Zach Zenner
Zach Zenner
28-Year-Old Running BackRB
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Few tailbacks simultaneously serve as special-teams ace and highly-efficient offensive depth, but that's exactly what Zenner was down the stretch last season when he produced three touchdowns and 4.8 YPC over 55 attempts. His viability as a fill-in starter also gained steam after Zenner closed the season with a 123-total-yard performance against Green Bay in Week 17. Zenner's problem is that his primary competition for the No. 2 role ahead of this campaign (C.J. Anderson) had an even better finish to 2018 in the form of a two-game stretch that saw Anderson rack up 299 rushing yards on 7.0 YPC to help propel the injury-riddled Rams into postseason play. The pecking order for carries - and even roster spots - behind Kerryon Johnson likely won't be settled until the preseason, and even then it could be a fluid situation. Read Past Outlooks
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$Released by the Lions in August of 2019.
Trying out for Giants
RBFree Agent
September 24, 2019
Zenner was one of three running backs to try out for the Giants on Tuesday, freelance NFL writer Howard Balzer reports.
Joining Zenner on Tuesday were Benny Cunningham and Fozzy Whittaker. If any of them ultimately receives a contract offer, he could be worth keeping an eye on given Saquon Barkley's (ankle) expected 4-to-8 week absence. New York currently has Wayne Gallman and fullback Elijhaa Penny as the only other options in the backfield.
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Receiving Alignment Breakdown
See where Zach Zenner lined up on the field and how he performed at each spot.
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2019 Zach Zenner Split Stats
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Zach Zenner
2019 Detroit Lions
2019 Detroit Lions
84 days ago
84 days ago
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Justice Hill initially blended in with other projected mid-round running backs, but a strong showing at the combine has him closing in on a Day 2 pick.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
It's been a long time since Zenner lit up the 2015 preseason to the tune of a league-leading 183 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Since then, the running back hasn't done much more than establish himself as a productive special-teams player who can occasionally lend a hand as a short-yardage ballcarrier. Furthermore, the Lions backfield -- currently headlined by LeGarrette Blount, Theo Riddick and second-round rookie Kerryon Johnson -- is suddenly much more crowded than it's been in a number of years, and Zenner is not guaranteed to stick around in 2018. Even if he does make the cut, the South Dakota State product is highly unlikely to see a significant number of touches on offense, leaving Zenner far off the fantasy radar.
After the Lions lost Ameer Abdullah to a season-ending foot injury in the second game of the season, they then spent the next several weeks auditioning a slew of running backs for their vacant lead-back role. After trying and failing with rookie Dwayne Washington and veteran Justin Forsett, Detroit ultimately turned to Zenner, who finished the year as the team's workhorse. Nonetheless, Abdullah has recovered in full and enters the 2017 campaign as the team's stated starter at running back, leaving Zenner at least an injury away from gaining fantasy relevance.
Zenner vaulted himself into the Lions' RB mix with an outstanding 2015 preseason performance as a rookie and stayed in the rotation through much of the subsequent regular season. He figures to move up in that mix in 2016, with a shot at getting more touches, particularly in short yardage situations, behind an improved offen-sive line.
Zenner impressed during the preseason, leading the league with 183 rushing yards. With Joique Bell, Theo Riddick and fellow rookie Ameer Abdullah ahead of him on the depth chart, however, regular season carries will be hard to come by.
More Fantasy News
Let go by Lions
RBFree Agent
August 27, 2019
The Lions will release Zenner, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports.
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Falling behind in job battle
RBDetroit Lions
August 24, 2019
Zenner carried four times for 21 yards during Friday's preseason game against the Bills.
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Scores touchdown in preseason game
RBDetroit Lions
August 17, 2019
Zenner rushed three times for 17 yards and caught one pass for five yards and a touchdown during Saturday's preseason game against the Texans.
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Suffers injury Thursday
RBDetroit Lions
August 9, 2019
Zenner suffered an undisclosed injury during Thursday's preseason loss to the Patriots and did not return, Kyle Meinke of reports.
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Losing grip on No. 3 role
RBDetroit Lions
August 8, 2019
Zenner rushed three times for 13 yards during Thursday's 31-3 preseason loss to the Patriots.
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