You know like they always say. Ain’t no party like my Nana’s tea party cuz my Nana’s tea party don’t stop. Or at least I do as a Flight Of The Conchords fan but not their actual show. Is that weird? Like saying ‘I don’t like shredded coconut but I like coconut milk and actual chunks of it’. Well I say that, too. Shizz feels like shredded paper in my mouth, can’t stand it. German chocolate cake was my nana’s favorite cake and she always had it for the b-day which is to say, I hated going to my Nana’s b-day party. Wow, I’m getting all biographical up in this business when I should be talking to you about our 2013 Fantasy Football Rankings. My bad, but now you know everything you’ve ever needed to know about me and more, right? You could even write my eulogy at this point. Sky: lover of fantasy sports, hater of shredded coconut, was all about Nana’s tea parties. I’m tearing up over here, I mean you really GET me! Now down to the brass tax you came for. If you’re wondering how to start the marvelous journey that began last week up until now with our Rankings, you can either click the link I provided you or scroll up to the menus above. You see that one that says Rankings? Click there or hover over it to see where there other individual rankings reside. Not enough ways to reach our rankings for you yet? Fine, give me your address, I will print it as a book and sell it to you for $20. Shipping charges are separate. You ok with the links now? Good, so with that let’s move along with the show as we look at the Top 40 Running Backs for 2013 Fantasy Football…
Stats based on rushing yards, rushing touchdowns, receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. Rankings based on a PPR setting.
21. David Wilson – See Top 50 for 2013 Fantasy Football for David Wilson projections.
22. Lamar Miller - See Top 50 for 2013 Fantasy Football for Lamar Miller projections.
23. Darren McFadden – This is the start of the next tier and it stops at Rashard. I call this one the ‘This Old House’ tier as they’ve been around long enough for us to know what to reasonably expect and what not to. Plus I wanted a reason to post a picture of Bob Vila. Hairy handsome devil…but nevermind about that, we’re talking Limp DMC here. That’s my nickname for him. Dude doesn’t stay healthy. Never has, may never be able to. I don’t mind taking a chance on him but this is my price range for him which probably means I won’t get him. As the French would say, C’est La Vila. 2013 Projections: 1222/7/35/245/2
24. DeMarco Murray – Well what do you know, another guy who has a hard time staying healthy and an even harder time healing fast enough to make drafting him worth it. Sure, his track record of health woes is shorter but that doesn’t make it any better in my book. Again, I’d take him if he falls but the reality is I’ll be way off DeMarco aiming for him here. 2013 Projections: 1118/6/50/350/1
25. Rashard Mendenhall – It’s still a terrible O-Line in AZ but I think Rashard will do a good job playing through it as long as he stays healthy. I’m not jumping out of my goldfish in the heel boots to get him here but if I need a little stability, I think he’ll fill that role fine even if he does put me to sleep. 2013 Projections: 1064/5/22/154/1
26. Montee Ball – This is yet another tier. I call this one ‘The Bell Of The Ball’ cuz it is comprised of two guys with the last name of Bell and Ball. Hey, not every tier has a good reason, ok? Ball is a dicier call than Vince makes with his Slap Chop after a few lines of the devil’s dandruff. There’s been rumors that Hillman is actually weaving his way into the lead back conversation. However, given his size, I have a hard time imagining Ronnie handling the ball enough to make that argument valid. Time will tell but if Ball gets the, uh, ball he’ll be in that ‘solid but not spectacular’ vein that I’m saying Rashard looks like to me. That’s not a bad thing to have at this price, let’s make a deal Montee Ball! 2013 Projections: 990/6/35/245/1
27. Le’Veon Bell – Bell has a similar issue in that he does have competition for the starting spot in Pittsburgh but it’s hard to imagine the guys who combined for a 3.9 ypc average and 4 total rushing touchdowns get the nod over Bell unless something goes wrong in training camp. As long as he picks up his pass-blocking skills – something that I failed to mention for Ball as a factor but it applies there too – Bell should be on the field enough to be a solid RB2. 2013 Projections: 1016/8/35/210/1
28. Ryan Mathews – Mathews is the start of the next tier and it goes to Daryl. I call this tier the ‘Really? Just me?’ tier since I know these are unpopular rankings for various reasons. People want to put Mathews higher. I say those people didn’t watch him last year. Even without the injury issues – which are just as big for Mathews as DMC and Murray – Mathews played downright terribly last year and there’s talk he’s not going to be the 3rd down – i.e. receiving – back this year, further dampening his chances of elite production. I’m ranking him here telling you if you wanna take a chance, go ahead but he won’t be on my team where I have him. 2013 Projections: 836/4/20/150/1
29. Giovani Bernard – When you look at the stats I’ve projected you’re probably gonna say ‘huh? what? why?’. First off, I strongly suggest full sentences. One word with a question mark after it doesn’t make you sound very intelligent. I’m of the mindset that Giovani takes over the lead RB role in Cincy sooner rather than later. That said, I also realize it could take a while as his counterpart is very good at staying healthy and on the field. Either way, if I’m drafting a Bengal back, it’s clear which one I want. 2013 Projections: 540/4/30/225/2
30. Daryl Richardson – It feels odd ranking Richardson ahead of all those other Ram backs but it’s me trying to get inside the mind of Jeff Fisher. Trust me when I say it’s scary, dark and has a lot of Vince Young images scratched out in red marker on it. I’m not putting him here because I like him, I’m putting him here because he has seniority and less off-field issues over his competition. Yep, clean living and not a rookie. What a great reason, right? This is me pointing something out not demanding you draft him so take this ranking with a grain of salt. Unless you’ve got high blood pressure, of course. 2013 Projections: 817/2/38/239/1
