The NFL continues to evolve, and one of the latest trends in the league has been using a running back by committee approach in the backfield. For backs looking for an opportunity, it's great news. For fantasy football players, it creates a lot of headaches. Here are the four most crowded backfields ahead of the 2019 NFL season.
4. Buffalo Bills
The Bills crowded their backfield this past offseason, heading into training camp with LeSean McCoy, Frank Gore, T.J. Yeldon and third-round rookie Devin Singletary. It's tough to fully predict how this backfield will shake out for two reasons. First, they all eat into each others touches, due to varying skill sets. Secondly, you can't count out the impact Gore will have. Despite seemingly being on his last leg for awhile, he takes over the backfield at every opportunity he is given. This is a backfield to simply stay away from, unless McCoy drops into your lap in drafts.
3. Philadelphia Eagles
The Doug Pederson approach to running backs in Philadelphia has been to have a revolving door of options, with nobody being a true workhorse. Last season, Wendell Smallwood played the largest share of snaps, at 29 percent. The season before that was LeGarrette Blount at 31 percent. It will be the same situation this season, with a backfield consisting of Jordan Howard, rookie Miles Sanders, Corey Clement, Josh Adams and Wendell Smallwood.
2. San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers have great talent in their backfield, but it is already been rumored that someone will have to be a healthy game day scratch. Two spots will be taken by versatile fullback Kyle Juszczyk and special teamer Raheem Mostert. That leaves Tevin Coleman, Jerick McKinnon and Matt Breida fighting for two game day spots. Coleman seems to be the lead back, so it comes down to the other two. There could be value in this backfield, but it will be tough to predict before training camp.
1. Washington Redskins
Last season, Derrius Guice was drafted with the expectation that he would be the workhorse in Washington. But after a season-ending preseason injury, plans changed. This led to Samaje Perine getting banged up and veteran Adrian Peterson being the player the team leaned on. Third-down back Chris Thompson came in during certain situations, but he wasn't healthy last season either. Now, all four players return. Perine is expected to play fullback, Thompson is in the passing down role, and Guice and Peterson will be competing for early down work. There simply is too many mouths to feed to have much confidence for fantasy.
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