Fantasy Football: Running-Back Previews/Projections

Posted: August 16, 2011 by mceagle611 in Sports
Tags: , , , ,

I am continuing to ramp up the Fantasy season boys and girls, check out the top ten fantasy half-back prospects and who is a smart pick – and who is not. Read my QB projections (here) if you have yet to, and make sure you get educated before you enter your live draft.

1 – Arian Foster – Houston Texans – Let me pose this question, if I told you that Arian Foster – who I believe was third on the depth chart for the Texans last preseason – was going to have the season he did last year and be a top fantasy prospect in the 2011-2012 year, would you believe this to be in the realm of possibility. The man is tough, he fights for every yard, and he earns everything he gets…he is truly a great first pick this season because…he will follow through on his expectations. Something that Chris ‘CJ2K’ Johnson did not accomplish last season.

2 – Adrian ‘All Day’ Peterson – Minnesota Vikings – I went back and forth between Foster and All Day – who should I project as the Number One Fantasy Back? You can make the case for either but then I thought about it a little deeper than last year’s stats and the talent surrounding them; I realized that the Vikings definitely have a tougher defensive division. The Packers, Lions, and Bears will be 6 of the games on their schedule…6 games in which I would not count on All-Day scoring more than one TD and 70 or 80 yards. Otherwise, this guy has the capability of scoring you 2 TD’s and 100+ yards a game; and what’s more is that he will be getting the ball a lot early on in the season because he is one of the only offensive weapons that Leslie Frazier trusts.

3 – Chris ‘CJ2K’ Johnson – Tennessee Titans – After a lot of hype coming into last season Johnson only had 11 TD’s…what?? He started with a the season with 147 yards and 2 TD’s (26 points); and it seemed like he would on and off get you 20+ points then he would score the next week in the single digits. I’m putting him at three because obviously he will get you a sum of about 200 – 225 points this season. However I want to make it clear that he is not going to have a 2,000 yard season and he is not a smart ‘first’ pick.

4 – Ray Rice – Baltimore Ravens – Rice has not yet been able to summon his potential and turn it into ability, however I am placing him at number four because I believe this is the season he will begin to be talked about as a top-tier RB. He has great talent surrounding him – so defenses cannot crowd the line – and now that McGahee is gone he will be their punch-it-in back. He likes catching the ball out of the backfield, so I really think this year he’s going to end up in the 240 range. Very excited about what Little Ray can put together this year.

5 – Lesean McCoy – Philadelphia Eagles – Last season he finally demonstrated how good his craft is, and this year I see no reason why the starting running back for the ‘Dream Team’ will not have another great season. He is another that cares to catch the ball out of the backfield and – if he does not get hurt – McCoy is an over-looked guy that would be a great second or (if available) third pick.

6 – Maurice Jones-Drew – Jacksonville Jaguars – MJD is the man in Jacksonville, simply put. There is something to be said for a talent that the defense will always be paying attention to, that’s why I believe Rice and McCoy are great picks to start. I really think if Jones-Drew comes across like a Detroit, Green Bay, or Baltimore type of ‘D’ then he is probably not going to put up more than 10 points. Just be aware of that MJD owners, his line is not very good.

7 – Michael Turner – Atlanta Falcons – This is an older guy that has just been consistent and for the past couple years I have made the mistake of labeling him as “he is too old and cannot get it done anymore.” Two years, it’s been two years that I had an opportunity to snag a guy that will get you 200+ points in a season. Especially since defenses have to worry about two great WR’s and an elite TE, they will not devote much attention to the aging Turner. He’s a great pick.

8 – Rashard Mendenhall – Pittsburgh Steelers – Always been solid, and ever since he got out of Illinois I have always thought that this guy was going to do something special. He starts for one of the more steady offenses in the league, and he likes to use his large exterior to pound through the line. A solid pick, but if any of the above names are available then don’t settle.

9 – Darren McFadden – Oakland Raiders – I got to be honest, McFadden has some serious talent that has not been able to be shown throughout the course of the past couple years. With that being said I like what he has to offer this year, he extremely fast and likes to embarrass people in the open field. If you are in a snake draft and take a QB/WR or QB/RB, and are looking for another RB then this is likely the guy you will be staring right in the face; it’s a high risk that is worth it…TAKE HIM.

