Fantasy Football Rankings Week 14: Best Running Backs to Start in Playoffs

Ah, the fantasy playoffs. A time when the money that each owner put in the pot at the beginning of the year seems to be just out of grasp. Or maybe a time when some teams are striving to avoid every league’s equivalent of the “Toilet Bowl.”

I hope that everyone reading this article is on the former side of this conversation.

Without further ado, here are the top 20 running backs for this week followed by an in-depth look at the three best running backs to start in Week 14 of the fantasy season.

Best Running Backs of Week 14
Rank Player Team Opponent
1 DeMarco Murray DAL @ CHI
2 Matt Forte CHI DAL
3 Jamaal Charles KC @ WAS
4 Eddie Lacy GB ATL
5 Adrian Peterson MIN @ BAL
6 Marshawn Lynch SEA @ SEA
7 Ben Tate HOU @ JAX
8 Knowshon Moreno DEN TEN
9 LeSean McCoy PHI DET
10 Andre Brown NYG @ SD
11 Le’Veon Bell PIT MIA
12 Reggie Bush DET @ PHI
13 Ray Rice BAL MIN
14 Alfred Morris WAS KC
15 Frank Gore SF SEA
16 Maurice Jones-Drew JAX HOU
17 Giovani Bernard CIN IND
18 C.J. Spiller BUF @ TAM
19 Zac Stacy STL @ ARI
20 Chris Johnson TEN @ DEN

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys

Murray has been a consistent back over the last three games and seems to be hitting his stride at the end of the year. After a 28-point game against the Oakland Raiders last week, he faces a disastrous Chicago Bears rush defense that is allowing 153.6 yards per game and 15 touchdowns on the season, which rank 32nd and 29th in the league, respectively.

From @EliasSports: DeMarco Murray joins Emmitt Smith (1996 & ’98) as only Cowboys with 3 rush TD on Thanksgiving

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) November 29, 2013

After he had a three-touchdown performance against the Raiders, it’s unreasonable to expect a similar performance. But against the Bears rush defense, every running back looks like Emmitt Smith.

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Forte, Chicago Bears

Another spot down, another dependable back down. Forte has failed to amass double-digit points just twice this season, with one being due to a fumble. This week, he is on the other side of DeMarco Murray against an equally awful rushing defense in Dallas.

Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune points out that Forte is nearing a career high in rushing yards for the season:

#Bears RB Matt Forte needs 29 rushing yards Monday night to reach 1,000 for the season. He is on pace for 1,295. Career high is 1,238.

— Brad Biggs (@BradBiggs) December 5, 2013

The Cowboys have given up more yards per game (126.7) than Forte averages per game (118) and have allowed 13 touchdowns this season through 12 games. Look for the Bears running back to roll for another 20-plus-point week.

Peter Aiken/Getty Images

Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs

The best fantasy running back this season by the numbers, Charles has averaged more than 120 yards and nearly one touchdown per game. 

This week, he faces the Washington Redskins defense, which ranks 14th in the league with 108.8 yards allowed per game. But Charles will likely exploit the Redskins in the red zone, as they have allowed a league-high 17 touchdowns on the ground this season.

Look for yet another double-digit game from Charles and maybe more than 20 points if he can touch paydirt multiple times for the Chiefs.

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