RB Player Rankings – Week 15
1. Darren McFadden (vs Den) – McFadden is one of the more dynamic RBs in the league right now and will get to use all his various skills against this woeful Donkeys D on Sunday. He’s not the biggest back around (6’2”, 210 pounds), but his work in the off-season learning how to stay on his feet after first contact seems to have done wonders. It has allowed him to finally use his ridiculous 4.33 speed on a more regular basis and it’s really showing off in the stat column. Play him as your RB1 with confidence against a Denver defense that just gave up 148 yards and two TDs to Tim Hightower last week.
2. Arian Foster (@ Ten) – Foster continues to dominate for his fantasy owners and now gets to face a Titans team he put up his second highest rushing and highest receiving totals against earlier in the season (143 yards on 30 carries, nine catches for 75 yards). Enjoy the love folks because it doesn’t get much better than this… until next week when he gets to play the Broncos of course.
3. Maurice Jones-Drew (@ Ind) – MJD is on a freakin’ tear right now putting up over 100 yards on the ground in each of his last six games. He’s only scored in three of them, but that shouldn’t be a worry against the Colts as he had two TDs against them the last time they played (Week 4). In fact, in his nine career games against Indy, Jones-Drew has averaged 98.1 yards rushing and 1.2 total TDs while failing to cross the goal-line in just one of them.
4. Michael Turner (@ Sea) – “The Centaur” has reestablished league-wide dominance this year as he’s put up five 100-yard games in his last seven while rushing for at least one TD in six of them. Seattle’s defense is nothing special as they’re 20th in the league in rushing yards allowed per game while giving up exactly one rushing TD a game to their opponents as well.
5. Peyton Hillis (@ Cin) – Two weeks in a row without a TD for The Big Twinkie?!?! Unheard of!!! Hillis will get back on track this weekend though as he faces off against a Bengals D ranked 24th in both rushing yards allowed and TDs per game.
6. Chris Johnson (vs Hou) – CJ2K hasn’t had nearly the year he and his fantasy owners were expecting, but this matchup against a very beatable Texans D should make for some nice stats this Sunday. Last week against the Colts, Johnson put up 179 total yards (111 rushing) with a TD. The upward trend should continue this Sunday.
7. Adrian Peterson (vs Chi) – Purple Jesus was stifled by the Giants in Week 14, but I doubt that will happen two weeks in a row. Even though the Bears have been stellar in defending the run this season, AP loves to see them on the schedule as he’s averaged 112 yards and 1.6 TDs in his seven career games against them.
8. Jamaal Charles (@ StL) – The Ostrich is the only running back in the top ten rushers this season to have fewer than 200 carries so far (192), and though the fact that he’s third in the league in rushing is astounding, his average of 6.1 yards/carry is even more insane. Expect at least 20 touches against the Rams this Sunday, which should be all he needs to make his fantasy owners happy.
9. Jonathan Stewart (vs Ari) – Stewart has been on a roll lately putting up an average of 107.7 rushing yards/game over the last three weeks, and now he gets to face off against the third worst defense in the league at defending the run. He hasn’t done much yet this year, but you can expect a solid 100 yards and maybe a TD out of him right when you need it this week.
10. Knowshon Moreno (@ Oak) – Moreno has his game-face on putting up six TDs in his last seven games while having either 100 rushing yards or a TD in each of his last five. Oakland is one of the bottom-feeders against the run, so expect this streak of his to continue.
11. LeGarrette Blount (vs Det) – What a great find this monster RB (6’0”, 247 pounds) has been for the Bucs this season. Blount has averaged 5.2 yards/carry at home so far this season and has done well against the lesser rush Ds in the league, so have confidence playing him as an RB2 with upside on your fantasy team this week.
12. Steven Jackson (vs KC) – The Beast went over 1,000 yards on the season last week for the sixth straight time in his career a feat not many running backs can lay claim to. The Chiefs rush D is right in the middle of the pack, so with Sam ‘The Ram’ Bradford struggling a bit as of late, I expect a good 25-plus carries en route to a nice game out of the big fella this Sunday.
13. Ray Rice (vs NO) – Rice has been a bit of a disappointment for fantasy owners this year, but he’s still eighth in the league in total yards averaging almost 106 per game. Rice will be counted on quite a bit this Sunday in what could turn into quite a matchup between these two playoff-bound teams, so expect another 100-plus total yard day out of Ray Ray.
14. LeSean McCoy (@ NYG) – I can’t say McCoy has been a complete surprise, but the numbers he’s putting up are pretty amazing. Last game against the Giants he had 140 total yards (111 rushing) with a TD, and though it will be tough to repeat those stats against a powerful defense like New York has, you can be sure he’ll get around 20 touches to do it, a number that pretty much assures him of some nice fantasy points.
