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Running back rankings (non-PPR) for 2021 fantasy football leagues

We take you through our running back rankings heading into the 2021 NFL season heading into fantasy football drafts.

Running back Nick Chubb #24 of the Cleveland Browns warms up prior to the AFC Divisional Playoff game against the Cleveland Browns at Arrowhead Stadium on January 17, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri. Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images


The NFL regular season kicks off Thursday, September 9th, when the Dallas Cowboys head down to Tampa Bay, Florida to take on the old guy who has won more Super Bowls than any one person should be allowed to win. I mean really, can we put a cap on the number?! That game is 24 days from the time this is published, which means it is time to get your fantasy football research in gear!

2021 PPR Fantasy Football rankings: Running backs

Today we’ll be looking at standard league running backs. That means non-PPR, but “standard” might be PPR in your neck of the woods. So I’ll just say non-PPR to make it clear. That pretty much means Derrick Henry, as he gets the biggest bump in non-PPR due to the bulk of his fantasy points coming from rushing yards and touchdowns while the majority of backs get bumps in fantasy points from receptions.

Of course, with most of the top backs getting plenty of work on the ground and through the air, they still do well in yardage and touchdowns, keeping them as strong plays in both standard and PPR. The difference comes from a back who is used mostly as a receiver and doesn’t get into the end zone that much. They often become useless in most non-PPR leagues.

I still have Christian McCaffrey as my No. 1 back in non-PPR because even if a catch doesn’t get him any points, it gets him in space and makes him more versatile. And with his usage and lack of strong backups, it’s hard not to like him over Henry.

In the end it comes down to workload. For the most part, the touchdown vulture backs aren’t that prevalent and they are hard to predict. Sometimes we’ll find a backfield that truly delineates the work enough that you can feel strongly about a player being a much better non-PPR back than PPR. Someone like Gus Edwards in Baltimore comes to mind or Damien Harris in New England. But don’t get too wrapped up in the differences. You want players who have a path to usage first and foremost.

Running back rankings (non-PPR) for 2021 fantasy football leagues

Rk Name Team
Rk Name Team
1 Christian McCaffrey CAR
2 Derrick Henry TEN
3 Dalvin Cook MIN
4 Saquon Barkley NYG
5 Alvin Kamara NO
6 Aaron Jones GB
7 Najee Harris PIT
8 Ezekiel Elliott DAL
9 Joe Mixon CIN
10 Nick Chubb CLE
11 Jonathan Taylor IND
12 Antonio Gibson WAS
13 David Montgomery CHI
14 Austin Ekeler LAC
15 Clyde Edwards-Helaire KC
16 Chris Carson SEA
17 Miles Sanders PHI
18 Josh Jacobs LV
19 J.K. Dobbins BAL
20 James Robinson JAC
21 D'Andre Swift DET
22 Raheem Mostert SF
23 Damien Harris NE
24 Mike Davis ATL
25 Kareem Hunt CLE
26 Gus Edwards BAL
27 Myles Gaskin MIA
28 Melvin Gordon III DEN
29 Chase Edmonds ARI
30 Zack Moss BUF
31 Trey Sermon SF
32 Darrell Henderson LAR
33 Javonte Williams DEN
34 Ronald Jones II TB
35 Leonard Fournette TB
36 Sony Michel LAR
37 James Conner ARI
38 AJ Dillon GB
39 Devin Singletary BUF
40 Jamaal Williams DET
41 Tony Pollard DAL
42 Michael Carter NYJ
43 Malcolm Brown MIA
44 Giovani Bernard TB
45 Phillip Lindsay HOU
46 Darrel Williams KC
47 Kenyan Drake LV
48 Rashaad Penny SEA
49 Tevin Coleman NYJ
50 Nyheim Hines IND
51 James White NE
52 Rhamondre Stevenson NE
53 Alexander Mattison MIN
54 Marlon Mack IND
55 Salvon Ahmed MIA
56 Darrynton Evans TEN
57 Latavius Murray NO
58 Justin Jackson LAC
59 Tony Jones Jr. NO
60 Mark Ingram II HOU
61 Carlos Hyde JAC
62 Joshua Kelley LAC
63 Anthony McFarland Jr. PIT
64 Justice Hill BAL
65 J.D. McKissic WAS
66 Jerick McKinnon KC
67 David Johnson HOU
68 Tarik Cohen CHI
69 Chuba Hubbard CAR
70 Kenneth Gainwell PHI
71 Damien Williams CHI
72 Xavier Jones LAR
73 Boston Scott PHI
74 Wayne Gallman SF
75 Kylin Hill GB
76 Ty Johnson NYJ
77 Benny Snell Jr. PIT
78 Qadree Ollison ATL
79 Devontae Booker NYG
80 Mike Boone DEN
81 Matt Breida BUF
82 Jake Funk LAR
83 Ke'Shawn Vaughn TB
84 Darwin Thompson KC
85 Samaje Perine CIN
86 Jaret Patterson WAS
87 Eno Benjamin ARI
88 Jeff Wilson Jr. SF
89 Ito Smith MIN
90 Royce Freeman DEN
91 Chris Evans CIN
92 Kene Nwangwu MIN
93 Rex Burkhead HOU
94 Khalil Herbert CHI
95 Stevie Scott III DEN
96 Jermar Jefferson DET
97 DeeJay Dallas SEA
98 Javian Hawkins FA
99 Gary Brightwell NYG
100 La'Mical Perine NYJ
101 Gerrid Doaks MIA
102 Kalen Ballage PIT
103 JaMycal Hasty SF
104 Travis Homer SEA
105 Jordan Wilkins IND
106 Jalen Richard LV
107 Jordan Howard PHI
108 Trey Ragas LV
109 Elijah McGuire KC