10 – Frank Gore – San Francisco 49ers – Not so big on Gore but he has to be in this elite group of Fantasy Backs. I always steer away from drafting him because I always feel he is injury prone (Injured for the last five games of the 2010-2011 season) and if they cannot find a consistent/solid QB then watch most defenses crowd the line; they will be expecting Gore to get at least 25 carries a game. If you pick Gore then I hope he’s your number two guy, if not then stay away and let some other sucker in your league take him.

3 Outside QB’s that I would not mind starting:

Ryan Mathews – San Diego Chargers – A great talent whose rookie season was haunted by injury. He worth the pick if you come across him because not only does he have a talented QB in Philip Rivers to take some of the attention away from him but he has one of the better O-lines in the NFL. Solid Pick for a number two back.

LeGarrette Blount – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – If you’ve overlooked Blount at all allow me to draw your attention to him now. I guarantee that the Buc’s number one man will be staring 190 or 200 points right in the face this season.

Ryan Grant – Green Bay Packers – You probably forgot about this guy didn’t you? Grant got injured early last season and this is probably the biggest risk/reward picks because if he is successful the first couple games he will likely start the rest of the season and rack up some serious points (probably around 200). However, if he fails to convert his time during his play early on then he will likely be sitting on the bench.

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  1. Chris says:

    Uh…Jamaal Charles maybe? Take MJD and Gore off the list and you’ll be fine. This isn’t 2008.

  2. Dbag says:

    Good list…I have a few thoughts:

    * CJ2K may be worth the #1 pick this year since Hasselbeck should prevent teams from stacking the box.

    * MJD: draft at your own risk. Off-season knee surgery, a terrible O-Line and a quality backup in Rashad Jennings scare me.

    * Michael Turner is a “young” 29-year old back because he played sparingly during his first 4 years in the league. Though he may be old for a RB as far as age is concerned, there is still a lot of tread left on his “tires.” Look at Thomas Jones…same deal for him the previous 3 years (though he is starting to slow down and I probably won’t draft him now). I agree that Turner is a quality pickup in the middle or late 1st round.

    * Mendenhall: Bad O-Line, lost their blocking TE, wasn’t a top-tier RB once Big Ben returned to the lineup because they are now a pass-happy team. I don’t like him in round 1 this year.

    * Gore: I’d rather have Blount or Grant…Gore will get injured…again. He’ll be a nice fantasy player for a good chunk of the season though.

    * Mathews: Won’t get many goalline touches, so I’ll pass on him.

    • mceagle611 says:

      Thanks for the comment man, and keep em coming. Although I do have to say…I WILL NOT be taking CJ2K number one, way too much of a risk when the top two on my post are much safer. MJD I mostly agree with you. Michael Turner agreed, Mendenhall should never be a first round pick you’ll probably be looking at taking him in third round early. Gore..completely agreed. Mathews, I just think that he’s going to come out of the gate much better than he did last year and he probably won’t get injured. Well hopefully. Thanks for the comment again and let me say to everyone that reads this comment a very deep sleeper that a source has just informed me of is Roy Helu of the Washington Redskins. Supposedly he is going to start the season behind Hightower but he is going to get some serious carries. Take that as you will.

  3. […] Before you enter yours make sure you check out my QB projections (Here) and RB projections (Here) if you have yet to in order to dominate your league. Good […]

  4. Alex says:

    Nice list but I think Jamaal Charles has gotta be on it, the guy had the second most yards in the league last year.

    • Alex says:

      Oh, I didnt see the previous comments, but Charles averaged like 6 yards a carry last year.

      • mceagle611 says:

        Thanks for the comment. I understand that he did have the second most yards in the league, yet he only had 5 touchdowns. He’s got Thomas Jones, he’s gotta split carries, I just don’t like the situation

  5. […] whom have been chosen to be placed on the cover of the renown video game. So the two reasons that Hillis will get injured: The Madden Curse and The fact that he does not have a great line surrounding […]

  6. jmac0101 says:

    your high if you think jamaal charles shouldnt be on your list.

    • mceagle611 says:

      no, he’s injury-prone and he has to share carries with Thomas Jones. I don’t see what is to like. You realize he has one of the three worst offensive lines in the league to Buffalo and Jacksonville..right?

  7. […] whom have been chosen to be placed on the cover of the renown video game. So the two reasons that Hillis will get injured: The Madden Curse and The fact that he does not have a great line surrounding […]

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