Running Backs

Just like QBs, these are SEASON LONG ranks. It’s the order in which I would draft them, not necessarily how they’ll finish. These ratings will reflect a half-point PPR (point-per-reception) scoring system.

Draft tip: stock up on them as much as you can. They’re a scarce position.

Quick note: I may have went a little too hard on QBs, especially if I’m going to have all the positions done by Saturday. Write-ups will be shorter. Sorrey aboot it. After the first 24, I will be providing quick words on each player ranked.

  1. Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers     Age: 26     Height: 6’1     Weight: 225

Yes, he hasn’t even reported yet and he might not until some time the week before the season. But Bell is the best running back in the league. When he’s not suspended for smoking pot or injured by a cheap shot artist piece of shit that rhymes with Bontaze Vurfict, there’s nothing like watching Bell play football. He’s a running back that can catch it and has a style that we’ve rarely seen before. He has his risks and is a bit of a diva, but Bell should be the number one overall pick in drafts.

2. Todd Gurley, Los Angeles Rams     Age: 24     Height: 6’1     Weight: 231

Hands off my Gurley! What a bounce-back season Gurley had last year. Playing in Sean McVay’s new offense ended up with TGIII producing 19 TDs and over 2,000 total yards. You can make the argument for him that he should be the number one player and your argument is totally valid. Even if the Rams take a step back on offense this year, Gurley is still a dreadlocked demon.

3. David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals     Age: 26    Height: 6’1     Weight: 225

My team name of “Suck My Johnson” was a short-lived endeavor last year as DJ unfortunately only got to play one half of a game before exiting with a wrist injury that cost him his season. When he’s healthy, he’s right up there with Bell and Gurley in terms of talent. He can run it and catch it, shit he can probably throw it pretty well too. As long as it wasn’t his jerkoff wrist, I’m not worried about his health at all. You could even make an argument for him at 1 and I wouldn’t tell you that you’re wrong. The Cardinals might not be good this year so that could be a good concern.

4. Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys     Age: 23     Height: 6’0     Weight: 225

To quote my smarter and witter than expected cousin’s team name from last year: Let’s Get Phyzekiel! This horse is probably going to touch the ball 984 times a game this season because what the fuck else is Jason Garrett going to do, throw it? Coke head Michael Irvin isn’t about to suit back up for Dallas. The loss of center Travis Frederick is concerning but Elliott will still be running behind a magnificent O-Line. Expect this animal to get the ball a metric shit ton.

5. Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints     Age: 23     Height: 5’10     Weight: 215

Even though Mark Ingram is suspended the first 4 games of the season, don’t expect Kamara to immediately inherit all of those touches. Although that would be pure sex on the field if he did. Sheesh. Sean Payton isn’t dumb. He’s not going to get his most talented weapon injured. Kamara is so fun to watch. His quicks are right up there with the league’s best and he’s one of the most dynamic pass catchers out of the backfield in the league.

6. Melvin Gordon, Los Angeles Chargers     Age: 25     Height: 6’1     Weight: 207

I’m not sure that he’s super talented like these top guys, but Gordon is in a great situation and is going to get the ball a ton. He’s powerful, pretty fast and pretty quick but he doesn’t catch it a ton. The Chargers are going to be a lot better this year. And Gordo here should benefit from that.

7. Saquon Barkley, New York Giants     Age: 21     Height: 6’1     Weight: 234

Saquon these nuts! That’s basically what Barkley told the Combine with his super-freak performance. Running backs don’t go #2 very often but this dude is just disgustingingly talented. He’s fast as hell, powerful and can catch it out of the backfield. He’ll be playing with the confused man himself Eli so that might limit his value and the Giants O-line last year was leakier than the Iraqi navy. But, talents like Barkley don’t come along very often so he’s definitely worth the first round pick.

8. Leonard Fournette, Jacksonville Jaguars     Age: 23     Height: 6’1     Weight: 228

After being drafted #4 overall in last year’s draft, Fournette did not disappoint fantasy owners last year as he finished at RB8. Halloween Leonard does come with some injury risks dating back to his days at LSU, where he straight stiff-armed people to the gates of hell on the reg, but he’s worth the risk. He won’t catch it a lot, I’m not even sure if he knows how to catch honestly but he’ll get enough targets where his points won’t come strictly from rushing yards. And if you’re playing with Blake the Blind Snake Bortles, your team is gonna run it a lot.

