Bengals rookie Rex Burkhead has solid debut, could be a fantasy sleeper

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati will likely split carries this season between Green-Ellis and Bernard, but is Burkhead going to sneak in a few carries of his own?

Bengals rookie Rex Burkhead, a sixth round pick out of Nebraska, ran for 59 yards on just 10 carries against Falcons last night in his preseason debut. Though BenJarvus Green-Ellis and fellow rookie Giovani Bernard will probably get the majority of carries this year, Burkhead is off to a fast start.

More: For more on the Bengals, check out Cincy Jungle

Burkhead is likely fighting for a roster spot against Daniel Herron. Bernard ran the ball 10 times for 28 yards and a touchdown last night and also caught three passes for 16 additional yards. Herron had 30 yards on eight carries.

Fantasy take: It's not unheard of for the player drafted after another player at the same position to overtake him at some point in the year. The same thing happened in St. Louis last season with Daryl Richardson and Isaiah Pead. It would be surprising at this point to see that happen, but if any injuries happen to the starting players, Burkhead is definitely on the fantasy radar.

Cincinnati head coach Marvin Lewis said back in May that Burkhead had impressed him and he expected him to "compete to be one of our core guys." It appears that he already might be.

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