We have reached the depths of the tub of ice cream. The “I was just leveling off the top” excuse is no longer legitimate (like it ever was). What remains is merely a mélange of candied toppings and molten cream. Take a deep breath, we are about to finish this off, the work we do may be messy, but it will be rewarding. I present to you, the final 40 Running Backs, ranked 81-120.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Is it me or are a lot of guys injured? Normally, I’d have some little cutsie intro to get into the carnage but sheesh, man! I don’t know about you but I’m getting killed out here! I actually sprained my right knee on a fishing boat last weekend and was listed as limited but here I am, dammit.
When I see the players I roster in person someday, I’m gonna tell them: If I can man up and type up a bunch of nonsense about fake football with a ligament injury, well then YOU GOTTA PLAY TOO, YOU BIG BABY!
As you can tell, this has been a tough week. Between my injury, all the injuries on my fantasy teams, and what’s happening to my Raiders… Well, we’ll get into that last part later.
And to add to the prevailing roster chaos we have our first bye week of the year! See you next week Jets, Falcons, 49ers, and Saints!
Let’s segue right into Sunday morning with an Intra-Florida showdown in London.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Another new day is upon us, folks. Another beautiful weekend of NFL football, another week of eating chicken wings and slamming brews while enjoying a real sport instead of some European nonsense like smelling gross cheese and discussing feelings. Or whatever those degenerates do over there. Could we be more blessed? Well, yeah. Your players could be healthy and your teams could be playing well but instead, here we are!
So let’s get into the latest injury news and updates for Week 4!Please, blog, may I have some more?
I promise I am not going to lead every waiver wire article in with a Jurassic Park reference, although there is enough material to do so. We had a lot of John Hammond’s in the fantasy football universe last week “sparing no expense” when it came to San Francisco running back Elijah Mitchell. Bids of a full 100% of FAAB (free agent acquisition budget) were not just uncommon, they were the standard. Not since Woody Harrelson took one million dollars from Robert Redford in Indecent Proposal has a monetary for goods exchange left someone feeling so cheated. Well, it wasn’t so terrible, 7.3 PPR fantasy points isn’t atrocious. Mitchell seems to have held onto the job with the entire backfield in San Francisco, and possibly the training staff too, getting injured on Sunday. Let’s hope it works out for those who did end up spending a lot. Just remember, this isn’t Brewster’s Millions. You don’t need to spend every penny of your FAAB right away to risk losing it all. Spend up when you need a player and make competitive bids when you want a player. There is nothing worse than needing to put IOUs in a Samsonite briefcase to salvage your season, possibly leaving you feeling a bit Dumb and Dumber.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Welcome to the very first Wright On Waivers. I will be taking over this column for the season and look forward to helping you navigate your way around the waiver wire with player suggestions to help both long and short-term needs. Your previous guide was indeed a great sherpa and wanted me to send along his best. If you have read any of my previous articles, you are aware I typically launch into these drawn-out movie tirades full of terrible analogies. I can assure you I will be focusing solely on your fantasy team this year and avoiding the proverbial opening twenty-one minutes and fifteen seconds of my favorite childhood film, Jurassic Park. Are those first twenty-one minutes important to the story? Yes. Yes, they are, but we really just want to see some dinosaurs. So, let us get to the dinosaurs.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Before you go any further if you haven’t read the original article on the Points Per Rush Attempt Analysis (PPRA), we recommend you read that first. You can find that article here. In Part 1 of the running back edition, we break down Fantasy Points Per Reception or FPPR outliers from 2020 to help you identify players to potentially buy in 2021.
Yes, we will be diving into the receiving portion of our analysis, but the concept is the same as the original PPRA article. The biggest difference is the numbers are a bit higher. For example, the league average FPPR over the past 10 seasons is 1.49. For a running back to see a half-point more per game they need to catch 40 passes and see an uptick in FPPR of .2.
The running backs who saw an outlier season of -10% in FPPR on average saw an increase of .47 or 40% increase in FPPR the next season. That means for every 40 receptions these running backs saw an increase of just over one fantasy point per game in .5 PPR the year after they had an outlier season.Please, blog, may I have some more?
