A week is in the books and there have been a lot of surprises, as always. Bishop Sankey and Marcel Reece were relevant, while C.J. Anderson laid an egg and split carries. As we move into the second week, check in here for some sound advice on which running backs will carry you to a win.
Injury Concerns: Andre Ellington ARI Doubtful, Lorenzo Taliaferro BAL Questionable, C.J. Anderson DEN Questionable, Arian Foster HOU Out, C.J. Spiller NO Questionable, Roy Helu OAK Day To Day, Reggie Bush SF Questionable, Tre Mason STL Day To Day
Out: Leveon Bell - Suspension
Elite Tier (Must Starts)
1. Jamaal Charles KC vs. DEN - I love Jamaal Charles against the Broncos this week. Denver looked out of sorts in week 1 and if they fall behind again, KC will run it all day long.
2. Jeremy Hill CIN vs. SD - Hill looked amazing in week 1 and he should continue bowling over the competition in the second week of the season. Watch for multiple TDs.
3. Marshawn Lynch SEA @GB - Seattle loves to run the ball and Beast Mode is the man for the job. He's a safe bet for nice numbers.
4. DeMarco Murray PHI vs. DAL - I'm not jumping off the Murray bandwagon after one bad week. Philly looked out of sync in general week 1. Look for a solid rebound versus Murray's old teammates in Dallas.
5. Adrian Peterson MIN vs. DET - The Lions have a solid defense, but Peterson is too strong to be kept down for another week. I'm not as high on AP as some people this year, but he is a solid RB1.
6. Eddie Lacy GB vs. SEA - Nobody who has Lacy on their team is benching him, but Seattle is not the softest matchup. The numbers will be there, just not in the same quantity as usual.
Strong Plays (Reliable But A Notch Below)
7. Matt Forte CHI vs. ARI - I love Forte, but the Arizona defense is legit. I think that the yards will be there, but touchdowns will be tough to come by.
8. Chris Ivory NYJ @IND - Ivory looked strong in week 1 and the Jets love to run the ball. The presence of Brandon Marshall is just making the running lanes wider.
9. Carlos Hyde SF @PIT - The Steelers aren't the same defense that they once were, but at home they are a tough
draw. Carlos Hyde is a budding star and he'll produce anyway.
10. LeSean McCoy BUF vs. NE - I was not impressed with the Pats defense versus the annually unimpressive Deangelo Williams. Shady McCoy should produce as he inches closer to full strength.
11. Justin Forsett BAL @OAK - Baltimore's offense was a dumpster fire in week 1. They can only get better from there and I still believe that Forsett is a RB1.
12. Mark Ingram NO vs. TB - Tampa Bay does not have a defense. What else do I need to say?
13. Rashad Jennings NYG vs. ATL - The Giants were embarrassed in the closing seconds of week 1 and will come out angry. Jennings is a solid play as he had a solid workload in week 1.
Risk/Reward (Potentially Shaky)
14. Lamar Miller MIA @JAC - Another back that I am high on but was weak in week 1. I think that he comes back strong against a sneaky stout Jacksonville defense.
15. Alfred Morris WAS vs. STL - The rumors about splitting the workload were just that, Morris is still the man in DC.
16. Ameer Abdullah DET @MIN - I don't think that the Vikes defense is that weak, but the Lions will have the ball A LOT.
17. Joseph Randle DAL @PHI - Long term, I don't like Randle too much. For this week he is a decent RB2.
18. Doug Martin TB @NO - Martin will never be what he once was, but he can get you some ugly points.
19. Jonathan Stewart CAR vs. HOU - The Houston defense looked surprisingly beatable in week 1. Look for Stewart to break a couple of big gains.
Question Marks (Could Get You RB2 Numbers)
20. Bishop Sankey TEN @CLE - I feel dirty for saying that Sankey should be in anyone's lineup. He isn't great, or even good. He is starting though, and Cleveland will be focusing on Mariota.
21. C.J. Anderson DEN @KC - This rank is only if Anderson suits up of course. The split carries in week 1 made
me feel uneasy about C.J. but give him another chance before panicking.
22. Latavius Murray OAK vs. BAL - Week 1 was not kind to the Raiders, but Baltimore was WAY worse. Murray should have some chances at the least.
23. Deangelo Williams PIT vs. SF - Williams has one more week to be relevant before Bell pushes him to the bench. Enjoy low end starter production then cut him.
24. Danny Woodhead SD @CIN - Melvin Gordon is the starter, but Woodhead gets the passing downs and goal line work at the moment.
25. Tevin Coleman ATL @NYG - The passing game is Atlanta's strength, but Coleman seems to be in the lead for carries at the moment. Don't discount Freeman in the long run, but this week Coleman is the man.
Flex Appeal (Usable In A Pinch)
26. T.J. Yeldon JAX vs. MIA
27. LeGarette Blount NE @BUF
28. Melvin Gordon SD @CIN
29. Ronnie Hillman DEN @KC
30. Frank Gore IND vs. NYJ
31. Chris Johnson ARI @CHI
32. Ryan Mathews PHI vs. DAL
33. Dion Lewis NE @BUF
34. Isiah Crowell CLE vs. TEN
35. Giovani Bernard CIN vs. SD
36. Benny Cunningham STL @WAS
37. Darren McFadden DAL @PHI
38. David Johnson ARI @CHI
39. Joique Bell DET @MIN
40. Shane Vereen NYG vs. ATL
41. Darren Sproles PHI vs. DAL
42. Devonta Freeman ATL @NYG
43. Alfred Blue HOU @CAR
44. Bilal Powell NYJ @IND
45. Denard Robinson JAX vs. MIA
Tough Sledding (Last Resorts)
46. Duke Johnson CLE vs. TEN
47. C.J. Spiller NO vs. TB
48. Andre Williams NYG vs. ATL
49. Terrance West CLE vs. TEN
50. Lance Dunbar DAL @PHI
51. Matt Jones WAS vs. STL
52. Khiry Robinson NO vs. TB
That's it for this week. As always, keep an eye on the injury report as the games get closer and good luck.