9. Kareem Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs     Age: 23     Height: 5’11     Weight: 201

As a rookie who stepped into the starter’s role due to injury to Spencer no worse for the Ware, Hunt took the rushing title for the Chiefs. He might not get the same workload as last year and he plays for Andy Reid who at times forgets the fact that you’re allowed to call running plays so he’s a little bit risky. Maybe Reid is too focused on what or who he’s going to eat after the game, but he should be able to get the ball into the hands of this talented second year back.

10. Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers     Age: 22     Height: 5’11     Weight: 205

This running back has to be Bill Belichick’s wet dream. He’s tough. He’s a great pass catcher. He’s white. Wait, I can’t be the only one who’s noticed Bill’s penchant for skilled white guys, right? But to McCaffrey. OC Norv Turner says he’s going to get the ball quite a bit. We can’t be sure if he can take a full workload or not. Take a load. Yikes. Run CMC is a great pass catcher and should continue to be featured in Carolina’s offense. 10 might be high, but I’m optimistic on CMac because he’s #goodatthegame.

11. Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons     Age: 26     Height: 5’9     Weight: 209

Atlanta has made their choice of who they want in their backfield for the future and that’s with Morgan’s grandson Devonta. I’m not sure if they’re related, but shit that’d be cool if they were. Freeman possess cat-like quicks and is a reliable pass catcher. For being pretty undersized, he’s a great between the tackles runner who is great at the goal line. Much like most of the Falcons, Freeman suffered last year because Matt Ryan is apparently color blind. The Falcons should bounce back. I’m betting Freeman will be a big part of that.

12. Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings     Age: 23     Height: 6’0     Weight: 210

Unfortunately Cook’s rookie season only lasted 4 games because of a torn ACL. What we saw of him in that limited action was impressive enough to find his way inside the top 15 here. Some people have been scared off because there’s a fear that there could be too many cooks in the kitchen in Minnesota. (Dalvin Cook, cooks in the kitchen. I’m trying here!) But if you’re afraid of Latavius Murray, then you shouldn’t take Cook. I’d be more afraid of Eddie Murphy or even Charlie Murphy (RIP) than I would of Latavius.

13. Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals     Age: 22     Height: 6’1     Weight: 218

Look, Mixon is a piece of shit. While at Oklahoma, he got into some trouble for punching a female student. So, not exactly a good dude. But we’re looking at fantasy value here, and he has it. He’s a very talented, bigger back who should be in line for a bigger workload this year. He should also be mixin’ (Mixon, puns – they’re so fucking fun) it up with Gio Bernard for receiving work as well. The Bungles improved their O-line this offseason which will only help the young back. He’s a borderline RB1.

14. Jordan Howard, Chicago Bears     Age: 23     Height: 6’1     Weight: 224

I know I made fun of Fournette’s receiving skills earlier but I probably should’ve saved it for Jordan Howard. Watching Howard try to catch a pass is like watching someone try to catch butterflies. It looks like it could be fun, but you sure as shit know that they’re not going to catch one. Luckily for Howard, he can straight pound the rock. Well, I hope he doesn’t pound The Rock (although that’s ok if he does, it’s 2018 people – let it go). Howard should get a boost from Chicago’s improved offense.

15. LeSean McCoy, Buffalo Bills     Age: 30     Height: 5’11     Weight: 207

McCoy is in the news for potentially doing some shady (whoops, that’s his nickname) things to a former ex. He could be facing suspension, we don’t know right now. What we do know is that he’s going to be playing on an offense that doesn’t have much of a choice to give him the ball as much as possible. That also is a risk. He’s 30. 30 for a running back is like normal people’s 60. They start to break down, think about retiring and for the most part are kind of boring. McCoy might be boring, but he might be worth the risk because if he’s right and not suspended, he’s still something special to watch at the running back position.

16. Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins     Age: 24     Height: 6’1     Weight: 211

Welcome to the part of the running backs section where you don’t know whether to laugh, throw up or shit your pants because you might legitimately have to draft one of these guys as your top RB. Drake and Bake could potentially be Miami’s workhorse this season. He finished last year strong and is the favorite to lead the team in touches. But again, Miami’s offense is led by Ryan Tannehill which will definitely want to make you shit your pants. Because that’s prettier than his quarterbacking ability.

17. Jerick McKinnon, San Francisco 49ers     Age: 26     Height: 5’9     Weight: 216

The Niners gave McKinnon a butt ton of money to come to the Bay Area and be their version of Devonta Morgan Freeman. He’s been hurt most of the preseason so we haven’t seen him much. McKinnon has also never been the feature back before. He was supposed to be when Adrian Peterson got suspended the whole year way back when and I spent my entire FAAB budget on him, and he didn’t do shit except lose the job to Matt Asiata. Matt Asiata! Matt FUCKING Asiata! But, I’m not bitter. Playing with that sexy beast of a QB that is Jimmy G, McKinnon offers a ton of upside for those willing to take the risk.

