Jonathan Taylor, Derrick Henry, and Nick Chubb. These three names are the most common picks for the top running back in the NFL. Arguments can be made for each one, but is there any high-tier production from this season that can back it up?
Starting with JT of the Indianapolis Colts. Taylor is awarded this title the most right now because of his MVP-level production last season. He rushed for 1811 yards on 312 carries last season averaging 5.22/YPC. To go with that he had 20 touchdowns in 17 games and was ranked the 5th best player in the NFL by other players. JT looked unstoppable last season whether it was against top teams like the Buffalo Bills or against divisional opponents like the Titans, (not the Jaguars). But this year he has most of the same blockers in front of him and we have not seen the same fantasy-winning JT we remember. Obviously, he dealt with an injury on Thursday but his lack of production has left room for other RBs to take the #1 place.
Now, Derrick Henry. Henry did not play most of last season due to a regular season-ending injury coming in week 8. So beyond last season, he has been considered the best RB in the league for several seasons. But this year, fully healthy, we haven’t seen the same King we usually see. If anything he should be having higher production without AJ Brown because the offense will be relying on him more.
Finally, Nick Chubb. Chubb, this season, is in the best circumstances for any of the three RBs I have named. He has a top 3 offensive line to find holes behind, is currently out of a capable starting QB so the offense is a lot more ground-based, and finally, he has another great running back behind him in the depth chart to let him take snaps off. Chubb has put up the numbers so far that we’re used to seeing from him. Chubb has 459 yards on 81 carries and 5 touchdowns.
In my opinion, so far this season, Nick Chubb is looking like the running back 1. Let me know your runningback 1 in the comments below!