2020 Post-NFL Draft RB Depth Chart (Fantasy Football)
Every year after the NFL Draft, running back depth charts are shaken up by incoming rookies. Last weekend, we saw some top tier talent like Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Jonathan Taylor, and J.K. Dobbins land in very favorable situations, likely landing them atop their respective team’s depth chart. For a more detailed analysis of all the winners and losers from the NFL Draft, be sure to check out The Fantasy Footballers podcast. I’ll highlight a few notable changes to the running back depth chart in this article, but for a more detailed view of the depth chart before the NFL Draft, check out that article here. I have highlighted the rookies in green so that they are easier to locate.
For more great running back NFL Draft content, check out Eric Ludwig’s articles highlighting RB landing spots.
Todd Gurley, Atlanta Falcons
Gurley signed a 1-year deal with the Falcons worth just $5 million after being released by the Rams prior to the NFL Draft. Entering the draft, the Falcons were a team that was likely to add depth behind Gurley given the concerns regarding the knee and the fact that Gurley is only locked up for one season. Gurley is now firmly entrenched as the lead back in this offense with little competition behind him after the Falcons didn’t draft a single RB.
Chris Carson, Seattle Seahawks
Carson’s 2019 season ended early due to a fracture in his hip, and Rashaad Penny tore his ACL midway through the season. The Seahawks, who ran the ball the third-most in the league, were a team most draft analysts pegged as a team looking to add RB depth given the injuries to Carson and Penny. Moreover, Carson is entering the final year of his rookie deal, so there’s no long term certainty with him in Seattle. Nevertheless, Seattle didn’t take an RB until the 4th round (DeeJay Dallas), suggesting Carson should have every opportunity to be the lead back in 2020 once again.
Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles
The argument about the Eagles’ RB group with Doug Pederson at the helm has always been about whether or not he’ll employ a running back by committee. Sanders entered the NFL Draft firmly entrenched as the team’s lead back with Jordan Howard now in Miami, but there was a good chance the team would address the position in the middle rounds of the Draft. Instead, they passed on RB completely, suggesting Sanders could be employed as a bell cow in 2020.
Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Kansas City Chiefs
The former LSU running back lands in a dream spot with the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. He was the only back taken in Round 1 of the NFL Draft and profiles as a fantastic pass-catching back in the league’s best offense. Worth noting, Pat Mahomes literally handpicked CEH to join his backfield.
Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts
Arguably the best pure runner of the football in this class, Jonathan Taylor lands in a fantastic situation in Indianapolis. Per Football Outsiders, the Colts’ offense line ranked 12th in the league in run blocking in 2019. Jonathan Taylor behind that offensive line should spell fantasy football success. The only question mark is how much of a role Marlon Mack will continue to play. This could be a 1A, 1B situation with Taylor leading the way.
J.K. Dobbins, Baltimore Ravens
Dobbins may have to wait one season before he’s “the guy” in Baltimore with Mark Ingram still under contract, but Dobbins goes to an offense who ran the ball the most in the entire NFL. Ingram, who will be 31 before the end of the 2020 season, is under contract through 2021, but there is an out in his deal after 2020. We could easily season Dobbins be the workhorse in Baltimore as soon as 2021.
Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Vaughn was selected in the third round and joins a wide-open backfield in Tampa. There was a ton of speculation that Tampa may take an RB earlier in the draft, but they chose to wait for Vaughn, who is an underrated prospect out of Vanderbilt. Bruce Arians has been vocal that he has been looking for a pass-catching back, and while Vaughn isn’t necessarily the best pass-catching RB in this class, he’s perfectly capable. Expect him to compete with Ronald Jones for the starting role.