EARLY Must Avoid Running Backs For 2022 Fantasy Football Season

Jun 29- 8 min read

EARLY Must Avoid Running Backs For 2022 Fantasy Football Season

As the Fantasy Football draft season is quickly picking up steam there are big bust candidates to avoid for the 2022 season. Must-avoid running backs are players that will drastically underperform their ADP. Some examples of this from last season are Saquon Barkley, who was drafted as the RB8 and finished as RB35, and Mike Davis drafted as RB22 and ended the season as the RB36.

Josh Jacobs: Top RB to Avoid

  • Average ADP: RB20 | My Rank: RB27

The Las Vegas Raiders decided to decline Josh Jacobs’s fifth-year option in the offseason. This is a clear sign that the Raiders are looking to move on from Jacobs and do not love what he has done in his first three years in the NFL. Kenyan Drake will be back healthy this season, and the Raiders used their second pick of the draft on an RB, Zamir White. With heavy competition in the RB room and with the addition of Davante Adams, it is evident that Jacob’s touches will be going down from last season.

There is a belief among some that because it is potentially Jacob’s last season in Las Vegas, they will give him a bunch of carries and run him into the ground. However, Jacobs has never been an efficient runner and is running behind one of the worst offensive lines in football.

New Raiders head coach, Josh Mcdaniels has never had an RB with over 200 carries and 35 receptions in a season since the 90s. Lastly, Jacobs has gotten hurt in all of his three NFL seasons, and his current ADP of RB20 is above guys like JK Dobbins, Elijah Mitchell, and Miles Sanders.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire (KC)

  • Average ADP: RB25 | My Rank: RB33

Clyde Edwards-Helaire took a massive step backward last season putting up just 517 yards and four touchdowns, ranking him as the RB46. Last season, he finished 59th out of 64 qualifying running backs in yards after contact per attempt (2.4). Additionally, he was third last in target rate per route run (13%) and was bottom 5% in yards per route run (0.73). He is not an efficient runner or receiver and hasn’t been since he entered the NFL in 2020. The Chiefs running game won’t be fantasy relevant, but newcomer JuJu Smith-Schuster will be a must draft wide receiver.

I also have some serious questions about his health and role. He has gotten hurt in both of his first two seasons, and the Chiefs added Ronald Jones || in free agency and drafted Isaiah Pachecho. I believe Ronald Jones could actually threaten to take his starting job by the end of the season. He is currently being drafted as the RB25 ahead of guys like AJ Dillon, Miles Sanders, and Damien Harris. Lastly, I don’t think CEH has any high-end potential as he has just 10 goal-line carries in his two-year career.

Regardless of the CEH’s Fantasy Football value, Kansas online sports betting bill was passed and the Chiefs are looking to relocate in the state eventually. Chiefs games could get a lot more fun coming into the 2022 NFL season.

Travis Etienne (JAX)

  • Average ADP: RB23 | My Rank: RB32

Travis Etienne’s rookie season was cut short by a preseason Lisfranc injury. He played in no regular season games last season but should be healthy for next season. The Jaguars other running back, James Robinson, is coming off a torn Achilles that he suffered in December. Despite that, a report from Sports Illustrated’s John Shipley says that, “Jaguars RB James Robinson is expected to have a large role in the offense upon his return from a torn achilles, and HC Doug Pederson views him as a three-down back.”

Etienne is currently being drafted as the RB23 which is around rounds four and five. I think is ridiculously high for him as he is going over players like AJ Dillon, Miles Sanders, Damien Harris, and Kareem Hunt. I have Etienne ranked as my RB32 and I don’t know how you can draft him as a top 25 running back if James Robinson, an undrafted RB coming off an Achilles tear, is expected to take carries away from him and even potentially overtake him as the team’s RB1.

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