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Week 14 Running Back Rankings - PPR Leagues

Examining the best matchups for week fourteen running backs from a point per reception-league standpoint.

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

We have made it. Well, not me, but most of you have made the playoffs in your fantasy football leagues. Congrats! Now bear down, sit at your desk, and assess all your lineup options. You can't afford a James Starks Week 13 performance in the first round of the playoffs. So let's get to the best running back plays this week.

Rank Player Team Opponent Analysis
1 David Johnson ARI @MIA He's the RB1 every week for the rest of the season. Hasn't gone a game under 14 points this entire season.
2 Le'Veon Bell PIT @BUF The Bills just gave up two touchdowns to Latavius Murray. Bell will have plenty of scoring opportunities.
3 Ezekiel Elliott DAL @NYG The Giants are an underrated run defense, but that doesn't matter to Zeke and the Cowboys offensive line.
4 LeSean McCoy BUF PIT If Mike freaking Gillislee didn't vulture TWO touchdowns from him, Shady would've had close to a 40 point game last week. He's a stud.
5 Spencer Ware KC OAK The Raiders are a sieve on the ground. Ware, who scored twice last week, is in line for more touchdowns on Thursday night.
6 DeMarco Murray TEN DEN Fresh off a bye and hopefully with a healthier toe, one of fantasy's best running backs gets an underachieving Broncos run defense.
8 Melvin Gordon SD @CAR The Panthers just got thrashed on the ground by Rawls. If Luke Kuechly sits again, Gordon should eat.
9 Devonta Freeman ATL @LA Freeman has scored four touchdowns in the past two games even with Coleman back. He's as safe of an option as there is at the position.
10 Thomas Rawls SEA @GB After disappointing against the Bucs, Rawls went bonkers against a stout Panthers run defense. If he runs again like he did on Sunday night, the Packers have no chance of stopping him.
11 Jordan Howard CHI @DET Matt Barkley hasn't held Howard back one bit. The game script could get negative, but Howard does more than enough in the passing game to keep him an RB1.
12 Lamar Miller HOU @IND This rank is a leap of faith considering how disappointing Miller has been at times this season and his lingering health concerns, but he went over 30 points in his last meeting with the Colts.
13 Mark Ingram NO @TB Should get way more volume this week against a Bucs run defense that is gushing rushing production.
14 Jeremy Hill CIN @CLE Hill has been brutally ineffective, but he's still gone double digits in the last two games and put up 168 rushing yards and a touchdown on just nine carries the last time these two teams met.
15 Latavius Murray OAK @KC His scoring opportunities and receiving usage keeps him high on this list, but the matchup is easily his toughest since the Ravens in Week 4.
16 Todd Gurley LA ATL Regardless of THIS, Gurley is still getting a lot of touches and the Falcons give up touchdowns to everyone.
17 Doug Martin TB NO The Saints have allowed at least one running back to reach double digits every week since week two.
18 Frank Gore IND HOU The Texans run defense has gotten better, but they're still mediocre and Gore already tagged them for over 100 yards in their first meeting.
19 Carlos Hyde SF NYJ Hyde has been great when healthy and the Jets stout run defense has started to soften substantially.
20 Theo Riddick DET CHI Riddick doesn't see a lot of volume, but he catches a lot of passes and should have a solid game at home against an inferior opponent that's without their top two linebackers.
21 Jay Ajayi MIA ARI Even in the worst of matchups last week, Ajayi scored double digit points. Expect the same low ceiling, decent floor game this week against another tough opponent.
22 Isaiah Crowell CLE CIN Fresh off a bye week and into a matchup against a Bengals team he tagged for 79 yards and a touchdown earlier this season.
23 Rob Kelley WAS @PHI Kelley has come crashing down to Earth due to a negative game script and a brutal matchup in consecutive weeks. This matchup shouldn't provide either, which is good news.
24 Jonathan Stewart CAR SD Couldn't expect much from him against the Seahawks. This week should be a different story against a Chargers defense that's efficient against the run but gives up a lot of fantasy points to the position.
25 Devontae Booker DEN @TEN It has not been pretty, but Booker is all they have right now and the Titans are ripping apart at the seams on defense.
26 LeGarrette Blount NE BAL The Ravens have the best run defense
27 Bilal Powell NYJ @SF The 49ers run defense is so forgiving that Powell could house one from any spot on the field this weekend.
28 Jerick McKinnon MIN @JAX He's looked good the past two weeks, which means he'll deliver a 17 carry, 41 yard stat line this week.
29 Rashad Jennings NYG DAL I can't ever project this guy correctly. So let's call it 10 points from him this week.
30 Dion Lewis NE BAL The way to attack the Ravens run defense is through shifty backs in the passing game. Enter Lewis, who has looked good with his limited touches
31 Tevin Coleman ATL @LA He isn't seeing the goal line opportunities he was earlier this season, but he still gets enough touches to do plenty of damage. That just might not come this week against a tough defense.
32 T.J. Yeldon JAX MIN Whether Ivory is back or not, Yeldon through the air will be their best chance against the Vikings.
33 Ty Montgomery GB SEA James Starks is done after showing to be one of the worst running backs in the league. It'll be the Montgomery and C-Mike show from now on, with Ty a better option to move the offense in this tough matchup.
34 Terrance West BAL @NE I suspect the Ravens will attempt to get the run game going against the Pats, but they might fall behind early and be forced to abandon it. I wouldn't feel great about West this week.
35 Duke Johnson CLE CIN Has like a five point floor, but only like a 15 point ceiling. He's an okay play in a decent matchup.
36 James White NE BAL Doesn't have the same role he had earlier this season, but is still seeing touches when he's in the game with Lewis back. His ceiling is gone, though.
37 Charles Sims TB NO Expected back from IR this week, and would immediately slot in as the passing down back in a fantastic matchup.
38 Derrick Henry TEN DEN Finally got some run in the game before the bye week and delivered with 60 yards and a touchdown. Should get around eight carries in a good matchup.
39 Rex Burkhead CIN @CLE He's legitimately looked better than Hill, but is still just a low floor play as a breather and pass catching back.
40 Darren Sproles PHI WAS He can give you a solid game in PPR, but he has a really low floor that has shown this season a few times. The matchup is great, though.
41 Kenneth Dixon BAL @NE If the Pats go up early, Dixon will be relied on much more than West as the passing down back.
42 Matt Asiata MIN @JAX You know the drill: touchdown or bust.
43 Tim Hightower NO @TB I don't get their fascination with him, but if he gets 8-10 touches against this defense, he has the ability to give you a decent point total.
44 Jalen Richard OAK @KC Has rendered DeAndre Washington a healthy inactive and taken control of backup duties. More appealing in PPR leagues.
45 Chris Thompson WAS @PHI Similar to Duke Johnson, he has a low ceiling and an okay floor.
46 Mike Gillislee BUF PIT Vultured two touchdowns last week, but not sure if that will continue. He does have some flex value as a breather back in a run-dominated offense.
47 Christine Michael GB SEA Can anyone say REVENGE GAME? Going up against the team that cut him two weeks ago, Michael will have a chip on his shoulder but probably won't get much going on the ground in a tough matchup.
48 Ryan Mathews PHI WAS Tentatively expected back, but the Eagles could very well fall behind quickly once again in this one. That would spell doom for any Mathews hope.
49 Alfred Blue HOU @IND Could get increased touches with Miller seemingly banged up every week.
50 Shaun Draughn SF NYJ The Niners pass catching back isn't a horrible flex option in deep leagues.