15. BenJarvus Green-Ellis (vs GB) – The Firm has been outstanding for the Pats this season as he’s averaged a touchdown a game over his last 11. He might even be the most automatic TD-producer in the league when his team gets around the goal-line, which seems to be a regular occurrence for New England lately.
16. Matt Forte (@ Min) – Besides the Blizzard Bowl last week against the Patriots, Forte has been a steady force for Mike Martz and the Bears over the last month. If he can garner a good 20 touches in this game, expect around 100 total yards with a possible TD against a Vikings squad that fell apart trying to handle Bradshaw and Jacobs last Monday night.
17. Ahmad Bradshaw (vs Phi) – All 5’9”, 198 pounds of the Little Engine that Could has been nothing short of a fantasy dream for owners this year. Though his fumbling problem demoted him to “second-string” a few weeks ago, he’s still getting more touches than Jacobs and seems to be making the most of them. He’ll be a solid RB2 for you this week.
18. Cedric Benson (vs Cle) – Benson has put up more bad games than good this year, but he’s been a much better back at home than on the road. Against this Cleveland D in Cincinnati, I expect this to be one of his better ones.
19. Ryan Torain (@ Dal) – Did you all catch what Ryan did to that poor Tampa rush D last week (24 carries, 172 yards)? Holy crap! Every time I looked, Torain was trucking through the defensive line and making the Bucs secondary have to pull him down. He won’t beat the Cowboys front seven as easily, but you can bet the Redskins will be getting him the ball a ton this game.
20. Brandon Jacobs (vs Phi) – Jacobs has been running downhill like a man possessed lately and now averages 6.1 yards/carry to go along with his eight TDs. Bradshaw is still getting more touches than him each game, but the Juggernaut is making the most of every carry he gets. It’s tough to depend on a guy who hasn’t had more than 14 touches in any single game this season, but you might have to ride his latest streak of two straight games with over 100 yards and a TD.
21. Tim Hightower (@ Car) – After what Hightower did to the Broncos last game (18 carries, 148 yards, two TDs), Beanie Wells might have just become an afterthought for the Cardinals the rest of the year. The Panthers have been beaten pretty badly on the ground this year, so even though he won’t do what he did last week, Tim should still have a nice game.
22. Rashard Mendenhall (vs NYJ) – Mendenhall has been pretty darn dependable this year, but his last couple of games have been lackluster at best and I don’t expect the trend to change too much against a hard-nosed Jets defense this week.
23. Felix Jones (vs Was) – Felix has averaged over 20 touches a game the last few weeks which has led to him putting up 95.7 total yards/game in that time. These numbers look to continue on Sunday against a Redskins defense that has a tough time stopping, well, pretty much anything teams throw at them.
24. Mike Tolbert (vs SF) – With Ryan Mathews back, you can’t expect 100 yards out of Tolberticus anymore, but you can still assume a trounce into the endzone.
25. Fred Jackson (@ Mia) – Freddy went back up over 100 yards against the Browns last weekend, but the Dolphins defense is a whole different animal to contend with. He’ll get his fair share of touches in this one, but temper your expectations of FJax against a seventh-ranked Miami rush D that’s allowed just six rushing TDs on the season.
26. Mike Goodson (vs Ari) – Even with Stewart taking over the lead-back role, Goodson is still producing with his limited touches. He’s now scored a TD in three straight games for the Panthers, and it could continue this Sunday against a soft Arizona D.
27. Ronnie Brown (vs Buf) – Ronnie has been a huge bummer this year grabbing just three TDs and not once rushing for more than 85 yards or putting up 100 total yards in a game. If he’s going to do it, however, it will be against this awful Bills rush D (165.8 rush yards/game, last in the NFL). He might be worth a shot if you’re looking for the home run this fantasy playoff weekend.
28. Javarris James / Joseph Addai (vs Jax) – If Addai plays, then he should be moved up a good five-to-ten slots in these rankings. If he doesn’t, then Javarris should stay right here. Either way, expect a TD out of one of these two guys come Sunday.
29. Jahvid Best (@ TB) – Best has been looking better the last couple of games, and against a Bucs D that just got torched for 172 yards on the ground by Ryan Torain, he might be worth a shot if you’re looking for a good flex option.
30. Tashard Choice (vs Was) – Choice didn’t get nearly the love fantasy owners were expecting last week after he proved his worth the week before against the Colts. However, the Cowboys should have room enough to get him some good play this weekend against a poor Redskins front seven.
31. Michael Bush (vs Den) – Bush should see his share of the action this week after McFadden blows the Donkeys up early and often. If he can get around 15 carries, he might have himself a real nice game.
32. Ryan Mathews (vs SF) – Mathews is back and looks to be running with a bit of a chip on his shoulder. He hates being thought of as “injury-prone”, so when he gets the ball this Thursday night (which might not be more than 10 times), expect to see an angry runner on your television set.