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Fantasy Football Running Back List

Hey everyone, I hope everyone has had a good week since my last post. A lot has gone on in the Dallas Cowboys organization this week. With T.O. running his vapid mouth again, to the Greg Ellis situation, we sure have had a lot to talk about. I recently watched a feature on NFL.com which was  a round table discussion with Deion Sanders, Warren Sapp, and Marshall Faulk. They seem to think that Dallas is going to have a hard time winning 8 games this year. Lets hope that they are wrong. I personally, don’t care about ANYTHING Warren Sapp has to say about anything. Heres hoping that the Cowboys are the sleeper story of the next NFL season. I really need something to shut up the haters that live in my part of the world. The Baltimore/Washington DC area….Enemy Territory.

Anyhow, getting down to business at hand, I promised to start with the Fantasy ranking of each position. As preseason comes around, some of these rankings may change, due to injuries and other factors. I am going to start with the rankings for Running backs. I will be doing a top 12 list for all positions, due to the fact that most Fantasy leagues that I have played in have about that many teams competing. The numbers I put up in this article are based on LAST Season.

  1. Michael Turner (ATL) – I may get flak for putting him at the #1 spot for this season, but I think that his numbers might be better than Adrian Peterson’s. This guy was a beast in every aspect of Fantasy football last year. Turner ran for 1,699 yards and scored a hefty 17 touchdowns for the season. He rarely fumbles, only losing the ball 3 times. He gets lots of touches in the Falcons offensive scheme and makes the most of them, averaging 106 yards per game.

  2. Adrian Peterson (MIN) – This guy is a beast in every aspect of Fantasy football. He had 20 rushes over 20 yards last season, and also pulled together 1,760 yards rushing for the season. This guy is a workhorse if there ever was one. The only downside to having him as your main running is that of all the premier Running backs in the league, he only scored 10 touchdowns all season and also coughed up the ball 9 times.

  3. Clinton Portis (WAS) – Even though he plays for the hated Redskins, Portis is a solid 1st round pick. He gets a lot of touches and averages about 4.5 yards per carry. He rushed for 1,487 yards last season. Portis can sometimes be streaky though. Last season, he exploded in the beginning of the season and kind of dropped off when the Redskins imploded last year. He also only scored 9 touchdowns. Bottom line, Portis will give you good numbers.

  4. LaDainian Tomlinson (SD) – In past years L.T. was almost a sure bet for being the #1 overall Fantasy draft pick. However it is widely speculated that his performance is dropping off. I don’t know if I agree with this consensus, but it does seem to be a fact. Tomlinson ran for 1,100 yards last season and put up 11 TD’s. He didn’t have the carries that he usually did, due to injury, and if he stays healthy this year, he is definitely someone you want to pick up in the 1st round.

  5. DeAngelo Williams (CAR) – He had a great season last year averaging 5.5 yards a carry and putting up 1,515 yards for the season. He was limited to only 273 carries but managed to score 18 times. His Fantasy numbers were great last year, the only question is, Will he be able to repeat the same success as last season?

  6. Brandon Jacobs (NYG) – Jacobs is a bulldozer of a running back, he ended up in opponents end zones 15 times last season, and averaged 5 yards a carry. While he doesn’t get the carries some of the other premier backs do, he definitely makes the most of them. If he is still on the board in the 1st round by the time your pick comes along, he might not be a bad choice.

  7. Steven Jackson (STL) – Although Jackson has had some injury issues in the past, he still gets the ball quite a bit with St. Louis’s receiving a liability. He got 253 carries last season and scored 7 times. Averaging 4.1 yards a carry isn’t anything to scoff at, but he also lacks that great offensive line. That being said, I expect Jackson to have a better season this year than last year.

  8. Thomas Jones (NYJ) – Jones got off to a very slow start last year, however got his game going good at the end of the season. He rushed for 1,312 yards and put up 13 touchdowns. However it remains to be seen if he gets his contract woes fixed. With a new head coach and a new QB in Sanchez, I expect the Jets to rely heavily on their running game, very similar to the pre-Flacco Ravens.

  9. Matt Forte (CHI) – Forte had some impressive numbers last season rushing for 1,238 yards and putting up 8 touchdowns. I might have even put him higher on the list. Hard to tell what his production will be next year. I do expect him to get more touches and have, at least, a slightly better season than last year.

  10. Chris Johnson (TEN) – One of the only reasons why I put Mr, Johnson towards the bottom of this list is because of how heavily he has to share the ball with Lendale White. Lendale seemed to get most of the goal line carries and took a lot away from the value of Johnson. Even with that being the case, He still put up good stats. 1,228 yards rushing, and 9 TD’s. Had he have gotten those goal line touches, he may even be in the top 5 RB’s in the league.

