Now that the NFL draft is behind us, it is time for fantasy football nuts to start breaking down the rookies. Here’s the Lester's Legends’ look at the 2014 NFL rookie running back class.
1. Bishop Sankey, Tennessee Titans
Sankey may not be the best running back in this class, but there is a path to the starting job with Chris Johnson moving to the New York Jets. Sankey tore it up last year at Washington with 1,870 yards and 20 touchdowns on the ground, which was a nice follow-up to his 1,439 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2012.
Sankey also caught 61 passes over the past two years, making him a potential three-down back. He should have little problem beating out Shonn Greene.
2. Andre Williams, New York Giants
Andre Williams was taken in the fourth round with the 113th pick in the 2014 NFL draft, but he lands in a good spot with the G-Men. Rashad Jennings ran well for the Oakland Raiders last year, but his 163 carries were a career high.
Williams ran for 2,177 yards and 18 touchdowns last year for Boston College. At 6’0″, 227 pounds, he could easily handle goal-line duties while sharing some of the load on the ground.
3. Carlos Hyde, San Francisco 49ers
Ohio State’s Carlos Hyde is easily the top choice among running backs for dynasty leagues. Frank Gore just turned 31 on May 14th. The Niners nabbed Hyde in the second round to be his replacement. Hyde is a 6’0″, 235-pound battering ram.
He ran for 1,521 yards last year and has 35 touchdowns in the past two seasons. Hyde will get some touches this year. If Gore gets banged up, he’ll immediately move up the ranks.
4. Terrance West, Cleveland Browns
West should steal some carries from newly acquired Ben Tate, as Tate has never had 200 carries in a season. West finished his career at Towson with 802 carries for 4,854 yards and 84 touchdowns.
West is 5’11" and 223 pounds with 4.54 40 speed, so he'll be their power back. He’s also a good dynasty option.
5. Jeremy Hill, Cincinnati Bengals
Hill was the second running back selected. It’s a little curious, as the Bengals took Giovani Bernard last year in the second round. Hill, at 6’1″ and 235 pounds, will likely be the goal-line back. He could also be used to close out games.
Running backs have not gone in the first round the past two seasons. Committees are the new wave. If Hill can punch in several scores during the year, he’ll have some fantasy weight.
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