Which top fantasy RBs can you trust enough to draft early this season?

In the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast, Matt Harmon and Dalton Del Don break down which top RBs they are trusting in fantasy this season.

Video Transcript

MATT HARMON: The anchor part of this, I think, is the hardest part to nail down--


MATT HARMON: --this year, right, bro? Because, like, you said it. After Jonathan Taylor, you've got-- just-- I'm looking at ADP right now in best ball leagues-- Christian McCaffrey, Austin Ekeler, Derrick Henry, Najee Harris, Dalvin Cook, Joe Mixon, D'Andre Swift, Aaron Jones, Alvin Kamara as guys that are, like, top-10-drafted backs right now.

I feel good about Austin Ekeler. Who else-- who else are you, like, pounding the table for? I like-- I like Aaron Jones a lot. I think Aaron Jones is going too late. But who else do you, like, really feeling great about right now as that, quote, anchor running back?

DALTON DEL DON: No one at all. I like Aaron Jones, too. I mean, D'Andre Swift, can he stay healthy? Leonard Fournette up there in high value touches. Coming back there, you got to-- I simply had to rank him high. But is he really going to repeat it? I mean-- I mean-- and look at how he showed up.

Derrick Henry-- there's a "Football Outsiders" column just really delving into his performance really declined before the injury last year. And we all know--


DALTON DEL DON: --McCaffery's injury risk. So yeah, I mean, it's-- you want to build-- your anchor RB, ideally, is Jonathan Taylor in this strategy. Then you build your tight ends, your quarterbacks, and obviously, your wide receivers. You want RB2 to be your biggest weak spot. And this year it makes sense.

But the problem, as you said, is getting the anchor. And then as the zero RB, I do like the options later for that RB2, that weak spot. As you said, Melvin Gordon-- we could just name so many of these options. But the problem with this strategy is if you don't get the number one pick, and, yeah, I think there's-- just it's tough this year drafting a running back early. And it's going to be, you know, weird to tell people in home leagues that are-- that are not, you know, smaller, shallower home leagues that are used to 10 running backs going in the first 15 picks.

MATT HARMON: Yeah, it's going to be difficult. Now, I mean, obviously, there are upside scenarios for Christian McCaffrey. There are upside scenarios for Derrick Henry. Even Dalvin Cook, like, I kind of look at Dalvin Cook, and I think of these guys who--

Andy and Scott made this point I think on last podcast. I talked about it a little bit in my first-- or my first two-round mock draft that I did for the website recently. Like, we're at this weird spot with running backs where the old guard-- and it's weird to say that guys like Christian McCaffrey, Derrick Henry, and Dalvin Cook, who really have been around since, like, 2018, for the most part, in terms of when they've been popping off, Derrick Henry even later that that.

Like, it's weird to say that these guys are the old guard. But we know that that's how the running back position works. These guys haven't really aged out. But look at those players that we just talked about. Like, D'Andre Swift and Najee Harris are kind of, like, the young guys. Throw Johnathan Taylor out because, like, obviously, he's the first overall pick. We're great there.

But, like, Najee Harris, I think, is pretty locked in. I know there's some rumors out there, there's some kind of speculation that he might not be-- by the way, if you're-- if you're commenting on Najee Harris' weight, like, just shut up. Just shut up. And I'll leave it at that.

But there is some speculation they might lighten his workload. Now, I-- I'm kind of in the opinion of I'll believe it when I see it. But D'Andre Swift hasn't really proven it over the course of a full season yet. We haven't had these guys kind of age in as the old guard, even throw Alvin Kamara in this, quote, old guard. These guys haven't fully aged out yet and a new crowd hasn't fully aged in yet. And I think that's kind of where we're at a difficult spot with the running back position.

DALTON DEL DON: Yeah, second-contract running backs are becoming just so risky. I mean, yeah, you said you're-- I mean, I love-- I love Ekeler as well. But it's difficult to score 20 touchdowns and get--

MATT HARMON: Sure, yeah.

DALTON DEL DON: --barely 200 carries. I mean, it's tough to project him. I mean, you're going to have to take him in the top five pick, of course you are. But yeah, I think just the answer for me is I'm-- if I don't get Jonathan Taylor, I'm pivoting to wide receivers and doing the zero RB type strategy this year.

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