10 Best NFL Free Agent Running Backs in 2023

Adam Taylor McKillop
The 10 best NFL free agent running backs for 2023, including Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs.
The 10 best NFL free agent running backs for 2023, including Saquon Barkley and Josh Jacobs. / ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Football is an ultimate team sport and requires high levels of production from every position on the roster. There may be no position where talent and production comes from more unexpected places than running back.

In a position so vulnerable to injuries, the need for depth at running back is greater than any other position on roster. Teams are in constant search for at least two viable running back options and the best teams in the league often rely on a cast of players to get the job done.

Whether your team is looking for a surefire starter, someone to mix up the pace, or an excellent pass-catching option, here are the 10 best free agent running backs available during the 2023 NFL offseason.

10 Best Free Agent Running Backs 2023

1. Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

When Saquon Barkley is healthy, he's not just one of the best running backs on this list. He's one of the best running backs in football. Injuries have been a sticking point, but Barkley enjoyed one of the best years of his career. He tallied 1,650 yards from scrimmage and 10 total touchdowns in 16 starts.

2. Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders

Looking for a true workhorse RB1 to take over the depth chart? Look no further than Josh Jacobs, who put together a monster campaign with his career-high 340 rushing attempts. He amassed 2,053 yards from scrimmage and 12 total touchdowns on a bad Las Vegas Raiders squad.

3. Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys

Living in the shadow of Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard finally put the pieces together with the highest workload of his career. Thanks to a career-high 193 rushing attempts, Pollard hit the 1,000-yard rushing mark and accounted for 12 total touchdowns. He showed the ability to be an RB1 in Dallas this past season, but will that role be on a different team next year?

4. Jamaal Williams, Detroit Lions

D'Andre Swift's injury issues opened the door for Jamaal Williams in 2022, and he took advantage. He led the league with 17 rushing touchdowns and eclipsed 1,000 rushing yards for the first time in his career.

5. Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles

Another viable starting running back option, Sanders had a monster year in Philadelphia's premium offense. He rushed for 1,200+ yards and 11 touchdowns behind Philly's dynamic attack. Was this the result of playing for a highly-rated offense, or could Sanders repeat this performance with lesser talent around him?

6. David Montgomery, Chicago Bears

David Montgomery's stock is falling, but that could make him the perfect lower budget option in free agency. He failed to reach 1,000 rushing yards for a a second straight year, but still accounted for 34 receptions and 316 receiving yards. A viable option for teams looking for pass-catching help out of the back field.

7. Kareem Hunt, Cleveland Browns

It's fun to imagine what Kareem Hunt could accomplish without Nick Chubb eating up half of his carries. The best example came back in 2017 when Hunt was a rookie with the Chiefs. He led the league with 1,327 rushing yards. Unfortunately, that was six years ago. But, Hunt is a great pass-catching option and hit 4.9 yards per carry just one season ago.

8. Damien Harris, New England Patriots

Damien Harris has never been able to hold onto a true starting role, with the lone exception coming in 2021. The fourth-year pro tallied 15 touchdowns and 929 rushing yards during his 15 starts that season. More of a depth option than a true No. 1, Harris' services will be in demand this offseason.

9. Jeff Wilson Jr., Miami Dolphins

Jeff Wilson Jr. is another depth option. He's never operated as a true No. 1, but tends to find himself in situations where injuries arise and allow him to showcase his skillset. The fifth-year pro split time between the 49ers and Dolphins this year, but averaged 4.9 yards per carry with 22 receptions.

10. D'Onta Foreman, Carolina Panthers

D'Onta Foreman revived his career with the Carolina Panthers. An afterthought with the Houston Texans, Foreman joined the Panthers and enjoyed a career year in 2022. He tallied 940 yards from scrimmage and 5 total touchdowns. Not much of a threat in the passing game, Foreman can be dynamic on the ground.

The Duel also ranked the 10 best NFL free agents for each position group:
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Quarterbacks in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Running Backs in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Wide Receivers in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Tight Ends in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Offensive Linemen in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Defensive Linemen in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Edge Rushers in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Linebackers in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Safeties in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Punters in 2023
-10 Best NFL Free Agent Kickers in 2023

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Adam Taylor McKillop is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Adam Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username atmckillop. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel. 

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