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2012 Fantasy Football Running Back Rankings

BALTIMORE, MD - JANUARY 15:  Arian Foster #23 of the Houston Texans runs the ball against the Baltimore Ravens during the second quarter of the AFC Divisional playoff game at M&T Bank Stadium on January 15, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland. Baltimore won 20-13 in regulation. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images
Ryan LesterSenior Writer IJune 6, 2012

Here’s another look at the LestersLegends 2012 fantasy football running back rankings.

1. Arian Foster, Houston Texans: Foster closed the season averaging 169.3 total yards with five TDs in his past four games. With 1,841 total yards and 12 total TDs in 13 games, he’s clearly still the top back in the game.

2. LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles: McCoy turned in a beast of a year with 1,624 total yards and 20 TDs. I don’t see him putting up those numbers again, but he is clearly elite.

3. Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens: 2,068 total yards and 15 TDs. He’s as electric as they come.

4. Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers: Mathews had 1,546 total yards in 14 games. With Mike Tolbert in Carolina, look for a surge in TDs and a serious breakout for Mathews. Assuming he can stay healthy, of course.

5. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings: Peterson's knee seems to be checking out. The dude is unreal. You know his resume. If he’s good to go, he’s really good.

6. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars: Year in and year out, he continues to produce. He led the NFL last year with 1,606 yards (1,980 total). He also scored 11 touchdowns.

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 01:  Runningback Marshawn Lynch #24 of the Seattle Seahawks rushes the football against the Arizona Cardinals during the NFL game at the University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2012 in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals defeated t
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

7. Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans: He definitely wasn’t his normal self last year, and I don’t expect him to return to the 2009 level, but 1,800 total yards and double-digit touchdowns wouldn’t be a stretch.

8. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks: Beast mode was back in a big way. It seems like he’s been in the league forever, but he’ll turn just 26 later this month.

9. Matt Forte, Chicago Bears: He’s upset with his contract, but when he’s healthy, he does it all. Michael Bush will cut into his value, but it should also keep him fresh.

10. Michael Turner, Atlanta Falcons: Turner continues to put up big numbers. Many thought he’d slide last year and he had 1,508 total yards and 11 TDs.

11. Darren McFadden, Oakland Raiders: He could put up monster numbers with Michael Bush gone, but he’ll have to stay on the field.

12. Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs: Peyton Hillis will get the tough yards, but Charles should still get a ton of carries between the 20s.

13. Frank Gore, San Francisco 49ers: He’s still the lead back, and while Brandon Jacobs’ arrival could take some TDs away, it will also keep him fresh.

BEREA, OH - MAY 12: Running back Trent Richardson #33 of the Cleveland Browns during the second day of minicamp at Cleveland Browns training facility on May 12, 2012 in Berea, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images

14. DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys: He was a beast midseason but slowed down the stretch. He still has big-time potential.

15. Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams: There is a lot of mileage on the tires, but he can still get it done. He had 1,478 total yards last year.

16.  Trent Richardson, Cleveland Browns: The Browns have a solid offensive line, and they will lean heavily on Richardson, who is one of the top running back prospects to come into the league in years.

17. Reggie Bush, Miami Dolphins: Am I “all in” with Reggie? Not exactly. I did think he’d have a nice run in Miami, and he didn’t disappoint. He was more of a running back than I imagined and less of a receiver. I think he can be even more productive when Miami utilizes him better in the passing game.

18.  Fred Jackson, Buffalo Bills:  Mr. Underappreciated. Jackson is coming off a pretty serious injury, plus C.J. Spiller threatens his value. But you still can’t count him out.

19.  Ahmad Bradshaw, New York Giants:  He’ll have to prove he can stay healthy. With Brandon Jacobs gone, Bradshaw should see his touches.

20.  Darren Sproles, New Orleans Saints:  Sproles was tailor made to play with Drew Brees.


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