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NFL Free Agent Running Backs

Before I start reviewing the running backs taken in the draft, here's a brief review of the free agent RBs still available.

Shaun Alexander - The cream of the free agent crop.  If he's healthy - and I'm not sure anybody really knows if he is - he's one of the best running backs in fantasy football.  He will play in the NFL this season and will be a starter on somebody's team in your fantasy football league.  

Mike Anderson - He's old (almost 35) and he hasn't been fantasy-worthy in years.  He could still vulture a few goal-line carries on the right team though.

Michael Bennett - Also old and not as marketable as Anderson, which says a lot.  He'll have no fantasy value this season.

Ron Dayne - I've never been a big fan of this guy, even when he was good.  It says a lot that the Texans didn't even want him.  He may catch on somewhere though.

Kevin Jones - Jones went from starting running back to unemployed in a flash, as the Lions stated they were concerned about a toe injury.  If Jones comes back healthy I can't see him going without work for very long.   I also can't see him staying health for very long, so tread very carefully if you're thinking about drafting him.

Dominic Rhodes - (Rhodes isn't a free agent anymore, since he signed a contract with the Colts yesterday.  I wrote this the day before and I still think it's relevant)

So let's review what's been going on with Dominic.  He won the Super Bowl with the Colts (good) then left the team in free agency (bad).  He signed with the Raiders for a big contract (very good), then was suspended for four games for violating the league's substance abuse policy (very bad). He finished the 2007 season with 100+ rushing yards against both the Jaguars and the Chargers (wow!) and then the Raiders cut him (wow!).   Assuming the karma pendulum is due to swing back, Rhodes should be picked up by an NFL team and depending on the team he may have limited fantasy value.  But the odds are that soon after he'll be hit by a meteor or something, so watch out.  

The Rest - Expect no fantasy value from Verron Haynes, ReShard Lee, Reno Mahe, Travis Minor, Josh Scobey, Musa Smith, Paul Smith, Anthony Thomas and Shaud Williams this season.