X
Lost password?

Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

X

Receive free daily analysis

NFL
NBA
NHL
NASCAR
CFB
MLB
MMA
PGA
ESPORTS
BETTING

Already have an account? Log In

X

Forgot Password


POPULAR FANTASY TOOLS

Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Weekly Rankings
Compare Any Players
Starts and Sit
Daily Fantasy
Who To Pickup
Fantasy Updates
24x7 News and Alerts

Biggest Surprises of 2018 - Running Backs

The 2018 fantasy football season was filled with surprises, especially at the running back position. We saw some veteran resurgences, rookie surprises, breakouts, busts, and some truly impressive numbers out of the running backs this year.

Saquon Barkley finished as the top-scoring running back in PPR scoring this year with 385.8 points. Surprised? Sure, it was surprising to see him as the number one overall scoring running back, but based on his ADP, not exactly the type of 'surprise' I'm looking for.

For our purposes here today, we'll look at the running backs who completely defied expectations, for better or worse.

Be sure to also check our other Week 14 fantasy football waiver wire pickups articles:

 

2018 Top-12 Running Backs (PPR)

 

Phillip Lindsay - Denver Broncos

Rank: RB13 (222.8 PPR Points)

First on the list is none other than the undrafted rookie turned Pro Bowl running back, Phillip Lindsay. With all of the hype around Royce Freeman (who finished as RB47 in PPR) heading into the season, Lindsay was getting absolutely no love. Heck, many owners had probably never even heard of Lindsay until they saw him popping up all over their waiver wire claims. If you were lucky enough to grab him off the waiver wire, you basically got an every-week starter and someone who had become matchup proof and ultimately, a stud running back for fantasy.

Lindsay finished the season with double-digit carries in all but two games in 2018. One of those games was Week 3 at Baltimore, where he was ejected for throwing a punch at a defender. His receiving ability helped his production this year as he caught 35 of 47 passes for 241 yards and a touchdown. He finished the season with 192 carries for 1,037 yards and nine touchdowns over 15 games. The production was real, the volume was there, and in the end, finishing as the RB13 was impressive and beyond any production that anyone was expecting from him. He was just the third undrafted rookie running back ever to finish with over 1,000 yards and the first undrafted rookie to land on the Pro Bowl in their rookie season.

From being snubbed at the 2018 NFL Combine to landing on the 2018 Pro Bowl, Lindsay is without a doubt the biggest surprise at the running back position this year.

 

Adrian Peterson - Washington Redskins

Rank: RB19 (189 PPR Points)

It only makes sense to follow up an undrafted rookie running back with a seasoned veteran like Adrian Peterson. Heading into his 12th season in the NFL, "All Day" clearly showed us that he still has some juice left in him. For a while, it looked like Peterson may not even get signed for the 2018 season.

After drafting Derrius Guice and having a pass-catching complimentary back like Chris Thompson, it took a pair of injuries for another running back to get brought in. After a failed attempt to revitalize his career in New Orleans, Peterson would get another shot in Washington. Peterson ended up playing 15 games in 2018, which in itself is pretty surprising for the 33-year-old. He finished with four games where he put up over 100 scrimmage yards and we also saw four games where he ran the ball over 20 times.

It's safe to say, Peterson was a surprise to most everyone this year, as he finished as the RB19 with 189 total points in PPR scoring. While Peterson was being drafted very late in some leagues, there's a good chance that he went undrafted in your fantasy drafts, making him, along with Lindsay, two of the most pleasant surprises of the 2018 season.

 

James White - New England Patriots

Rank: RB7 (276.6 PPR Points)

James White is a guy that continually gets overlooked for fantasy football purposes. Outside of his rookie season in 2014 where he played in just three games, he's had 50 or more targets each season. In 2018, he saw a whopping 123 targets, catching 87 of them for 751 receiving yards and seven touchdowns.

We all know the narrative that New England running backs are impossible to predict and a backfield to avoid for fantasy purposes. White continues to consistently get his share of volume out of the backfield and went under the radar heading into the 2018 season once again. Signing rookie running back Sony Michel (RB35 in PPR) had fantasy owners torn on whether or not it was finally time to invest an earlier draft pick in a Patriots running back, and made White even more of a value.

