2016 Draft Kit

Top 95 running backs for 2015 fantasy football

We kicked off our 2015 fantasy football position primer with the quarterbacks, the darlings of real football.

But in the fantasy football realm, the running backs are the darlings.

What one of your leaguemates doesn’t want to draft this year’s Jeremy Hill and brag about it on draft day in 2016? None of them. That’s who.

We all want to be the genius who finds the new, unexpected bell-cow back because they are a rare animal. Like spotting a chupacabra in the wild.

Season long draft strategies

Here’s the bottom line. These rankings are for non-PPR leagues. That means these rankings are everything. Run a couple non-PPR mock drafts. Draft however you want for three of them, then draft three times where you take RB-RB-RB without hesitation. Your RB-RB-RB teams will come out on top more times than not, even if you’re picking Justin Forsett over Calvin Johnson or Dez Bryant. In non-PPR, running backs reign supreme.

I’m not saying you have to go RB-RB-RB, but if you want a good start, it’s a good way to start. At the least you should have two running backs in your first three picks.

If two of them happen to be top-10 guys on the rankings below, you just won the lottery because someone was too eager to get a quarterback.

The middle and late rounds are a running back desert. Sure there are names you recognize there, but not names you can trust for weekly performance. Best to take shots here.

Personally, I prefer drafting handcuffs of other players’ more injury-prone running backs rather than my own, unless I’ve drafted someone like DeMarco Murray and his backup is Ryan Mathews. It feels like having a handcuff on your team all season is almost like rooting for your starting back to get hurt. But, like I said above, mid- and late-draft is a wasteland so picking your handcuff without overpaying is a decent strategy.

Daily fantasy football draft strategies

Most DFS sites are going to award you a PPR point, like Draft Kings, or a half-PPR point, like FanDuel, so these rankings won’t help you much. However, I’m going to go over this here anyway.

Just like with quarterbacks, there are a lot of experts out there suggesting a lot of different strategies. They are all viable, but some affect how you build the rest of your lineups.

My favorite strategy is to draft one stud or low-upper-tier running back and one running back with big opportunity but low cost. If you play enough DFS, however, you know that you’re going to eventually have lineups that have two extreme value running backs and others that have two high-priced studs. But typically, using one medium-high priced player — Justin Forsett was this kind of player for most of the second half of 2014 — and one low-priced option opens up cap space to get at least one stud wide receiver and a serviceable quarterback, which is why it is the most common strategy.

We will, of course, provide you with rankings and information throughout the season to help you build the best possible lineups

2015 Draft Kit | Rankings | Quarterback consistency | Top quarterbacks over the final five weeks of 2015Strength of schedule | Team previews 

Top 95 running backs for 2015

These rankings may seem a bit off to you. Here’s the methodology: We took three-year fantasy point season averages (fpts) and assigned them to players based on the free fantasy football rankings at Fantasy Pros. The ADP is by position from Fantasy Pros, to give you an idea where these players are being drafted compared to their peers. Then we modified the points (xfpts) using a formula that factors in age-based performances and projected schedule based on defense-adjusted value over average.

I’m not sure I could draft seven other running backs ahead of Marshawn Lynch, but these rankings will certainly make me consider it, which is kinda what we do here at Chinstrap Ninjas.

