2017 RB Rankings Part 3

dalvincook

22. Dalvin Cook

HC Mike Zimmer stated after minicamp that 2nd Round Pick Dalvin Cook “has a chance to be special.” With Latavius Murray recovering from ankle surgery, Cook has had the spotlight and all but assumed the RB1 job in Minnesota.

The decision to trade up and grab RB Dalvin Cook fills a glaring need for explosiveness on the offensive side of the ball. To note, Viking RBs performed anemically last season in terms of big play ability, only topping QB Sam Bradford’s Week 17 24-Yard scramble “3 times” for the entire season.

The Star Tribune writes, Dalvin Cook who broke loose for a run of 50 or more yards 10 times during his Florida State career turned heads on the second day of last month’s three-day minicamp, when Cook got loose down the right sideline and could not be caught by cornerback Xavier Rhodes, who runs a 4.4 40-yard dash.

We fully expect heavy usage out of Cook, with Murray carrying short-yardage opportunities. The home run ability on both sides of the ball make for a fantasy superstar in the making and with support this early on from Zimmer, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see his volume only grow as the season approaches.

23. Terrance West

This may take you off-guard, but Baltimore has led the league in Passing Attempts over the past two seasons, with 676 Attempts in 2015 and 679 Attempts in 2016. West was the recipient of some of that volume last season, notching 34 Receptions, however expect newly acquired RB Danny Woodhead to take on the bulk of that business. When healthy in previous seasons, Woodhead has rang the register for 76 Receptions in 2013 and 81 Receptions in 2015, with him being out nearly the entire season in 2014 and 2016. To make matters even better for both West and Woodhead, the potential three-headed-monster has been trimmed down to two with news recently coming out that RB Kenneth Dixon required full repair of a torn meniscus during surgery, putting him out for the entire season.

24. Danny Woodhead

See Above via Terrance West (Important):

Joe Flacco on Woodhead: “Really, ever since we lost Ray Rice, we haven’t had a type of back that’s quite like how Ray was and quite like how Danny is in the passing game. They just have a very good feel for when they’re open and how to get open, how to sit in holes, how to find my eyes, and you can already see that.”

We’re expecting a huge season from Woodhead and a dominant force in PPR Formats. With the loss of Pitta and Juszczyk, expect Flacco to look Woodhead’s way even more. This could be an all-around perfect scenario and one we’re buying!

The Ravens Passing Target’s “Lost” for 2017:

Steve Smith: 102
K. Aiken: 50
Dennis Pitta: 121
Justin Forsett: 28
K. Juszczyk: 49

Total Targets Lost: 350

25. Doug Martin

Alert: Doug Martin will be suspended Weeks 1-3 to start the season.

A few bullets to be aware of:

  • “One name that’s going to shock … Doug Martin,” Winston said. “He looks incredible. The way he’s bursting and just being so explosive. It really shows his resilience and how well he’s prepared this offseason.”
  • Bucs GM Jason Licht said suspended RB Doug Martin “has looked as good as I’ve seen him” during the offseason program. “Both mentally and physically he’s been outstanding,” Licht added.
  • Doug Martin says he came out of drug treatment a stronger person. “It was a journey of self-development,” Martin said. “I definitely turned a negative into a positive and I’m out here and I’m definitely a stronger person because of it.”

After a year to “never” remember, Martin has impressed and all but seized back and locked in the RB1 job in Tampa. He has received stellar reviews from teammates and management alike, which gives Martin just the ammunition necessary to have a bounce-back 2017.

Martin has been nearly impossible to predict throughout his career with 2 Seasons over the 1,400 Rushing Yard mark and 3 Seasons under the 500 Rushing Yard mark. Buy cautiously here, consider the momentum and remember the “3 Game Suspension.”

26. Marshawn Lynch

Lynch came out of retirement to play at home in Oakland behind one of the best O-Lines in football. However, It’s hard to imagine Oakland will throw 300+ carries at Lynch after taking a season off from an injury riddled 2015 season where he played just 7 games. Instead, it’s likely Lynch will see a role similar to Latavius Murray’s 195 carry/12 TD 2016 season.

The Raiders face the 4th hardest schedule for Fantasy Running Backs this coming season where they face all Top 10 Run D’s from weeks 11-16 (NE, DEN, NYG, @KC, @PHI). That said, it’s likely Lynch will see his biggest upside from weeks 1-10 where Oakland will see just two Top 10 Run Defenses.

DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard should see work similar to their 2016 season’s. Both will continue to have major roles in the passing game and will form a RBBC should Lynch go down. Consider Lynch at best a Fantasy RB2 for the 2017 season.

