Great Bobboo’s Way Too Early RB Ratings

The running back position in not only the most important it is also the most consistent. If you have a stud running back they can carry you into the playoffs and win the championship just ask the owners who had Demarco Murray and C.J. Anderson. The problem is the running back position is also the most injured so you need to be careful when drafting to make sure you make the most bang for your buck. Here are my top 20 players going into the year.


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1. Adrian Peterson- At first I was apprehensive about him this high with him sitting out a whole year, however I had to “switch” my thinking. Get it Switch? Ok enough with the jokes. Peterson is going to run pissed off all year, and the Vikings are going to lean on him heavily. Peterson was at the top of his game before his suspension and a year off gave him time to rest his body. Look for over 1500 yards rushing and 13 TD’s from Peterson.

2. Le’Veon Bell- I know what you are thinking this is the same guy that was suspended for the beginning of the season, but even with the suspension this guy is the 2nd best running back on my board. Not only did he have 1,3861 rushing yards and 8 td’s he also had 83 receptions with over 800 yards and 8 td’s, basically this guy will get you a lot of points every week, and if you are in PPR league he is definitely worth the #1 pick. Bell is a great pick and will actually be healthier when it comes playoff time with not playing the first few weeks, remember you don’t win the championship in the first few weeks.

3. Eddie Lacy- I would have Lacy higher up on the list if he did not seem to have concussion issues, however you can expect a great year from Lacy. Whenever I watch Packer games and trust me it’s too much, Lacy pops out of the screen and it’s not just because he is a fat ass. Eddie Lacy is a bruising back who is also a great receiver out of the backfield. Luckily Lacy plays on the best offense in football so defenses play to stop Rodgers which leaves huge holes for Lacy to run through. I look for Green Bay to pass less this year which will allow Lacy to have an even greater season than he did last year.

4. Jamal Charles- Charles is also a great dual threat. He struggled last year with injuries, but when he played he put up quality starts, and with an improved offensive line this year in KC and I think Alex Smith may actually throw a TD to a receiver this year, I believe Charles is in a for a big year. Make sure with Charles you draft Knile Davis for his handcuff.

5. Arian Foster- Injuries started to catch up do Arian the last few years he missed three games last year, but posted the best yards after contact in his career at 2.2, and the Texans boast one of the best offensive lines in football so Foster is a pretty easy pick here. If he stays healthy he will be one of the top scoring running backs in fantasy this year.

6. Marshawn Lynch- This will be the last year that Lynch will be fantasy viable in my opinion. However, Seattle will still be a run first option and Lynch is their bell cow. With Lynch you will be guaranteed yards and rushing tds, as he is not a great option in PPR leagues. Wilson will vulture some goal line tds from Lynch but he is still a solid RB for your team. Don’t get too cute with your pics as Lynch accounted for 17 TD’s last year.

7. Matt Forte- Forte continues to be one of the best backs in fantasy, but this year although he is still worth having on your team I think his numbers will start to dwindle. John Fox is the coach now in Chicago and he will be employing a more run first offense in Chicago, and that is not where Forte’s strength is, under Marc Trestman, Forte was another receiver on the field. With Fox he will be running the ball more, and receiving it less which in my opinion is his strength. Forte will still put up numbers just not what he has done in the past. He is still a high pick, but I have seen people taking him high in the first round which I don’t recommend.

8. C.J. Anderson- Now is when the RB position starts to get really interesting. If you took a WR or QB with your first pick chances are these next few players will be available and you don’t want to miss on these guys. Anderson almost single handedly won me a fantasy championship last year. With Manning injured last year Anderson became an absolute beast. The Broncos went into the year with Montee Ball and he got injured and Anderson just took over. With Gary Kubiak coming into town and running his zone blocking scheme I look for a huge year from Anderson. During the last 8 games of the year last year no fantasy player scored more points than Anderson, and with a healthy Manning look for another huge year. Make sure if you draft Anderson you also draft Ball as a handcuff. These are my early rankings but if he is the starter out of training camp he is a top 3 pick.

9. Jeremy Hill- Much like Anderson, Hill also came out of nowhere to be a fantasy stud last year. Going into the year Gio Bernard was a high pick in most fantasy leagues, but he actually regressed especially in the passing game which led to the emergence of Hill. Hill averaged 5.1 yards per carry, but when he touched the ball more than 15 times a game it jumped up to 5.6. I look for Hill to be the featured back in Cincy and look for the Bengals to lean on him heavily. He is definitely worth a high pick, but I can stress enough handcuffing him with Bernard.