31. Johnathan Franklin – Franklin is the start of the next tier and it goes to Lacy. I call this tier ‘Pack it up, Pack it in’ just to see how many of you try and carry on the lyrics in the comments. If you don’t know the song, well that’s just not my problem. Oh and of course we’re talking Packers running backs. I see a yin/yang thang going on with these two moreso than a victor and a loser. As Murph talked about in the off-season with his 2013 Pre-Draft Running Back Rankings, he mentioned how ‘…Franklin is one of the most complete Running Backs in the draft…My dream team for him would be the Green Bay Packers.’ Well, he got his wish! Of course, the next guy on this list makes his dream a nightmare but I still believe in Jonathan with an extra ‘h’ to produce. 2013 Projections: 677/4/25/187/1
32. Eddie Lacy – I think Lacy will be the power back in this backfield brawl but with his injury history and Franklin’s solidarity, I don’t think the Packers lean on him too much outside of those needs. Of course, being the goal to go back for a high powered offense isn’t the worst thing in the world now is it? 2013 Projections: 444/7/15/105/0
33. Pierre Thomas – You’re going to notice a theme with the next few tiers that started with the Packers backfield. This tier is called the ‘Devilish Saints’ tier and goes to Ingram. We already went over Sproles a bit when we covered the Top 20 Running Backs but his role is really slot receiver so someone needs to carry the ball. PT will be competing with Ingram for carries but if reports out of camp are true, Ingram looks to be on the short end of the stick in terms of getting a majority share of the touches. As much as I want to write a sleeper post on PT, I just can’t bring myself to do it. Just pretend I did and enjoy the value he brings on draft day. 2013 Projections: 652/3/35/297/2
34. Mark Ingram – True story, I had Ingram on the fringe of my top 25 until I heard how the first team was playing out in camp. After finishing the year with solid production, I thought Ingram was ready to take the next step towards being fantasy gold. Well, for now he’s just fantasy bronze which is alright and your parents will be proud but you’ll still notice that wistful glean in their eye while looking at the kid with the huge spelling bee trophy. I didn’t know how to spell ostentatious because you told me never to be that way, mother! 2013 Projections: 682/7/10/53/0
35. Jonathan Stewart – Here’s the final tier pairing and it ends with Williams. I call this tier ‘Sex Panther’. Cuz Ron Burgundy and I need no other reason. F’ you, San Diego! Though I haven’t made it clear, I will now: I’m not a huge fan of these pair tiers. I think the dividing line is unclear with most of them but if I had one I’d circle as flat out avoid, it would be this one. Cam Newton steals plenty of goal line carries and the Panthers also have Mike Tolbert on the roster. It’s a house of horrors and one I’d choose to avoid if possible. And since I’m drafting for myself, it is. Oh yeah and pray for J-Stew. 2013 Projections: 805/4/35/315/1
36. DeAngelo Williams – Fun with stats: in 9 December games starting in 2011, DeAngelo has 688 yards, 162 receiving yards and 8 total touchdowns. In his other 23 games he’s at 885/160/6. Draft/trade strategy for 2013: don’t draft a Panther back but trade for Williams before the calendar rolls to December 1. And with that, let’s move on to the final colon in this blurb. 2013 Projections: 787/4/17/136/1
37. Andre Brown – This is the start of the next tier and it goes into the Top 60 Running Backs. I call this tier ‘Know Your Role’ as I think every single one of these guys is not the starter but is still a large enough part of the offense to be intriguing even if you’re not picking them up as a handcuff. Andre proved he could be a starter when he filled in for Ahmad against the Panthers for 113 yards for 2 touchdowns last year. By November, it looked like he and Bradshaw were in a full timeshare but the injury bug cut his season short and he only played 10 games. Despite all of this, he still finished with 8 touchdowns and looks locked in as the goal line back in New York. Yeah, I want Andre the Giant on a lot of my teams this year. 2013 Projections: 504/9/15/105/0
38. BenJarvus Green-Ellis – The Law Firm is just a’ight. Nothing to get crazy over. If he were the sole back in Cincy, he’d be higher up on my ranks but he has competition this year and it’s actually talented competition. Think he’s the goal line back for Cincinnati this year when the dust settles which is good enough to hold him in the Top 40 but I don’t really think I’ll be drafting him unless I’m desperate. 2013 Projections: 703/5/12/48/0
39. Fred Jackson – What exactly is F-Jax role that makes him so special, Sky? Is he CJ’s wuh-wuh-waterboy!?! Yeah, yeah, I could’ve put Fred lower but like Andre and BJGE, I think he still has a role in Buffalo at the goal line and despite the age it’s hard to forget how 2011 started for him. I’m probably not drafting Fred unless I draft CJ but at least with Fred we know he can be a fantasy asset when healthy/starting. 2013 Projections: 656/5/32/192/1
40. Danny Woodhead – You can mark me down as not wanting anything to do with Mathews but want everything to do with getting Woodhead…I’ve rethought that last sentence and there’s really no better way to say it no matter how lewd it sounded. Trust me when I say I don’t think Woodhead is a beast of a running back but Chargers camp has already mentioned Mathews won’t get many passing down situations and Danny has filled the role of pass-catching back very well before when he was with the Pats. Cheap PPR flex guy who may have a starting job with the crack of a collarbone at some point this year. 2013 Projections: 688/3/50/350/4