Fantasy football: Five running backs to avoid in Week 11

Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard is a low-end fantasy football RB2 in Week 11. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI
1 of 6 | Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard is a low-end fantasy football RB2 in Week 11. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI | License Photo

MIAMI, Nov. 17 (UPI) -- Tony Pollard is among my five running backs to avoid for Week 11 of the fantasy football season. Christian McCaffrey leads my Top 30 weekly rankings for the position.

Rhamondre Stevenson, Najee Harris and Michael Carter are among the other players I would lower my expectations for or try to keep out of my lineup.


Week 10 performance, opportunity, strength of Week 11 opponents and expected game script are among the factors I considered when determining the players to avoid. My full Top 30 rankings are below.

Kenneth Walker III, Leonard Fournette, Jeff Wilson Jr., and Travis Etienne are among the players who should be benched as the Seattle Seahawks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins and Jacksonville Jaguars serve Week 11 byes.

Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones scored one rushing touchdown over his last eight games. File Photo by John Sommers II/UPI

Aaron Jones

Jones was among my running backs to avoid for Week 11. The Green Bay Packers star totaled 60 yards from scrimmage and didn't find the end zone in a loss to the Tennessee Titans on Thursday in Green Bay, Wis.

New England Patriots running back Rhamondre Stevenson totaled 70 yards and a score on 18 touches in Week 9. File Photo by Matthew Healey/UPI

Rhamondre Stevenson

Stevenson totaled 70 yards from scrimmage and a score in Week 9, before the New England Patriots' Week 10 bye. He gained 143 yards from scrimmage in Week 8 and is a Top 10 fantasy football running back this season.

This week, the Patriots will face the New York Jets on Sunday in Foxborough, Mass. The Jets allowed the 11th-fewest fantasy points and 10th-fewest rushing yards (84.4) per game to running backs through 10 weeks.

They also just held Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary to 24 yards on eight carries in their last performance. Stevenson ran for 71 yards on 16 carries and totaled 72 receiving yards in the Patriots' Week 8 win over the Jets, but look for a more moderate performance from the Patriots running back this week.


He is my No. 16 option.

Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Pollard (20) isn't a great fantasy football play in Week 11. File Photo by Ian Halperin/UPI

Tony Pollard

Pollard is averaging the second-most fantasy points per game among running backs over the last four weeks. He totaled 128 yards from scrimmage and a score in Week 10 and 147 yards from scrimmage and three scores in his previous outing.

Cowboys starter Ezekiel Elliott did not play in either of those games. Elliott was limited at his first practice session this week and could return to play Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. Elliott's return, paired with a tough matchup push Pollard down to No. 21 in my Week 11 rankings.

The Vikings allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy points and fifth-fewest rushing yards per game to running backs through 10 weeks.

Pollard should remain in lineups, but only expect RB2/flex statistics.

Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najee Harris leaves the field after a win against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium in Pittsburgh. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI

Najee Harris

Harris struggled through his first eight games this season, but rebounded with a 99-yard performance in Week 10. This week, Harris and the Pittsburgh Steelers will face the Cincinnati Bengals.


The Bengals held Harris to just 23 yards on 10 carries in Week 1, but the Steelers running back scored a receiving touchdown in that outing. The Bengals also tied for allowing the ninth-fewest fantasy points per game to running backs through 10 weeks.

Harris is my No. 28 option and should only be used if you don't roster a player with a better matchup.

New York Jets running back Michael Carter (pictured) will compete for carries with teammate James Robinson. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI

Michael Carter

Carter and the Jets will face the Patriots on Sunday in Foxborough. The Patriots allowed fewer than 100 rushing yards in three of their last four games. They also allowed the second-fewest fantasy points per game to the position through 10 weeks.

Carter didn't eclipse 76 rushing yards in any of his nine previous games this season and I don't expect that to change this week against the Patriots. Fellow Jets running back James Robinson's increased usage in the offense also should hinder Carter's ability to help his fantasy football stock owners in Week 11.

I would keep Carter out of lineups this week. He is not inside my Top 30 rankings.


Week 11 fantasy football running back rankings

1. Christian McCaffrey, San Francisco 49ers at ARI

2. Saquon Barkley, New York Giants vs. DET

3. Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals at PIT

4. Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts vs. PHI

5. Nick Chubb, Cleveland Browns at BUF

6. Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers vs. KC

7. Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles at IND

8. Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints vs. LAR

9. David Montgomery, Chicago Bears at ATL

10. Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders at DEN

11. Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings vs. DAL

12. Dameon Pierce, Houston Texans vs. WAS

13. Jamaal Williams, Detroit Lions at NYG

14. Antonio Gibson, Washington Commanders at HOU

15. Isiah Pacheco, Kansas City Chiefs at LAC

16. Rhamondre Stevenson, New England Patriots vs. NYJ

17. Cordarrelle Patterson, Atlanta Falcons vs. CHI

18. Kenyan Drake, Baltimore Ravens vs. CAR

19. James Conner, Arizona Cardinals vs. SF

20. Devin Singletary, Buffalo Bills vs. CLE

21. Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys at MIN

22. D'Onta Foreman, Carolina Panthers at BAL

23. Elijah Mitchell, San Francisco 49ers at ARI

24. Brian Robinson Jr., Washington Commanders at HOU


25. D'Andre Swift, Detroit Lions at NYG

26. Darrell Henderson Jr., Los Angeles Rams at NO

27. James Robinson, New York Jets at NE

28. Najee Harris, Pittsburgh Steelers vs. CIN

29. Jerick McKinnon, Kansas City Chiefs at LAC

30. Kyren Williams, Los Angeles Rams at NO

This week in the National Football League

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes escapes from the grasp of Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Arden Key at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City on Sunday. The Chiefs defeated the Jaguars 27-17. Photo by Jon Robichaud/UPI | License Photo

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