Top running backs are arguably the most valuable commodity in fantasy football. They have the potential to put up 20-point games each week, yet there's a steep drop-off in talent after the first few rounds of fantasy drafts.
While everyone knows the top names and what they'll likely do this season, how easy or hard an NFL team's projected schedule is can be another tool to find gems at the running back position in fantasy football drafts.
While it makes sense to look at the talent of a running back and the team around him, considering who the player will face can be just as useful for predicting future outcomes.
The Ravens' backfield enters the fantasy season with the easiest projected schedule, according to FFToolbox, which is likely good news for Baltimore's new lead back, Mark Ingram. With a current average draft position (ADP) of RB22, a solid season is expected for Ingram, but this could point to him outperforming that ADP. And while he's not a running back, an easy projected schedule for running backs gives a running quarterback like Lamar Jackson a boost in value as well. This could even push you to take a flier on Ravens' backup RB Kenneth Dixon.
Behind the Ravens is a first-round pick, in the Steelers' James Conner, and a Seahawks' backfield where Chris Carson is expected to get the lion's share of carries over Rashaad Penny. There could be some extra value from Tevin Coleman and/or Jerick McKinnon for the 49ers due to their seemingly weak schedule, and the Patriots' Sony Michel is already being taken relatively high in 2019 drafts.
Considering this information about their strength of schedule this season, players like Coleman, McKinnon and Penny, who are all being selected outside the top-25 in ADP at the running back position, make for sneaky targets for fantasy owners late in drafts.
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