3 Star NFL Running Backs That Could Be Traded at the Deadline

Max Staley
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The NFL is arguably the most unpredictable major American sports league. Each season, there are Super Bowl contenders that seemingly appear out of nowhere (i.e. the San Francisco 49ers), and teams that fail to meet offseason expectations (i.e. the Cleveland Browns).

When a team falls out of contention, they often elect to trade an established veteran in exchange for some sort of draft capital. The Atlanta Falcons did that earlier this week when they shipped Mohamed Sanu to the New England Patriots for a second-round pick.

With that in mind, here are three star running backs that could be on a new team by next week's 2019 NFL Trade Deadline.

1. David Johnson, Arizona Cardinals

For a team with serious holes on both sides of the ball, namely the offensive line and secondary, the Arizona Cardinals could look to flip David Johnson. He's in his first season of a 3-year, $39 million dollar contract and for a rebuilding team to pay a RB that kind of money, it's likely not the best allocation Arizona's cap space. Additionally, head coach Kliff Kingsbury got his first taste of life without Johnson in Week 7, and Chase Edmonds more than answered the bell, racking up three touchdowns and 150 yards from scrimmage. Arizona also just signed Alfred Morris, which could give the Cardinals added depth at RB in the event that Johnson does get moved.

2. Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons

Entering the season, the Falcons looked poised for a bounce-back campaign. While the team struggled tremendously on defense and the offensive line in 2018, much of that was attributed to bad injury luck. Unfortunately, things have actually gotten worse this season. Sitting at 1-6, Atlanta is out of playoff contention barring a miraculous late-season run, and they've already traded Sanu to the Patriots. Shipping Devonta Freeman, who has 503 yards from scrimmage and three TDs through seven games, to a contender could fetch a nice return for the Falcons.

3. Melvin Gordon III, Los Angeles Chargers

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Melvin Gordon didn't do himself any favors when he elected to sit out the first four games of the season. He's averaged 2.3 yards per carry in three games since returning to the Los Angeles Chargers and his goal line fumble last week pretty much lost the game for them. He's also been thoroughly outplayed by Austin Ekeler. Still, when he's right, Gordon is one of the most talented RBs in the NFL, having amassed at least 1,375 yards from scrimmage in each of the last two seasons. With Ekeler having proven that he can handle the load, Los Angeles can afford to move on from Gordon without losing much on the field. And, at 2-5, the Chargers might be smart to start reloading for next season.

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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. 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.