10. Demarco Murray- I wanted to put Murray up higher but with the Eagles cutting Evan Mathis one of the best guards in the league I wonder if that will cut into his production. Everyone talks about how Murray is leaving a great offensive line in Dallas and he was, but Philly’s run blocking actually rated higher than Dallas last year. I believe Murray will have a solid year, but what scares me is Ryan Matthews and how much he will be used. It will be interesting to pay attention in training camp to see how the backfield works, but Murray is definitely worth a second round pick and could carry your team again.

11. Melvin Gordon- I think Gordon will be the most impactful rookie this year in fantasy. Although I believe Gurley is a better back he won’t be playing as much with the injured knee. Gordon goes to a team that needs a running back, and he will be their workhorse back. In PPR leagues I would drop Gordon down a few spots, but in traditional leagues you can feel safe with Gordon.

12. LeSean McCoy- I was torn on this selection as I like McCoy, I just don’t like the situation he is in. Buffalo’s QB situation is the worse in the league, and NO bringing in Matt Cassel will not help. He is easily one of the worst quarterbacks in the league. This presents a problem for McCoy as he will be facing fronts designed to stop him, however I do believe McCoy will get a ton of carries and opportunities so he will have a better year than last year. If you are looking at McCoy in PPR he moves up a few spots as he is a great receiver out of the backfield.

13. Mark Ingram- Many people have C.J. Spiller as a sleeper pick this year, but I really like Ingram. The Saints are going to be a more run offense than they have ever been under Sean Payton, and I look for Ingram to have a big year. Keep in mind in PPR leagues I would have CJ Spiller ranked higher than Ingram, but in traditional leagues look for Ingram to be the best back. He is not a great receiver out of the backfield, but he will be their goal line back and will get the majority of the carries as Spiller is not durable at all. Look for 10 plus TD’s out of Ingram this year.

14. Justin Forsett- Forsett came out of nowhere to be one of the better backs in football last year. Forsett is the main option for a team that is a run heavy team. Forsett is not a sexy pic, but hey he doesn’t beat the shit out of his wife in a casino elevator either. Forsett is also a capable receiver out of the backfield with 44 catches last year. Forsett will make a solid RB2 on any roster.

15. Jonathan Stewart- For most of his career Stewart has shared the backfield with DeAngelo Williams, but with Williams off to Pittsburgh look for a big year from Stewart. Last year in the last five games the only running back that had more rushing yards than Stewart was Demarco Murray. With Williams gone look for Stewart to touch the ball a lot more and be a very productive running back.

16. Alfred Morris- Morris is not a flashy running back, but he is a great pick. Washington will run the ball a lot especially with RG3 as their starter. Morris won’t get you spectacular numbers, but look for 1,000 rushing yards and around 10 TD’s for Morris.

17. Carlos Hyde- with Frank Gore leaving for the Colts it leaves the job to Hyde. Hyde didn’t do much in his rookie season but he didn’t get a lot of opportunities with Gore being the main back. The 49ers are going to go to a more run friendly offense, as Kap has trouble completing passes past five yards, so I look for around 1000 yards and 10 TD’s from Hyde.

18. Frank Gore- For being 100 years old Gore is still very productive, and he is going to one of the best offenses in football. Gore will have a very productive season and will be on the field a lot in passing situations where he can be very dangerous. His numbers might not be as good as recent years, but will still be a very viable fantasy option.

19. Lamar Miller- I look for the Dolphins to be one of the more improved teams this year, and Miller will be a big part of that. Miller is their #1 back going into the year. Miller has breakaway speed and is also a good receiver out of the backfield. Miller has durability issues so make sure you have someone to back him up. Tannenhill’s ascension into a quality quarterback will also help with Miller’s numbers.

20. Todd Gurley- I like to take big risks in fantasy and this is one of them. Gurley is still in rehab for his knee so you want to take Tre Mason as a handcuff, but Gurley is a beast and when he plays he will be spectacular. He has Adrian Peterson type skills. Gurley is a must have in keeper leagues. Gurley’s big payoff would be towards the end of the season.


– Jeff Bauer

TWITTER: @jbauer36