USA Today

Running Back Rankings for Week 2 Fantasy Football

The Detroit Lions' backfield will continue to cement itself as a top fantasy producer. Full running back rankings for 2021 Week 2 fantasy football.

Welcome to the fantasy football Week 2 running back rankings hub!

Below you will find my top-60 running backs for Week 2, perhaps unsurprisingly dominated by some familiar names up top. After teasing fantasy managers for years, Cincinnati Bengals’ lead back Joe Mixon established himself as one of the league’s few true bellcows. He’s a top-5 back this week. David Montgomery of the Chicago Bears was just too productive against Aaron Donald and Co. to be ignored this week. Against a far softer Bengals’ front-seven, Montgomery should have little resistance en route to a top 12 outing.

These rankings are geared toward .5PPR scoring formats for Week 2 of the 2021 NFL season but should aid those who play in both non-PPR and full-point PPR formats. Check back throughout the week to see how expectations have changed as news continues to roll in, enhancing our prognostication abilities. Feel free to hit me up on twitter @Ginger__Nic for any fantasy related advice.

Week 2 Standouts

D’Andre Swift (RB13) & Jamaal Williams (RB18) — Detroit shocked the world last week. Many expected Anthony Lynn and Co. to dial back the pace of play and finish near the bottom of the league in overall offensive snaps. Instead, the Lions paced the whole league, pumping out 84 offensive plays in their loss to the 49ers. While that number may settle closer to 75, the overall usage the team employed shouldn’t. Lynn embraced symmetry on Sunday, dishing out a 9 carry, 9 target workload for Williams and a matching 11 carry, 11 target day for Swift and both backs finished inside the top 5 of the .5PPR ranks. The Lions’ 1-2 punch should again have a healthy output against a Green Bay defensive front that just rolled out the red carpet for Alvin Kamara and Tony Jones Jr.

Elijah Mitchell (RB17) — With Trey Sermon a surprise inactive—potentially a punitive move—and lead back Raheem Mostert injuring his knee early in Week 1, Mitchell rose to the occasion for San Francisco, toting the rock 19 times for 104 yards and 1 touchdown. JaMycal Hasty figures to remain a factor in the passing game and Sermon should be back in the lineup this Sunday with Mostert out for the rest of the year, but it would be a massive blow to team morale if Kyle Shanahan didn’t name Mitchell the starter for Week 2. The explosive rookie rusher should see at least 15 touches against Philly this week.

Nyheim Hines (RB26) — The Colts ditched their three-man backfield ways last week with Jonathan Taylor and Nyheim Hines taking the entirety of the team’s RB touches. Some thought Marlon Mack would be a factor but that bet was fool’s gold. It’s tragically difficult for a running back to return from a ruptured Achilles tendon. Hines’ newly solidified role (on top of his newly signed contract) tells us a big season is on tap. The fourth-year back logged a respectable nine carries and saw a team-high eight targets come his way as well. The Rams’ high-octane offense should only benefit Hines this week as the pace is sure to be pushed.

Latavius Murray (RB29) —  Rookie Ty’Son Williams did a decent job as Baltimore’s lead back but as the great Matt Waldman lays out below, he left yards on the field.

After half-time veteran back Latavius Murray got some run and managed to find the end zone in the process. Although Williams should retain the No. 1 RB role, Murray should absolutely see fantasy-relevant usage this week. Something in the neighborhood of 12-15 touches is in order.

Week 2 Running Back Rankings
RankPlayerTeamOpp 
1Christian McCaffreyCARvs. NO
2Alvin KamaraNOat CAR
3Dalvin CookMINat ARI
4Joe MixonCINat CHI
5Derrick HenryTENat SEA
6Nick ChubbCLEvs. HOU
7Jonathan TaylorINDvs. LAR
8Austin EkelerLACvs. DAL
9Aaron JonesGBvs. DET
10Ezekiel ElliottDALat LAC
11Antonio GibsonWASvs. NYG
12David MontgomeryCHIvs. CIN
13D'Andre SwiftDETat GB
14Chris CarsonSEAvs. TEN
15Najee HarrisPITvs. LV
16Kareem HuntCLEvs. HOU
17Eli MitchellSFat PHI
18Jamaal WilliamsDETat GB
19Clyde Edwards-HelaireKCat BAL
20Miles SandersPHIvs. SF
21Saquon BarkleyNYGat WAS
22Damien HarrisNEat NYJ
23Darrell Henderson Jr.LARat IND
24Nyheim HinesINDvs. LAR
25Mike DavisATLat TB
26Melvin Gordon IIIDENat JAC
27Javonte WilliamsDENat JAC
28Ty'Son WilliamsBALvs. KC
29Kenyan DrakeLVat PIT
30Latavius MurrayBALvs. KC
31Chase EdmondsARIvs. MIN
32James RobinsonJACvs. DEN
33Myles GaskinMIAvs. BUF
34James WhiteNEat NYJ
35Trey SermonSFat PHI
36Kenneth GainwellPHIvs. SF
37Peyton BarberLVat PIT
38JaMycal HastySFat PHI
39Ronald Jones IITBvs. ATL
40Mark Ingram IIHOUat CLE
41Devin SingletaryBUFat MIA
42Cordarrelle PattersonCHIat TB
43Tony Jones Jr.NOat CAR
44James ConnerARIvs. MIN
45Tony PollardDALat LAC
46Alexander MattisonMINat ARI
47Carlos HydeJACvs. DEN
48Giovani BernardTBvs. ATL
49Sony MichelLARat IND
50Leonard FournetteTBvs. ATL
51AJ DillonGBvs. DET
52DeeJay DallasSEAvs. TEN
53Damien WilliamsCHIvs. CIN
54Tevin ColemanNYJvs. NE
55Ty JohnsonNYJvs. NE
56J.D. McKissicWASvs. NYG
57Salvon AhmedMIAvs. BUF
58Zack MossBUFat MIA
59David JohnsonHOUat CLE
60Justin JacksonLACvs. DAL