3 second-year running backs to target in 2023
Plus, updated re-draft and dynasty player rankings .
I hope your summer is going well so far! NFL camps will be kicking off before you know it, which means you’ll be hearing more from me in the coming weeks. 5th Down will be ramping up our advice content to help with your 2023 fantasy drafts, though we’ve been pretty busy already.
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In the meantime, I have a fresh rankings update for you (remember, these update frequently in between emails, so make sure you bookmark those pages for easy access), and some early RB analysis to chew on.
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3 second-year RBs to target in 2023
Courtesy of 5th Down Fantasy’s Mac Allen…
Rachaad White, TB
Rachaad White had a quiet first half to start his rookie season, but once he took over lead back responsibilities in Week 10, he blossomed in the Buccaneers’ offense. Leonard Fournette was released by the Buccaneers in mid-March, further solidifying White as the lead-back heading into 2023.
The lack of competition in the backfield is the biggest reason for White’s current ADP of RB24. From Week 10 to Week 17, White was the RB29. Interestingly, in that window, he did not score a single touchdown. I imagine this changes for the better next season.
In 2022 the Buccaneers ranked last in rushing attempts per game with 22.1. This was largely due to the offense running through Tom Brady. Fortunately for White, Brady is gone, and the starting quarterback in Tampa will be significantly worse. I have to assume this will lead to more rushing attempts, and White will see an even larger workload. White’s situation is prime for a breakout, and I believe he will take full advantage of the opportunity and finish the season higher than his current ADP.
Isiah Pacheco, KC
Isiah Pacheco was another late-round running back that outperformed in 2022. After starting the season as Clyde Edwards-Helaire’s backup, the rookie finally took over lead back responsibilities in Week 10 and has been the team’s first option in the backfield ever since.
From Week 10 to Week 16 Pacheco was the RB16, which shows us exactly what he is capable of in this Chief’s offense. During this window, Pacheco had 109 rushing attempts while CEH and Jerick McKinnon combined for only 38 attempts. He was clearly the team’s go-to back in the second half of the season, and I expect that to be the same in 2023.
Pacheco also played a major role in the Chiefs’ playoff run, rushing over 70 yards twice and scoring a touchdown in the Superbowl. Pacheco is primed for a more substantial role in 2023, and I believe he thrives and outperforms his current ADP.
Jerome Ford, CLE
Jerome Ford had a quiet rookie season as a rusher. Primarily this was because he was buried in the depth chart behind Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Ford, however, did contribute to the Browns’ limited success as a valuable kick returner.
Heading into 2023, Ford is currently in line to be the backup running back behind Chubb. In this role, Hunt finished 2022 as the RB41. Ford is a similar build to Hunt, and I have to believe the Browns use Ford in a similar way they used Hunt. Additionally, if Chubb were to miss anytime, Ford would inherit a massive workload. Ford’s current ADP seems extremely low. I absolutely believe he finishes above RB60 on the year.