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Top 10 Running Back Studs - Best Fantasy Football RB Performances Including De'Von Achane, Kenneth Walker, Christian McCaffrey and more

Raheem Mostert - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Here we are almost 3 weeks into the 2023 fantasy football season and some running backs have simply exploded. Christian McCaffrey is looking like the clear 1.01 and several others are holding their own. Just when wide receivers started dominating the early rounds of fantasy drafts more than ever before, running backs have returned to flex their muscles and show us that the road to championships still goes through them.

The most important thing to remember is that it is still early, but we are now to the point where trends are beginning to show with NFL teams. Before the rest of the fantasy community and your league mates catch up, now is the time to buy low or sell-high on certain RBs and maximize the output of your roster for the rest of the season. Once Jonathan Taylor and Austin Ekeler get back into action, we could have even more backs out there sizzling up massive fantasy scores.

Ready to dive in and see who were the top dogs? Here are the Week 3 Top 10 RB MVPs, based on half-PPR fantasy scores (excluding Monday Night Football). For those of you who are in need of some real-time stats, bookmark our live fantasy scoreboard to your browser. You'll get live updates, top performances, and more – because who doesn't love some live fantasy action?

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


Top 10 Running Backs Of The Week

Here are the top 10 running back from Week 3 of the 2023 NFL season in half-PPR scoring:

Rank Player Team Points
1 De'Von Achane MIA 49.3
2 Raheem Mostert MIA 41.7
3 Kenneth Walker SEA 29.1
4 Zack Moss IND 21.5
5 Christian McCaffrey SF 20.4
6 James Conner ARI 18.6
7 Jerome Ford CLE 18.1
8 Jerick McKinnon KC 16.3
9 Travis Etienne Jr. JAC 15.8
10 Alexander Mattison MIN 15.0

1. De'Von Achane, Miami Dolphins

Holy smokes, what a day! The Dolphins' offense went absolutely nuclear dropping a 70-burger on the Denver Bronco defense, including an epic performance from the talented rookie. Achane had a slow start to the season after getting banged up in training camp but had a coming out party this afternoon. When it was all said and done, Achane rushed 18 times for 203 yards and 2 TDs including hauling in all 4 of his targets for 30 yards and another TD. The sad part about Achane's day is that he was either on waivers or left on the bench in most leagues.

The good news is that the Miami offense looks unstoppable right now and we are going to want as many pieces of it for fantasy as we can get. Fellow RB Raheem Mostert looms in the background and had quite a day himself, but this Miami offense is so good that it feels like both RBs can be started depending on the matchup. Mostert has looked great as well, but it does feel inevitable that this backfield eventually becomes Achane's to lose.

2. Raheem Mostert, Miami Dolphins

According to NFL Fantasy, today was the first day in fantasy history that two running backs from the same team had 45+ points each, the first teammates to ever do so in the same game. Who said that handcuffing RBs caps your upside? Handcuffing is a plus-EV move despite what anyone says! I'm kidding. Nonetheless, Mostert had himself another fantastic week as the Dolphins offense put up 70 points. That's just crazy. Mostert only had 13 rush attempts, but found pay dirt 3 different times on top of hauling in all 7 of his targets for 60 yards and another score. That's 4 TDs!

Mostert was the RB3 in Week 2, so he is starting off the 2023 season absolutely on fire. There's the threat of Achane looming in the background, as well as the talented Jeff Wilson Jr. soon to return from IR as well. The last thing we want for fantasy is for this offense to be a three-headed monster at RB, but the Miami offense is so high-powered that it's going to be an amazing one for fantasy all year long.

3. Kenneth Walker, Seattle Seahawks

Despite the concerns about rookie RB Zach Charbonnet taking away usage from KWIII this season, so far that hasn't happened. Walker carried the rock 18 times for 97 yards while scoring 2 TDs on Sunday and caught all 3 of his targets for 59 yards. He hasn't seen much work in the passing game (just 14 yards through the first 2 weeks), but having 59 yards on Sunday was big. The Seahawks are 2-1 and so far their offense is looking solid. Walker is going to need to see the receiving yardage that he did on Sunday in order to keep a top 5 ceiling for fantasy, but you have to be encouraged by what you've seen from him so far. Best to view Walker as a low-end RB1 with upside for now. He's going to need to score TDs to keep up his current pace, but he saw more goal line work than Charbs did yesterday.

4. Zack Moss, Indianapolis Colts

Another week, another solid performance from Moss. After seizing all of the opportunity in the Colts backfield in Week 2, Moss played 76 percent of the Colts offensive snaps yesterday where he rushed 30 times for 122 yards while seeing 3 targets and finishing with 2 receptions for 23 yards and a TD. Moss has looked like a man reborn after being traded from the Buffalo Bills. Still just 25 years old, he appears to have found himself a new home in this league.

