Chris Wesseling

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Week 12 Rankings

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Week 12 Running Backs

Rank Player Name Opponent Notes
1 Doug Martin vs. ATL -
2 Arian Foster at DET -
3 C.J. Spiller at IND -
4 Adrian Peterson at CHI -
5 Ray Rice at SD Probable (toe)
6 Chris Johnson at JAC -
7 Stevan Ridley at NYJ -
8 Marshawn Lynch at MIA -
9 Frank Gore at NO -
10 Trent Richardson vs. PIT Probable (ribs)
11 Alfred Morris at DAL -
12 Steven Jackson at ARZ Probable (foot)
13 Matt Forte vs. MIN -
14 Bryce Brown vs. CAR -
15 Marcel Reece at CIN -
16 Jamaal Charles vs. DEN -
17 Ryan Mathews vs. BAL -
18 Jalen Parmele vs. TEN -
19 Ahmad Bradshaw vs. GB Probable (neck)
20 BenJarvus Green-Ellis vs. OAK -
21 Mikel Leshoure vs. HOU -
22 Jonathan Stewart at PHI -
23 Vick Ballard vs. BUF -
24 Knowshon Moreno at KC -
25 Darren Sproles vs. SF Probable (hand)
26 Shonn Greene vs. NE -
27 Fred Jackson at IND Probable (concussion)
28 Ronnie Hillman at KC -
29 Reggie Bush vs. SEA -
30 Felix Jones vs. WAS -
31 Michael Turner at TB Probable (groin)
32 Beanie Wells vs. STL Probable (toe)
33 Rashard Mendenhall at CLE -
34 Mark Ingram vs. SF -
35 Kendall Hunter at NO -
36 Jonathan Dwyer at CLE -
37 Andre Brown vs. GB -
38 Chris Ivory vs. SF -
39 La'Rod Stephens-Howling vs. STL Questionable (ribs)
40 Danny Woodhead at NYJ -
41 James Starks at NYG -
42 Lance Dunbar vs. WAS Probable (knee)
43 Bilal Powell vs. NE -
44 Daniel Thomas vs. SEA -
45 Lance Ball at KC -
46 Donald Brown vs. BUF Probable (knee)
47 Shane Vereen at NYJ -
48 Michael Bush vs. MIN -
49 Daryl Richardson at ARZ -
50 Jacquizz Rodgers at TB -
51 Pierre Thomas vs. SF -
52 Alex Green at NYG -
53 Cedric Peerman vs. OAK -
54 Ronnie Brown vs. BAL -
55 Joique Bell vs. HOU -
56 DeAngelo Williams at PHI -
57 Peyton Hillis vs. DEN -
58 Dion Lewis vs. CAR -
59 Phillip Tanner vs. WAS -
60 Justin Forsett at DET -
61 Rashad Jennings vs. TEN -
62 Robert Turbin at MIA -
63 Bernard Pierce at SD -
64 David Wilson vs. GB -

RB Notes: Doug Martin has joined Eric Dickerson and Edgerrin James as the only rookies with 1,000 scrimmage yards over a six-game span. Warrick Dunn compares Martin to a cross between Emmitt Smith and Ray Rice while Earnest Graham notes that he’s a “stronger, more physical version of Darren Sproles” with more escapability than Rice or Maurice Jones-Drew. He’s emerged as one of the few three-down backs with a high-scoring offense, homerun-hitting ability, goal-line work, and a passing game to keep defenders from stacking the box. Fantasy’s No. 1 back is facing a Falcons run defense that ranks 26th in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric.

Even with Fred Jackson returning, C.J. Spiller will start and “get the majority of the snaps” against a Colts defense that has been rock solid against the run of late. With rare lateral explosion and elite breakaway speed, Spiller joins Adrian Peterson as matchup-proof backs when they get 15+ touches. … No coaching staff is as creative and imaginative as the 49ers. It’s evident in the running scheme as much as the passing game. Gore takes a gaudy per-carry average of 5.3 into a matchup against a Saints defense allowing the second-most fantasy points to running backs.

As solid as Brandon Weeden’s pass protection was at Dallas, Trent Richardson had no holes to run through and still ended up with 144 yards. The polar opposite of C.J. Spiller, Richardson could benefit from bouncing more runs to the outside. He’s averaging a whopping 30 touches per over the past three games. … Steven Jackson is averaging 106.5 yards the past two weeks and has a plus matchup against a Cardinals run defense that had been gashed for a month before lucking into a meeting with a washed-up Michael Turner last week.

The rub on Andy Reid is that he doesn’t run the ball enough, but LeSean McCoy is fifth in the NFL in touches through 11 weeks. McCoy appears unlikely to play, in which case Brown has borderline RB1 appeal with a three-down skillset. Not your garden variety seventh-round pick, Brown was the No. 1 high school player in the country back in 2008, ahead of Richardson. … Check back this weekend to make sure Marcel Reece is in line for another start. Darren McFadden could still return for Friday’s practice.

Von Miller is rivaling J.J. Watt for defensive player of the year because he’s been terrorizing QBs, but he’s flying under the radar as the most ferocious run defender among outside linebackers. Jamaal Charles has his work cut out for him this week. … Peyton Manning confirms the Broncos will use a three-man committee to replace Willis McGahee. We expect Ronnie Hillman to see the bulk of the touches against a Chiefs defense allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing backs.

Jalen Parmele saw a whopping 27 touches last week, dominating snaps in the Jacksonville backfield. The matchup is tasty this week, but Parmele spent much of Week 11 running as fast as he could into the back of his linemen. The career special teamer’s instincts and patience were lacking. … Mikel Leshoure faces a Texans defense that hasn’t allowed a rushing score all season. … With Mark Ingram and Chris Ivory emerging, Darren Sproles is a mere flex option outside of PPR leagues. Someone supplied Ingram with a jetpack on his 27-yard touchdown run last week.

Felix Jones is a game-time decision versus the Redskins. … The Cardinals had the NFL’s worst run defense over the past month, and Turner still managed just 3.1 YPC. … Rashard Mendenhall, Jonathan Dwyer, and Isaac Redman figure to split touches at Cleveland. … Cement-footed James Starks has been relegated to a timeshare with Alex Green again this week. … Joique Bell was replaced on third downs last week, ostensibly because the Lions believe Kevin Smith is stronger in pass protection.  


Sunday Update: Bumped Knowshon Moreno ahead of Ronnie Hillman following news that the veteran is starting. Hillman still isn't trusted in pass protection and shouldn't be viewed as more than a change-of-pace playmaker for Week 12. Both backs are flex options until one emerges as a reliable source of 15+ touches. Also bumped Vick Ballard slightly with the news that he's starting.


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Chris Wesseling is a senior football editor and Dynasty league analyst for The 2011 NFL season marks his fifth year with Rotoworld and his third year contributing to He can be found on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.
Email :Chris Wesseling

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