Dynasty RB Rankings (PPR): The Top 10
By Joe Kilroy (@KilroyDFW)
1. TRENT RICHARDSON, Cleveland Browns | DOB: 7/10/1991 (22)
Short Term Outlook (STO): Richardson is currently dealing with a shin injury that caused him to miss OTAs and minicamp, but he is expected to return for training camp and is in no danger of missing the start of the regular season. He should see significant improvement upon his already impressive rookie totals.
Long Term Outlook (LTO): The third overall pick of the 2012 draft is in good hands under new Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner. Turner has an impressive track record of getting strong production from his running backs and will continue to do so with Trent Richardson. Eleven-hundred plus yard rushing totals, along with double-digit levels of touchdown production should be routine for Richardson. He should also post 45-55 receptions regularly.
2. DOUG MARTIN, Tampa Bay Buccaneers | DOB: 1/13/1989 (24)
STO: Martin had an outstanding rookie campaign totaling 1926 total yards from scrimmage while scoring 12 touchdowns. He may not surpass those totals this year, but will still be among the best fantasy performers at his position.
LTO: Along with his 2012 draft class counterpart Trent Richardson, Martin is set to be amongst the elite fantasy performers for the foreseeable future. Choosing between the two is simply a matter of preference.
3. RAY RICE, Baltimore Ravens | DOB: 1/22/1987 (26)
STO: The emergence of Bernard Pierce in the Ravens backfield has some owners shying away from Rice. He is still Baltimore’s lead back however, and his track record suggests he’s a lock for no less than 1500 total yards from scrimmage and 60-plus receptions. He is also a threat to score 10-12 touchdowns.
LTO: As mentioned above Bernard Pierce’s presence is having an adverse affect on Rice’s value – both short and long term. At just 26 years of age however Rice is still in the prime of his career. And with the departure of Anquan Boldin this offseason the Ravens may very well lean more heavily upon their rushing attack going forward. It may result in Rice being targeted even more heavily than he already is in the passing game as well.
4. C.J. SPILLER, Buffalo Bills | DOB: 8/5/1987 (25)
STO: Spiller is coming off his best season as a pro in which he totaled 1703 yards from scrimmage on just 250 touches. He’ll be hard pressed to match his outstanding averages of 6.0 yards per carry and 10.7 yards per catch from a year ago, but his expected increase in touches should more than make up for any dips in those averages – which still figure to be very impressive anyhow.
LTO: The ninth overall pick in the 2010 draft is finally coming into his own. He’s had to split time with backfield counterpart Fred Jackson up to this point in his career, but is finally expected to be the primary option from season’s beginning to season’s end. If he can handle the rigors that come with a heavier workload he’ll be an outstanding fantasy option for years to come.
5. LESEAN MCCOY, Philadelphia Eagles | DOB: 7/12/1988 (25)
STO: The ins-and-outs of new Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly may not be fully known yet, but he is expected to run the ball quite often. And that means plenty of carries to go around for both LeSean McCoy and Bryce Brown. McCoy also figures to still receive plenty of opportunities in the passing game as well.
LTO: If Kelly’s offensive schemes prove successful at the pro level than McCoy will be one of the most productive backs in the league over the next few years. If not then the sheer number of touches McCoy will handle on a regular basis will still keep him amongst the top fantasy backs to own.
6. JAMAAL CHARLES, Kansas City Chiefs | DOB: 12/27/1986 (26)
STO: Charles is coming off a year in which he achieved career highs in both rushing attempts (285) and yards rushing (1509). He now finds himself working under new head coach Andy Reid and is expected to be better utilized as an all around threat within the offense. His reception count should see a significant climb and as such he’ll be amongst the top running back options in PPR leagues.
LTO: With Andy Reid on board the sky appears to be the limit for Jamaal Charles in the foreseeable future. And if he can begin amassing double-digit touchdown totals over the next few years his fantasy production will be truly outstanding. The 7-9 touchdowns he should produce on a regular basis, in addition to his reception count and yardage totals will keep him in elite company as it already is.
7. ADRIAN PETERSON, Minnesota Vikings | DOB: 3/21/1985 (28)
STO: Peterson is coming off an outstanding 2012 campaign in which he became just the seventh back in NFL history to rush for over 2000 yards in a single season. This feat is all the more impressive considering he had suffered a torn ACL and MCL in December of 2011. After accomplishing the seemingly impossible there is little reason to doubt the face of the Vikings franchise won’t once again produce double-digit touchdowns and 1600-plus total yards from scrimmage as he has done in every year that wasn’t cut short due to injury (see 2011).
LTO: Peterson’s age is getting to a point where his value in dynasty leagues is about to begin a steady decline. If any running back can be expected to produce at age thirty and beyond like he had in his twenties Peterson is it, but it’d be foolish to hold such a belief as if it’s already fact. His current value remains quite high, but he’ll be 29 at the start of the 2014 season and if he rushes for 1400 yards or less this year some of the shine will begin rubbing off Peterson’s dynasty value rather quickly.
8. ARIAN FOSTER, Houston Texans | DOB: 8/24/1986 (26)
STO: Foster averaged a disappointing and career low 4.1 yards per carry last season. He also finished with his worst receiving totals (40/217/2) since becoming the Texans primary rusher in 2010. Nonetheless his outstanding touchdown production and high volume of touches kept him ranked amongst the top fantasy performers. There’s some cause for concern about his long term outlook, but 2013 should be another strong one for him.
LTO: The upcoming season will go a long way in determining Foster’s outlook over the few years. His fantasy production has been outstanding, but his average yards per carry and number of receptions have declined notably in each of the last three seasons. If that trend continues or he doesn’t improve upon those figures from 2012 in 2013 it should send up a big red flag to his dynasty owners. The diminished numbers in those areas are concerning enough on their own, but even more so when Foster’s heavy workload is taken into account. It could be a sign that the wear and tear he’s endured of the years is taking a toll on his body.
9. LAMAR MILLER, Miami Dolphins | DOB: 4/25/1991 (22)
STO: Miller enters 2012 as the Dolphins lead back after working behind Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas as a rookie. With the upgrades Miami has made to their offense this offseason, along with Miller’s own abilities, he could be in line for a breakout campaign this year. His value is likely to continue climbing more and more as the start of the season approaches.
LTO: A case can be made that Miller deserves to be ranked ahead of both Arian Foster and Adrian Peterson here. And if it weren’t for the fact both those veterans are virtual locks for double-digit touchdowns as opposed to just relying primarily on their yardage and reception totals for fantasy production he would be. He’s well worth targeting in start-up drafts or via trade from an owner that doesn’t realize just how high Miller’s ceiling is.
10. DAVID WILSON, New York Giants | DOB: 6/15/1991 (22)
STO: Like Miller, David Wilson spent most of his rookie campaign behind a more established veteran back. In Wilson’s case it was Ahmad Bradshaw. The Giants released Bradshaw during the offseason however and that has left the door wide open for Wilson to make his mark as an impact player within the Giants offense. He should be a solid number two running back option for fantasy owners in the year ahead with the upside to do much more if he can fend off Andre Brown from stealing a significant number of touches out of the backfield.
LTO: Wilson is about as electrifying a player as you can find in the NFL. He possesses amazing speed and can truly take it the distance from anywhere on the field. If he can gain his coaches trust as a pass protector and prove himself as a reliable receiving target out of the backfield Wilson’s value will sky rocket. His rushing abilities alone make him a much desired commodity. It’s simply a matter of him proving he can be an all-around back at the NFL level which will determine how high his ceiling climbs.
Click this link to view: Dynasty RB Rankings 11-20 (PPR)