Week 13 of the NFL is here, as fantasy football owners everywhere are working on making the final push for the playoffs. Going through the rankings and picking the right running back for your fantasy football lineup is never easy, especially at this critical juncture of the season. Cam Akers finally had his breakout performance in Week 12, but can he carry over that success into Week 13?
Note that these rankings are for PPR scoring formats. Obviously, if you’re using a different scoring format, there will be some minor changes to these rankings.
Cam Akers, Snell Not Worth Trusting in Fantasy Football Week 13 Running Back Rankings
Tier 1: Best of the Best
To nobody’s surprise, Dalvin Cook is the RB1 in the Week 13 Running Back Rankings. His combination of talent and opportunity is rare, and the matchup against Jacksonville puts him over the top. Derrick Henry is right behind him, as these two are probably the most reliable running backs in fantasy football.
Austin Ekeler came back from injury and recorded 14 carries and a staggering 16 targets. That workload isn’t going away, especially against a New England Patriots defense that doesn’t have an answer for pass-catching running backs. James Robinson quietly has one of the most secure workloads in the league and should have another great outing against Minnesota. Nick Chubb rounds out the bunch, as the elite runner is a safe bet to hit 20 carries and find the endzone.
Tier 2: RB1 Ceiling
Aaron Jones might not have the largest workload in the league, but he’s so talented and Green Bay’s offense is so good that it doesn’t really matter. Ditto for Kareem Hunt, as the pass-catching specialist should have another great week. Seattle limited Chris Carson’s snaps last week, but the former seventh-round pick should have his usual ~65% snap share now that he’s fully healthy.
Josh Jacobs needs a positive game script to be a worthwhile start, but he should have that against an atrocious New York Jets team. D’Andre Swift finally got the workload he deserved before suffering a concussion. Now that he’s back, look for him to keep that three-down workload. After working almost exclusively as a runner early in the season, Antonio Gibson finally received some targets last week. If that trend continues, he’s an RB1 the rest of the way.
Miles Sanders only received six carries last week, but he still played in 61% of the offensive snaps. He has a favorable matchup against the Packers, but Philadelphia’s terrible offense and the questionable workload makes him a relatively risky play. David Montgomery will still have his reliable workload, but he probably won’t have the same efficiency from a week ago.
Taysom Hill is the worst thing that could have possibly happened to Alvin Kamara. The superstar running back is one of the best pass-catching weapons in the league, but Hill just doesn’t throw to the running backs. Without the receiving work, Kamara is nothing more than a sensational runner splitting carries with Hill and Latavius Murray.
Tier 3: Solid RB2
Wayne Gallman has been the RB6 since the start of Week 7. Losing Daniel Jones will hurt his standing in the fantasy football running back rankings, but Colt McCoy is good enough to keep Gallman relevant. Kyle Shanahan loves to switch up his running back usage on the fly, but Raheem Mostert should be the primary starter this week. Ezekiel Elliott is no longer a special talent, and Dallas’ offense isn’t nearly as good with Andy Dalton. That said, the workload alone ensures a relatively safe floor.
The Kansas City Chiefs do not like to run the ball, which is bad news for Clyde Edwards-Helaire. However, the lack of volume is easily offset by the scoring upside. Nyheim Hines is probably the Indianapolis running back to own if Jonathan Taylor cannot play in Week 13. Myles Gaskin had one of the best workloads in the league at the time of his injury and should pick up right where he left off, as there’s no real competition for work.
Kenyan Drake is starting to look like his old self, but Kyler Murray isn’t. The quarterback suffered a shoulder injury two weeks back and doesn’t quite look 100%. This limits Drake’s ceiling, as does the timeshare with Chase Edmonds. Duke Johnson is one of the least efficient runners in football, but he has no other competition for work as long as David Johnson remains sidelined.
As previously mentioned, Latavius Murray is getting a good amount of the work in New Orleans, including a high percentage of the goal line touches. Giovani Bernard is a low-ceiling, medium-floor option with Brandon Allen operating what should be an anemic offense.
Tier 4: Flex Play
J.K. Dobbins should return in Week 13, along with Mark Ingram. This means that Baltimore is going back to their three-headed committee at running back, which is bad news for everyone involved. Melvin Gordon will split snaps with Phillip Lindsay, and the offense probably won’t get too much done even with Drew Lock back on the field.
Zack Moss is the best Buffalo running back to play, but you’re probably better off avoiding the entire backfield. Josh Allen doesn’t throw to running backs and he vultures far too many scoring opportunities. Damien Harris remains a great running back that doesn’t do much in the passing game and loses too many touchdowns to Cam Newton. Ultimately, it’s a bad formula for reaching his fantasy football potential.
Pittsburgh’s rushing offense is one of the worst in the league, and Benny Snell is not a talented runner. Frank Gore is living proof that volume alone isn’t enough for fantasy relevance. Even without Lamical Perine, this offense is so terrible that Gore won’t be able to do much.
Devin Singletary is a good running back, but there is a limit to how good you can be without goal-line touches or receiving work. Cam Akers would be a lot higher on this list if you knew for a fact that he’d be the starting running back. However, despite his great performance, he only received nine carries and recorded a 27% snap share in Week 12. He’s far from a safe bet to receive a safe workload, and you should probably look somewhere else.
If Todd Gurley misses another week, Brian Hill should be Atlanta’s primary starter. However, he won’t get a full workload with Ito Smith around. It’s ultimately a backfield you’ll want to avoid, but if you had to pick a running back, Hill is the better option. Jordan Wilkins closes out these running back rankings, as he will get carries, but Nyheim Hines will receive the valuable touches.
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