Let’s take a look at five running backs our expert consensus likes more than ADP.
Rankings noted using FantasyPros half-PPR Expert Consensus Rankings (ECR) and Consensus ADP.
5 Running Backs Experts Like More Than ADP
Christian McCaffrey (CAR)
ECR RB2 | ADP RB4
We all know the deal with CMC. When healthy, he’s easily the best player in all of fantasy football. He played in four games in 2021 with at least a 50% snap share and his PPR fantasy finishes were RB1, RB3, RB4 and RB3. McCaffrey averaged 26 fantasy points per game. Considering the extent of CMC’s injuries have not resulted in major surgeries or completely torn ligaments, I like him bouncing back to form in 2022. I like that the Panthers are already putting him in preseason bubble wrap to make sure he’s full-go for Week 1. Four of the Panthers’ 5 wins last season came when CMC was active and playing.
D’Andre Swift (DET)
ECR RB8 | ADP RB11
In Weeks 1-11, before suffering an AC joint sprain that kiboshed his season, D’Andre Swift was a fantasy monster. He was the RB7, averaging 19 touches and 97.5 total yards per game. While the Lions have added more passing game weapons in the offseason with D.J. Chark and Jameson Williams, Swift’s efficiency through the air allows for hope that his target share (18.4%, second among running backs) won’t see a drastic dip. In Weeks 1-11, he was ninth in yards per route run (minimum 15 targets, per PFF) among running backs.
James Conner (ARI)
ECR RB15 | ADP RB20
The Cardinals re-signed their RB1 from a season ago to a three-year, $21 million extension this offseason, locking him in as their guy for the foreseeable future. It’s a great signing for fantasy football because it puts Conner firmly in the top-12 running back conversation, especially with Chase Edmonds landing in Miami.
The ex-Steelers running back finished the 2021 season tied for second in goal-line carries and third in touchdowns (18). Conner received extensive work in the passing game with Edmonds out of the lineup from Weeks 9-14 and Week 18. Conner averaged 26.2 fantasy points and 5.5 targets per game in those six games while running a route on 61% of the Cardinals’ dropbacks. His RB finishes in half-point scoring during those weeks: RB1, RB16, RB8, RB11, RB2, and RB3.
Breece Hall (NYJ)
ECR RB20 | ADP RB27
My highest-ranked rookie running back is Breece Hall. The Jets selected the Iowa State product at the top of Round 2, signifying his status as the team’s locked-in RB1 for the foreseeable future. Hall’s three-down skill set suggests he never has to come off the field, and the sheer volume he garners will vault him into redraft top-20 running back territory.
The Iowa State product totaled over 4,500 yards from scrimmage, 50 touchdowns and 80 catches over three seasons in the college ranks.
A workload of approximately 240 touches – based on ESPN fantasy analyst Mike Clay’s projections and how many touches the cumulative Jets RB1 earned last season – would place Hall inside the top-15 considering every running back last season that hit that threshold finished inside that ranking.
2021 fourth-rounder Michael Carter had his moments as a rookie, but the Jets know he’s just a No. 2 running back. Anticipate Hall to shoulder 15-20 touches per game based on the workload that Carter received last season when Tevin Coleman missed time.
From Weeks 7-9 with Coleman sidelined, Carter averaged 19 touches per game and a 66% snap share. Upon Coleman’s return from injury in Week 10, Carter averaged 14 touches per game and a 55% snap share in the games they played together.
Cordarelle Patterson (ATL)
ECR RB36 | ADP RB42
Patterson is already 31 years old, but he has relatively little wear on his body, given that last year was his first with 100-plus carries. As a Deebo Samuel-esque “wide back” hybrid, Patterson amassed 1,166 yards and 11 touchdowns from scrimmage in 2022. This year he has a decent chance to replicate his usage of 153 carries and 69 targets given that the Falcons will be without RB Mike Davis (release) and WRs Calvin Ridley (suspension) and Russell Gage (free agency). As intriguing as fifth-round RB Tyler Allgeier might be, he’s unlikely to push Patterson off the field, and first-round WR Drake London probably won’t claim all 146 targets vacated by Ridley and Gage.
FantasyPros Staff Consensus 2022 Redraft Fantasy Football Rankings
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