Michel was the first Patriots running back off the board last year, going in the 6th-7th round according to FantasyFootballCalculator. Meanwhile, White was going several rounds later, around the 9th round in most leagues. With an ADP like this, finishing as the RB7 in PPR scoring is beyond anything you could've asked for, and definitely a big surprise. Despite finishing the season this high, it still feels like White isn't quite getting the credit he deserves.

 

Leonard Fournette - Jacksonville Jaguars

Rank: RB40 (120.4 PPR Points)

While we did see some positive surprises this year, there are always those on the other end of spectrum. This year, it was the second-year running back in Jacksonville, Leonard Fournette. After posting over 1,300 yards from scrimmage and 10 total touchdowns in his rookie season over 13 games, Fournette came into the 2018 season as one of the guys with massive breakout potential and upside on the horizon. If you owned him this year, there's a good chance you burned either a late first-rounder or an early second-rounder on him.

While he was averaging roughly 15 PPR points per game, it's safe to say Fournette wasn't winning you anything this year as he played in just eight games. TJ Yeldon (finished as RB22 in PPR) had a quietly productive season this year and after trading a fifth-round pick to the Browns for Carlos Hyde, it was pretty clear that the Jaguars weren't planning on having Fournette much for the remainder of the season. Of course, there was the drama with Fournette getting benched and getting into it with the coaching staff as well.

Heading into the 2018 season, Fournette appeared to be one of the safer options at the running back position. Between that and the upside that a stud running back can bring to fantasy owners, his ADP made total sense. Surprises aren't always aren't always positive ones, and Fournette was definitely an unpleasant surprise this year.




POPULAR FANTASY TOOLS

Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Weekly Rankings
Compare Any Players
Starts and Sit
Daily Fantasy
Who To Pickup
Fantasy Updates
24x7 News and Alerts

REAL-TIME FANTASY NEWS

Derek Carr32 mins ago

Back On The Field Wednesday
Puka Nacua51 mins ago

Listed As Limited For Wednesday's Practice
De'Anthony Melton53 mins ago

Will Play On Wednesday
Dean Wade58 mins ago

Will Return Wednesday In Limited Capacity
Landry Shamet1 hour ago

Will Not Suit Up Against 76ers
D'Andre Swift1 hour ago

Practices On Wednesday
Anthony Edwards1 hour ago

Has Been Upgraded To Active On Wednesday
Grant Williams1 hour ago

Receives Questionable Tag Against Jazz
Justin Jefferson1 hour ago

"On Track" To Return On Sunday
Mark Williams1 hour ago

Tagged As Questionable On Wednesday
Breece Hall1 hour ago

Unable To Practice Wednesday
Bam Adebayo1 hour ago

Ruled Out On Wednesday
Dawson Knox2 hours ago

Dalton Kincaid Practicing In Full
DeVante Parker2 hours ago

JuJu Smith-Schuster Both Questionable
Kayshon Boutte2 hours ago

Demario Douglas, Kayshon Boutte Won't Face Steelers
Rhamondre Stevenson2 hours ago