What is up everybody? I hope you’re ready to see some undrafted free agents and backups this weekend. Me, I don’t really get excited about that stuff. I’m not exactly a Campus to Canton guy. But you? Maybe you dig that first week of preseason football vibes. Just like pre-season baseball, it’s hard to take anything you see in pre-season football terribly seriously — we’re not seeing proper game script, we’re not seeing the first team on the field all the time, and more often than not, we’re just watching to see if teams want to keep their young players on the field or bring in a veteran to eat up some yardage. That said, I also know most “home leagues” are starting up, and you’re looking for the best players to take such that you can embarrass your friends and relatives and win their undying respect. So! Let’s take a look at some end-game players that could really change your season outcomes before the pre-season gets underway.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Now that the 2020 fantasy football playoffs are upon us, my job overseeing the rest of season top 60 running back rankings here at Razzball are as through as the chances of Carson Wentz inviting Doug Pederson to this week’s Bible study. Last week, I put a bow on that project with one final, playoff edition of the top backs to target for those still in hot pursuit of a fantasy championship. Friends, we’ve come a long, long way from the initial set of rankings I constructed in the preseason edition, when I was young and naïve and my only prior experience with Reddit commenters was through the illegal streaming of countless sporting events. But now, since there are truly only two weeks of fantasy football remaining, my job is done. Instead, for those looking for rankings to use the next couple weeks, look to Donkey Teeth & Co. for further insight. All season long, Razzball’s Donkey Teeth and MB have been providing excellent work as always with their weekly fantasy football rankings. That’s the place to go for any and all remaining decisions. As for me, my final fantasy football post for 2020 will look ahead to 2021. Who is an early favorite for that first overall pick in drafts? Which 2020 rookie backs have put themselves in the conversation for a first round pick? And hey, how about the incoming 2021 rookie class? Any early-round selection potential there? You already know I want me some Najee Harris the same way I wanted to be in bed with Dobbins the Take-it-to-the-House Elf all season long. But first, before you all take your Sunday wizardry robes off, I’d like to take a few moments to reflect briefly on what we observed in 2020 (in lieu of a trip around the league), and how maybe we can use it as a learning experience to improve as fantasy owners in the years ahead.Please, blog, may I have some more?
All season long, we’ve been grinding through the top-60 rest of season running backs. There has been a lot of turnover, an excess of movement both in and outside of the top-24, and a heck of a lot of injuries and COVID-19 to navigate around — both in the fantasy realm and the real world. But, alas, we’ve finally made it to Week 14. Hopefully, for many of you, this means the start of a successful playoff run, as Weeks 14-16 is when the vast majority of fantasy playoffs occur. For this very reason, I find myself feeling sentimental as I write this. At times, I led you stray, and at others, I did my job well. Now, as we leave the regular season behind and enter the postseason threshold, I have the opportunity to provide you with one last set of running back rankings as it relates to the 2020 season. In this final installment, I’ll be focusing on the set of matchups each running back faces over the next three weeks, as I’ve replaced the previous “bye” week component in the rankings with a look at each respective player’s “upcoming schedule.” And before you ask, yes — I do have David Montgomery ranked as a top-10 rest of season, fantasy playoff run option for that very reason, among others.
But before we get to the rest of that top 10, let’s take one final, albeit emotional trip around the league together. Feel free to bring a pack of Kleenex or, if you wish, simply deploy your own makeshift snot sleeve. Personally, I haven’t cried this hard since I said goodbye to my foreign exchange student in 10th grade. It was emotional. We played a lot of ping pong together. To fully appreciate this last ROS top-60 segment, I highly recommend playing the song “I Hope You Dance” by Lee Ann Womack. Blast it from the speakers as you digest the fickle words to follow.Please, blog, may I have some more?
In a casual conversation with my future mother-in-law this past week, she adamantly described Derrick Henry as “sexy.” Now, I’m no expert on the perceived attractiveness of 6-foot-3, 250-pound behemoth running backs, but I do know one thing: there’s only one. There’s only one Derrick Henry, and as he approaches a fantasy playoff schedule as easy as hiding a piece of Thanksgiving stuffing in Matt Patricia’s beard at the end of No-Shave November, we’re likely to see history repeat itself yet again. Remember, Henry averaged 24.2 half-PPR points in his final five games of 2019, which was only slightly better than the 23.1 points he averaged across the final five games of 2018. Historically, Henry is stretch-run hero — a fantasy playoff superman in a class all his own. Even if Henry hadn’t erupted for 37.5 half-PPR points in Week 12, he would likely enter the Week 13 rankings as the RB1 overall, as an upcoming matchup with the Browns is the only thing that stands between him and a remaining schedule against the Jaguars, Lions, Packers and Texans. No matter how your league is structured, those matchups scream league-winning upside, and there’s no doubt in my mind Henry will again have a high ownership percentage on championship rosters. But, since Henry did pop off in Week 12, let’s unpack it: 27 carries, 178 yards, three rushing touchdowns; two receptions (four targets), seven yards. All three of Henry’s rushing touchdowns came in first half, as he legitimately provided three healthy weeks of fantasy value in a single half. Now I understand the “sexy” part.
