Compiling a list of the five best running backs in the AFC is a little more involved than doing the same in the NFC.
The American Football Conference is stronger at the position.
In predicting this season's performance I, of course, take into account past performance. I also consider the changes around a specific player that will effect him positively or negatively in 2009.
This is not limited to just offensive line changes, or quarterback moves for that matter.
One of the most important moves I look at is coaching changes, as this may signal philosophical changes within an organization.
An example of this analysis is the Indianapolis Colts, where both Tony Dungy and Tom Moore are gone.
The question is whether Indy will be more dedicated to the run this season with a new head coach and offensive coordinator.
In this case, probably not. The replacements for both of these coaches comes from within the organization.
Jim Caldwell served as both assistant and associate head coach before getting the top job. He started with Indianapolis as their quarterbacks coach.
Similarly, Clyde Christensen was previously the receivers coach.
With this information, we can surmise that there will be more of the same this year from Peyton and company.
For this reason, the very talented Joseph Addai (pictured above), does not make my top five.
These are the crucial tidbits that separate successful fantasy owners from the rest of the pack.
With that, here are the top five running backs coming out of the AFC in 2009.