Abdullah (shoulder) will have every opportunity to earn most of the Lions' rushing workload, according to Tim Twentyman of the team's official site.
Analysis: Abdullah missed the Lions' offseason program while recovering from January surgery to repair a torn labrum, but there doesn't seem to be any concern within the organization about his availability for training camp. Though not of much use to fantasy owners, Abdullah's rookie campaign wasn't a lost cause from his perspective, as he led the team in carries (143), rushing yards (597) and YPC (4.2), showing notable improvement along with the rest of Detroit's offense after Jim Bob Cooter replaced Joe Lombardi as the offensive coordinator mid-season. Abdullah averaged 10.7 carries for 51 yards (4.8 YPC) over the final six weeks, albeit with just one touchdown and 63 receiving yards (11 catches) while facing a soft part of the schedule. The 2015 second-round selection also did a better job taking care of the ball as the season progressed, with only one of his five fumbles occurring after Week 6, though it was still somewhat alarming to see his fumbling issues from college (23 on 980 touches) re-emerge. Assuming he returns to full health and mostly holds onto the ball, Abdullah doesn't have anything standing between him and the lead-back role, as Detroit's other running backs are either plodders (Stevan Ridley, Zach Zenner), pass-catching specialists (Theo Riddick) or special-teamers (George Winn). While easily the most explosive runner of the bunch, Abdullah is unlikely to surpass Riddick as the primary passing-down back -- a crucial role on a Detroit team that attempted 600+ passes each of the last six years. Further adding to Abdullah's workload concerns, Zenner and/or Ridley may take on most of the goal-line and short-yardage carries, with one of the two possibly even pushing for something akin to Joique Bell's role from last season. Even so, Abdullah offers an intriguing ceiling for prospective fantasy owners, entering his second NFL season with a clear path to lead-back status, assuming the shoulder checks out.
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