  11. Brien Westbrook (PHI) – Westbrook’s numbers have declined in the past few years, however what he lacks in touches, he makes up for in receiving. He put up a total of 14 TD’s last year and rushed for just under 1,000 yards. He might not rush more yards than some running backs but he is a dual threat and that makes him worth picking up.

  12. Maurice Jones-Drew (JAX) – Jones-Drew is an up and comer and possibly should be higher on this list. He should get more carries this year than he did last year. Even with that being said he still put up 12 touchdowns with only 197 carries. If he gets another 50-80 carries he will put up huge numbers.

Okay so there you have it. Remember these lists aren’t gospel. If you know someone with a crystal ball that can read the future, you might want to check in with them. I hope that this article, at the very least, gives you something to think about for your pick for your running back. What do you guys think? Who are you hoping to pick up? Any sleepers out there that you might be able to pick up on the sly? Let me know. As always, I wish you guys the best and have a great weekend.

Drafting in Fantasy Football

Hello Cowboys fans! This is my first of, hopefully, many articles for Lone Star Struck. I will be doing the Fantasy Sports article from here on out. My intention is to write an entertaining column about a game most of us now play. I have been playing since 1999, and I have also, for the last 6 years, been the commissioner for the league that I play in as well. Fantasy Football has come a long way in the last few years. You can now get your Fantasy scoring while watching games and they have entire shows dedicated to it during the week and early Sunday mornings. To say that Fantasy Football is a huge part of being a fan of NFL football is an understatement. Playing Fantasy Football is a great way to immerse yourself in the game, plus it also can help you learn about the sport in ways you previously may have looked over. I know, that for me, Fantasy Football has made me a better fan and it also has helped me learn about how teams/players other than the Cowboys are doing. Knowledge is always a good thing. Being as we are all Dallas Cowboys Fans, I will always include information and my opinions on Cowboys. As awesome as it would be to have a team of all Cowboys (I did that in 2002, and won more than I thought I would) sometimes isn’t at all feasible.

     

That being said, The first thing I’d like to discuss is how you should rank your picks by position. Some of you that have been playing for awhile may already know this, and this may be a good time to start planning out your team. For those of you that have never played before and intend on this season being your first, I hope this information is helpful to you. Just because this might be your first foray into Fantasy Football, it sure doesn’t have to LOOK like it.

  1. Running Back – Think of the running back as the main workhorse for your team. There is a reason why, in past years, Ladainian Tomlinson and guys like Adrian Peterson go first. Your main running back should be a guy who either A) gets ALL the touches on running plays or B)at least 75%. Depending on your league rules, Your main running back will most likely supply you with 30-40% of the points you will get on Sunday.

     

  2. Quarterback – Your Quarterback is high up on your list due to the fact, that like your main RB, he will likely put up a majority of the points on a good day. For maximum effect, try to match him up with his #1 receiver. This will double your points. For example, if your QB throws a 50 yard TD pass to to your receiver, they will both score the points for the 50 yards and the touchdown. A good quarter back is someone who will average over 250 yards a game and 2 touchdowns.

     

  3. 2nd Running Back – A good choice for your second running back is the type of back that gets the ball on 4th and 1. He might not get the touches like your #1 RB, but he puts up a good amount of points. A lot of teams have backs like this in this day and age of the multiple RB system

     

  4. Wide Receiver – Try to match your number one receiver with your QB’s #1 Receiver on his team. Like I said previously, this doubles your points, If you cannot, try to pick a premier WR. WR’s are tricky in Fantasy football, a guy like T.O. Can catch 4 touchdowns in one game and do nothing the next. It is usually wise not to count on your WR’s in Fantasy as they can be fickle. Think of anything they get you, as a bonus.

     

  5. Defense – In most leagues you will pick a teams entire defense. In past years teams like Baltimore, Tennessee and Pittsburgh have been strong picks. Any defense that holds other teams to 14 points or less are good choices. Look for teams that have lots of sacks and interceptions. Your Special Teams unit will also be your Defensive pick. So teams like the Bears might be a good choice due to players like Devin Hester and the like.

     

  6. Tight Ends- Make sure you get a receiving TE, because in most leagues, you don’t get points for blocking. Guys like Jason Witten and Kevin Boss are usually good picks.

Well, that about wraps it up for this article. I just want to add, that this is a very general and very basic guideline for how your draft should go. WR’s and your Second RB are interchangeable depending on what is available. In coming articles I will be ranking the top 12 guys at each position so that you can have your list ready for Draft Day. Thanks for reading and I hope that this comes in handy for you beginners and even for some of you veterans out there.