Even if you have already had your fantasy draft – you should still be trying to improve your team. If running back isn’t a strength for you – here are some flier runners to consider. None of these situations are ideal – but you might need to gamble and add some of these guys.
Knowshon Moreno, Denver – Moreno was not the starter on Monday, Montee Ball was – but that could just be because coach John Fox wants to give the rookie more repetitions in practice. If Ball can’t improve his pass-blocking, you can’t have much faith in him on your fantasy team. Moreno is the guy to gamble on. He is averaging 5.09 yards per carry in the preseason and appears to be healthy.
Bilal Powell, N.Y. Jets – I know Chris Ivory has been lining up with the starters – but Powell has been more impressive. Actually, almost anyone has been more impressive than Ivory who has gained 28 yards on 14 carries in the preseason. If you own Ivory – it would be in your best interest to also own Powell.
Kenjon Barner, Carolina – The Panthers’ DeAngelo Williams has 51 yards on 21 carries in the preseason and Jonathan Stewart is injured and could miss the first games of the season. Barner is a speedster who likely won’t be a workhouse back as a rookie – but he has more upside than say Atlanta’s Jacquizz Rodgers. In the leagues that I am in that has already drafted – Rodgers is being drafted and Barner is not. It just doesn’t make sense. Speaking of leagues I have already had a draft in - I wish I would have noticed this promotion sooner – but Saturday was apparently National Draft Day. I wish I would have known sooner.
Running back rankings – in a standard scoring league — not point-per-reception.
Adrian Peterson – He is all by himself.
Tier two – any of these players are a suitable lead running back
Trent Richardson – What do Emmitt Smith, Ricky Williams and LaDainian Tomlinson have in common? They all led the NFL in rushing with Norv Turner as the offensive coordinator. Turner is in Cleveland now and he expects big things out of Richardson.
Matt Forte – In the preseason he has 15 carries for 149 yards and three catches for 38 yards.
Chris Johnson – Bruiser Shonn Greene will take the short-yardage carries. The last year that Johnson played with bruiser LenDale White he gained over 2,000 yards rushing.
David Wilson – The Giants love the time share. Wilson and Andre Brown are the new Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs.
Eddie Lacy – Green Bay’s line is brutal. Brandon Jackson was the Packers’ last 100-yard rusher, gaining 115 in October of 2010. … 43 games ago. The rare feat happened on a rare day.
Darren McFadden – His value goes up if quarterback Matt Flynn is benched in favor of Terrelle Pryor.
Montee Ball – To be clear, Moreno is worth a gamble off the waiver wire for the start of the season – Ball should finish the season as Denver’s top running back.
Shane Vereen – Will be on the field quite a bit at the same time as Ridley.