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Mark Walton suspended four games for violating NFL personal conduct, substance abuse policies

Miami Dolphins Running Back Mark Walton runs with the ball past New York Jets Linebacker Brandon Copeland during the NFL game at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida on November 3, 2019. Photo by Doug Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Miami Dolphins running back Mark Walton has officially been suspended four games for violating the NFL’s personal conduct and substance abuse policies, per reporter Tim Reynolds. The suspension goes into effect immediately, which means he will miss the Dolphins next four games at Indianapolis, vs. Buffalo, at Cleveland, and vs. Philadelphia. He can return in Week 14 for the team’s road game against the New York Jets.

Kalen Ballage will likely start in place of Walton, with Patrick Laird and Myles Gaskin each getting some opportunities as well. Walton has been the primary starter since just prior to the team trading Kenyan Drake, but Ballage has still received sizable reps. This past week in the Dolphins first win of the season, Ballage had seven carries to Drake’s 12.

Fantasy football analysis: Dolphins RBs Kalen Ballage, Mark Walton

Dolphins skill position players have limited utility given how bad the offense is. However, there is still value in volume plays. Laird and Gaskin will get work, but Ballage is likely to get the majority of carries initially. If he can prove effective, he could become the workhorse while Walton is sidelined. Ballage is the guy to grab off the waiver wire.