the scoring started in the first quarter. Given his productivity in the face of adversity this week, Conner figures to dominate the touches again next Sunday against the Texans. Injuries remain a concern, however, so fantasy managers will hope he doesn't feel any lingering effects heading into the contest.
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NFL Stats
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Fantasy/Red Zone Stats
See red zone opportunities inside the 20, 10 and 5-yard lines along with the percentage of time they converted the opportunity into a touchdown.
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Advanced NFL Stats
How do James Conner's 2020 advanced stats compare to other running backs?
This section compares his advanced stats with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average. The longer the bar, the better it is for the player.
  • Broken Tackle %
    The number of broken tackles divided by rush attempts.
  • Positive Run %
    The percentage of run plays where he was able to gain positive yardage.
  • % Yds After Contact
    The percentage of his rushing yards that came after contact.
  • Avg Yds After Contact
    The average rushing yards he gains after contact.
  • Rushing TD %
    Rushing touchdowns divided by rushing attempts. In other words, how often is he scoring when running the ball.
  • Touches Per Game
    The number of touches (rushing attempts + receptions) he is averaging per game
  • % Snaps w/Touch
    The number of touches (rushing attempts + receptions) divided by offensive snaps played.
  • Air Yards Per Game
    The number of air yards he is averaging per game. Air yards measure how far the ball was thrown downfield for both complete and incomplete passes. Air yards are recorded as a negative value when the pass is targeted behind the line of scrimmage. All air yards data is from Sports Info Solutions and does not include throwaways as targeted passes.
  • Air Yards Per Snap
    The number of air yards he is averaging per offensive snap.
  • % Team Air Yards
    The percentage of the team's total air yards he accounts for.
  • % Team Targets
    The percentage of the team's total targets he accounts for.
  • Avg Depth of Target
    Also known as aDOT, this stat measures the average distance down field he is being targeted at.
  • Catch Rate
    The number of catches made divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Drop Rate
    The number of passes he dropped divided by the number of times he was targeted by the quarterback.
  • Avg Yds After Catch
    The number of yards he gains after the catch on his receptions.
Broken Tackle %
13.6%
 
Positive Run %
81.8%
 
% Yds After Contact
80.9%
 
Avg Yds After Contact
4.2
 
Rushing TD %
4.5%
 
Touches Per Game
13.0
 
% Snaps w/Touch
40.0%
 
Air Yards Per Game
1.5
 
Air Yards Per Snap
0.05
 
% Team Air Yards
0.6%
 
% Team Targets
8.2%
 
Avg Depth of Target
0.5 Yds
 
Catch Rate
66.7%
 
Drop Rate
0.0%
 
Avg Yds After Catch
4.5
 
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2020
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Snap Distribution / Depth Chart
Pittsburgh SteelersSteelers 2020 RB Snap Distribution See more data like this | See last season's snap counts
% of Team Snaps

65
39
25
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Receiving Alignment Breakdown
See where James Conner lined up on the field and how he performed at each spot.
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This Week's Opposing Pass Defense
How does the Texans pass defense compare to other NFL teams this season?
The bars represents the team's percentile rank (based on QB Rating Against). The longer the bar, the better their pass defense is. The team and position group ratings only include players that are currently on the roster and not on injured reserve. The list of players in the table only includes defenders with at least 3 attempts against them.
HOU
vs Texans
Sunday, Sep 27th at 1:00PM
Overall QB Rating Against
99.5
 
Cornerbacks
107.4
 
Safeties
107.8
 
Linebackers
82.4
 
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2020 James Conner Split Stats
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Measurables Review View College Player Page
How do James Conner's measurables compare to other running backs?
This section compares his draft workout metrics with players at the same position. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that metric and it would be considered average.
* The Cone Drill metric is from his Pro Day. All others are from the NFL Combine.
Height
6' 1"
 
