Though he lost the "Comeback Player of the Year" award to Denver's Peyton Manning, running back Adrian Peterson (aka "AP") has every reason to be proud of his performance during the 2012 season, He was exceptional running and catching the football, and deserves to be the No.1 running back going into the 2013 fantasy football draft.
This year's draft list is dedicated to the memory of Spaz, the magnificent football predicting cat, who died at the age of 15 earlier this year. The list is based on a survey of the eight most popular fantasy football sites and combines their selections with mine to determine the best set of players to select in the 2013 fantasy football draft.
Minnesota's Adrian Peterson was unanimously selected as the No. 1 running back in the NFL. He carried the ball 348 times for 2,097 yards and scored 12 rushing touchdown in 2012. AP also caught 40 passes for 217 yards and one touchdown. Opponents held him 5.4 yards-per-catch, while Peterson averaged 6.0 yards-per-carry rushing the football.
The battle for the No. 2 spot was very tight between Doug Martin of the Buccaneers and Arian Foster of the Texans. Both running backs received four 2nd place votes. Kansas City''s Jamaal Charles was selected No. 2 by one site, but the remaining votes gave Martin the edge.
A number of younger players pushed their way upward in the top 10, which moved many veteran running backs into the No. 11 to No. 20 spots. Examples include Doug Martin (No. 2), C.J. Spiller (6), Trent Richardson (9), Alfred Morris (10), Matt Forte (No. 11), Steven Jackson (12), Chris Johnson (13) and Maurice Jones-Drew (15).
No rookies appear in the top 20, though the Packers' Eddie Lacy is ranked No. 23 and Pittsburgh's Le'Veon Bell is No. 27.
Here are the top 40 running backs for the 2013 fantasy football draft.
No. Player Name, Team - Bye Week
1 - Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings - Bye = 5
2 - Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Bye = 5
3 - Arian Foster, Houston Texans - Bye = 8
4 - Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs - Bye = 10
5 - Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks - Bye = 12
6 - C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills - Bye = 12
7 - Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens - Bye = 8
8 - LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles - Bye = 12
9 - Trent Richardson, Cleveland Browns - Bye = 10
10 - Alfred Morris, Washington Redskins - Bye = 5
11 - Matt Forte, Chicago Bears - Bye = 8
12 - Steven Jackson, Atlanta Falcons - Bye = 6
13 - Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans - Bye = 8
14 - Stevan Ridley, New England Patriots - Bye = 10
15 - Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville Jaguars - Bye = 9
16 - Frank Gore, San Francisco 49ers - Bye = 9
17 - Reggie Bush , Detroit Lions - Bye = 9
18 - DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys - Bye = 11
19 - David Wilson, New York Giants - Bye = 9
20 - Darren McFadden, Oakland Raiders - Bye = 7
21 - Lamar Miller, Miami Dolphins - Bye = 7
22 - Darren Sproles, New Orleans Saints - Bye = 7
23 - Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers - Bye = 4
24 - Montee Ball, Denver Broncos - Bye = 9
25 - Ahmad Bradshaw, Indianapolis Colts - Bye = 8
26 - Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers - Bye = 8
27 - Le'Veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers - Bye = 5
28 - Christopher Ivory, New York Jets - Bye = 10
29 - Shane Vereen, New England Patriots - Bye = 10
30 - Giovani Bernard, Cincinnati Bengals - Bye = 12
31 - Rashard Mendenhall, Arizona Cardinals - Bye = 9
32 - Daryl Richardson, St. Louis Rams - Bye = 11
33 - BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Cincinnati Bengals - Bye = 12
34 - Andre Brown, New York Giants - Bye = 9
35 - DeAngelo Williams, Carolina Panthers - Bye = 4
36 - Mark Ingram, New Orleans Saints - Bye = 7
37 - Ben Tate, Houston Texans - Bye = 8
38 - Jonathan Stewart, Carolina Panthers - Bye = 4
39 - Bernard Pierce, Baltimore Ravens - Bye = 8
40 - Fred Jackson, Buffalo Bills - Bye = 12
Next Up - The top 60 wide receivers in the NFL.
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