Friday, November 11, 2005

Mid-Season NFL Best: Running Back

Best Running Back for the season so far:

These 4 guys are all having good years but I would rank them so far this season as:
1. Shawn Alexander, 2. Warrick Dunn, 3. Edgerrin James, 4. LaDainian Tomlinson

This was close for me but I went with Shawn Alexander (may my Ram soul burn in hell) by a hair over Warrick Dunn. Alexander has the most yards (949) and the best average (5.4) despite everyone stacking the box against the Seahawks. Hasselbeck's been no slouch (still bald) this year but Alexander has been their offense and a scoring machine.

Some would ask how I could not put Charger back LaDainian Tomlinson (also a fantasy stud) or Edgerrin James over Warrick Dunn (or for that matter Alexander). Tomlinson (835 yards) only has 15 more yards than Warrick Dunn (820) and only a 4.3 yard per carry average compared to Dunn's 5.1 average. Granted, LT's a monster in the red zone, and he does have 264 yards receiving (much more than Dunn and Alexander)-- but despite the hype around him, he hasn't run the ball quite as effectively as Alexander or Dunn (based mainly on rushing average) and they don't call them RUNNING backs just because it sounds cool. James has good stats and has been crucial for the Colt's this year (906 yards, 4.6 average, 181 rec.yards) but the the danger of a All Pro QB has helped him moreso than the other backs. Bottom line is that Alexander and Dunn so far this year have had to go against defenses waiting for the run and they still are piling up the yards.

Most mis-used running back this year:
Marshall Faulk is averaging over 5 yards a carry but has been given the rock only 27 times! Now I know Steven Jackson is the future in St. Louis but Faulk has looked healthy and quick and should be getting a chance to show that he still has it. The Rams have treated this guy with no class this year. He may have agreed that Jackson should be the starter this year but I'm sure he didn't envision getting less than 4 carries a game. I'm not entirely rational about this because of what he's done in the past but I don't think I 'm out to lunch either in thinking he should be playing a bigger part in their offense.


Sports Litter said...

Gotta agree with you in putting SA on top. I would put Edge next then LT, but that's just me. SA has everything you would want from a RB. Can't believe he isn't locked up long term yet. Edge has only been held under 100 yards twice. That's pretty impressive.

Got SA on my fantasy team, and just moved Larry Johnson into my starting line-up over Tiki. Ready to make my playoff push.

Greg said...

I have to disagree. LT has been the top running back. Shaun Alexander is without a doubt, #2, but I think his numbers are slightly misleading. Take away his two 4 TD games (against Arizona and Houston, no less) and he hasn't had as dominant a season as you might think. Don't get me wrong, it's still a good enough season to be the #2 back, but it's so hard to touch LT. He runs, he poses a receiving threat out of the backfield, he throws TD passes . . . and he's a legitimate threat in the red zone. And as much as I love Warrick Dunn, he is not an option on the goal line. He has been stuffed way too many times (hence, T.J. Duckett stealing all those TD's after Dunn and Vick do all the work). I would actually rank Edge ahead of Dunn.