Officially Ruled Out For Week 14
Najee Harris2 hours ago

Questionable To Play Thursday Night
Aaron Judge3 hours ago

Could Be Regular Center Fielder
New York Yankees3 hours ago

Yoshinobu Yamamoto Expected To Meet With Yankees Monday
Dylan Cease3 hours ago

White Sox Have High Asking Price For Dylan Cease
Trent Grisham3 hours ago

Expected To Be Shipped To Yankees
Bryce Harper3 hours ago

Hoping To Discuss Another Long-Term Deal
Craig Kimbrel3 hours ago

Orioles Agree To One-Year Deal
Mason Plumlee3 hours ago

Not Close To Returning
Tari Eason3 hours ago

Iffy To Play With Illness
Dalton Schultz3 hours ago

Returns To Practice
Bradley Beal4 hours ago

Suns Optimistic Bradley Beal Could Return Next Week
Cleveland Browns4 hours ago

Browns Undecided On Starting QB In Week 14
Kyrie Irving4 hours ago

Tim Hardaway Jr. Both Active Against Jazz
Dorian Thompson-Robinson4 hours ago

Expected To Practice
Kristaps Porzingis4 hours ago

Fully Practices, Targeting Return Friday
Darren Waller4 hours ago

Hopes To Return Next Week
Dallas Goedert4 hours ago

Sounds Ready To Return In Week 14
Hayden Hurst4 hours ago

Returns To Practice Wednesday
D'Onta Foreman4 hours ago

A Full Participant In Practice Off The Bye
A.J. Puk5 hours ago

To Be Stretched Out As A Starter
Eduardo Rodriguez5 hours ago

Expected To Have Decision By Thursday
Trevor Lawrence5 hours ago

Won't Participate In Practice On Wednesday
Kareem Hunt5 hours ago

Missing Wednesday's Practice
Amari Cooper5 hours ago

Won't Take Practice Field On Wednesday
Isiah Pacheco6 hours ago

No Practice For Isiah Pacheco On Wednesday
DJ LeMahieu6 hours ago

Is The Team's Starting Third Baseman
Jake Cronenworth6 hours ago

Another Trade Candidate For Padres
Juan Soto6 hours ago

To Yankees "Close To Being Finalized"
Nathan MacKinnon8 hours ago

Extends Scoring Streak With Three-Point Effort
Tomas Hertl8 hours ago

Posts Sixth Career Hat Trick
Vladimir Tarasenko8 hours ago

Shines In Win Over Rangers
J.T. Miller8 hours ago

Grabs Three Points In Loss Versus New Jersey
Jack Hughes8 hours ago

Continues Tear Versus Canucks
Matt Boldy9 hours ago

Notches Three Points In Tuesday's Win
Devin Vassell9 hours ago

Probable For Wednesday
Landry Shamet9 hours ago

Questionable For Wednesday's Game
Dean Wade9 hours ago

Listed As Questionable Wednesday
Caris LeVert9 hours ago

Sits Out Second Consecutive Game
Jonathan Isaac9 hours ago

Questionable For Wednesday's Matchup
Joe Harris9 hours ago

Considered Doubtful Wednesday
Marvin Bagley9 hours ago

III Probable For Wednesday
Gregory Santos18 hours ago

Might Not Be Full-Go For Start Of Spring Training
Craig Kimbrel18 hours ago

Orioles "Seriously Engaged" With Craig Kimbrel
San Francisco Giants18 hours ago

Giants Interested In Jung Hoo Lee
Victor Caratini19 hours ago

Astros Reportedly Sign Victor Caratini To Two-Year Deal
Marco Gonzales19 hours ago

Traded To Pirates
Alex Verdugo19 hours ago

Yankees Acquire Alex Verdugo In Four-Player Trade
Jordan Clarkson21 hours ago

To Miss Third Straight Game
Lauri Markkanen21 hours ago

Out On Wednesday
Cleveland Guardians24 hours ago

Guardians Secure First Overall Pick In Upcoming MLB Draft
Chas McCormick1 day ago

