HomeSportsFootballFantasy RB Rankings Week 4: Who to start, sit at

Fantasy RB Rankings Week 4: Who to start, sit at

Fantasy football owners should be used to running backs getting injured, but it never gets any easier. No. 1 pick Christian McCaffrey is the latest casualty, and it’s safe to say he’s conspicuous by his absence in our Week 4 fantasy RB rankings. Of course, when one back goes down, another gets an opportunity, and all eyes will be on Chuba Hubbard as he tries to graduate from mere handcuff to breakout. 

Of course, Hubbard isn’t the only sleeper this week. There are plenty of matchups that other backs should be able to exploit, including whoever starts for the 49ers (vs. Seahawks), Zack Moss (vs. Texans), Kenneth Gainwell (vs. Chiefs), and Peyton Barber (@ Chargers) if Josh Jacobs (ankle, toe) is out again.

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Those aren’t the main attractions, though — those are merely flex backs you might have to start if you’ve been getting hit by the injury bug. The top backs are still sorting themselves out, as uneven performances have been common early in the season from even some of the biggest names. Fantasy owners are still trying to figure out who they can count on, and while you’re not going to give up on guys like Saquon Barkley (vs. Saints), Jonathan Taylor (@ Dolphins), and Ezekiel Elliott (vs. Panthers) just yet, you might be getting close with David Montgomery (vs. Lions) and Myles Gaskin (vs. Colts).

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The good news with those guys is they’re not in committees (yet). However, there are still plenty of annoying timeshares causing start ’em, sit ’em headaches every week. The Broncos (vs. Ravens), Bucs (@ Patriots), Ravens (@ Broncos), Cardinals (@ Rams), and Jets (vs. Titans) are some of the most difficult to navigate, especially in weeks in which they have bad matchups. That would apply to the Bucs, Ravens, and Cardinals this week. and it’s tough to recommend starting any in standard leagues. The Ravens are a total mess for fantasy owners, and Leonard Fournette and Chase Edmonds figure to be better suited for PPR leagues. The Bucs have a good enough offense that Fournette or Ronald Jones II are always candidates for short TDs, but against the Pats, they’re tough to trust. 

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A few other backs are in tough spots this week. Mark Ingram (@ Bills), Damien Harris (vs. Bucs), Darrell Henderson/Sony Michel (vs. Cardinals), and Mike Davis/Cordarrelle Patterson (vs. Washington) all have statistically neutral or unfavorable matchups. We’re not too worried about whoever starts for the Rams against the Cardinals, but Ingram and Harris are risky in any format, while Davis and Patterson are also better situated for at least half-PPR setups.

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About the only thing we know with RB is that there will continue to be injuries. It’s an unfortunate fact with this position more than any other. The best you can do is stock up on backups, try to keep a high waiver claim, and get the most out of the guys on your roster. That starts with examining the matchups and usage trends more closely now that we’re getting a large sample size. We’ll be here to help along the way.

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Note: We’ll be updating these RB rankings as needed throughout the week. so check back for the latest changes.

Fantasy RB Rankings Week 4: Who to start at running back

Rankings are based on standard, non-PPR scoring.

