Training camps are opening across the NFL and fantasy football drafts are being done all over, so if you are looking for some help in preparing for your fantasy draft you have come to the right place as this post is going to break down and rank the top-40 running backs in point-per-reception scoring formats.
One thing you will want to take notice of right away is that the depth at running back this year is substandard, particularly at the top of the draft. There are some prospects and guys with upside that you can find later on in the draft but after the top five guys, things get pretty dicey in the first few rounds.
In the past, many a fantasy expert has preached how important it is to be good at running back and that definitely is true. But in my opinion, running back depth is just as important as having two high-end running backs, especially with so many elite players available at wide receiver. Anyways that was just a little bit of strategy and now here are the 2014 PPR Fantasy Football RB Rankings:
1. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings.
2. LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles.
3. Jamal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs.
4. Matt Forte, Chicago Bears.
5. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks.
6. Arian Foster, Houston Texans
7. Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers.
8. Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers.
9. Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Bucs.
10. DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys.
11. Reggie Bush, Detroit Lions.
12. Alfred Morris, Washington Redskins.
13. C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills.
14. Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers.
15. Giovanni Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals.
16. Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens.
17. Frank Gore, San Francisco 49ers.
18. Ben Tate, Cleveland Browns.
19. Darren Sproles, Philadelphia Eagles.
20. Shane Vereen, New England Patriots.
21. Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons.
22. Montee Ball, Denver Broncos.
23. Rashad Jennings, New York Giants.
24. Andre Ellington, Arizona Cardinals.
25. Chris Johnson, New York Jets.
26. Knowshon Moreno, Miami Dolphins.
27. DeAngelo Williams, Carolina Panthers.
28. Danny Woodhead, San Diego Chargers.
29. Maurice Jones-Drew, Oakland Raiders.
30. Fred Jackson, Buffalo Bills
31. Pierre Thomas, New Orleans Saints.
32. Bishop Sankey, Tennessee Titans.
33. Stevan Ridley, New England Patriots.
34. Toby Gerhart, Jacksonville Jaguars.
35. Darren McFadden, Oakland Raiders.
36. Bernard Pierce, Baltimore Ravens
37. Joique Bell, Detroit Lions.
38. Trent Richardson, Indianapolis Colts.
39. Mark Ingram, New Orleans Saints.
40. Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins.
Breaking Down the Ranks:
This year, running back is weak. There is still that can be had and solid value in the middle rounds of the draft but after the first five picks or so things get a little dicey. I love both Lacy and Bell but I struggle with taking either of them in the first round of the draft. They were great as rookies, I would just like to see them do it again before putting that much faith in them.
This also is a great time to get good players, who struggled last season on the cheap. Players such as Ray Rice, McFadden, Jones-Drew, Ridley, Chris Johnson and Steven Jackson are all players that disappointed fantasy owners last season and can had with much later picks than in previous seasons.
The rule in fantasy football has always been to be good at running back and that is still true. But don’t get stuck in the idea that you need to draft one early, after the top four guys, it’s a toss up, so you are better off waiting and getting better value at another position. The one thing you want to make sure you get is depth at running, so even if you can’t grab an elite back early, make sure you have three to four solid guys you can’t count on because when injuries and bye weeks hit, you will be ready.