Jake Meyers, Chas McCormick To Be Regulars In 2024
Lucas Giolito1 day ago

Drawing Interest From Five Teams
Rhys Hoskins1 day ago

Cubs, Rhys Hoskins Remain In Contact On Potential Deal
Connor Ingram1 day ago

Takes Winning Streak To Five Games With Second Shutout
Clayton Keller1 day ago

Records Hat Trick Of Assists
Travis Konecny1 day ago

Logs Two Assists In Monday's Win
Anthony Cirelli1 day ago

Nets Two Goals As Tampa Bay Ends Slide
Andrei Vasilevskiy1 day ago

Bounces Back In Style On Monday
Nikolaj Ehlers1 day ago

Takes Down Hurricanes
Beneil Dariush2 days ago

Suffers First-Round Knockout Loss At UFC Austin
Beneil Dariush2 days ago

Arman Tsarukyan Knocks Out Beneil Dariush In 64 Seconds
Jalin Turner2 days ago

Gets Back In The Win Column
Bobby Green2 days ago

Gets Knocked Out In The First Round
Punahele Soriano2 days ago

Dustin Stoltzfus Submits Punahele Soriano
Punahele Soriano2 days ago

Loses Back-To-Back Fights
Nathan MacKinnon2 days ago

Pushes Point Streak To Eight Games
Quinton Byfield2 days ago

Pots Two Goals Against Colorado
Alex Tuch2 days ago

Exits With Injury
Artemi Panarin2 days ago

Amasses Four Points In Sunday's Win
Mats Zuccarello2 days ago

Shines As Wild Keep Improving
Brad Marchand2 days ago

Scores First Natural Hat Trick
Clay Guida3 days ago

Falls To .500 In The UFC
Joaquim Silva3 days ago

Gets Decision Win At UFC Austin
Kelvin Gastelum3 days ago

Submitted In Welterweight Return
Jordan Greenway3 days ago

Won't Play On Sunday
Sean Brady3 days ago

Returns To Win Column
Rob Font3 days ago

1-4 In Last Five Fights After Loss At UFC Austin
Deiveson Figueiredo3 days ago

Wins Bantamweight Debut
Cale Makar3 days ago

Out On Sunday
Cole Sillinger3 days ago

To Miss Another Game
Beneil Dariush5 days ago

Arman Tsarukyan A Favorite Over Beneil Dariush At UFC Austin
Beneil Dariush5 days ago

Has A Dangerous Task In Front Of Him
Bobby Green5 days ago

Looking For Third Win In A Row
Jalin Turner5 days ago

A Favorite At UFC Austin
Dustin Stoltzfus5 days ago

In Dire Need Of Victory
Punahele Soriano5 days ago

Looking To Return To Win Column

RANKINGS

QB
RB
WR
TE
K
DEF
RANKINGS
C
1B
2B
3B
SS
OF
SP
RP

MORE RECENT ARTICLES

 
Taysom Hill - Fantasy Football Rankings, Waiver Wire Pickups, Draft Sleepers

Week 14 Half-PPR Tight End Rankings for Fantasy Football: Pat Freiermuth, Isaiah Likely, Taysom Hill, Cole Kmet, more

RotoBallers! Week 14 has arrived. With only one week left until the fantasy playoffs, it's win or go home for some fantasy managers. Tight end has been a very volatile position this season, and for managers playing the streaming game, RotoBaller has you covered with our Week 14 half-PPR tight end rankings for fantasy football.  Fantasy... Read More


Diontae Johnson - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Week 14 Half-PPR Wide Receiver Rankings for Fantasy Football: Puka Nacua, Noah Brown, Diontae Johnson, Brandin Cooks

Howdy RotoBallers! The NFL season is flying by, and we are already in the last week of the regular fantasy football season. It's time to lock down that playoff spot and set the most optimal lineup for Week 14. Today, we will review our Week 14 half-PPR wide receiver rankings for fantasy football. Only two... Read More


Week 14 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Analysis: Running Backs, Tight Ends Booms and Busts

Check out our top 2023 fantasy football Start/Sit analysis for Week 14 of the NFL season! Matt Donnelly discusses his top Start/Sit decisions at the Running Back and Tight End positions that will have an impact in Week 14. The 2023 fantasy football season is here - win big with RotoBaller in 2023! Be sure... Read More


Panic Mode: Week 14 Fantasy Football Busts, Start/Sit Concerns and Analysis for Justin Herbert, Terry McLaurin, D'Andre Swift, and more (2023

The 2023 fantasy football season continues with our Week 14 "Panic Mode" analysis. Jorden Hill digs into players that have disappointed so far and have some fantasy football managers in "Panic Mode". He analyzes some difficult Cut List Candidates and Start/Sit decisions for Week 14 of the 2023 fantasy football season. Be sure to tune... Read More


Ezekiel Elliott - Fantasy Football Rankings, Waiver Wire Pickups, NFL Injury News

