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Tim Hightower over Chris “Beanie” Wells in Cardinals Backfield

Super Bowl XLIII

Last season running back Tim Hightower took over the starting role from veteran Edgerrin James in the middle of the year. While Tim did show a nice display of work around the end zone with his 10 touchdowns last season, he was disappointing in that he only had a 2.79 yard per carry for the season.

By the end of the year the Cardinals went back to James as they seemed to be ready to give up on the idea of Tim being the starter in 2008.

Once Arizona drafted Chris “Beanie” Wells from Ohio State as their first round pick I was sure he would be the lock starter, now that Edge was gone. But in July rumors floated out of Arizona that Hightower would be the starter at the beginning of the season.

Arizona Cardinals Minicamp

At first I didn’t believe those talks but since Wells has been out now for more then a week due to injury, it is starting to look like Tim may indeed start for this team.

How Long will it last?

Listed below I have a chart that maps out Hightower’s stats over his full rookie season. While Tim was a consistent scorer at times he had a horrible yards per carry in most weeks of the season.

Cardinals- Tim Hightower’s 2008 Rookie NFL Stats

Only four games out of the season did Hightower have a yard per carry better then 2.9 for the year. With poor numbers like that it does not say much for Tim’s chances to hold onto the starting job if he should in fact win it in camp.

Beyond just a bad YPC, Tim also needs to show that he can carry the ball more then 11 to 13 times in a game. He only ran the football more then 13 times in one game and that was his big game against the Rams when he had 22 carry’s.

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One positive for this running back outside of his ability to score is that he does do a good job of catching the football. In this offense he will continue to get good opportunity’s to catch the football and that makes him a little more valuable in PPR leagues.

The final thing he has going for him is Chris Wells seems to be a bit injury prone. Chris was banged up from time to time at Ohio State and in early camp he is sidelined already for a week or two.

Fantasy Football Information for Tim Hightower

NFL 2009: Arizona Cardinals Beat Carlolina Panthers 33-13

Right now Tim is nothing more then a late round pick as we need to see that he is officially the starter for the team. “Beanie” Wells is going to be hot on his tail once he is finally healthy, as he is the better runner and should beat out Hightower at some point.

For now it looks like Tim is probably going to be the starter and we still have to see which runner will in fact win for being the teams goal line back. If Tim can get off to a hot start for the season against the 49ers at home week one then he might hold the job for the first half of the season.

Fantasy Football Information Writer Sean E. Douglas:

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