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Week 14 Running Back Rankings- PPR Leagues

As the fantasy playoffs kick off, Armando provides his top 50 PPR running backs to get you through the first round of the playoffs.

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Week 14 is upon us and in most leagues it’s the start of the playoffs. As I was doing my rankings this week,  I stopped for a moment staring at the top 10 and told myself, "only about three of these backs were ranked in the top 10 preseason in most rankings." In fact, several of these backs were not even drafted in most leagues. It’s pretty amazing how quickly things change in the NFL.  Now that the playoffs have started, it’s one and done for most owners, so the goal is to put the most optimal lineup together and get a win. With that said, let’s jump right into this week’s top 50 PPR backs.

Rank

Running Back

Team

Opponent

1

LeSean McCoy BUF

Buffalo Bills

@PHI

2

Matt Forte CHI

Chicago Bears

WAS

3

Doug Martin TB

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NO

4

DeAngelo Williams PIT

Pittsburgh Steelers

@CIN

5

Adrian Peterson MIN

Minnesota Vikings

@ARI

6

Devonta Freeman ATL

Atlanta Falcons

@CAR

7

Jonathan Stewart CAR

Carolina Panthers

ATL

8

David Johnson ARI

Arizona Cardinals

MIN

9

Shaun Draughn SF

San Francisco 49ers

@CLE

10

Thomas Rawls SEA

Seattle Seahawks

@BAL

11

Lamar Miller MIA

Miami Dolphins

NYG

12

Javorius Allen BAL

Baltimore Ravens

SEA

13

T.J. Yeldon JAC

Jacksonville Jaguars

IND

14

Darren McFadden DAL

Dallas Cowboys

@GB

15

Todd Gurley STL

St. Louis Rams

DET

16

Chris Ivory NYJ

New York Jets

TEN

17

Charcandrick West KC

Kansas City Chiefs

SD

18

Latavius Murray OAK

Oakland Raiders

@DEN

19

James White NE

New England Patriots

@HOU

20

Giovani Bernard CIN

Cincinnati Bengals

PIT

21

Mark Ingram NO

New Orleans Saints

@TB

22

Jeremy Hill CIN

Cincinnati Bengals

PIT

23

Frank Gore IND

Indianapolis Colts

@JAC

24

Spencer Ware KC

Kansas City Chiefs

SD

25

C.J. Anderson DEN

Denver Broncos

OAK

26

Theo Riddick DET

Detroit Lions

@STL

27

Duke Johnson CLE

Cleveland Browns

SF

28

Charles Sims TB

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NO

29

DeMarco Murray PHI

Philadelphia Eagles

BUF

30

Darren Sproles PHI

Philadelphia Eagles

BUF

31

Eddie Lacy GB

Green Bay Packers

DAL

32

Danny Woodhead SD

San Diego Chargers

@KC

33

Matt Jones WAS

Washington Redskins

@CHI

34

Bilal Powell NYJ

New York Jets

TEN

35

Ronnie Hillman DEN

Denver Broncos

OAK

36

Jeremy Langford CHI

Chicago Bears

WAS

37

Isaiah Crowell CLE

Cleveland Browns

SF

38

Melvin Gordon SD

San Diego Chargers

@KC

39

Antonio Andrews TEN

Tennessee Titans

@NYJ

40

Jay Ajayi MIA

Miami Dolphins

NYG

41

Rashad Jennings NYG

New York Giants

@MIA

42

Shane Vereen NYG

New York Giants

@MIA

43

Jonathan Grimes HOU

Houston Texans

NE

44

Ameer Abdullah DET

Detroit Lions

@STL

45

Alfred Morris WAS

Washington Redskins

@CHI

46

LeGarrette Blount NE

New England Patriots

@HOU

47

Chris Polk HOU

Houston Texans

NE

48

Kerwynn Williams ARI

Arizona Cardinals

MIN

49

Brandon Bolden NE

New England Patriots

@HOU

50

Dan Herron IND

Indianapolis Colts

@JAC

I was torn between the top three backs and in what order to put them in, but after some time it only made sense to put McCoy at the top. He has 19 or more carries in four straight games, has 14 receptions in that span, and has scored two touchdowns. He’s also averaging 20.13 fantasy points per game in his last four games. In addition, we are taking a trip down narrative street as he faces his former team, the Eagles. Running backs have scored over 25 fantasy points in each of the last three games against the Eagles. Their defense is surrendering 110.1 rushing yards, 5.25 receptions, and 45.5 receiving yards per game to opposing backs, while allowing seven touchdowns. McCoy averages 4.2 targets per game, but has been targeted 21 times in the last four games.

Matt Forte stepped right into his formal role as he received 21 carries last week and caught all five of his targets. He rushed for 84 yards and a touchdown, and had 36 receiving yards. He will take on the Redskins run defense that surrenders 106.6 rushing yards per game and 4.5 yards per carry. They also allow 4.8 receptions and 35.7 receiving yards per game to running backs, while giving up eight total touchdowns.  Forte averages over 100 total yards per game and is a big part of the Bears offense. This is a good matchup for him and he should be able to get the best of the Redskins defense. They have struggled against respectable backs all season.

Doug Martin has scored double digit fantasy points in four straight games and has eclipsed 14 fantasy point three times. He now has 95 or more rushing yards in three consecutive games and has one touchdown in that span. He has the Saints on deck who are not so good against the run. In fact they’ve allowed over 120 rushing yards per game and two rushing touchdowns in their last three contests and have given up over 20 fantasy point in each of those games. They’re allowing 119.8 rushing yards per game and 5.04 rushing yards per carry. Opposing running backs are also averaging 5.8 receptions and 57.3 receiving yards per game against the Saints, while finding the end zone 12 times. Martin didn’t do so well in his last matchup against the Saints, but that could change this week. This offense if playing much better and the Saints defense is abysmal.

Lamar Miller is right outside the top 10, but is someone I think can finish within the top 10 this week.  In his last game, he carved up the tough Ravens run defense as he rushed for 113 yards on 20 carries. He’s averaging nearly four targets per game and has big play potential any time he touches the ball. The Giants have allowed 100+ rushing yards to opposing backs in six of their last eight games. They yield 17.3 fantasy points per game and have surrendered 10 touchdowns. The Dolphins have made it clear that they want to establish a run game, so I’m fully expecting another 18-20 carries for Miller. He averages 4.9 yards per carry and the Giants allow 4.04 yards per carry. This is a good spot for him to have another big day.

Another back who’s been playing well and is heavily involved in the offense is Javorius Allen. He’s sitting at 12 this week and that’s mainly due to the matchup. Even though the Seahawks defense isn’t as stingy as it has been in years past, they are still tough to run on. However, he is still a low-end RB1/ high-end RB2 because of his pass catching abilities. Last week Allen caught 12 passes for 107 yards and a touchdown. He now has 21 receptions and 24 targets in his last three games. While he may struggle to get a ton of rushing yards, he will get fantasy points in the passing game. The Seahawks are surrendering a little over five receptions per game to running backs.

Bilal Powell and James White are two backs coming off of 13 target games, so if you’re in a deep league or hurting at running back, they might be serviceable for you this week. Danny Woodhead has not been as consistent as he was earlier this season, but he has still received 13 targets in his last two games and an injury to Stevie Johnson could make room for more targets to Woodhead. However, he did struggle against the Chiefs several weeks ago.

Best of luck to all of those in the playoffs!