Weight
233 lbs
 
40-Yard Dash
4.65 sec
 
Cone Drill*
7.41 sec
 
Vertical Jump
29.0 in
 
Broad Jump
113 in
 
Bench Press
20 reps
 
Hand Length
9.88 in
 
Arm Length
31.25 in
 
Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring James Conner
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Yesterday
With GOAT kickers like Justin Tucker now playing in the league's best offenses, the "wait-till-the-last-two-rounds-to-draft-a-kicker" dogma needs to be retired.
Weekly Rankings: Week 3 Value Meter
Yesterday
Miles Sanders faces a Bengals run defense that was gashed for four rushing touchdowns last week.
Hidden Stat Line: Week 2 Backfield Usage for Every NFL Team
2 days ago
The Eagles and Texans aren't looking so hot, but their Week 2 backfield distribution was highly promising for anyone who invested in Miles Sanders or David Johnson.
Week 2 Observations
Week 2 Observations
2 days ago
2 days ago
Aaron Jones was supposed to see some TD regression this year, but he scored three more times on 22 touches Sunday.
NFL Reactions: Week 2
3 days ago
In a day full of frustrating injuries, a suspected season-ending torn ACL suffered by Saquon Barkley stands out as especially painful.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
2017
In his second year, Conner became a true hometown hero for the Steelers. He was born in Erie, Pa., and matriculated at Pitt, where he ran for 26 touchdowns as a sophomore and then overcame Hodgkin's lymphoma to become a third-round pick in the 2017 draft. Conner got a chance to start for the Steelers when Le'Veon Bell's annual preseason holdout became a slow, season-long divorce between the star running back and the franchise. Conner's 135-yard, two-TD performance on the ground Week 1 helped fans quickly forget all about Bell. While the rest of his season was a little more erratic, Conner still showed enough to solidify his hold on the No. 1 job before an ankle injury cost him three games late in the season. Seen as primarily a power back coming out of college, Conner proved to be adept as a receiver, but it's still his ability to plow through contact that remains his best asset --- his 24 broken tackles on rushes tied for ninth in the league, and his 17 carries inside the 5-yard line tied for third as he converted 53 percent. That bulldozer approach may lead to further injuries (he's missed time late in the year twice in two seasons) but with Jaylen Samuels and Benny Snell on hand as capable backups, the Steelers aren't likely to grind Conner into the dirt with a massive workload the way they did with Bell.
A third-round pick in last year's draft, Conner didn't get much of a chance to show he was worth the investment as Le'Veon Bell dominated the backfield before Conner suffered a Week 15 knee injury that ended his campaign early. The 23-year-old is accustomed to setbacks – he's already come back from Hodgkin's lymphoma, so a little MCL strain should be no big deal. Conner is a burly back who ran with power and anger during a prolific college career at Pitt, frequently shoving defenders aside with stiff arms before lowering his shoulder at the end of runs. He also displayed the balance to keep his feet in traffic, but he isn't particularly elusive and his skills as a receiver and pass-blocker are rudimentary. His best fit in the NFL might be as a short-yardage back, and in that role he could be an effective complement to Bell. Of course, the Steelers seemingly intend to wring every snap they can out of their star before he walks out the door – a plan that would once again leave little work for Conner.
Currently listed at 6-1, 233 pounds, Conner overcome Hodgkins lymphoma and a torn MCL from 2015 to return to the field in 2016, and he came back with a leaner build and improved pass-catching skills. The 2017 third-rounder doesn't look like a standout talent and won't have much opportunity to produce behind Bell, but he's probably talented enough to produce if Le'Veon Bell should miss any time. Conner finished his college career at the University of Pittsburgh with 3,733 yards (5.6 YPC) and 52 touchdowns over the span of 39 games.
More Fantasy News
May split carries with Snell
RBPittsburgh Steelers
September 20, 2020
Conner is expected to split carries with Benny Snell on Sunday in the Steelers' game against the Broncos, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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Good to go for Sunday
RBPittsburgh Steelers
September 18, 2020
Conner (ankle) practiced in full Friday and doesn't have a designation for Sunday's game against the Broncos, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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Puts in full practice
RBPittsburgh Steelers
September 17, 2020
Conner (ankle) was a full participant in Thursday's practice, Brooke Pryor of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Unable to practice
RBPittsburgh Steelers
Ankle
September 16, 2020
Conner (ankle) didn't practice Wednesday.
ANALYSIS
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Avoids high-ankle sprain
RBPittsburgh Steelers
Ankle
September 15, 2020
Conner is believed to have avoided a high-ankle sprain in the Steelers' 26-16 win over the Giants on Monday, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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