18. Lamar Miller, Houston Texans     Age: 27     Height: 5’10     Weight: 225

Miller Time! Doesn’t it feel like Lamar Miller has been in the league forever? Maybe he has Benjamin Button’s disease or some shit, I don’t know. Nonetheless, it’s tough to bet ON Miller. He basically lost the starting job to Alfred Blue at the end of the year last year. Alfred Blue, yuck. Bruce Wayne’s butler Alfred is a better running back than Alfred Blue, and he doesn’t even truly exist. When Deshaun Watson was healthy last year, Miller was a fringe RB1. To bet on Miller is to bet on the Texans. I feel alright about that.

19. Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans     Age: 24     Height: 6’3     Weight: 238

Holy shit, what a mountain of man. When God first created football, this type of player was probably what he was envisioning. Just a beastly, muscular man who looks like he wants to eat players’ souls when he runs near them. You couldn’t pay me to try to stop Derrick Henry. Well you could, but I would have to be paid with a guaranteed fact that Margot Robbie would bang me. Then marry me. Then have our kids. Then take care of our entire family. Sorry, bit of a tangent there. If only the Titans didn’t sign Dion Lewis. Then Henry would’ve had the backfield all to himself. He’ll still provide a lot of value and could find his way in the top 10 if everything breaks right.

20. Jay Ajayi, Philadelphia Eagles     Age: 25     Height: 6’0     Weight: 220

Ajayi never really got a full workload once he was traded from the shitshow that is the Miami Dolphins to the eventual champion Eagles. There’s no guarantee that happens this year either. But at 20, he’s worth a shot. The Eagles O-line is a bunch of badass motherfuckers that will clear lots of running lanes for whoever is getting it from Wentz or Foles.

21. Alex Collins, Baltimore Ravens     Age: 24     Height: 5’11     Weight: 216

Once Collins got promoted from the practice squad last year by the Ravens, he took the starting job and ran with it. Because he’s a running back, they run. Keep up dumb-dumbs. Collins gets the chance to run behind a terrific line and shouldn’t really be challenged for carries. Like Fournette and Howard, we don’t really know if he can catch. Sucky Bucky Allen will handle that job for the Ravens.

22. Marshawn Lynch, Oakland Raiders     Age: 32     Height: 5’11     Weight: 215

Beast Mode is still probably the baddest dude in the league. He’s a hard-nosed runner and will straight bowl anyone over in his way. He’s not as powerful as he once was but the dude is 32. When I’m 32, I’m still going to be typing this blog that everyone on the planet will read because it’s so damn good but I won’t be as powerful as I am now. Or will I? Fuck it, I don’t know what I’m talking about. Oakland’s O-line is still solid and if you believe Jon Gruden about his “taking football back to the 70’s” line, then Lynch will be a big part of that.

23. Rex Burkhead, New England Patriots     Age: 28     Height: 5’10     Weight: 214

I told you Bill Belichick loves white skill players. And we’re not even to wide receiver and tight end yet! Not so sexy Rexy stands in line to be the Pats’ lead back for now, and that’s worth something in fantasy. It’s hard to trust New England running backs because ole Bill just loves fucking with us fantasy guys. Remember Sammy Morris and Kevin Faulk? Fuck you, Belichick. It’s a big risk, but Burkhead has the chance to lead this team in carries and potentially be the goal line option there.

24. Dion Lewis, Tennessee Titans     Age: 27     Height: 5’8     Weight: 195

Dion Lewis is fucking tough. For the Patriots last year, he was definitely their most consistent between the tackles runner and he weighs just a little more than I do, and let’s just say I’m a little bitch. Lewis arrives in Tennessee looking to steal some work from Derrick Henry, and he definitely will, at least in the passing game. If you’re like me, I’m betting on the Titans this year to bounce back. I like Lewis as a low end RB2.

25. Carlos Hyde, CLE – Hyde is a good RB. Cleveland was smart to pick him up because he’s looked like a damn workhorse in the preseason.

26. Mark Ingram, NO – Suspended first 4 games this year for PEDs. Performance Erectile Dysfuction’s. No, that’s not right. Shit, talking about myself again.

27. Chris Carson, SEA – Total Request Live with Chris Carson Daily should be open in Seattle for the time being.

28. Isaiah Crowell, NYJ – not often you can leave the Browns and somehow go to a worse situation. Way to fuck that one up, Isaiah!

