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Dynasty Rankings Cont.
6. Ronald Jones II, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ronald Jones is just outside my top-5 simply because I am concerned on how he will hold up over time. Jones is a very talented runner, but he is a bit one dimensional and has a smaller frame (6-0, 201). Jones has not yet proven as a reliable receiving threat, and this also limits his upside. Regardless, Jones should have solid production in his career, but I think he will never be a true RB1. If Jones can stay healthy, he can carve himself out a great role with Tampa Bay.
7. Royce Freeman, Denver Broncos
Royce Freeman has a big opportunity in 2018 and beyond with the Broncos. He can become a true feature back for the Broncos right away if all goes well. Freeman should be a reliable RB2 in 2018, and could even approach RB1 territory if he makes the most of his carries. Freeman should get about 20 touches per game, and he has a great chance to help revive a struggling Broncos Offense.
8. Kerryon Johnson, Detroit Lions
Kerryon Johnson has a crowded backfield to find touches in 2018, but after that he could become a full-time workhorse. The Lions have not had a 1,000 yard rusher in a season since Reggie Bush in 2014, and they likely drafted Johnson thinking he could break that streak. Johnson will not likely be fantasy relevant in 2018, but this is not because of his talent. It will be hard for Johnson to take touches away from established veterans in LeGarrette Blount and Theo Riddick. But, Blount is only signed on a one-year deal, and Johnson will likely become the lead back in 2019 and beyond. That opportunity is a good one, and Johnson should become a solid RB2.
9. Nyhiem Hines, Indianapolis Colts
Nyhiem Hines has great upside in PPR right away. He could (and should) outscore Kerryon Johnson in 2018 in PPR formats. Hines is a route technician out of the backfield, and he thrives is catching balls out of the backfield. The Colts have a young RB group, and the lead back seems to be Marlon Mack. Although, besides Mack, there are no proven backs and Hines has chance to carve out a solid role as a receiving threat. Hines has low-end RB2 upside, and should be a decent option in deep PPR leagues.
10. Kalen Ballage, Miami Dolphins
Kalen Ballage is a very talented RB who has the skillset to be a threat as a receiver and a runner. Ballage could eventually unseat Kenyan Drake and become the workhorse, but that likely is a year or two away. Ballage has tremendous upside, but also he has a low floor if things don’t work out in Miami. In 2018, Ballage should take a backseat to Drake and newly-signed Frank Gore, but watch out in the not-so-distance future.
11. Mark Walton, Cincinnati Bengals
Walton is another talented back who will be the main benefactor if Joe Mixon flops. Mixon was a bit underwhelming in his rookie season, and if that continues don’t be surprised if Walton finds ways to be productive. Although, signs are pointing up for Mixon, and Walton likely won’t see important snaps anytime soon. Walton is another player with high upside, but a low floor.
12. Ito Smith, Atlanta Falcons
Ito Smith is a guy who won’t make headlines for a couple years, but he has a huge opportunity to be successful in Atlanta at some point. The Falcons have maintained two fantasy relevant RBs in the past few years (Freeman & Coleman), and if one of them went down with injury, Smith could step in and contribute. Smith has some decent upside and could blossom with the Falcons.
13. Chase Edmonds, Arizona Cardinals
If David Johnson goes down again, Chase Edmonds should be the next man up. Johnson owns Arizona’s RB production, but Edmonds could make an impact if he ever goes down. Edmonds is another talented back in this extremely deep RB class that could pay dividends if the cards fall his way.
14. Trenton Cannon, New York Jets
Trenton Cannon will have to compete with Isaiah Crowell, Thomas Rawls, Bilal Powell, and Elijah McGuire for touches in 2018. Cannon is worth a pick in dynasty formats late just in case he carves himself out a role in the future.
15. John Kelly, Los Angeles Rams
John Kelly is a handcuff for Todd Gurley, and should be valued as one of the best handcuffs for a multitude of reasons. Kelly is talented back, and he is the backup to one of the best RBs (if not the best) in football. Take Kelly late if you’re a Gurley owner, and even if you don’t own Gurley he is worth a look.
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