Rank Player
1 Derrick Henry, TEN @ NYJ
2 Nick Chubb, CLE @ MIN
3 Dalvin Cook, MIN vs. CLE
4 Alvin Kamara, NO vs. NYG
5 Aaron Jones, GB vs. PIT
6 Austin Ekeler, LAC vs. LV
7 Joe Mixon, CIN vs. JAX
8 Antonio Gibson, WAS @ ATL
9 Najee Harris, PIT @ GB
10 Miles Sanders, PHI vs. KC. Sanders’ workload is concerning, but the Chiefs defense has allowed the third-most fantasy points per game (FPPG) to RBs. We’re betting on the Eagles trying to establish their run game after taking flack for abandoning it last Monday, and if they do, Sanders will flourish. 
11 Saquon Barkley, NYG vs. NO
12 David Montgomery, CHI vs. DET
13 Chris Carson, SEA @ SF
14 Jonathan Taylor, IND @ MIA. Fantasy owners are waiting for Taylor to get going, and it just might happen this week against a Dolphins defense allowing the second-most FPPG to RBs. Peyton Barber ran all over Miami last week, so if he can do it, you know Taylor can. 
15 Ezekiel Elliott, DAL vs. CAR
16 D’Andre Swift, DET @ CHI
17 James Robinson, JAX @ CIN
18 Josh Jacobs, LV @ LAC. Obviously, Jacobs (toe, ankle) is a bit of a risk after missing the past two games, but the Raiders offense has been strong this year. That should open things up against a Chargers defense that has been bad against backs, allowing a 100-yard rusher and at least one RB touchdown in each of the past two weeks. If Jacobs is out, Peyton Barber would vault into the RB2 range after his heavy workload last week.
19 Elijah Mitchell, SF vs. SEA. No team has been worse against fantasy RBs this year, and while Derrick Henry is a big reason for Seattle’s poor showing, it’s not as if the Seahawks offered much resistence against Alexander Mattison last week or the Colts’ duo in Week 1. Mitchell (shoulder) might have to split touches, but even with 10-14 carries, he’ll produce. If Mitchell is again out, Trey Sermon is a legit RB2/flex. 
20 Chuba Hubbard, CAR @ DAL. He’s going to get touches, as we saw last week when he received 11 carries and five targets in three quarters of work. The Cowboys have been surprisingly solid against RBs this year, limiting all three teams they’ve faced, but we know the Panthers will force the ball to Hubbard. As long as Royce Freeman doesn’t steal too many snaps, Hubbard should post RB2/flex stats based on volume alone. 
21 Clyde Edwards-Helaire, KC @ PHI
22 Melvin Gordon, DEN vs. BAL
23 Myles Gaskin, MIA vs. IND
24 Kareem Hunt, CLE @ MIN
25 Javonte Williams, DEN vs. BAL
26 Zack Moss, BUF vs. HOU
27 Darrell Henderson, LAR vs. ARI
28 Jamaal Williams, DET @ CHI
29 Devin Singletary, BUF vs. HOU
30 Leonard Fournette, TB @ NE
31 Latavius Murray, BAL @ DEN
32 Mike Davis, ATL vs. WAS
33 Damien Harris, NE vs. TB
34 Mark Ingram, HOU @ BUF
35 Cordarrelle Patterson, ATL vs. WAS
36 Kenneth Gainwell, PHI vs. KC
37 Trey Sermon, SF vs. SEA
38 Tony Pollard, DAL vs. CAR
39 Chase Edmonds, ARI @ LAR
40 James Conner, ARI @ LAR
41 Michael Carter, NYJ vs. TEN
42 Ty’Son Williams, BAL @ DEN
43 Tevin Coleman, NYJ vs. TEN
44 JD McKissic, WAS @ ATL
45 Nyheim Hines, IND @ MIA
46 Kenyan Drake, LV @ LAC
47 Ty Johnson, NYJ vs. TEN
48 Sony Michel, LAR vs. ARI
49 Alexander Mattison, MIN vs. CLE
50 Royce Freeman, CAR @ DAL
51 Ronald Jones II, TB @ NE
52 Phillip Lindsay, HOU @ BUF
53 David Johnson, HOU @ BUF
54 Darrel Williams, KC @ PHI
55 AJ Dillon, GB vs. PIT
56 Tony Jones Jr., NO vs. NYG
57 Damien Williams, CHI vs. DET
58 Carlos Hyde, JAX @ CIN
59 Malcolm Brown, MIA vs. IND
60 Peyton Barber, LV @ LAC
61 Brandon Bolden, NE vs. TB
62 Devonta Freeman, BAL @ DEN
63 Alex Collins, SEA @ SF
64 Larry Rountree III, LAC vs. LV
65 Travis Homer, SEA @ SF
66 Justin Jackson, LAC vs. LV
67 Samaje Perine, CIN vs. JAX
68 J.J. Taylor, NE vs. TB
69 Jeremy McNichols, TEN @ NYJ



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