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NFL Rankings

Week 3 Rankings

by Patrick Daugherty
Updated On: September 22, 2019, 11:52 am ET

Week 3 Running Backs

 

RK

Player

TM

Opp

1

Christian McCaffrey

CAR

@ARI

2

Dalvin Cook

MIN

OAK

3

Saquon Barkley

NYG

@TB

4

Ezekiel Elliott

DAL

MIA

5

Austin Ekeler

LAC

HOU

6

Alvin Kamara

NO

@SEA

7

Nick Chubb

CLE

LA

8

Chris Carson

SEA

NO

9

David Johnson

ARI

CAR

10

Leonard Fournette

JAC

TEN

11

Aaron Jones

GB

DEN

12

Derrick Henry

TEN

@JAC

13

Le'Veon Bell

NYJ

@NE

14

Todd Gurley

LA

@CLE

15

Mark Ingram

BAL

@KC

16

Sony Michel

NE

NYJ

17

Marlon Mack

IND

ATL

18

James Conner

PIT

@SF

19

Kerryon Johnson

DET

@PHI

20

Matt Breida

SF

PIT

21

Devonta Freeman

ATL

@IND

22

David Montgomery

CHI

@WAS

23

Josh Jacobs

OAK

@MIN

24

Joe Mixon

CIN

@BUF

25

Frank Gore

BUF

CIN

26

LeSean McCoy

KC

BAL

27

Rex Burkhead

NE

NYJ

28

Carlos Hyde

HOU

@LAC

29

Peyton Barber

TB

NYG

30

Miles Sanders

PHI

DET

31

Phillip Lindsay

DEN

@GB

32

Adrian Peterson

WAS

CHI

33

Duke Johnson

HOU

@LAC

34

Royce Freeman

DEN

@GB

35

Raheem Mostert

SF

PIT

36

Malcolm Brown

LA

@CLE

37

Chris Thompson

WAS

CHI

38

Kenyan Drake

MIA

@DAL

39

Justin Jackson

LAC

HOU

40

Tarik Cohen

CHI

@WAS

41

Giovani Bernard

CIN

@BUF

42

Ito Smith

ATL

@IND

43

Ronald Jones

TB

NYG

44

Jordan Howard

PHI

DET

45

Jaylen Samuels

PIT

@SF

46

Jeff Wilson

SF

PIT

47

Darren Sproles

PHI

DET

48

Jamaal Williams

GB

DEN

49

Latavius Murray

NO

@SEA

50

Darwin Thompson

KC

BAL

51

T.J. Yeldon

BUF

CIN

52

Ty Johnson

DET

@PHI

53

Kalen Ballage

MIA

@DAL

54

Tony Pollard

DAL

MIA

55

C.J. Prosise

SEA

NO

56

Jordan Wilkins

IND

ATL

       

 

RB Notes: Backup quarterbacks are almost never good news for running backs, but it is hard to see Christian McCaffrey do anything less than gut the Arizona Cardinals. … Dalvin Cook has somehow looked even better via the “eye test” than his gaudy numbers. The third-year pro has been an absolute monster. The Raiders have eliminated a pair of shaky running games but won’t have any answers for the centerpiece of the Vikings’ offense. … The Giants finally did something to make Saquon Barkley’s life easier when they benched Eli Manning. The quarterback upgrade comes at the same time Barkley faces a Bucs run D that has been surprisingly frisky. … The Cowboys have spoken of the importance of easing Ezekiel Elliott into the season after his protracted holdout. It is unlikely to be Zeke closing out the pathetic Dolphins in the fourth quarter. … JJ Zachariason hit the nail on the head with regards to running backs playing with backup quarterbacks: “Not only is there less of a chance for positive game scripts, but we know the touchdown potential drops.” That’s the key. With McCaffrey, it stings less because he plays 100 percent of the Panthers’ snaps. With Alvin Kamara? @SEA will be an immediate game flow challenge.

