Fantasy Football: Week 5 running back rankings

By Alex Butler
Baltimore Ravens running back Alex Collins (34) takes a pass and dives into the end zone for a three yard touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers on September 30 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
Baltimore Ravens running back Alex Collins (34) takes a pass and dives into the end zone for a three yard touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers on September 30 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 2 (UPI) -- Melvin Gordon is my top fantasy football running back for Week 5, followed by Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott, Christian McCaffrey and David Johnson.

James Conner, Alvin Kamara, Kareem Hunt, Saquon Barkley and Alex Collins are also in the top 10 of my weekly rankings.


Don't forget to remove Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Chicago Bears running backs from your lineups in Week 5, as those teams are serving byes.

With injuries piling up and bye weeks watering down the field, it is becoming a bit more difficult to predict which players will have huge weeks. But there are still plenty of viable options with great matchups in Week 5.


If you are needy at the position, check out my waiver wire add/drops for Week 5.

Here are my Top 30 options at the position this week.



Gordon is my top option for Week 5 for various reasons. The Los Angeles Chargers star already has five touchdowns this season. He is also coming off of his best game -- in terms of rushing yards -- in Week 4. Gordon went off for 104 yards on 15 carries in the Chargers' win last week against the San Francisco 49ers. He also had 55 yards and a score on seven receptions. He is always a threat to score and continues to get a large amount of touches. That should definitely continue in Week 5 against the Oakland Raiders, a defense that has allowed the third-most rushing yards and seventh-most fantasy points to opposing running backs. Gordon is a high-end RB1 for the rest of the season, but should explode in this matchup.

Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner might have fizzled a bit since Week 1, but he is still getting a lot of work and has a great matchup in Week 5 against the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons are one of just three teams in the NFL to have allowed at least 300 rushing yards and 300 receiving yards to opposing running backs. Atlanta is also allowing the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing ball carriers. I expect Conner to eclipse 100 yards from scrimmage and have a chance to score in this matchup. He is my No. 6 running back in Week 5.



Baltimore Ravens running back Alex Collins is my No. 10 option this week, landing in RB1 territory against the Cleveland Browns. The Browns have allowed the fourth-most rushing yards to running backs and Collins should come through in this spot. He has yet to top 100 yards from scrimmage in a game this season, but does have three scores. I expect him to get into the end zone here and come close to triple digits in yardage.

San Francisco 49ers running back Matt Breida is my No. 17 option at running back this week, landing in RB2 territory. He can be used as a streamer in this matchup against the Arizona Cardinals, who have allowed the most fantasy points and rushing touchdowns to opposing running backs this season. Breida has shown spots of brilliance this season and should be able to exploit this defense.


Derrick Henry hasn't given fantasy owners any reason to trust him this season, but I think he is a streaming RB2 in Week 5 against the Buffalo Bills. The Tennessee Titans running back has yet to score or eclipse 57 rushing yards in a game this season, but the Bills have allowed the second-most rushing scores and ninth-most fantasy points to opposing running backs. Henry is my No. 21 option at the position for Week 5.


1Melvin GordonLos Angeles Chargersvs. OAK
2Todd GurleyLos Angeles Ramsat SEA
3Ezekiel ElliottDallas Cowboysat HOU
4Christian McCaffreyCarolina Panthersvs. NYG
5David JohnsonArizona Cardinalsat SF
6James ConnerPittsburgh Steelersvs. ATL
7Alvin KamaraNew Orleans Saintsvs. WAS
8Kareem HuntKansas City Chiefsvs. JAX
9Saquon BarkleyNew York Giantsat CAR
10Alex CollinsBaltimore Ravensat CLE
11Marshawn LynchOakland Raidersat LAC
12Sony MichelNew England Patriotsvs. IND
13Mark IngramNew Orleans Saintsvs. WAS
14Jay AjayiPhiladelphia Eaglesvs. MIN
15Kerryon JohnsonDetroit Lionsvs. GB
16Tevin ColemanAtlanta Falconsat PIT
17Matt BreidaSan Francisco 49ersvs. ARI
18Chris ThompsonWashington Redskinsat NO
19Carlos HydeCleveland Brownsvs. BAL
20Lamar MillerHouston Texansvs. DAL
21Derrick HenryTennessee Titansat BUF
22Dalvin CooksMinnesota Vikingsat PHI
23James WhiteNew England Patriotsvs. IND
24T.J. YeldonJacksonville Jaguarsat KC
25Dion LewisTennessee Titansat BUF
26Giovani BernardCincinnati Bengalsvs. MIA
27Aaron JonesGreen Bay Packersat DET
28Phillip LindsayDenver Broncosat NYJ
29LeSean McCoyBuffalo Billsvs. TEN
30Kenyan DrakeMiami Dolphinsat CIN

Aaron Jones returned to form in Week 4, rushing for 65 yards and a score on 11 carries while also logging a 17 yard reception. I expect Jones to have a nice game again in Week 5 against the Detroit Lions, a team that has allowed the most rushing yards and third-most fantasy points to opposing running backs. Jones is my No. 27 option for Week 5 and can be used at RB2 or flex.


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