Fantazzle 2009 Fantasy Football Running Back Rankings
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Fantasy Football Running Backs – Overall
Running back strategy has shifted. You have heard it before and I’ll repeat: if you don’t have one of the first 4 overall picks, you’re taking a chance at this position. In the first round you want a sure thing and running backs just don’t offer that anymore. Split time, injury concerns, inconsistency, you name it. If I’m in the bottom half of the draft order, I’m picking WRs with my first two picks and stacking up on RBs with upside starting in round 3 through 6 (depending on how the draft goes, ONE of those picks may be for a QB or WR if certain guys fall to you).
Running back is by far the hardest position to rank. As of August 28th, there are 7 to 8 teams that haven’t given a clear position of who the starter is or how much time the named starter will play. For all other positions, you know who is starting and in most cases, you know these guys will play 90-100% of snaps. At running back, there is no guarantee that someone like Addai or Barber or even DeAngelo will play as much as expected. Thats why you can’t count on these guys and should stockpile in later rounds. You want as much a sure thing as possible in the first couple rounds.
Fantasy Football Running Backs Scoring
Standard. 6pts TD; 1pt every 10 yards; -2pts fumble (no points for receptions)
RUNNING BACKS TIER 1
1 Adrian Peterson — #1 in non-PPR leagues.
2 Matt Forte — #1 in PPR leagues.
3 Maurice Jones Drew
4 Michael Turner
RUNNING BACKS TIER 2
5 LaDainian Tomlinson
6 DeAngelo Williams — Hard schedule; Overrated.
7 Frank Gore
8 Chris Johnson
9 Brandon Jacobs — If he plays all 16 games, he can be ~#5.
10 Marion Barber — F Jones will help, rather than hurt ranking.
11 Clinton Portis
RUNNING BACKS TIER 3
12 Brian Westbrook — Really hard to rank given his injury history. I’m not drafting.
13 Steven Jackson — See BW…only he plays for a much worse team. I’m not drafting.
RUNNING BACKS TIER 4
14 Kevin Smith — No RBBC here. Big potential.
15 Steve Slaton
16 Julius Jones — Value Pick.
17 Ryan Grant
18 Ronnie Brown
19 Pierre Thomas
20 Larry Johnson — High-risk, high-reward
21 Derrick Ward — Value Pick.
22 Darren McFadden
RUNNING BACKS TIER 5
23 Marshawn Lynch — Top 15 if no suspension.
24 Thomas Jones — I’m staying away.
25 Joseph Addai
26 Jonathan Stewart
27 Ray Rice
28 Cedric Benson
29 Willie Parker
30 Knowshon Moreno — Who knows….
31 Reggie Bush — Always a disappointment.
32 Chris ‘Beanie’ Wells
RUNNING BACKS TIER 6
33 Willis McGahee
34 Felix Jones
35 James Davis
36 Michael Bush
37 Rashard Mendenhall
38 LenDale White
39 Donald Brown
40 LeShon McCoy — Major upside
41 Ahmad Bradshaw
42 Kevin Faulk — Not drafting any NE RBs.
43 Tim Hightower
44 Earnest Graham — I think D. Ward is going to produce.
45 Jamal Lewis — Not drafting even if its round 16
46 Fred Jackson
47 Correll Buckhalter
48 Darren Sproles
49 Glen Coffee
50 Shonn Greene — Helluva keeper league pick.
Fantasy Football Running Backs – Conclusion
The tiers are incredibly important. If you don’t have a top 4 pick, then stay away from RB. Look at Tier 2. How many of those guys do you feel 99% confident on? Tier 3, do you feel 50% confident they’ll be healthy? There are no sure things in Tier 4 or 5, but if you grab 3 or 4 of these guys and 1 or 2 Tier 6 (and free agent pickups), your bound to get two RBs you start week to week. Don’t risk your top picks with guys you can’t fully feel confident on. Go for a guy you can count on in another position.
Good luck to you all! QB and TE coming Sunday. WR shortly after.
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