Fantasy football busts: 5 running backs you will learn to hate in 2010

We’ve started unveiling more staff sleepers, but there is another side to the coin. It is an ugly side.

Busts come in all shapes and sizes, but it’s the ones near the top of your draft that make us shake our fists in the air, scream a name and an accompanying string of unintelligible cuss words.

What follows are some of the players I’ve been avoiding in an attempt to keep my blood pressure below the instant death mark in 2010.

EP’s bold running back busts

Maurice Jones-Drew, JAX: I know, right? He’s my top RB. Unfortunately, for those of us who have already drafted MJD, this whole knee thing is new and potentially very bad. I’m not saying he’s going to be awful, but I don’t want to waste my first pick (or any of my top four, really) on somebody who has an unknown knee thing that nobody is explaining.

DeAngelo Williams, CAR: In my re-review of ADP round 2, I said: “Williams will be great, but somebody else is going to pay less for Jonathan Stewart and get the same fantasy numbers. That will disappoint Williams owners.” My stance hasn’t changed.

Shonn Greene, NYJ: Another back I own in two leagues. Ugh, what was I thinking? LaDainian Tomlinson has looked like the real LT in the preseason. If this isn’t a full-blown committee, the job is Tomlinson’s. You have to pay top 20 for Greene and top 100 for Tomlinson.

LeSean McCoy, PHI: There’s a reason Leonard Weaver was so exciting for stretches last season while McCoy was “starting” in place of an injured Brian Westbrook. Mike Bell wasn’t brought in as a backup, he was brought in to fill the role he had in New Orleans last season when he missed three games and still scored five TDs.

Brandon Jacobs, NYG: Everybody’s talking about picking Felix Jones as the big-play back over Marion Barber, but they’re not making the connection with the Giants. The crazy thing: Bradshaw was better than Felix Jones last season. Both players were hurt last season but Jones didn’t have a 100-yard game. Bradshaw had two. Bradshaw also didn’t have any nine-touches-for-13-yards disasters last season. Jones missed two¬† games and had three awful games on top of that.

Felix Jones, DAL: I know I only promised five busts, but did you read that Jacobs blurb? Jones has got to be on here.

Use the comments to tell us if this list is wrong, wrong wrong, or to tell us who your 2010 running back busts are.

After you comment, check out all of our 2010 fantasy football rankings and our fantasy football draft strategy and advice page with mock drafts, sleepers and auction strategies.

7 Responses to “Fantasy football busts: 5 running backs you will learn to hate in 2010”


  1. Brohamma

    Nicely done ep. I couldn’t agree with you more, regarding Jacobs. Even after the preseason game tonight, versus New England, Jacobs was downcast on the sidelines. Not a single touch! This will just go to reinforce my running back sleeper pick that is soon to be released.. thank you very much! ::preen::

    I have to disagree with you, however, on DeAngelo. Let me give you two words.. CONTRACT YEAR. He’s 27 and I seriously think he could repeat those 2008 numbers. As a running back, the contract he will be playing for could be his big payday before hitting that magical number of 30 years old. The surgeries in the offseason cleaned-up the nagging injuries that plagued him throughout 2009 and he’s looked solid throughout camp.

  2. ep

    @Brohamma: Thanks for the comment and the insight. Your points are valid and fantasy owners should take them into account.
    I also agree that Williams is not technically a “bust.”

    Actually, I really hated to put him on the list — Knowshon Moreno, and his torn hammie, easily could have replaced Williams — but it’s that Jonathan Stewart thing.
    They could both have awesome seasons, 50-50 in fantasy stats even. But there are two rounds and about $20 dollars between them. That could lead to some serious hate from owners who could have waited/paid less for the same performance.

    How that Carolina backfield plays out — will they run Williams until his legs fall off because they know they won’t get him back? Do they favor Stewart since he’ll be the future? Do they embrace the moment and go 50-50? — will be one of my favorite storylines to follow in 2010.

  3. 2010 fantasy football busts: 4 quarterbacks some of you love now and will hate later at Chinstrap Ninjas — Fantasy Football and Fantasy Baseball Assassins

    [...] McNabb, WAS: Like Maurice Jones-Drew in the running back busts discussion, a player with an injury just before the season starts is alarming. It’s even more alarming [...]

  4. Dan

    I will have to disagree with you on McCoy IF and ONLY IF you are in a PPR league like myself. He catches the ball and I think Kolb will look for Celek and McCoy when things get hairy; and they will.

    I’m looking for the real McCoy in my 1 point PPR league.

  5. Krause

    I think it’s funny, when all the other ninjas were bragging up MJD, I was bragging up Ray Rice. If I was a betting man, I’d say Im going to be right on this one. Thanks to all who jumped on the MJD bandwagon, I got Rice in every league I drafted 6th or better in.

  6. ep

    @Dan: Good catch. You are correct.
    McCoy is a great PPR play, he should easily catch 50+ this season.

  7. ep

    @Krause: Thanks for the comment.
    I still like MJD better than Rice personally, but everything’s lined up for MJD to fall.