Another exciting week of football has come and gone with some major fantasy running back turn around. We’re already able to see some durability and health issues, opening the door to some new faces from your routine studs. This week holds some wide open opportunity for these top 5 fantasy ground hogs.
5. Jamaal Charles
John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/MCT
Charles had a pretty decent outing against the Dallas Cowboys last week. He showed us that he can be just as much a threat in the running game as he is in the passing game. He’s a for sure go within standard PPR leagues. He was able to haul in a reception touchdown while gaining a fair amount of yards on the ground. Andy Reid I’m sure would love to air it out against his former team. As Kansas City begins to prey on a struggling Eagles secondary, things should open up in the running game for Charles. I expect him to get some goal line touchdowns due to Philly’s ability to give up the long play, setting up several 1st and goals. One way to stop a fast high-tempo offense is to keep them off the field through the run game. Charles has huge upside this week.
4. C.J. Spiller
AP PHOTO/GARY WIEPERT
Spiller’s only weakness against the Panthers last week was his inability to find the endzone. You can thank Fred Jackson for that. Other than that, he’s one of six week 2 running backs to hit the century mark on the ground on just 16 carries. I think the Bills continue to do their rookie quarterback a favor by handing it off to their bread and butter playmaker, further exposing the Jets to the possibility of a pretty high first-round draft pick next year. I think Spiller helps the Bills show supremacy over New York in the AFC East, awarding the Jets their biggest loss of the season.
3. Matt Forte
The Bears head down to Pittsburgh to face a team in crisis. Forte is red hot both in the rushing and passing game despite losing a fumble against Minnesota. Forte will get plenty of snaps as the Steelers struggle to convert 3rd downs while pressure easily gets to Big Ben. Forte will gas the Steelers defense, further adding to what is looking like a disastrous season for a team that can’t seem to find it’s identity. Forte should have a big game, especially if he can reach pay dirt territory.
2. Marshawn Lynch
Lynch, just two yards shy of a hundred yards rushing against a stout 49ers defense, managed 3 touchdowns and last weeks competition. He led running backs in fantasy points last week, and I believe he continues the trend. He’d have the number one spot on this list if he was playing in front of the 12th man. Lynch will still be week 3′s road warrior.
1. Adrian Peterson
Fantasy owners were a little upset that AP didn’t find the endzone last week. The carries and the yards however, are still there. Cleveland provides me with little doubt that Peterson won’t get some touchdowns. You gotta wonder where the team’s confidence level is with Richardson being shipped off to Indy, while you enter a game in hostile territory with your backup quarterback. I can see your reining league MVP enforcing his will on a shell-shocked Browns franchise.
Some key notes to look at for week 3, and possibly beyond, are some injuries, thus allowing opportunity for the starting role in the running game. Lions’ Reggie Bush is pretty banged up and will be limited if he plays at all. The work load was already being split evenly between Bush and backup Joique Bell. I see Bell’s workload over Bush’s being 60-40 at least. Bell could be Detroit’s guiding light against a poor Raiders defense. I’d start Bell over Bush if I had my pick.
Eddie Lacy suffered a concussion last week and has not been cleared yet. Even if he is cleared, James Starks carried his weight and did his job last week with 132 yards on 20 carries with a touchdown to boot. Lacy won’t need to be rushed back with production out of your backup like that. Although it was against an awfully generous Redskins defense, Starks will definitely be Green Bay’s starter. The Cincinnati Bengals will test Starks, but I still like his chances to have a solid game in Lacy’s absence. He’ll be out to make the starting role his to lose when Lacy returns.
Last but not least, I must give a shout out to Mile High hero Knowshon Moreno. The reason behind Moreno’s success in Denver is simple. When you have a lights-out air assault with a veteran quarterback playing career high ball during his peak, you’re going to force the defense to play honest. Manning is good at reading pass defenses and will be able to provide Moreno with carries should the success of the play fall on to the hands of the running back. I don’t see Washington posing any threat to anything the Denver offense has to do, especially with The Sheriff ‘Manning’ the offense.
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Sports-Kings Down and Distance Contributor Austin Peat @PistolPeat187
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