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2025 NFL Draft - Early Running Back Prospect Rankings

Quinshon Judkins - Fantasy Football Rankings, College FB, RB, NFL Draft Sleepers

The 2024 NFL Draft featured a pretty clear weakness at running back. There's maybe one or two players from the 2024 class who project to be a real No. 1 running back in the league.

Luckily, the 2025 running back class is one of the best in years, with multiple legitimate NFL RB1s in the class plus a number of players who can carve out high-end backup roles. It's an extremely exciting group of running backs.

Below are the top running back prospects for the 2025 NFL Draft, broken into three tiers.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers won two writing awards and received 12 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. A big congrats to our very own Byron Lindeque (Golf) and Jordan McAbee (NASCAR) for both winning Writer Of The Year awards! Be sure to follow RotoBaller's analysis and advice all year long, and win more. Win More With RotoBaller!

 

Tier 1 - RB1 Potential

1. Ollie Gordon - Oklahoma State

Ollie Gordon set college football on fire in 2023. After a disappointing freshman campaign, Gordon had 2,062 scrimmage yards in his second season with the Cowboys. He excels in both the run game and the receiving game, plus he's got home-run speed. Gordon just mixes pretty much everything you want from a top running back into one package.

Gordon can run around you, but he can also just run right through you, like on the above touchdown against Houston where he takes the ball right up the middle and manages to stay upright and drag himself into the end zone despite the defense hitting him around the 3-yard line.

2. Quinshon Judkins - Ohio State

After spending his first two seasons at Ole Miss, Quinshon Judkins transferred to Ohio State this offseason. Judkins had 17 touchdowns from scrimmage in both of his seasons with the Rebels. He's great forcing missed tackles and gaining yards after contact.

A big part of that is his elite footwork. Watch the clip above, where Judkins is able to just completely drop a defender through a juke move and escape into the open field.

3. TreVeyon Henderson - Ohio State

That's right: Ohio State has two elite running-back prospects. Henderson was eligible for this year's NFL Draft but went back to school. He's not a bruiser like Judkins, but he can hit the hole and gain big yardage. If he can improve on his pass-catching ability this season, he could wind up as the best back from this class.

4. Omarion Hampton - North Carolina

UNC's Omarion Hampton had a huge sophomore season with the Tar Heels, carrying the ball 253 times for 1,504 yards and 15 touchdowns. Hampton is great at running through contact and has the build to be a top between-the-tackles player in the NFL.

5. Ashton Jeanty - Boise State

Playing at Boise State might have Ashton Jeanty flying under the radar,  but don't let the fact that he isn't at a power conference school fool you. Jeanty is a top running back prospect in 2025. PFF's highest-rated running back in FBS last season, Jeanty is the best receiving back in college football and has a great chance to be an elite player in the NFL.

I mean, look at the guy. I saw someone on X compare him to early David Johnson and I really love that -- just a compact player who can do anything he wants with the football in his hands.

 

Tier 2 - High Ceiling, Low Floor

6. Nick Singleton - Penn State

7. Damien Martinez - Miami

8. Donovan Edwards - Michigan

Even beyond the top-five names, there are plenty of good running backs in this class. Any of these three players could break out and wind up as a top-three back from the 2025 class and I wouldn't be shocked.

Nick Singleton had a bit of a drop in his production in 2023, so that's something to monitor in 2024. He's got breakaway speed and prototypical NFL size, but I'd just like to see if he can keep the per-play production up in a larger role. If he can, he probably needs to be moved up a tier, but it's tough when he's playing beside another really good running back in Kaytron Allen.

Damien Martinez heads to Miami from Oregon State this offseason. He's a bruising back who can break tackles and gain tough yardage in the middle, but he can also hit another gear and sprint away from the defense.

Donovan Edwards didn't get a chance to showcase what he could do last season as he was stuck taking snaps behind Blake Corum, but he's an explosive player who can make plays in the run game and the receiving game. Don't be shocked if he jumps up this board once he gets the chance to feature at Michigan.

 

Tier 3 - Maybe There's a Chance?

9. Trevor Etienne - Georgia

10. Jaydn Ott - Cal

11. Devin Neal - Kansas

12. Jordan James - Oregon

13. Tahj Brooks - Texas Tech

Rounding out the list are some upside players who aren't guaranteed to have long NFL careers, but who have the talent and could wind up putting together some solid seasons at the next level. Seriously, I keep repeating myself here, but I love this running-back class. You've got players like the missed-tackle machine that is Cal's Jaydn Ott and Kansas' Devin Neal, who really goes under the radar.

I mean, that's a 21-minute video of Devin Neal highlights, and every minute is good stuff. He's scored 36 touchdowns in three seasons with the Jayhawks. The fact he lands outside of the top 10 in this list really illustrates the depth of the 2025 running- back class.

If you're a dynasty manager who was disappointed by what you saw out of the 2024 class, get ready to love 2025. It's a good class to stockpile rookie draft picks for.



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