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Tim's Top 5 Fantasy Football Running Backs

By Tim Heaney

Today was my first day back in the office following vacation in Vancouver. (Nice place, if you haven't been.) Thus, my impetus to craft a snappy blog topic wasn't exactly there -- on top of the fact that it's Monday.

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson

Enter Twitter, our bastion of idea fulfillment. "First person to send a #fantasyfootball question will be featured in my blog. Ready? Go!"

Surprisingly, I quickly received two worthy entries ... not counting this one from my buddy Jared:


When should I draft Aaron Hernandez?

All depends on the penal league settings. <Insert joke about his position here.>

Moving on.

Both questions worth answering pertained to running backs, a position on the downswing. I'll answer the first one today.


List your top 5 RBs for this season, in order.

I'm waiting longer than ever to build RB depth this year unless I have a top-three pick, and you'll see how much I think the first round will turn over this year compared to its early ADP indications.

  1. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings - He's not going to match his numbers from 2012, but despite his QB situation, there's still sufficient talent around him to complement his stout run-blocking quintet and his own natural freakish abilities.
  2. Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs - Many forget about this ACL recovery. Cory hasn't. Neither have I. Nor have I overlooked how people mistakenly think Andy Reid hates running backs. In PPR, this is a no-brainer.
  3. C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills - When you eliminate team-based factors, Spiller would more closely challenge Peterson for No. 1. I think Doug Marrone's new system will treat Spiller as it did the New Orleans Saints' incarnation of Reggie Bush. On top of that, Spiller is a more potent inside runner than that slasher, as well, and don't think Marrone will shy away from using Spiller in goal-line situations. Fred Jackson is only a handcuff to this potentially annual stud.
  4. Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers - A few ridiculous weeks bolstered his season-ending totals, and I think he's being slightly overrated, but his volume of work by default puts him this high. Unlike Ray Rice, LeSean McCoy and other touch hoarders, there's no imminent, dangerous threat to Martin's utilizations. Not sure I'd pay this price for him, and I think he's the most in danger of losing this classification, but it's an understandable investment after the first three or so selections.
  5. Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons - Can't wait to see how many people I've pissed off by not including Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch or Trent Richardson. They're all borderline, but they have their flaws, and Jackson, even with his impending 30th birthday, has been in few better positions to succeed. He'll get Michael Turner's workload while boasting better wheels. Atlanta will give him plenty of red zone trips. His pass protection will make him a three-down option. S-Jax has plenty of teammates in the passing game to take defensive attention off him. He's not injury-prone, despite those classifications, and takes ridiculous care of his body. It's a rare case of age breeding fantasy beauty for an RB, but I'm staking my claim.


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