Week 14 Half-PPR Running Back Rankings for Fantasy Football: Ezekiel Elliott, De'Von Achane, Jaylen Warren, David Montgomery

Hey RotoBallers, Week 14 is here! We are back with more fantasy football advice. It's crunch time, as it's the last week of the fantasy football regular season. Thankfully, only two teams are on the bye, with the Commanders and Cardinals off this week. It's time to set those winning lineups with our NFL team's... Read More


Week 14 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Analysis: Wide Receiver, Quarterback Booms and Busts

Check out our top 2023 fantasy football Start/Sit analysis for Week 14 of the NFL season! Matt Donnelly discusses his top Start/Sit decisions at the Wide Receiver and Quarterback positions that will have an impact in Week 14. The 2023 fantasy football season is here - win big with RotoBaller in 2023! Be sure to... Read More


Gardner Minshew - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Week 14 Quarterback Rankings for Fantasy Football: Jordan Love, Joshua Dobbs, Gardner Minshew, Mitch Trubisky, more

Week 14 is finally here, the last week of the fantasy football regular season. Injuries continue to hit the quarterback position. Trevor Lawrence (ankle) is dealing with a high-ankle sprain but has yet to be ruled out for Week 14. At the same time, Kenny Pickett underwent successful tightrope surgery to address a right high-ankle sprain and is expected... Read More


Fantasy Football Playoffs Primer: Troy King's Three Tips To Win Your League's Championship (2023)

The fantasy football season is barreling toward the playoffs! Check out our top tips to prepare for the fantasy playoffs and win your leagues! RotoBaller's Troy King discusses three of his favorite playoff tips and shares strategies that fantasy managers should try to deploy ahead of their league's playoffs. The 2023 fantasy football season is... Read More


Minnesota Vikings Defense D/ST Streamers, Rankings, Waiver Wire - Danielle Hunter Fantasy Football IDP

Week 14 Team Defense Rankings for Fantasy Football: Texans DST, Packers DST, Saints DST, Colts DST, Vikings DST, more

Hey, RotoBallers! Week 14 is here, and some fantasy managers have one more shot to make the fantasy playoffs. The Cardinals and Commanders are the only two teams on bye this week. We churn out rankings week in and week out. Streaming the right defense could be the difference between winning or losing your league... Read More


Dak Prescott - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

2023 NFL QB Power Rankings: All 32 Starting Quarterbacks After Week 13

Let's be honest...we've seen some downright ugly quarterback play in 2023. Unfortunately, there was more of the same in Week 13. On the flip side, some NFL QBs have been phenomenal this year, elevating their games -- and their teams -- to different levels. While we certainly have some ugly matchups on tap in Week... Read More


Jaylen Warren - Fantasy Football Rankings, Waiver Wire Pickups, Draft Sleepers

Who Should I Start? TNF Fantasy Football Lineup Decisions for Week 14 - Jaylen Warren, Ezekiel Elliott, Chuba Hubbard, Najee Harris, George Pickens, Zack Moss, Raheem Mostert

It's almost time for Thursday Night Football. Who Should I Start? Who Should I Sit? Set you optimal fantasy football lineups for Thursday Night Football and Week 14 of the 2023 NFL season. Our free Who Should I Start? tool will help make your fantasy football lineup decisions. Compare up to four NFL players, and... Read More


DeVon Achane - Fantasy Football Rankings, NFL DFS Picks, Injury News

Updated Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

      Fantasy Football Rankings by NFL¬†Position ALL¬†-¬†QB¬†- RB¬†-¬†WR¬†-¬†TE¬†- DEF Above you will find all of RotoBaller's¬†fantasy football rankings, tiers, player news and stats for your 2023 fantasy football leagues. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's fantasy football rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Fantasy Football... Read More


Isiah Pacheco - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Rookies

Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Week 14

Week 13 has come and gone. The fantasy football playoffs are starting for some and just around the corner for others. In the coming weeks, fantasy managers will have some tough decisions to make. In this weekly column, we'll be looking at fantasy football players whose arrows may be pointing up and players whose arrows... Read More