2015 redraft rankings: QB | RB | WR | TE | K | D/ST

Rk Name Pos Age xfpts ADP fpts agex Skd skdx
1 Le’Veon Bell PIT, 11 RB 23 267.7 4 308.5 90 -4 -20
2 Eddie Lacy GB, 7 RB 24 256.4 2 269.5 97 -2 -10
3 Adrian Peterson MIN, 5 RB 30 254.5 1 342.7 75 -1 -5
4 Jamaal Charles KC, 9 RB 28 250.9 3 285.1 88 0 0
5 C.J. Anderson DEN, 7 RB 24 243.6 7 240.8 97 4 20
6 DeMarco Murray PHI, 8 RB 27 202.2 8 212.0 93 2 10
7 LeSean McCoy BUF, 8 RB 27 194.6 9 206.5 93 1 5
8 Marshawn Lynch SEA, 9 RB 29 185.8 5 261.1 75 -4 -20
9 Jeremy Hill CIN, 7 RB 22 185.8 10 222.1 87 -3 -15
10 Lamar Miller MIA, 5 RB 24 183.9 14 192.1 97 -1 -5
11 Mark Ingram NO, 11 RB 25 181.6 12 180.9 99 1 5
12 Alfred Morris WAS, 8 RB 26 180.1 13 175.1 100 2 10
13 Matt Forte CHI, 7 RB 29 161.8 6 225.7 75 -3 -15
14 Latavius Murray OAK, 6 RB 24 161.4 18 163.8 97 1 5
15 Jonathan Stewart CAR, 5 RB 28 157.9 19 165.2 88 5 25
16 Justin Forsett BAL, 9 RB 29 152.4 11 203.1 75 0 0
17 Melvin Gordon SD, 10 RB 22 150.3 16 172.8 87 0 0
18 Andre Ellington ARI, 9 RB 26 141.1 20 148.6 100 -3 -15
19 Frank Gore IND, 10 RB 32 139.9 15 185.6 74 1 5
20 Joseph Randle DAL, 6 RB 23 136.8 22 146.4 90 2 10
21 Carlos Hyde SF, 10 RB 23 130.7 17 153.6 90 -3 -15
22 Doug Martin TB, 6 RB 26 128.6 33 113.6 100 6 30
23 Ameer Abdullah DET, 9 RB 22 118.9 29 133.8 87 1 5
24 Christopher Ivory NYJ, 5 RB 27 112.9 31 121.4 93 0 0
25 LeGarrette Blount NE, 4 RB 28 112.5 28 130.7 88 -1 -5
26 C.J. Spiller NO, 11 RB 28 110.4 26 122.6 88 1 5
27 T.J. Yeldon JAC, 8 RB 21 108.3 23 141.1 75 1 5
28 Shane Vereen NYG, 11 RB 26 107.2 39 102.2 100 2 10
29 Charles Sims TB, 6 RB 24 102.6 45 90.3 97 6 30
30 Cam. Artis-Payne CAR, 5 RB 25 101.9 62 90.3 99 5 25
31 Giovani Bernard CIN, 7 RB 23 100.6 30 120.1 90 -3 -15
32 Tevin Coleman ATL, 10 RB 22 99.4 34 108.5 87 2 10
33 Bobby Rainey TB, 6 RB 27 98.9 58 90.3 93 6 30
34 Joique Bell DET, 9 RB 22 97.6 27 109.3 87 1 5
35 Montee Ball DEN, 7 RB 24 97.6 55 90.3 97 4 20
36 Chris Polk HOU, 9 RB 25 96.9 65 90.3 99 3 15
37 Ryan Mathews PHI, 8 RB 27 95.6 38 97.4 93 2 10
38 Alfred Blue HOU, 9 RB 24 95.1 36 90.3 97 3 15
39 Devonta Freeman ATL, 10 RB 23 95.0 40 100.0 90 2 10
40 Lance Dunbar DAL, 6 RB 25 94.4 77 90.3 99 2 10
41 Arian Foster HOU, 9 RB 28 93.8 24 98.1 88 3 15
42 Roy Helu OAK, 6 RB 26 92.8 63 90.3 100 1 5
43 Daniel Herron IND, 10 RB 26 92.8 67 90.3 100 1 5
44 Rashad Jennings NYG, 11 RB 30 91.9 25 115.9 75 2 10
45 Khiry Robinson NO, 11 RB 25 91.9 83 90.3 99 1 5
46 Trent Richardson OAK, 6 RB 25 91.9 80 90.3 99 1 5
47 Bernard Pierce JAC, 8 RB 25 91.9 90.3 99 1 5
48 Ronnie Hillman DEN, 7 RB 23 91.2 73 90.3 90 4 20
49 Isaiah Crowell CLE, 11 RB 22 90.6 32 107.1 87 -1 -5
