Sept. 28 (UPI) — Ezekiel Elliott tops our list of fantasy football running backs for Week 4.
Although the Dallas Cowboys star is a sophomore in the NFL, there is a plethora of talented rookies in the RB1 and RB2 range this season because of good matchups.
Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley, Buffalo Bills star LeSean McCoy, Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell and Kansas City Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt round out my top 5 options for Week 4.
If you don’t have great options on your bench, check out our add/drop article for Week 4.
Here are my Top 30 options at the position this week.
TOP 30 WEEK 4 RANKINGS BELOW
Dallas Cowboys stud Ezekiel Elliot is my No. 1 running back for the week with a matchup against the Los Angeles Rams. The Rams have allowed the most touchdowns and second-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. Elliot has at least 92 yards from scrimmage in 16 of his last 17 games, including the 2016 postseason. He is a top-end RB1 for the rest of the season, regardless of matchup, but I love him this Sunday.
Buffalo Bills running back LeSean McCoy faces the Atlanta Falcons on the road in Week 4. McCoy is my No. 3 option this week. After piling up 159 yards from scrimmage in Week 1, McCoy has just 30 rushing yards combined. Luckily for McCoy, the Falcons are giving up the fourth-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. The Falcons are also struggling against pass-catching tail backs, giving up a league-high 38 targets and 26 receptions to the position, as well as two scores through the air. Look for McCoy to be very dynamic here.
It’s time to unleash rookie running back Joe Mixon in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bengals playmaker is my No. 10 option for Week 4 with a matchup against the Cleveland Browns. Mixno has seen an escalated workload as a ball-carrier each week this season. Coincidently, the Bengals had their best showing of the season when Mixon received the highest amount of carries so far in his young career. Last week in a loss to the Green Bay Packers, Mixon piled up 101 yards from scrimmage on 21 touches. He is an RB1 for me this week and will likely be a high-end RB2 for the rest of the season.
Leonard Fournette and the Jacksonville Jaguars have a matchup at the New York Jets this weekend. The Jets have allowed the seventh-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs this season. Fournette has gotten at lease 16 touches and has scored a touchdown in all three games this year. I think that trend continues here, putting Fournette in RB1 territory in 12-team leagues.
Another rookie is worth RB1 consideration in deeper leagues if you look at Christian McCaffrey. The Carolina Panthers running back can put up points in a variety of ways. This week the Panthers face the New England Patriots. The Patriots are allowing the most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. Even if the Panthers go down early in this one, I expect McCaffrey to remain very active in the passing game. McCaffrey is averaging six receptions per game this season, which pulls his season projection to 96 catches. He is also on pace for nearly 1,000 receiving yards. McCaffrey is my No. 14 running back for Week 4.
Washington Redskins running back Chris Thompson has been a welcomed addition to many fantasy football teams. He is averaging more than 116 yards from scrimmage on nine touches per game through three weeks. He also has four touchdowns. This week he battles the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday Night Football. The Chiefs have allowed the second-most rushing touchdowns and 11th most fantasy points per game to running backs this season. Thompson is an RB2 this week and especially useful in PPR formats.