Last and certainly not least, the NFC West. Home to three of the top ten RBs in fantasy. Maybe four of the top ten...
Arizona (#1 - Edgerrin James) - Marcel Shipp has been with the Cardinals for six seasons, always getting a few carries and serving as a big sleeper tease for fantasy players who thought he might breakout when Emmitt Smith finally fell apart. An injury to James would make Shipp worth a spot on your fantasy team, maybe even a starting spot depending on your league. Considering the poor quality of the Arizona offensive line Shipp isn't worth a handcuff pick for Edge, though here's an interesting stat: out of Shipp's 17 carries last year, eight of them went for a first down. Strange.
Seattle (#1 - Shaun Alexander) - There are rumors - scary, evil rumors - that Shaun Alexander's broken foot never healed correctly in the off-season. He still has a fracture in his foot, and he might not even be ready for the start of training camp. I don't know if these rumors are true or not, but everybody should be reading up on Maurice Morris. "MoMo" (as he's called) wasn't all that impressive last season (OK, he's not really called that, I just made that up) filling in for Alexander though he turned it on later with two consecutive games with 120+ rushing yards. Morris would be a decent #3 fantasy RB if he took over for Alexander, but nothing to get worked up over. Handcuff him if you draft Alexander.
San Francisco (#1 - Frank Gore) - Considering how much the Niners rely on Frank Gore, I'm surprised they don't have a better backup in case something happens to him. The current #2 is Maurice Hicks, a journeyman with 184 total rushing yards in three seasons with the Niners. A more exciting possibility is Michael Robinson, a college quarterback who didn't get much of chance last season but showed some potential with a 33-yard run against Seattle and a two touchdown effort against the Eagles. He has deep sleeper potential if something happens to Gore.
St. Louis (#1 - Steven Jackson) - Who is backing up Steven Jackson? That's a damn good question. The official answer right now is Travis Minor but come on, nobody is inspired by that. Other options include guys named Kay-Jay Harris and Rich Alexis. But the guy I'm keeping my eyes on this summer is rookie RB Brian Leonard. Leonard was a monster at Rutgers and while all the scouts said he was better suited to be an NFL fullback, I don't think the Rams spent a second round pick on him so he can block. It's a long shot, but if Jackson went down with an injury I think it would be only a few weeks before Brian Leonard were the starting RB for the Rams.