So we’ve finally arrived at what many consider the Cadillac of rankings– the running back position. Though, I don’t really get the car association, seeing as how there are several other makes I’d rather own. I’d even consider some Kia’s, but that might be my half-Koreaness (is that a thing?) coming into play. Which might make it raycess. Who knows. What I do know is that Kia stands for Keeping It Awesome, and that’s all that matters. So here we are, ranking the running backs, and the first thing that I think of is a little boy’s village being attacked by a vicious tiger named
Chaka Khan Shere Khan. During the attack, he gets lost in a jungle and ends up meeting a wise bear and black panther, who both talk. Which sounds like a good acid trip. Or the plot to The Jungle Book. Why this is the first thing that came to mind is the more interesting subject, but I have no idea how to tackle it. So this whole thing will have to stand on its own. Yeah, I have no clue either. Rankings forward!
AP does stand for Advance Placement in some cases…: There was a time and place where I thought about having both Jamaal Charles and LeSean McCoy as the number one overall running back, but I just couldn’t pull the trigger. We’ll discuss this a bit more as the off-season progresses, but to very quickly comment, I just don’t like the Chiefs OL and the chance for McCoy to once again have a career year enough to pick them over the once perennial number one pick in fantasy football. As an added note, it’s pretty obvious that the first three picks are the best to have in standard leagues this year, and furthermore, I wouldn’t be surprised that if the league’s best rusher in 2014 came from any of the tier 1 names.
Tier 2 is 2 risky. See what I did there?: There’s a lot to like in tier 2, but every single player comes with a question mark. Can DeMarco Murray stay healthy enough and stop running sideways to finally give us a top-3 season that he’s capable of? Can Doug Martin not do what he did last year? Can Ryan Matthews progress from his career season? How about Zac Stacy? Can he survive playing against the two most physical defenses and still produce elite numbers? Ray Lewis is retired, so we can rule out Stacy having to survive a stabbing. What happens to Alfred Morris‘ production with a new system and Roy Helu considered a competent third down option? Are Montee Ball and Giovani Benard ready to take the reigns and run away with the starting gig? You get the point by now…every single guy in this tier could provide you with elite fantasy numbers or morph into a David Wilson-like substance and destroy any semblance of a competitive team.
Interesting situations: I’m liking Bishop Sankey a bit this season, as the situation is tailor-made for a rookie running back (run happy innovative coaching staff and system, lack of any true competition, etc.), but as the off-season progresses, his value could inflate past the nice RB-3 option he is now. Frank Gore looked really old late last season, and that’s reflected in the rankings. Carlos Hyde, to me, seems like Gore 2.0, which also sounds like a terrible internet horror film. I’m not excited with Toby Gerhart and Ben Tate, but you could do worse. The thing is, you could do a lot better too. Sounds like my ex. And with Ray Rice beating up fiancée’s and such, I would hide your women. Also, I would keep an eye on Lorenzo Taliaferro, seeing as how Benard Pierce did even worse than Rice last year, which seems impossible. And yeah, I still don’t like Trent Richardson, and I’m pretty sure everyone is tired of waiting for Lamar Miller to show up. Well, at least I am. And with Arian Foster‘s back surgery and statements hinting at a RBBC approach, Andre Brown could be an interesting name. Also, I trust Steven Jackson as far as I can throw him (Hint: my back would give out, so it would probably be at a negative distance), so Devonte Freeman might be an interesting flier…