At this point, Moss is a must-start in Week 4, but how do things look once Jonathan Taylor is eligible to return from injured reserve in Week 5? If Taylor returns and solves his current squabble with the Colts' front office, he absolutely demolishes any fantasy value that Moss has. If Taylor continues to hold out or ends up being traded, Moss is a potential league-winning RB. How you decide to play this one has some big repercussions. Tread carefully. My advice: sell-high.

5. Christian McCaffrey, San Francisco 49ers

CMC continues to make his case as to why he should have been the 1.o1 or at least the 1.02 in all fantasy drafts. CMC has been an RB7 or better in all 3 weeks of this season in half-PPR formats and found the  yet again on Thursday Night Football. CMC has scored a TD in 12-straight games, which is incredible. On TNF, he had 18 carries for 85 yards and a TD while catching all 5 of his targets for 34 yards. This 49ers offense is a straight-up juggernaut right now and looks unstoppable. While there is always a chance that CMC could start seeing his workload managed to keep him fresh for the end of the season, he's just so talented it's going to be hard for San Francisco to keep him off the field. McCaffrey should be viewed as the RB1 rest of season.

6. James Conner, Arizona Cardinals

Well, well, well. All that talk of the Cardinals tanking this year doesn't appear true. While they are still just 1-2, Arizona has been fighting hard every week and their offense has been much better than advertised. Many fantasy drafters were worried about drafting Conner this season, but so far he hasn't shown any signs of slowing  down and is seeing a heavy workload. On Sunday, Conner had 14 carries for 98 yards and a TD and caught both of his targets for 18 yards. The Cardinals have a brutal matchup in Week 4 against the 49ers defense, so he may still be a potential sell-high candidate, but if Kyler Murray returns soon and Conner continues to see this much work, he is going to be a smash for fantasy this season.

7. Jerome Ford, Cleveland Browns

After a gruesome injury ended the season of America's favorite running back: Nick Chubb in Week 2, the starting RB job on the Browns has now gone to Ford. The team signed veteran RB Kareem Hunt this week and the depth chart also features the youngster, Pierre Strong, but the Browns chose Ford over Hunt at one point over the summer already, so it's best to view him as their starting RB for now. On Sunday, Strong had just 10 rushes for 18 yards against a stout Titans defense, but he found the end zone and had 2 receptions for 33 yards and a TD. It wasn't a pretty game by any means, but Tennessee's defense has been brutal on opposing RBs and Ford played 56 percent of the offensive snaps. He can't give you Nick Chubb-like replacement, but if you can't sell-high on Ford he's a nice consolation prize.

8. Jerick McKinnon, Kansas City Chiefs

The late season fantasy darling of 2022, McKinnon didn't do much on the ground on Sunday with just 2 carries for 9 yards, but he was destructive through the air with 3 receptions for 19 yards and 2 TDs. This was likely due to the great matchup the Chiefs offense had against a bad, bad Bears defense on Sunday, so you likely can't start McKinnon with much confidence going forward yet. The Chiefs defense continues to be a stout one and they play the Jets in Week 4. Kansas City's backfield is currently a nightmare for fantasy, but McKinnon is worth holding on your bench for the time being if he can carve himself out a bigger role.

9. Travis Etienne, Jacksonville Jaguars

It's understandable to be mildly concerned about the Jaguars offense right now. After not looking great against Kansas City in Week 2 where they scored just 9 points, Jacksonville wasn't any better on Sunday as they were trounced, 37-17 by the winless Houston Texans. The Jaguars brought just about all of their offense back from 2022 with the only addition being WR Calvin Ridley. Can they turn things around? Etienne carried the ball 19 times for 88 yards and caught 4 passes for 50 yards. The frustrating part for fantasy is that he was vultured by RB Tank Bigsby, who scored a rushing TD from the 1-yard line. Despite not having a TD, Etienne still finished as a Top 10 RB for fantasy and has continued to look explosive. We just need the Jaguars offense to turn things around.

10. Alexander Mattison, Minnesota Vikings

After being a straight-up dud for the first 2 weeks of the season, Mattison rebounded yesterday with 20 carries for 93 yards and saw 7 targets to finish with 5 receptions for 32 yards. He did not find the end zone, but it was an encouraging day for Mattison managers. The bad? Earlier in the week the Vikings traded for RB Cam Akers from the Rams, which currently muddies the Minnesota backfield quite a bit. You likely can't play Mattison with a whole lot of confidence right now. He's a volume dependent type of RB who is going to need to see a lot of usage to produce for fantasy. While there is still a chance he can fend off Akers, Minnesota faces a tough Carolina defense in Week 4 followed by the Chiefs in Week 5. Not a bad time to sell-high if you can.


Looking Forward to the Rest of 2023

How did you do in Week 3? While we want to remain aware of things like usage and snap shares, it is vital that we don't completely overreact and abandon our process after just two weeks. NFL offenses definitely looked a lot better in Week 2 compared to Week 1 and this is a trend that should continue as the season goes along. Be sure to follow us here at RotoBaller with up-to-date fantasy news and team reports.

Are there any running backs not on this list who you expect to bounce back in Week Four? If you have any FAAB or waiver questions as well, feel free to get at me on Twitter.

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