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NFL Running Back Rankings
Chris Pokorny July 7, 2006
Chris Pokorny
PFC Owner & Writer

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Many people are asking the same question: Larry Johnson or Shaun Alexander? Individually, Johnson has the potential to perform slightly better. However, if Priest Holmes decides to return, he will cut into Johnson's playing time somewhat. That small amount gives Alexander the advantage, but don't hesitate on taking either back if they're on the board: you won't regret it.

One of the running backs that have fallen is LaDainian Tomlinson. Nothing is wrong with him, but the Chargers offense will not be as strong in Phillip Rivers' first season. Despite moving from the Indianapolis Colts, Edgerrin James has maintained a solid position. One of the surprises on the list is Denver Broncos running back Ron Dayne. We all know that Denver running backs are bound to rush for 1,000 yards, and if Dayne is named the starter, he'll be a sleeper. Speaking of sleepers, despite having a low ranking, Ahman Green could be the biggest steal if he stays healthy. Enjoy our running back rankings! These wide receiver rankings were made on July 2nd, 2006.

Rank Player Comment
1 Shaun Alexander The offensive line lost a little, but the Seahawks gameplan is to run the ball.
2 Larry Johnson The only thing preventing Johnson from the top is Priest Holmes.
3 Clinton Portis It only makes sense: Portis improves as the Redskins improve.
4 Tiki Barber An automatic top five lock with receiving and rushing skills.
5 LaDainian Tomlinson Tomlinson's ranking drops somewhat with presence of first-year QB.
6 Rudi Johnson It's not often a great running game combines with a great passing game.
7 Ronnie Brown Without Ricky Williams, there's no one that can hold Brown from breaking out.
8 Edgerrin James He will suffer from the Cardinals offensive line, but Warner loves a good back.
9 LaMont Jordan Same as last year: nothing too special, but still a solid performer.
10 Carnell Williams He cooled down in his rookie season; hoping to be more consistent this year.
11 Ron Dayne This ranking only counts if Dayne is the starter. Denver starter = 1,000 yards.
12 Reuben Droughns Droughns deserves credit for breaking the 1,000-yard mark for the Browns finally.
13 Willie Parker Parker definitely benefits from the Steelers O-line, and he's a home-run threat.
14 Willis McGahee An overall lackluster Bills offense will hold him back once again.
15 Steven Jackson Jackson's the only guy on the Rams offense who can stay healthy anymore.
16 Jamal Lewis Lewis has the potential to be top 5, but there's a reason they signed Mike Anderson.
17 Joseph Addai The Colts won't run the ball as often, but they hope that Addai provides enough.
18 Priest Holmes In a backup role, he'll stay healthy and rack up touchdowns near the goal line.
19 Julius Jones Splitting time with Marion Barber was the theme at the end of last season.
20 Deuce McAllister McAllister's health hasn't been good the past few years, and he'll be splitting time.
21 Reggie Bush Bush could come through big with WR, RB, and KR abilities combined.
22 Warrick Dunn The Falcons are supposed to be a dominant running team - we'll see.
23 Corey Dillon Dillon is definitely past his prime, but he's playing in an appropiate system.
24 Chris Brown Is he really the Titans' top back with Henry and White behind him?
25 Ahman Green Potentially the biggest sleeper in the draft.
26 Cedric Benson Will see more action this year in his second season.
27 Chestor Taylor In first year as a starter, Taylor will find out why it's tough to run in Minnesota.
28 Brian Westbrook The Eagles need more receivers before the run game can be taken seriously.
29 Fred Taylor Taylor is feeling Greg Jones sneaking up on the depth chart awfully fast.
30 Mike Anderson Despite his age, he can take over for Lewis when he gets injured again.
31 Domanick Davis Davis could also be a sleeper is the Texans finally build some chemistry.
32 Kevin Jones The Lions finally dumped Joey Harrington, but the offense still needs time.
33 Thomas Jones His production will drop due to more playing time by Benson.
34 Curtis Martin Martin's career will be coming to a close in the next few years.
35 Frank Gore The 49ers don't have a great running back, but Gore's shown some potential.
36 DeAngelo Williams The Patriots utilize their players, and Williams will find time behind Dillon.
37 Greg Jones After being impressive last year, Jones will continue to push into Taylor's time.
38 Marion Barber Barber performed so well last year, he was able to see split time with Jones.
39 Tatum Bell He ran very well last year, and if Dayne is the starter, he should feel gypped.
40 Duce Staley The Bus is gone, but don't forget that this man is still on their roster.
41 Dominic Rhodes Of course, if Rhodes is the starter, you can swap him with Addai's position.
42 Michael Pittman In the Buccaneer's system, Pittman can hurt you as a receiver.
43 Samkon Gado He came from the fourth-string position last year to contending with Green.
44 LenDale White White could be very effective if used down near the goal line in first season.
45 Chris Perry Although Johnson is on the field often, Perry produces anytime he sees the ball.
46 Laurence Maroney Foster rarely stays healthy, and Maroney would have trouble with a big load.
47 T.J. Duckett Duckett is supposed to be a touchdown machine, but it hasn't been working out.
48 Mike Alstott Handing off to the big fullback near the goal line doesn't happen every game.
49 Cedric Houston If Martin's injury concerns start up again, Houston should be the next option.
50 Brandon Jacobs The big man saw a lot of carries from the one-yard line last year.
Bubble: Antowain Smith, Najeh Davenport, Kevin Barlow

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