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Fantasy Football: Week 16 running back rankings

By
Alex Butler
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith hands the football off to Kareem Hunt in the second half against the New York Jets in Week 13 of the NFL season on December 3 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith hands the football off to Kareem Hunt in the second half against the New York Jets in Week 13 of the NFL season on December 3 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 20 (UPI) -- If you've made it this far into the fantasy football postseason, you likely have a solid stable of capable running backs.

But that might lead to tricky decisions down the stretch. With frequent injuries at the position and inconsistent play, it's hard to find a true week-to-week RB1 in this spot. But there are still plenty of options with great matchups in Week 16.

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Kansas City Chiefs running back Kareem Hunt is my No. 1 player at the position this week. I have Dallas Cowboys talent Ezekiel Elliott, New Orleans Saints rookie Alvin Kamara, Los Angeles Rams star Todd Gurley and Pittsburgh Steelers star Le'Veon Bell also ranked in my top five for Week 16.

Read the descriptions below for some of my favorite running backs for Week 16. Here are my Top 30 options at the position this week.

RELATED Fantasy Football: Week 16 wide receiver rankings

FULL TOP 30 WEEK 16 RANKINGS BELOW

TOP SHELF

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Kareem Hunt has returned to his early-season form. The Kansas City Chiefs running back has back-to-back games with at least 100 yards rushing and a touchdown heading into a Week 16 matchup against the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins are allowing the sixth-most fantasy points per game and are tied for allowing the fifth-most rushing touchdowns in the NFL. Hunt is an elite option in this spot.

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Baltimore Ravens running back Alex Collins is another RB1 option in Week 16 with a matchup against the Indianapolis Colts. I have Collins penciled in as my No. 10 running back. The Colts are tied for allowing the fourth-most fantasy points per game and are surrendering the fifth-most rushing yards to opposing running backs. Start the Ravens' lead ball carrier with confidence.

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Rookie Christian McCaffrey is my No. 13 option at running back in Week 16. McCaffrey and the Carolina Panthers are facing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a unit tied for allowing the fourth-most fantasy points per game and second-most rushing touchdowns to the position. McCaffrey went off for 136 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown on 18 touches in Week 15. I expect a similar workload and even better production here.

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Tennessee Titans veteran DeMarco Murray is my No. 14 option this week with a matchup against the Los Angeles Rams. The borderline RB1 hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 12 and hasn't rushed for more than 66 yards in a game since Week 3, but I'm playing him in this spot if I don't have a better option. The Rams are allowing the third-most fantasy points per game and sixth-most rushing yards to opposing running backs. You are hoping for a score here.

LONGSHOTS

New England Patriots running back Dion Lewis is my No. 16 running back this week, due to his matchup against the Buffalo Bills. Lewis has 80 yards from scrimmage and a score on 14 touches in the Patriots' big Week 15 win against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He has at least 80 yards from scrimmage in four of his last five appearances for the Patriots. Lewis is a high-end RB2 and a terrific flex play against the Bills, a unit allowing the most fantasy points per game, second-most rushing yards and a league-high 16 rushing scores to opposing running backs.

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Week 16 Running Back Rankings

Dynamic Detroit Lions running back Theo Riddick comes in as my No. 26 this weekend with a matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals are allowing the second-most fantasy points per game and third-most rushing yards to opposing running backs. But Riddick's value comes as a pass catcher here. The Bengals have allowed a league-high 778 receiving yards to opposing running backs. Riddick is a fringe RB2 and can be used as a flex in PPR leagues.

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