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Top 10 NFL running back rotation: Browns, Colts headline the best backfields to enter in 2022

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The NFL may be a passing league these days, but having an elite rush attack as opposed to a serviceable one can be the difference between a wildcard bid and a title run. Do you want an elite running back to dominate the Or just an elite rotation? From Derrick Henry to Dalvin Cook, everyone would agree on the big names at the position, but which team has the best overall backfield?

Below is one of the pecking order that will identify the top 10 to enter in 2022.

RB: Christian McCaffrey, Chuva Hubbard, Donta Foreman

Christian McCaffrey


Attrition is a big concern here, with McCaffrey playing just 10 games in the last two years. But when healthy, he’s a dual-purpose chain-running machine. It caused several explosions.

RB: Derrick Henry, Dontrell Hilliard, Hassan Haskins

This is all about King Henry. King Henry is a true freak, a nightmare in weekly matchups due to his monstrous combination of overwhelming size, brutal power and top speed. Neither Hilliard nor Haskins have much experience. Until then, the Tennessee group wears nothing but makeup to wear down their opponents.

RB: Javonte Williams, Melvin Gordon III, Mike Boone

With just one official start as a rookie, Williams may be able to carry the backfield himself for over 1,300 total yards. But Gordon is knowledgeable and efficient, especially when it comes to pitch numbers. All eyes are on Russell Wilson and the passing game, but the QB’s greatest complement is probably here, in the same position as Seattle’s highly regarded Pete Carroll.

RB: Alvin Kamara, Mark Ingram II, Malcolm Brown

If the 41st weren’t likely to face a serious suspension for off-field behavior, they’d be higher thanks to Kamala and his big-time pass catches. And, perhaps, if Ingram hadn’t stalled at his 32-year-old.

RB: Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard, Rico Dowdle

Zeke has received a lot of criticism lately for not matching Pollard’s explosive power, but he’s still a starter who does everything above average for a Top 10 offense. The one-two punch can be deadly if you keep increasing the role of the to speed up the attack.

RB: JK Dobbins, Gus Edwards, Mike Davis, Justice Hill

JK Dobbins


Three of the top four backs here are free from season-ending injuries, so the early-season blowup could be slightly lessened. There is a reason for Dobbins is built like a workhorse, Edwards is very efficient as a change of pace, and Davis has a lot of experience as a physical pass-catching stand-in.

RB: Aaron Jones, AJ Dillon, Kirin Hill

High marks come only from their top duos. Jones has all the tools a modern starter should have despite his injury history, while Dillon’s size and physicality allow Green Bay to play old-school ball. Aaron Rodgers is leaning more on them now that Davante Adams is gone, and that might not be a bad thing.

RB: Dalvin Cook, Alexander Mathison, Kenne Nanwu

There might be a Buck or two who gets more attention than Cook when he’s perfectly healthy. Even if it’s a safe bet to miss one to three weeks each season, the Vikings star is one of football’s most gifted natural runners. His top speed is unreal. Mattison, on the other hand, is practically a clone in terms of size and has been underrated for years.

RB: Jonathan Taylor, Nyheim Hines, Philip Lindsay

Star power helps, and Taylor has just that, giving Indy perhaps the most complete back in the entire NFL. Meanwhile, Hines remains a reliable safety valve as a receiver, and Lindsay at least provides plenty of grit and starting experience.

RB: Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt, Durnest Johnson

Kareem Hunt (left) and Nick Chubb


Despite the close game with the Colts, all three of the Browns’ top backs have suffered serious damage when given RB1 duties. Yes, the Cleveland line has something to do with this, but Chubb and Hunt are undeniable talents in their own right, with the former averaging 5 yards per carry in all four of his NFL seasons as a smooth, traditional ball carrier. I have recorded more. Hunt, on the other hand, shifted more with good hands, and Kevin Stefanski’s attack on the ground put him at 1B.

honorable mention

Kenneth Gainwell


  • Eagles (Miles Sanders, Kenneth Gainwell, Boston Scott): Sanders still has home run potential, Gainwell is emerging as a utility man, and Scott remains a diminutive, punching man to rival Darren Sproles.
  • Commander (Antonio Gibson, Brian Robinson Jr., JD McKissick): Gibson is underrated after a quiet sophomore season and McKissick is the target machine, but what does Robinson have to offer as a rookie?
  • The Bills (Devin Singletary, James Cook, Zach Moss): Buffalo is all about throwing the ball with Josh Allen, but if Cook can make an early impact as a receiving option, this group looks pretty balanced.
  • Dolphins (Chase Edmonds, Raheem Mostert, Sonny Michelle, Myles Gaskin): At what point do you actually own Too many A solid ball carrier, if unremarkable?
  • Bears (David Montgomery, Khalil Herbert, Darrington Evans): Both of the top two backs are starting points, but I wonder how high the ceiling is with Chicago’s rebuild setup.
  • Jaguars (James Robinson, Travis Etienne Jr., Snoop Connor): Robinson is a steady hand, and Etienne is clearly giving off Deebo Samuel vibes, but they’re both seriously injured.
  • Charger (Austin Ekeler, Isaiah Spiller, Joshua Kelly): Ekeler is a central player in attack due to his high contribution as a receiver, but the depth behind him has not proven.