29. Royce Freeman, DEN – Freeman’s ADP is 3.08 right now. All those stoned bastards in Denver must be upping his value like crazy.

30. Tevin Coleman, ATL – every time I see the name Tevin, I think of the guy from I Love You, Man who works with Paul Rudd. Massive douche. But not this Tevin! Coleman would be an RB1 if something happens to Freeman.

31. Kerryon Johnson, DET – Carry on a johnson? Gross. Oh, that’s his name? Cool cool cool cool. Knew that. Should be the starter soon in Detroit – as long as Jim Bob Cooter can figure that out.

32. Jamaal Williams, GB – McCarthy has to put someone to run the ball behind Rodgers. Williams kind of looks like a bowling ball, and runs like one too.

33. Ronald Jones, TB – RoJo has been getting shit on all preseason and for good reason. He’s looked like horseshit in the preseason. But it won’t be long until Tampa realizes that not every Barber they have can be great.

34. Nick Chubb, CLE – So many team name possibilities with a last name like Chubb. Exciting. And so is this prospect in Cleveland. Could overtake Hyde by midseason.

35. Rashaad Penny, SEA – WTF was Seattle thinking taking an RB in the first round when they have so many needs elsewhere? Pete Carroll was definitely a pot head when he was young and he must’ve been on some pretty good shit at the draft to take Penny out of San Diego St. He’s not Marshall Faulk.

36. Duke Johnson, CLE – Duke’s Johnson? Why are we talking about dicks so much here? Oh shit, that’s his name? I’ll learn someday. Johnson should catch a ton of passes but won’t give much value rushing.

37. Sony Michel, NE – if the Patriots take an RB in the first round, you pay attention. Michel has missed most of camp with a “knee” injury. I think Belichick was making him undergo a skin transformation surgery like Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder. Except Downey became black. Michel, you guessed it, is now probably white.

38. Latavius Murray, MIN – Yes, I basically took a shit on Murray’s value earlier when I talked about Dalvin Cook. But Murray won’t be completely out of the picture.

39. Tarik Cohen, CHI – Tarik the Freak! Wait, that’s Tyreek Hill. They’re both freaks. They’re both little and as fast as the Jamaican bobsled team from Cool Runnings.

40. CJ Anderson, CAR – CJ originally looked like he would play the Jonathan Stewart role in Carolina, but Norv hasn’t exactly used him that way in the preseason. I’ll bet that changes.

41. Devontae Booker, DEN – 5 time! 5 time! WCW champion Booker T’s son should figure into the Denver backfield. That’s why Freeman’s value makes no fucking sense. Damn stoners in Colorado.

42. Marlon Mack, IND – Mack has been hurt most of camp and might miss Week 1 but he’s probably the best thing Indy has at running back. Mack Attack is a big risk though.

43. Aaron Jones, GB – If this knucklehead wasn’t suspended two games, we’d be talking about him being GB’s starting back. Come on A A ron!

44. Peyton Barber, TB – Only a matter of time till he gives his job to RoJo. Are we sure this isn’t Ronde Barber?

45. Ty Montgomery, GB – Montgomery was the starter last year until Green Bay decided to basically execute the smaller RB in their first two games. Will provide value as a pass catcher.

46. Chris Thompson, WAS – This dude had a nice run of games but is still recovering from a broken leg. Good PPR option.

47. Adrian Peterson, WAS – I hope AP can flip the switch from being dead to being alive and have some value.

48. Rob Kelley, WAS – I have no fucking clue how the Redskins backfield will play out.

49. Doug Martin, OAK – The Muscle Hamster will back up Marshawn. I can’t really say anything positive about him.

50. Theo Riddick, DET – Rid this dick. Riddick. I don’t know, I’m doing all I can here people. Great receiving back.

51. Corey Clement, PHI – I like this guy. Sick TD catch in the Super Bowl against the Pats and could provide value as Ajayi’s backup.

52. James Conner, PIT – If Bell doesn’t come back in great shape, Jimmy Conner could be in line for a nice workload.

53. Jordan Wilkins, IND – could be the starting horse for the Colts. Haha.

54. Alfred Morris, SF – knows KShan’s offense and is the most powerful runner there.

55. Bilal Powell, NYJ – POW! Powell! Shit, I’ll be honest, he needs to be higher. Forgot to rank him.

We’re nearing the beginning of the season. Normally, I’d write about more than 55, but 55 is what you get right now.

 

 

 

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