Stock Watch: Running Back
The Running Back Stock Watch is here to keep you ahead of the rest of your league and be ready to fill any roster situation your team encounters during the season. We all need to remember though that fantasy football is not a science. Running backs are going to have good weeks and bad weeks. This article explains who you should start, sit, look to trade, or acquire this week! We are back with the Stock Watch.
Week Seven is here. We're back with another edition of Running Back Stock Watch. With some obvious choices on this list comes the ebb and flow of the running back position. With six teams on bye this week, it will be a long week for some fantasy teams. Let’s see who has their stock up, and down.
Josh Jacobs and the Raiders this week play the Bears. With last week's stats on the books, the Bears are a top-10 run defense. I still feel Jacobs is a good play this week, especially if Justin Fields can’t go, he is already doubtful with his right thumb dislocation. With that, the Bears defense will be on the field a lot and will get worn down. They are against one of the best running backs that can wear down a defense. The Raiders will also want to keep Jimmy Garoppolo on his feet and might not even go with his back injury. If he can't go they will either play Brian Hoyer or Aiden O’Connell. This game screams a heavy run game for both sides. I will take Josh Jacobs every time I can this week.
This should be an obvious choice for a lot of people. The Washington Commanders are playing the New York Giants and they are ranked 31st in run defense this year. Last week may have been an anomaly against the Bills for New York. The Bills are great at a bunch of things but being a methodical offense is not one of them. The Commanders are the epitome of methodical. They are going to give the Giants a heavy dose of Brian Robinson and even Antonio Gibson to open up the screen game and play action game for Sam Howell. The Commanders offense has also been up and down this year, so expect a Ron Rivera “get right” game, meaning a heavy dose of rushing plays. Fire up all the Commanders running backs in this game.
Next man up here. Elijah Mitchell has apparently fallen out of the rotation and is nonexistent even coming back from injury. The last two games against Dallas and Cleveland Mason has a touchdown. He had 10 rushes for 69 yards against Dallas and 5 rushes for 27 against Cleveland. 5 rushes is not a lot but still out snapped Mitchell 15 - 7. Now they have a middle-of-the-road rushing defense in Minnesota. If Christian McCaffery’s rib injury makes him miss a game or two. Mason seems to be the guy you want to have in that backfield. We can’t expect Christian McCaffery level of production but Jordan Mason should be the guy if he can't go.
The Packers are graced to play one of the worst defenses in the league right now in the Denver Broncos. Ranked dead last in rush defense and AJ Dillon was a disappointment in Jones absence. We will get a heavy dose of rushes and check-down passes to get Jordan Love some confidence and time to throw. With the Packers coming off a bye week and Jones getting some extra days to heal up his hamstring injury. Expect the Packers to come out and utilize one of their best playmakers early on.
Next man up. Kyren Williams is more than likely a no-go with a sprained ankle and Ronnie Rivers heading to injury reserve with his injury. Evans is the only healthy running back on the 53-man roster at the moment and should get the chance to show out. With Royce Freeman getting a call-up from the practice squad and Darrell Henderson getting onto the practice squad. I still feel they will give Evans the chance to prove himself The Rams are playing the Steelers this week as well and ranked 29th out of 32 teams is ideal for a running back looking to get his first start. Unfortunately, as I have said a lot in the past few months, Sean McVay is still his coach. He may have lightning in a bottle and not open it. No matter what though, Evans stock is as high as it has been since rookie drafts. If you would like to read more about the rookie. Click the link above.
The Patriots are playing the Bills this week and like every in the last month. Stevenson will probably underperform. He is still getting a plus 60 percent snap share at the running back position. Yet, he has not broken 60 yards rushing in a game yet this year. While his two touchdowns save him a little bit, he has been an underperformer all year and I don't expect anything different. Buffalo has the 25th-ranked rush defense so he should get opportunities but when your backup in Ezekial Elliott is starting to get goal-line work and starting to produce with the touches he gets. That is concerning. It is also tough to trust anyone on this team with how horrendous the quarterback and offensive line play has been. With the wide receivers not getting open and Mac Jones not helping the cause. Teams will start stacking the box more and more until Jones can prove he can do something. Stock is down for Stevenson
Another running back who has been a disappointment this year is Rachaad White. With no real competition behind him, even though I want Sean Tucker to be that, he is the lead guy for Tampa Bay. He hasn't been above 60 yards or has scored a touchdown since week two, I do not expect him to this week either. The Atlanta Falcons have been playing good defense against the run and are just outside of the top 10 this week at 11 in rush defense. Expect Atlanta’s defense to rise again after this week because if we know anything about division matchups, it's always going to be a dogfight. The Buccaneers have the matchup between wide receivers and corners with Chris Godwin and Mike Evans. Expect Baker Mayfield to set the tone and do it early. Rachaad White is getting over 75% of snaps at the running back position for the Bucs. So he has been getting all the chances but still has been underwhelming. Expect the same this week.
The Vikings play the 49ers on Monday Night Football this week and you guessed it, they are a top-10 rush defense. For some reason, Cam Akers only saw 9 snaps to Alexander Mattison’s 45 snaps.I think Mattison and Akers have proven that they are not bell cow backs. They are better when both get 10 rushing attempts per game. San Francisco has been stingy to every running back except to the Browns running backs this last game. The 49ers are going to want to have a bounce-back game and what a perfect team to have next then a turnover-riddled Minnesota Vikings team. The Vikings want to run the ball, especially with Justin Jefferson out with his hamstring injury. Every team knows they will try to run the ball more and they also know without Jefferson the wide receivers can’t get open. Stacked boxes are coming Mattison’s way. Stock down.
Like last week, I don't like putting injured players on this list but he would've been on it regardless. Playing the 10th-best rush defense in Baltimore and the presence of Jahmyr Gibbs coming back, fantasy regression was coming, no one can withstand 2 touchdowns per game. Since September 28th, his breakout 121 yards and 3 touchdowns on Thursday Night Football. He has seen his rushing attempts and yardage go down. With Gibbs, Amon Ra St Brown coming back from injury and Jameson WIlliams coming back from suspension. The stock lowers because Montgomery is not the only playmaker anymore.
Come back next week to see which running backs stock is going up or down based on the games. Enjoy the NFL slate this week.
Cody Folden joined the Dynasty Pros team in 2023. He plays in many dynasty leagues but dabbles in other leagues like devy, contract, and scouting leagues. He loves to dive deep into learning about prospects coming up through college and seeing them thrive when they get to the league.