Christian McCaffrey, Derrick Henry and Top RBs in Madden NFL 22 Player Ratings

Adam WellsJuly 28, 2021

FILE - In this Nov. 8, 2020, file photo, Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey (22) carries the ball against the Kansas City Chiefs during the first half of an NFL football game in Kansas City, Mo. The Panthers have restructured the contracts of running back Christian McCaffrey and linebacker Shaq Thompson, freeing up more than $11 million in salary-cap space before the start of free agency. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File)
AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File

An injury-plagued 2020 season wasn't enough to knock Christian McCaffrey off his perch as the top running back in the Madden NFL video game series. 

The Carolina Panthers star won't begin the season in the 99 Club like he did last year, but he is still the No. 1 player at the position with a 97 overall rating in Madden NFL 22. 

Derrick Henry of the Tennessee Titans (96), Nick Chubb of the Cleveland Browns (96), Dalvin Cook of the Minnesota Vikings (95) and Alvin Kamara of the New Orleans Saints (94) round out the top five. 

Madden NFL 22 @EAMaddenNFL

1️⃣ <a href="https://twitter.com/CMC_22?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CMC_22</a> <br>2️⃣ <a href="https://twitter.com/KingHenry_2?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@KingHenry_2</a> <br>3️⃣ <a href="https://twitter.com/NickChubb21?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NickChubb21</a> <br><br>Give us your Top RBs <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Madden22?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Madden22</a> <a href="https://t.co/KCmUX5ILsx">pic.twitter.com/KCmUX5ILsx</a>

McCaffrey was one of five players who started last year in the 99 Club. He was coming off a 2019 season in which he led the NFL in touches (403), yards from scrimmage (2,392) and total touchdowns (19). 

Ankle, quad and shoulder injuries limited McCaffrey to three games in 2020. The Stanford alum was still highly productive when healthy, racking up 374 yards from scrimmage and six total touchdowns on 76 touches.

It wouldn't be a surprise to see new Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold target McCaffrey early and often this season, so the likelihood of the runner getting back to a 99 overall seems high as long as he stays healthy. 

Based on 2020 performance, Henry would have seemed like a lock to be the No. 1 back in Madden NFL 22.

The Titans superstar was named Associated Press Offensive Player of the Year after leading the league in rushing attempts (378), rushing yards (2,027), rushing touchdowns (17), touches (397) and yards from scrimmage (2,141). 

Henry's 96 overall rating represents a three-point jump from last season's initial number.

Kamara made the most significant year-to-year leap among the top running backs. The four-time Pro Bowler was an 88 overall and No. 9 running back in Madden NFL 21. He received a six-point boost and climbed four spots into the top five thanks to a league-leading 21 total touchdowns in 2020. 

The biggest year-to-year decline among the top 10 running backs is that of Ezekiel Elliott. The Dallas Cowboys star set career lows in rushing yards (979) and yards per carry (4.0) in 15 games last season. 

Elliott went from a 92 overall in Madden NFL 21 to an 88 for this year's game and the No. 9 running back. 

EA Sports is releasing Madden NFL 22 on Aug. 20 for the PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One.