27 Julius Jones
The departure of Maurice Morris and Leonard Weaver leaves Jones in a fortunate situation. If Jones remains healthy he could get close to 250 carries. He may lose a few goal line carries to T.J. Duckett, but he still could offer later round value.
28 Jamal Lewis
Lewis did not have a 100-yard game last season, however he still topped 1,000 yards. Lewis remains the primary back in Cleveland so he should have 250-plus carries, however we are not too optimistic about the Browns offense.
29 Reggie Bush
Pierre Thomas is likely to lead the Saints in rushing attempts this year, however Bush still provides fantasy value despite his limited touches becasue of his involvement in the passing game. Check your league settings before targeting Bush. If you are in a PPR league, Bush is worth a pick.
30 LenDale White
White scored 15 TDs last season and lead the league in carries inside the five. White should have a similar role in Tennessee’s offense again this season so unless you are in a TD-only league you may want to look elsewhere for more consistent weekly value.
31 Darren McFadden
McFadden will be in a timeshare with Justin Fargas and Michael Bush again this season. After a disappointing rookie campaign, run DMC has a lot to prove. McFadden is talented, but there are a lot of question marks in Oakland, which make him a boom or bust option this year.
32 Tim Hightower
Edgerrin James and J.J. Arrington are gone which leaves a timeshare between Hightower and rookie Chris Wells. Hightower looks to lose some goal line carries to Wells, but he should have an increased role in Arizona’s explosive offense.
33 Knowshon Moreno
Denver surprisingly drafted Moreno with the 12th overall pick despite a crowed backfield. With the departure of Jay Cutler and likely timeshare there are too many unknowns to give Moreno much value on draft day.
34 Chris Wells
Wells should see plenty of scoring opportunities with the Cardinals and he may be looking at double-digit rushing TDs, however his lack of versatility will keep him from being an every down back. Tim Hightower will play on passing downs so Wells should be downgraded in PPR leagues.
35 Willis McGahee
McGahee will likely split carries with Ray Rice. Le’Ron McClain, the teams leading rusher last season, has gone back to the fullback position. McGahee is in a contract year so he should be more motivated this year, however you may want to monitor this situation before draft day.
37 Leon Washington
Washington is worthy of a late round reserve pick, especially in PPR leagues. Thomas Jones will likely get the majority of the carries, and rookie Shonn Greene will also be in the mix. Don’t expect consistent fantasy numbers from Washington unless injuries strike.
38 Ray Rice
There are indications that Ray Rice may be the No. 1 running back when camp opens. Either way Rice will be in some kind on timeshare with Willis McGahee. Monitor this position battle closely as Ray Rice may end up with the bigger role.
39 Justin Fargas
Fargas will likely see his role decrease significantly with a healthy Darren McFadden and Michael Bush. Fargas has fantasy value if he reaches 200 or more carries, however that seems unlikely in the three-man committee system in Oakland. Fargas may be worth a late round look only because of the injury history of his committee mates.
40 Felix Jones
Dallas will use Jones to help keep Marion Barber fresh. Even with a healthy Barber, Jones will have some fantasy value as he should get 10-15 touches a game. Jones may not provide consistent fantasy value, but he has big play potential and is worth targeting in the later rounds.
41 Donald Brown
Brown will be in a committee splitting snaps with Joseph Addai. Brown is not a great receiver and he does not have breakaway speed, but he may snag a few goalline carries and it would not surprise us if he is starting by the end of the season. Watch this position battle closely if you are targeting him on draft day.
42 Laurence Maroney
The signing of Fred Taylor is another indication of the Patriots lack of confidence in Maroney. A committee system is certain with Fred Taylor, Sammy Morris, Kevin Faulk, and BenJarvus Green-Ellis, however it is still likely that Maroney will lead the Patriots in carries. He makes a nice late round value target.
43 Fred Jackson
Jackson will get a chance to start while Lynch serves his three-game suspension. Once Lynch returns, Jackson will likely return to a role similar to the one he played last season. He has slightly more value in a PPR league, but he’ll only provide marginal fantasy value after week 3 unless Lynch missing any time due to injury.
44 Jerious Norwood
Norwood may snag a few more carries from Michael Turner this season, but he does not offer much value beyond that unless Turner gets hurt. If you drafted Turner you may want to consider drafting Norwood as a handcuff.
45 Le’Ron McClain
With Lorenzo Neal gone, McClain will play a more traditional fullback role for Baltimore. Ray Rice and Willis McGahee will get a majority of the carries and receptions, but McClain is the better option to score. McClain is worth a late round pick, especially in TD only leagues.
46 Correll Buckhalter
Buckhalter was projected as the teams starter until Denver drafted Knowshon Moreno. Buckhalter may be worth a late-round handcuff pick if you drafted Moreno, but with Kyle Orton at the helm we would suggest you not invest too much in Denver’s backfield.
47 Ahmad Bradshaw
Bradshaw will play a similar role to what Derrick Ward did the past two seasons as a change-of-pace back to Brandon Jacobs. Jacobs is an injury risk because of his bruising running style and Bradshaw would be the favorite to start if Jacobs were to miss any time.
48 LaMont Jordan
Jordan seems more likely to be a short-yardage option instead of the primary backup. The Denver backfield is already crowded with Knowshon Moreno, Correll Buckhalter, Peyton Hillis, and J.J. Arrington so its a long shot for Jordan to provide much fantasy value.