27. Spencer Ware

Spencer Ware will open the season as the Chiefs featured back after being thrust onto the scene last season with Charles’ ongoing injuries. Ware finished the season as the Fantasy RB16 after totaling nearly 1,400 yards and 5 TDs. Outside of Kelce and Sophomore WR Tyreek Hill, KC’s receiving game is below average. Alex Smith will continue to look Ware’s way after targeting the 25 year old 42 times last season. Rookie addition, Kareem Hunt, is killing Ware’s ADP. Still, Hunt had a successful collegiate career in Toldeo, but it’s still a MAC school. Players like Hunt coming from smaller D1 schools tend to have a harder time adjusting to NFL Gameplay in their first season. For now, Ware is the go to guy with a mix of the two likely to happen towards the latter part of the season.

28. Paul Perkins

Perkins will get the first look at RB in New York after a less-than-inspiring rookie debut. The Giants ranked 24th in Rushing Attempts in 2016 and dead last in Rushing Touchdown’s with a measly 6 TDs on the entire season. With Vereen expected to seize the passing-down opportunities and upgrades made toward the receiving corps, Perkins may have a shorter ceiling than most would expect. With competition slim amongst RBs in New York, Perkins should enter and hang onto the job, but could be range bound as exemplified above.

 29. Tevin Coleman

Coleman should be registered as this season’s primo handcuff with flex play opportunity, after ending 2016 with 11 TDs, 520 Rushing Yards on 118 Attempts and 421 Receiving Yards on 31 Receptions. The Falcons ranked 1st in Points Scored in 2016, averaging 34.1 PPG and 2nd in Total Yardage with 416 YPG, only trailing New Orleans. Teammate Devonta Freeman ranked 3rd in the NFL in red-zone carries (50), also leading the Falcons in Red-Zone Targets (17). All of this being said, many expect regression from 2016’s numbers and that may be possible, however when this offense is registering these sort of numbers along with teammate Devonta Freeman ringing the register, it’s evident that Coleman will be an immediate beneficiary and the volume and opportunity will absolutely be there.

30. Eddie Lacy

Lacy has burnt fantasy owners over the past two seasons and now enters Seattle where he will see a timeshare between Rawls and Prosise, staged behind a dreadful offensive line. We just don’t recommend going down that path and getting fooled again. George Bush … Lol!

31. Adrian Peterson

Adrian Peterson’s best single-season total was 436 Receiving Yards in 2009 with Brett Favre at QB, and he thinks getting to work with Drew Brees will allow him to set a new personal best, with the goal of surpassing 500 Receiving Yards this season. With dual-purpose RB Mark Ingram fully expected to garner the RB1 in New Orleans, these should be perceived as lofty goals for AP and more than likely owners will overdraft Peterson in the process. Peterson isn’t the best receiving option and these estimates should be thrown out the window. We don’t expect New Orleans to move that heavily away from Ingram, who notched 50 Receptions for 405 Receiving Yards in 2015 and 46 Receptions for 319 Receiving Yards and 4 Receiving TDs in 2016. Peterson will enter into a stellar offense, behind a strong offensive line and with Ingram taking the load, it should equate to a healthier and more electric Peterson. AP has always been a volume guy, so this will be interesting to see play out, but at 32-Years-Old and coming off of a 3-Game-Season in 2016, Peterson isn’t going to eat carries at the rate many will probably expect at the given ADP. Expect this to turn into a frustrating situation for fantasy owners this season.

32. Ty Montgomery

Injuries to Eddie Lacy and James Starks forced Montgomery into action last season where he contained 5.9 YPC on 77 carries, totaling 457 rush yards on the season. The 24 year old RB/WR racked up 35% of his 2016 rush totals and 2 of his 3 rushing TDs in a Week 15 matchup against the Chicago Bears. Montgomery has never been a full-time RB in any level of football and therefor struggled in many scenario’s last season, including pass-protection. As a result,  Green Bay was forced to bench him at times. With this amount of inconsistency, it’s no surprise that the Packers drafted 3 RBs in the 2017 NFL Draft. Of those, Jamaal Williams possesses the highest goal line value for Green Bay  and will likely vulture all TDs from Ty Mont.

33. Latavius Murray

See “Dalvin Cook” above for insight.

Murray is currently recovering from ankle surgery, but we are assuming he will seize the short-yargage and goal-line opportunities in Minnesota, carrying vulture scoring potential for fantasy owners. Murray scored 9 TDs from inside the five-yard line and converted 13-of-18 short-yardage tries on 3rd or 4th down last season in Oakland, totaling 12 Rushing TDs on the season.

34. Frank Gore

34 year old Frank Gore finished as the 12th best Fantasy RB in 2016 totaling 1,300 yards and 8 TDs! The Colts decided to keep Robert Turbin, who vultured 8 TDs from Gore last season, and drafted South Florida speedster RB Marlon Mack. A tough 2017 run schedule, terrible offensive line and with even more competition in the backfield; it’s safe to say drafting Frank Gore should be a very low priority for your fantasy teams.

Jordan and Michael Tozzi were 2013's Most Accurate Fantasy Football Experts in the nation. Owners of LegionReport.com

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