While Henry is up to RB1 this week, there’s a lot of other movement on the top-60 list and, as always, an overwhelming amount of injury updates to digest. So, before we get to the rankings, let’s take a quick trip around the league.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Frank Reich is a fine man. A good man, even. Sometimes, I sit around daydreaming, wondering what it would be like if he were my father. He would no-doubt instill many wholesome values in me, his son, and be a great fishing partner. He simply has that look about him — the one that comes with a Geppetto-eque twinkle in one’s eye — that exudes wisdom and level-headedness. Personally, I believe he’s a tremendous football coach, perhaps one of the most underrated in the entire league. The Indianapolis Colts are incredibly fortunate that Josh McDaniels spurned their head coaching offer back in the February of 2018 to remain with New England, leading to Reich landing the job as a sort of second choice candidate at the time. Since then, he’s done wonders with the team and carries many strengths as the man in charge, but he’s largely been a fantasy enemy to this point — especially as it relates to the running back position. That’s because he treats his backfield like a true father figure would: he believes in all of his backs, especially the young Jonathan Taylor, and is always willing to give dish out a second chance. The issue is… it’s hard to predict when those second chances are going to come. Heading into the week, Nyheim Hines was one of the highest risers up most rest-of-season rankings after receiving 12 carries in Week 10, rushing for 70 yards and one touchdown in addition to his typical receiving workload: five receptions for 45 yards and another touchdown. Jonathan Taylor saw just seven carries in that game, to which he translated to a mere 12 yards, which came on the heels of a Week 9 game in which Reich gave Taylor a measly six carries. Fast-forward to Week 11: Taylor rushed 22 times for 90 yards, also catching four passes (on four targets) for 24 yards. Those 22 carries equated to 68.8% of running back carries (22/32), as his 26 total touches were by far the highest amongst the Indy trio. Jordan Wilkins (four carries, 21 yards; one reception on one target, 15 yards) touched the ball just five times, while Hines (six carries, two yards; three receptions on four targets, 31 yards) registered nine touches. It’s certainly encouraging to see Taylor so involved in a crucial, competitive game that the Colts ultimately won in exciting fashion — but what can we expect from him moving into the home stretch of the 2020 fantasy football season?
After sinking to RB30 overall in my rankings last week, Taylor is back up into RB2 territory thanks in large part to an incredibly easy schedule from here on out. The only truly difficult matchup remaining for Taylor will come in Week 16 against the Steelers, which isn’t ideal as it’s when most fantasy championships will occur, but until then he’ll go up against the Titans, Texans, Raiders and Texans, again. There are certainly RB2 options with safer floors, but Taylor is once again trending up and represents a much more attractive Flex play than he did one week ago.
There’s a lot more to dive into this week, so before getting to the rankings, let’s take a quick trip around the league.Please, blog, may I have some more?
THUMP. That was Week 10 crushing us in the face. It was unpredictable, I know, but let’s begin the conversation about the running back position this past week with a look at some of the names that finished inside RB1 territory, with their overall rank listed: RB3 Nyheim Hines, RB4 Ronald Jones, RB5, D’Andre Swift, RB6 Devontae Booker, RB7 Rex Burkhead, RB8 Antonio Gibson, RB10 Wayne Gallman, RB11 Malcolm Brown and RB12 Salvon Ahmed. That’s three-fourths of the past week’s RB1 finishers going to running backs that were likely all drafted outside of the first five rounds in your fantasy draft and at least three, maybe four players who may not have even been rostered in your league as of Sunday night. Next, let’s move over to RB2 territory: RB14 J.D. McKissic, RB15 Boston Scott, RB17 Kalen Ballage and RB23 Alex Collins. Overall, that’s 12, or half, of Week 10’s RB1-2 crop going to names that likely required very little draft capital to make your roster. Some of those names are less surprising, like Swift and Gibson, but for the sake of argument, both running backs finished outside the top-28 running backs drafted in 2020. It’s already been a miraculous year at the position — for some, perhaps heart-breaking is a more fitting adjective — and the madness ensued in Week 10, to put it lightly. Fortunately, we can at least say we did not see the same absurd number of running back injuries as we’ve grown accustomed to.
Even so, it was a truly unpredictable week. Before you begin beating your forehead against the keyboard and your boss yells at you (or partner/child/parents/etc. for those still stuck at home) for disrupting the workplace over fantasy football for the umpteenth time since the onset of September, remember this: we’re all in it together. We’re all playing the same game, with the same weekly uncertainty factored in and with the same information at our fingertips. That’s reason for composure. That’s reason to keep fighting the good fight because, as you may have heard me say many times before, the grinders beat the whiners. I’ve actually never said that before, but you get the point.
It’s time to get to the rankings, but before we do, let’s take a quick trip around the league.Please, blog, may I have some more?