Nick Chubb has cleared 17 carries and three receptions in back-to-back games. He’s the best thing the Browns Offense has going right now. … David Johnson has emerged from a pair of tough matchups without great numbers. The Panthers have been softer on the ground despite one of their two opponents being the Bucs. As expected, Johnson’s 52 pass routes run are eighth amongst running backs. … Playing nearly 100 percent of the Jaguars’ snaps and gobbling up passing-game looks, it is a matter of when, not if, Leonard Fournette comes alive. … Aaron Jones was the best non-Dalvin Cook back in fantasy last week. That did not stop unimpressive rookie coach Matt LaFleur from saying he would like to keep Jones in a committee with Jamaal Williams. That’s tough to take seriously, of course. Week 3 opponent Denver is more permissive on the ground than through the air. … We have been talking about running backs and backup quarterbacks. Le'Veon Bell remains in the RB1 mix because it is quite possible he will be the Jets’ only means of moving the ball in New England. 

Chris Carson’s fumbles are keeping the door propped open for Rashaad Penny. His usage keeps him RB1 afloat for now. As promised, Carson’s pass-game involvement has increased. He ran 17 routes in each of his first two games. … Even though he’s yet to have a 20-carry day, Derrick Henry has been as advertised, steamrolling defenders en route to back-to-back 80-yard performances. Game script won’t be a problem vs. the Jags. … Todd Gurley received a goal-line carry in Week 2 and saw his targets spike from one to four. He still ceded entire drives to Malcolm Brown. We don’t have a clear picture of what Gurley’s 2019 usage is really going to look like. … Tied for second for carries inside the five-yard line? Gus Edwards, with three. Teammate Mark Ingram is tied for fifth with two. On the whole, Edwards was barely involved in Week 2 even though Ingram missed time with injury. There are red flags but also plenty of reasons for Ingram optimism … There have been mixed signals on Marlon Mack’s (calf) Week 3 availability. If he goes, it will be for a not-particularly-appealing date with the Falcons.

Sony Michel is ticketed for another week of closing duties. Averaging an abysmal 2.8 yards per carry, Michel has yet to break a tackle. He won’t be long for his golden role if that keeps up. … James Conner (knee) isn’t practicing but has claimed he will be good to go in San Francisco. The 49ers erased the Bucs’ weak rushing attack before containing the Bengals’ injured one. Pittsburgh’s has been both. … Bad game flow bit Josh Jacobs in Week 2. At least early, the fire-and-brimstone Vikings are unlikely to pull away from the Raiders the way Kansas City did. … Matt Breida rotated with Raheem Mostert in Week 2 while Jeff Wilson operated as the goal-line back. Concerning! Breida lost the overall touch battle to Mostert but only because he rested late. He looked like the 49ers’ best back. He will be ranked as such at least one more week. Mostert is a fine FLEX play, especially in PPR. … Neither Damien Williams (knee) nor LeSean McCoy (ankle) practiced Wednesday. Keep Darwin Thompson holstered. Add Darrel Williams if you are already truly desperate in a deeper league. McCoy seems closer than Williams to suiting up. 

Kerryon Johnson’s snap percentage somehow declined in Week 2. In theory, C.J. Anderson’s release is good news. It could also mean intriguing rookie Ty Johnson will get more run on passing downs. … There is no way to spin what has thus far been a disastrous year for Joe Mixon. The Bills are more vulnerable on the ground than through the air. … The fantasy back they told you not to worry about, Carlos Hyde, is the Texans’ early-down runner and gobbling up yards after contact. Duke Johnson is winning the snap war Hyde 66-62, though Hyde won the Week 2 battle 39-25. Hyde is looking like the play. … Sometimes you just need to grin and bear it. Peyton Barber and Adrian Peterson should both experience solid game flow. … It’s tempting to believe the Eagles’ receiver injuries will mean more touches for Miles Sanders. In reality, they will probably mean more for Darren Sproles. … The Packers have allowed a league-worst 18 running back receptions. That gives Phillip Lindsay a narrow advantage over Royce Freeman. … Devin Singletary is battling a hamstring issue. His absence would vault Frank Gore into the top 32. … Devonta Freeman has been bad enough that Ito Smith is emerging on the PPR radar. Smith has run 36 routes, good for 21st amongst RBs.  

Patrick Daugherty
Patrick Daugherty is a football and baseball writer for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .