UPDATED Friday September 10 after the season opener of TBB v DAL.
In 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 we had a thread that folks seemed to find valuable so I am starting another version for 2021 - it's a living, ongoing list of potential King Makers at RB - the idea is to be PREEMPTIVE on RBs most likely sitting on the Waiver Wire (depending upon league size, sharks or guppies, etc.). The definition of this thread is generally re-draft.
To paraphrase @TZMarkie from 2016: "This is for re-draft and we are looking for the ones with the best combination of availability, upside and possibility of a big workload. That combination would likely give the average owner the best chance at hitting the "lottery ticket RB" that could change an owners season...The point is, regardless of however you see it, and whatever your league preference and/or breakdown may be, in most cases a typical owner (think redraft with 5-7 bench spots) will only be able to truly "take a shot" on one or two of these guys".
To paraphrase @Interseptopus from 2019: "A lotto ticket, to me, costs almost nothing, and is easily expendable for the next lotto ticket, but has potential to win you your season. ... Lotto tickets, in my mind, are easily cut from one week to the next."
P.S. I want to give a shout out to
@SameSongNDance for starting this annual tradition back in 2016!
Friday September 10 Note: I did away with the 'keys' ('lotto', 'handcuff', etc.) because that required too many judgement calls on my part and I don't want to influence where I am not qualified.
Editor note about the spirit of this list: While TZMarkie and Interseptopus defined "what a LOTTO is" opinions and league sizes vary. This list is meant to be a cast a wide net review as a tool to make your own judgement calls. Then make your own rankings. Please share if you're willing. Some RBs are included, like AJ Dillon in GP, in the event of a very shallow league. Others are included like Darrel Williams in KCC because what if a frustrated owner drops him during a bye week crunch? In both cases those backs fit TZMarkie and Interseptopus' criteria.
CANDIDATES for the Season Changing - King Maker List - loosely ranked by chronological mention:
BAL - Ty'Son Williams - Matt Waldman favorite - @sushinsky4tsar seems to disagree: LINK - @sushinsky4tsar shared this LINK
BAL - for completeness: L Murray - per @SoBeDad
BAL - for completeness: D Freeman
BAL - for completeness: L Bell
BAL - a tip o the hat to @Tanner9919 for the Gus Edwards suggestion which unfortunately did not make this list before he tore his ACL
GBP - Kylin Hill - Tags from Fantasy Pros loves this guy and as a Packer fan I can say he looks decisive when he runs through the line, can get outside and catch the ball - but please don't listen to me! @Buck Bradcanon shared this LINK
GBP - AJ Dillon - per @Cranjis who writes "AJ Dillon is the ultra league winning handcuff"
LAC - Rountree per @Boston stating: "should have an opportunity for the complimentary role for the Chargers."
ATL - Ollison - Ollison seems to be the handcuff to own in ATL per @Boston + @zamboni agrees stating "I'd also add Qadree Ollison. He may be JAG, but runs with power and is reasonably shifty for a guy his size. Mike Davis is no world beater despite his success in filling in for CMC last year. Not sure Davis' hold on the starting gig is as strong as we think." @foxco agrees
ATL - Caleb Huntley - per @JFS171
CHI - Damien Williams per @Dacomish stating "I moved on from Cohen to Damien Williams for the Chi Cuff for free."
CHI - Tarik Cohen - per @wgoldsph LINK
CHI - Khalil Herbert - per @Edgar who writes "Khalil Herbert over Damien Williams in CHI"
HOU - Lindsay - "I think Lindsay(HOU) could be the 2021 version of Mark Davis" @BoltBacker - @MTskibumnotes "Lindsay, he is dirt cheap and I have been grabbing him in all of my best balls"
PHI - Kenneth Gainwell per @zamboni who states "I'll submit Kenneth Gainwell - he's being discussed a bit in the Miles Sanders thread. By most accounts he's a dynamic pass catcher and could have a role there early on if Sanders doesn't fix his drop issues"
MIA - Salvon Ahmed - per @jtd13 who states [Aug 18] "Salvon Ahmed should be mentioned in this thread. Still the wrong part of an RBBC, but it sounds like his role as a legit receiving threat is continuing in practice today." - @foxco agrees with the S Ahmed call
MIA - M Brown - per @Adso who makes his argument here: LINK
CLE - D'Ernest Johnson - per @RenegadeGM who writes: "If we are talking about #3, off the radar types, I'll go with D'Ernest Johnson, CLE."
SEA - Alex Collins - per @IHEARTFF who writes: "Alex Collins again in Seattle apparently"
SEA - Rashaad Penny - per @SeniorVBDStudent
LAR - per @IHEARTFF who writes, and the editor appreciates this: "whichever guys make the Rams roster"
LAR - Xavier Jones - per @zamboni who adds "Xavier Jones is worth mentioning as a guy who could emerge there."
LAR - Sony Michel - per @Tanner9919
DET - J Jefferson - per @Ilov80s who writes "Jermar Jefferson in Detroit. Swift has a groin injury already. Williams would be the main guy but they are sure to use a committee all season. Jefferson could get on the field early"
NYJ - Ty Johnson - per @JFS171 who writes an excellent post in this thread on Johnson here: LINK
CAR - Chubba Howard - per @Hankmoody who writes "Chuba Hubbard is mine. He's the ultra-handcuff already and he's got the talent to be on the field with CMc and get his own touches as well." @massraider agrees
MIN - Alexander Mattison - per @Gally
NO - Tony Jones - per @Edgar who writes: "Tony Jones is a nice sleeper over 31yo Latavius Murray" @massraider agrees
TBB - Gio Bernard - per @Tanner9919 "in PPR leagues"
CIN - Samaje Perine - per @Truebluey LINK
CIN - Chris Evans - per @Truebluey LINK
ARI - Eno Benjamin - per @JFS171 LINK - @zamboni agrees: "Perfect late round dart throw IMO" as well as @Ilov80s
ARI - Jonathan Ward - per @JFS171 wrting: "The one catch with Eno is the team seems infatuated with Jonathan Ward" LINK
WAS - Jaret Patterson - per @MAC_32 - @JFS171 contributes: LINK
NEP - JJ Taylor - per @JFS171 - @massraider agrees
KCC - J McKinnon - per @Stat Correction
KCC - Darrel Williams - per @Birdie048
SF - Trey Sherman - per @hamsterdam
SF - JaMycal Hasty - per yours truly
ATL - Wayne Gallman - per @elcohiba
TEN - Mekhi Sargent - per yours truly - per Waldman “remember that name”