50 Stevan Ridley NYJ, 5 RB 26 90.3 52 90.3 100 0 0
51 Denard Robinson JAC, 8 RB 24 90.1 64 90.3 97 1 5
52 Theo Riddick DET, 9 RB 24 90.1 66 90.3 97 1 5
53 Bryce Brown BUF, 8 RB 24 90.1 90.3 97 1 5
54 Darren McFadden DAL, 6 RB 27 88.9 37 90.3 93 2 10
55 Travaris Cadet NE, 4 RB 26 87.8 86 90.3 100 -1 -5
56 Branden Oliver SD, 10 RB 24 87.6 70 90.3 97 0 0
57 Zac Stacy NYJ, 5 RB 24 87.6 95 90.3 97 0 0
58 Jonas Gray NE, 4 RB 25 86.9 48 90.3 99 -1 -5
59 Terrance West CLE, 11 RB 24 85.1 57 90.3 97 -1 -5
60 Tyler Gaffney NE, 4 RB 24 85.1 90.3 97 -1 -5
61 Andre Williams NYG, 11 RB 22 83.5 49 90.3 87 2 10
62 Matt Jones WAS, 8 RB 22 83.5 71 90.3 87 2 10
63 Todd Gurley STL, 6 RB 21 83.0 21 127.4 75 -5 -25
64 Kendall Hunter SF, 10 RB 26 82.8 90.3 100 -3 -15
65 Toby Gerhart JAC, 8 RB 28 81.9 96 90.3 88 1 5
66 Jacquizz Rodgers CHI, 7 RB 25 81.9 82 90.3 99 -3 -15
67 Knile Davis KC, 9 RB 23 81.2 56 90.3 90 0 0
68 Javorius Allen BAL, 9 RB 23 81.2 81 90.3 90 0 0
69 Lorenzo Taliaferro BAL, 9 RB 23 81.2 60 90.3 90 0 0
70 Karlos Williams BUF, 8 RB 22 81.0 90.3 87 1 5
71 Josh Robinson IND, 10 RB 22 81.0 90.3 87 1 5
72 Bishop Sankey TEN, 4 RB 22 80.7 41 92.7 87 0 0
73 Robert Turbin SEA, 9 RB 25 79.4 76 90.3 99 -4 -20
74 David Cobb TEN, 4 RB 22 79.3 44 91.1 87 0 0
75 James White NE, 4 RB 23 78.7 74 90.3 90 -1 -5
76 Jerick McKinnon MIN, 5 RB 23 78.7 69 90.3 90 -1 -5
77 Damien Williams MIA, 5 RB 23 78.7 90.3 90 -1 -5
78 Christine Michael SEA, 9 RB 24 77.6 84 90.3 97 -4 -20
79 Matt Asiata MIN, 5 RB 28 76.9 78 90.3 88 -1 -5
80 Benny Cunningham STL, 6 RB 25 76.9 94 90.3 99 -5 -25
81 Jay Ajayi MIA, 5 RB 22 76.0 59 90.3 87 -1 -5
82 David Johnson ARI, 9 RB 23 73.7 51 90.3 90 -3 -15
83 Jeremy Langford CHI, 7 RB 23 73.7 88 90.3 90 -3 -15
84 Darren Sproles PHI, 8 RB 32 71.8 46 90.3 74 2 10
85 Mike Davis SF, 10 RB 22 71.0 90.3 87 -3 -15
86 Ka’Deem Carey CHI, 7 RB 22 71.0 93 90.3 87 -3 -15
87 Tre Mason STL, 6 RB 22 69.1 35 93.8 87 -5 -25
88 Thomas Rawls SEA, 9 RB 22 68.5 90.3 87 -4 -20
89 Danny Woodhead SD, 10 RB 30 67.7 47 90.3 75 0 0
90 Pierre Thomas FA RB 30 67.7 90.3 75 0
91 Duke Johnson CLE, 11 RB 21 66.5 50 91.9 75 -1 -5
92 James Starks GB, 7 RB 29 62.7 75 90.3 75 -2 -10
93 Reggie Bush SF, 10 RB 30 60.2 42 90.3 75 -3 -15
94 Chris Johnson ARI, 9 RB 29 60.2 68 90.3 75 -3 -15
95 DeAngelo Williams PIT, 11 RB 32 56.8 43 90.3 74 -4 -20
96 Fred Jackson BUF, 8 RB 34 20.6 54 90.3 20 1 5

What’s your running back strategy? Pick all the running backs or go contrarian and scoop up all the values? Let us know in the comments.

May variance be in your favor today and every day. Draft well this season.





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