With star running backs banged up such as Adrian Peterson and the second round of the fantasy playoffs here, running back decisions can help continue or end your season. If you’re still around, playing for that spot in your league’s finals, check out which backs will shine or fall flat this week.
DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys: DeMarco Murray has been very hot of late, performing as fantasy’s sixth best rusher over the last four weeks. In the Cowboys last 4 games, Murray has not had less than 12 fantasy points in a game and has scored 4 touchdowns. With a matchup this week against Green Bay’s 25th ranked rush defense, the hot streak should continue. Green Bay has been especially bad during the past month, allowing the second most fantasy points to opposing rushers over that span. Keep riding Murray this week.
Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers: Although a little banged up from last week’s win over the Atlanta Falcons, Eddie Lacy once again finds himself with a great matchup. Expected to play, Lacy faces fantasy’s most generous run defense in the Dallas Cowboys. Lacy has scored in six of his last eight games, and the Cowboys have surrendered 17 total touchdowns to opposing running backs this season. Expect Lacy to continue his great rookie season against one of the league’s worst defenses.
Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens: If you have managed to get this far with Rice on your squad, you probably have some good options at running back to play over one of fantasy’s biggest busts. Although Rice has been serviceable of late, this is the week to use those alternate options. This week, he faces one of the league’s best front sevens in the Detroit Lions. Except for last week’s bizarre blizzard game, the Lions have been absolutely dominant against the run. Before LeSean McCoy gauged them for two touchdowns last week, the Lions had not given up a touchdown in nine games. Rice is nowhere near the back that McCoy is and will not have much room to run on Monday night.
Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans: Over the past three weeks, Johnson has seen his yardage totals and carries drop while fellow back, Shonn Greene, begins to cut into his workload, especially towards the goal line. Chris Johnson’s value now comes between the 20s, and with a matchup against the Cardinals fierce run defense looming, this does not look like the week to trust Johnson. The Cardinals are fantasy’s best run defense and have only surrendered more than 100 yards rushing on two occasions. Losing carries and getting vultured, Chris Johnson should remain on the bench this week.