Top 25 Fantasy Football Running Backs 2017

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1. Le’Veon Bell – While DJ is topping many pre draft fantasy lists Bell remains the king for KBT. The reason why, well in 12 games Le’Veon amassed what would be a career year for almost any running back. The star rb went for 1884 yards from scrimmage with 9 total touchdowns. This is a ridiculous 157 total yards and .75 touchdowns per game. If you are working in a standard scoring league that’s a whopping 20.2 points per game.

Prediction: 1600 yards rushing, 80 rec 800 yards, 20 TDs, 360 total points

2. David Johnson – All this monster of a man did in his second year was tie Barry Sanders for most consecutive 100 plus yard games in a single season. That plus 2118 yards from scrimmage and 20 total touchdowns. Johnson was an absolute madman averaging 20.7 points per game in a standard scoring league. The only reason that DJ did not make his way to the top of the list this year is his team around him. He has an aging offense around him and he should see a lot of attention from opposing defenses all year long.

Prediction: 1400 yards rushing, 80 rec 800 yards, 18 TDs, 328 total points  

3. Melvin Gordon – After an extremely disappointing rookie season Melvin Gordon was having a breakout sophomore season that was derailed by a late injury. While his ypc average was still relatively low the Chargers kept feeding Gordon the ball who ended the year with 1416 yards from scrimmage and 12 total touchdowns in just 13 games. If Gordon stays healthy he should see plenty of opportunities again this year.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 50 rec 500 yards, 16 TDs, 266 total points  

4. Devonta Freeman – Freeman has shown to be much more durable than I first predicted considering his frame. Not only has he been consistently healthy, he has played extremely well during that time. The Falcons RB has gone for over 1500 total yards and had 13 or more scores in each of his past 2 years even with Coleman eating into his snaps last year. With a solid offensive line and a great team around him, Freeman should continue his success in 17.

Prediction: 1100 yards rushing, 75 rec 600 yards, 14 TDs, 254 total points

5. Demarco Murray – Last year Murray was able to bounce back in a big way after a less than impressive 2015 season under Chip Kelly. Gathering over 1600 yards from scrimmage and totalling 12 touchdowns Murray showed everyone he still has plenty left in the tank. The Titans have only improved during the offseason and Murray should have himself another big year behind that beastly Titan OL.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 35 rec 300 yards 13 TDs, 228 total points  

6. Jordan Howard – The impressive rookie burst out on the scene once he was given a chance due to injury. In just 13 games started Howard ran for 1313 yards and added another 298 through the air. Howard should see the ball a lot again this year since he is now clearly the best weapon the Bears have.

Prediction: 1300 yards rushing, 40 rec 400 yards, 8 TDs, 218 total points  

7. Todd Gurley – After taking down ROTY Gurley had a seriously disappointing sophomore season. Don’t let this discourage you in taking the talented young running back. Goff has shown slight improvement in the preseason, this along with the addition of Watkins should help keep some attention off of Gurley.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 30 rec 300 yards 10 TDs, 210 total points  

8. Lesean McCoy – McCoy was an absolute freak last year, and arguably the best not named David or Le’Veon when healthy. The reason for ranking McCoy towards the bottom of the top 10 is his supporting cast. The Bills have seemingly given up on their season, leaving McCoy out to dry. While he doesn’t have much talent around him McCoy is the starter and his talent merits a top 10 spot regardless of the situation.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 40 rec 500 yards, 6 TDs, 206 total points  

9. Lamar Miller – Last year was a slight disappointment for the first year Texan. He was able to get over 1000 yards on the ground but he barely had 4 ypc average and only reached the end zone 6 times on the year. A lot of that could be due to the absolutely atrocious play of Osweiler. Look for this to be a better year for Miller.

Prediction: 1000 yards rushing, 40 rec 400 yards, 8 Tds, 188 total points

10. Isaiah Crowell – Showed that he can be a very productive runner on a less than average team. He will see many 3rd downs taken away from him by the talented receiving back Duke Johnson Jr, but don’t let that stop you from taking the best offensive weapon on the Browns.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 20 rec 200 yards, 7 TDs, 182 total points

11. Leonard Fournette – This big bruising runner will be the featured back for a Jaguars team that has had trouble with running the ball over the past several years. He has all the tools and will look to make an immediate impact for the young team.

Prediction: 1100 yards rushing, 20 rec 200 yards, 8 TDs, 178 total points

12. Jay Ajayi – Ajayi burst onto the scene last year with 3 HUGE performances of 200 or more yards on the ground. He ended the season with over 1200 yards despite splitting time early with Foster. Look for Ajayi to have another successful season despite losing his quarterback for the year.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 15 rec 100 yards, 8 TDs, 178 total points

13. Ezekiel Elliott – Coming off a monster rookie season the only reason that Zeke the freak is this low on the list is due to his off the field issues. Facing a possible 6 game suspension, it is possible that we don’t see Elliott until October. When he is in expect him to be the same old fantasy football phenom.

Prediction: 1000 yards rushing, 25 rec 200 yards, 9 TDs, 174 total points

14. Christian McCaffrey – McCaffrey did it all in college, running, catching, returning. In fact he even broke Barry Sanders record for most yards in a single season. On top of that, he has looked fantastic in the preseason this year, often making people miss, and showing great vision. His touchdowns will be limited by the fact that he plays with Newton and Stewart who will vulture goal line carries.

Prediction: 800 yards rushing, 60 rec 600 yards, 5 TDs, 170 total points

15. Doug Martin – Martin will serve the remaining 3 games of his suspension at the beginning of the year. He has looked great in the preseason and should benefit from having a potent offense around him.

Prediction: 1200 yards rushing, 15 rec 150 yards, 5 TDs, 165 total points

16. Marshawn Lynch – Making his return after a short retirement Lynch is excited to get an opportunity to play for his hometown team. He should be the main back but look for him to get a good amount of breathers throughout the season.

Prediction: 1000 yards rushing, 10 rec 100 yards, 10 TDs, 160 total points

17. CJ Anderson – The number 1 back on the Broncos, has shown flashes. If he stays healthy he could make his way up this list, if not he could see De’Angelo Henderson take advantage.

18. Dalvin Cook – With Murray still nursing an injury and the rest of the Viking running backs being less than impressive Cook will see the lion’s share of the carries early in the season.

19. Carlos Hyde – He is the number one running back for the niners and that has to count for something, doesn’t it?

20. Paul Perkins – Again, all about volume here. Perkins has not been very impressive, but has done enough to win the starting job.

21. Robert Kelley – Won the starting job from Jones towards the middle of last season. He has shown the ability to handle the full workload and run very well. He will be seeing around 15-20 touches a game if he stays productive and healthy.

22. Joe Mixon – Right now he is in a running back by committee but he has a lot of upside and could earn himself more carries as the season ages. Mixon could find himself as a fantasy elite if he takes the starting job.

23. Mark Ingram – Ingram will be sharing carries with Peterson and third down snaps with the talented rookie Kamara. If Peterson is playing to his true potential Ingram could see even less playing time. This is a risky pick but Ingram should still see enough to be a solid fantasy back.

24. Ameer Abdullah – The Lions pass a lot, Abdullah has injury problems. He has a lot of talent but is a high risk pick.

25. Bilal Powell – A great receiving back who only has the aging Forte in front of him on the depth chart.

 

HONORABLE MENTION

Kareem Hunt – With Ware injured Hunt should see a good amount of playing time to start the season. Whether he hands the reins back to Spencer Ware is completely in his hands.



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