Could McCoy, Gus Edwards and Lamar Miller really help you win your fantasy playoff matchup this week?
The running back position has become a little more diverse in recent weeks in fantasy football. Some of the stud backs aren’t the only ones at the top of the leaderboard.
Todd Gurley continues his torrid pace, while Phillip Lindsay has multiple touchdowns in each of his last three games and Tarik Cohen may be one of the most important running backs to have on a roster during the fantasy playoffs.
That should make these next couple of weeks interesting, with several running backs able to contribute down the stretch. But as it relates to Week 14, which running backs should you make sure are in your lineup? Before revealing my Week 14 suggestions, let's see how the Week 13 start/sit advice went.
Good Calls for Week 13...
Start Phillip Lindsay (27.9 fantasy points) – Lindsay is by far this year’s fantasy football breakout star, and if he keeps this up, he will be on a lot of fantasy championship-winning teams.
Sit Tevin Coleman (1.1 FP) – Each week that passes it becomes more evident that offensive coordinator Steve Sarkasian has no idea what he's doing.
Bad Calls for Week 13...
Start Austin Ekeler (4.3 FP) – With Melvin Gordon out, the opportunity was there for Ekeler to have a huge game against Pittsburgh, and instead, he was a dud and may have ceded touches to rookie Justin Jackson in the process.
Sit Adrian Peterson (15.8 FP) – Throw out his 90-yard touchdown run and he produced eight yards on eight carries.
START THESE RBs...
LeSean McCoy, BUF (vs. NYJ)
McCoy’s taken a backseat to quarterback Josh Allen’s ground game, but he still got 19 touches in last week’s loss to Miami and is just two games removed from scorching the Jets for 113 rushing yards and two touchdowns. And who does he face this week? The Jets! The Jets have been beaten up by opposing running backs all season long and McCoy’s volume has a good chance at panning out here. Especially considering the Jets have allowed nearly 130 rushing yards per game this season.
Lamar Miller, HOU (vs. IND)
After being disrespected during the preseason and in fantasy drafts, Miller wasn't doing anything to prove his doubters wrong through the first half. However, he's turned things around with 100-yard showings in four of the past six games. Volume has never been a problem for Miller in Houston, it's just that the production hasn't always been there. That's on the uptick and along comes the Colts, who aren't exactly shutting down opposing running backs. Miller should get enough opportunities to continue his recent run of strong play and is worth starting in Week 14.
Gus Edwards, BAL (at KC)
The Gus Bus keeps rolling along. In his three games as a starter, Edwards has put up 118, 115 and 82 rushing yards on 61 carries. Even with Lamar Jackson running the ball plenty, Edwards should see plenty of carries against a Chiefs defense that is giving up the most fantasy points to running backs. The Ravens may try and grind it out in order to keep the ball away from Kanas City's offense, which means more work for Edwards. He's a strong RB2 this week.
MIGHT BE WORTH THE RISK...
Jaylen Samuels, PIT (at OAK)
Those who had Samuels stashed or scooped him on the waiver wire should feel confident about plugging him in against the Raiders. He caught all three of his targets for 20 yards and a touchdown (as well as rushing for five yards on two totes) in relief of the injured James Conner on Sunday night, which shows his versatility. Yes, Stevan Ridley will be involved, Samuels' pass-catching ability should give him a leg up in terms of usage. Those in Yahoo! leagues can also deploy him as a tight end, which is a great plus for some and a hilarious sticking point for people to huff about on Twitter.
SIT THESE RBs...
Chris Carson, SEA (vs. MIN, Mon.)
Carson tallied 108 total yards on 16 touches (13 carries) last week, but Rashaad Penny put up a sparkling 7-65-1 line when Carson left the game with a dislocated finger. The Seahawks have said they want to involve Penny more and we simply don’t know what that’ll look like. Plus, Minnesota has let a running back top 83 rushing yards this season and just held Sony Michel to 63 yards on 17 carries. The Vikings have been more vulnerable to pass-catching running backs (James White caught seven passes for 92 yards last week), and that's not Carson's strong suit, especially with a bad finger.
Marlon Mack, IND (at HOU)
Mack and the Colts were a huge letdown last week as they got shutout in Jacksonville. Heading into Houston isn't much easier as the Texans are ranked second in rushing DVOA, according to Football Outsiders. The only running back to tally more than 100 total yards against them so far was Saquon Barkley back in Week 3. Also, the Colts are more likely to attack Houston through the air considering Andrew Luck's numbers (464 yards, 4 TDs) in their first meeting in Week 4.
Josh Adams, PHI (at DAL)
Adams has been great in helping many fantasy owners reach the playoffs. But this is a tough spot for him. The Cowboys allow the fifth-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs, as only one has gained more than 62 rushing yards since Week 3 (Adrian Peterson, 99 yards in Week 7). Adams had seven carries for 47 yards against Dallas in Week 10, which was just before he took off as the lead guy in Philadelphia. In the past two games, he has 42 carries for 169 yards and a touchdown. But he has no catches over that span, and now Darren Sproles is back in the mix. Linebacker Sean Lee (hamstring) also could return for the Cowboys, which would make them even tougher to run on.
YOU’VE BEEN WARNED...
Spencer Ware, KC (vs. BAL)
Ware is the new lead back in Kansas City, but he is in an extremely difficult matchup with a Ravens defense that has allowed the fewest fantasy points to RBs this season. Considering that Ware only generated 52 total yards on 15 touches against the Raiders last week, it may be difficult for him to get going against Baltimore.
— Written by Michael Horvath, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Horvath is a Canadian who also happens to be a fantasy football (not to be confused with CFL) and fitness nut. Follow him on Twitter @realmikehorvath.