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NFL Fantasy Football Playoffs Adds and Drops at Running Back

The NFL regular season is winding down, which means the fantasy football playoffs are heating up.

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

With fantasy football owners' mindsets on the upcoming playoffs, Cincy Jungle has everything you need to know about which running backs to add for a deep run, and which could hold you back from advancing.


Dan Herron, a former Ohio State Buckeye, has emerged as the Colts' leading running back, due to Ahmad Bradshaw's injury. Herron has proved to be an effective runner in the Colts' offense, taking advantage of the heavy passing attack from Andrew Luck to secure first a 5.4 YPC and then a mark of 11 this week, with 88 yards on eight carries, and a touchdown to boot. Against Jacksonville, he provided a nice addition to Luck's air attack as well, adding 31 yards on five catches to his resume.

An important note is that he's fumbled in each of the last two games, and lost both. Still, Herron is owned in just 4.5 percent of leagues, but he could be a promising back to add to the roster if you're looking for someone that does the most with the touches he gets.

Jonathan Stewart is doing all he can to help the Carolina Panthers find a groove. Despite the fact that the team is still mired in a rut, Stewart seems to be finding his own way to make fantasy owners happy. That is, the mere 2.5 percent that started him....

He's owned in just 13.2 percent of leagues, but he may have just had the breakout game he's been waiting for to get back on track. He posted 85 yards on just 12 carries, and added 25 yards on two catches from Cam Newton as well, giving fantasy players a reason to go grab this guy as he's getting hot.

Have I mentioned that I've been very happy that I traded for Tre Mason two weeks ago? The Rams running back is owned in 56.4 percent of leagues, but there's no reason why he shouldn't be in far more. That stat lines he continues to put up as head of the St. Louis ground game are definitely at least a No. 2 RB consideration on fantasy rosters.

The line for this week? 117 yards on 14 carries, with two touchdowns, including a very, very long breakout run for one of his score in the Rams' blowout 52-0 win over the Raiders. Pick him up while you still have a chance.


The Raiders running game continues to be less than impressive, and yet, Darren McFadden and Maurice Jones-Drew's amount of fantasy owners fails to reflect the poor performances. The former is owned in 73 percent of leagues and the latter in 50. 5 percent of them.

With that in mind, the two once powerful running backs combined for less than 50 yards against the Rams defense on Sunday, something that you simply can't accept from a starting running back as you gear up for the playoffs. You'd be far better off going with one of our suggested adds above.

Whatever happened to Andre Ellington? While that question may require some debate, his poor track of performances in the last few weeks speak for themselves. Ellington has posted rushing yard totals of 42, 24, and 12 yards, respectively. While the first two were against two of the best defenses in the NFL, you don't expect him to pick up a mere dozen on the ground against the Atlanta Falcons.

The Cardinals are responding by bringing in help and splitting carries, so I would be wary of keeping him on my roster for anything other than insurance. That's all his numbers are worth right now.

As we've previously listed, Branden Oliver is not a running back you want to have on your roster at this point in the season. He's currently owned in 38.3 percent of fantasy leagues, and therefore, people in 38.3 percent of fantasy leagues are doing something wrong.

Oliver has dropped off in a big way since the beginning of the season, as Ryan Mathews has effectively take over the running attack for the Chargers. Following his poor performance against the Raiders and his follow-up (or lack thereof) against the Ravens, it might be best to drop the San Diego running back in favor of one of the suggested adds above.