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Running Backs

July 24, 2006
July 24, 2006

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July 24, 2006

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Running Backs

ON THE RISE

This is an article from the July 24, 2006 issue

RONNIE BROWN,Dolphins
He led Miami in rushing last season, and Ricky Williams's exile means he'sofficially the man now.

BRIAN WESTBROOK,Eagles
As Philly turns more toward the ground game, look for him to flirt with the1,000-yard mark.

FRANK GORE,49ers
Last season as a rookie he ran for more yards per carry than fellow Miami alumEdgerrin James. This year he's the favorite to get the lion's share of thecarries.

ON THEDECLINE

SHAUN ALEXANDER,Seahawks
It'll be impossible to match his MVP stats, especially without All-World guardSteve Hutchinson.

COREY DILLON,Patriots
He turns 32 in October, and rookie Laurence Maroney is knocking on thedoor.

CURTIS MARTIN,Jets
His 3.3 yards per carry was a career low. Though he pledges a comeback, he'stoo risky to count on.

SLEEPERS

DEUCE MCALLISTER,Saints
He appears to be fully healed from a torn ACL, and new coach Sean Payton willplay him and Reggie Bush together, creating matchup problems.

CHESTER TAYLOR, Vikings
He'll thrive behind new blocker Hutchinson, who joins one of the league'sbetter offensive lines.

KEVIN JONES,Lions
In Mike Martz's wide-open offense he'll play the Marshall Faulk role, which hasfantasy owners drooling.

DESIGNATEDSCORERS

MIKE SELLERS,Redskins
He moves into the backfield after being one of the league's most reliable pointproducers as a tight end.

BRANDON JACOBS,Giants
He could be an every-down back, but with Tiki Barber around he'll play largelyin short-yardage situations.

LENDALE WHITE,Titans
A load at 6'1", 235 pounds, he has a nose for the goal line (52 TDs on theground, plus five through the air, at USC over the last three seasons).

IMPACTROOKIES

REGGIE BUSH,Saints
Few players have his ability to take a pitch the length of the field.

DEANGELOWILLIAMS, Panthers
Behind oft-injured DeShaun Foster, he's worth a relatively early pick,especially in keeper leagues.

JOSEPH ADDAI,Colts
Rule No. 1 in Indy is Protect Peyton, so Addai has a big advantage over DominicRhodes in the quest for playing time: Addai is an excellent blocker.

BUYER BEWARE

FRED TAYLOR,Jaguars
After missing 31 games in his eight-year career, he's too fragile andinconsistent to count on, except as a late-round pick for depth.

RON DAYNE,Broncos
The Heisman Trophy winner has a chance to start, but he could lose carries toTatum Bell and Cedric Cobbs.

THOMAS JONES,Bears
His numbers last season were spectacular, but a contract dispute has led tomajor uncertainty.

View this article in the original magazine



 SI PLAYER RANKINGS FOR 2006 With 2005 statsGAMESRUSH YARDSYARDS/
CARRY
100-YARD GAMESREC. YARDSYARDS/
CATCH
TOTAL TDSBYE WEEK
1.Larry Johnson, Chiefs161,7505.21034310.4213
2.LaDainian Tomlinson, Chargers161,4624.353707.3203
3.Shaun Alexander, Seahawks161,8805.111785.2285
4.Clinton Portis, Redskins161,5164.392167.2118
5.Edgerrin James, Cardinals *151,5064.293377.7149
6.Tiki Barber, Giants161,8605.285309.8114
7.Ronnie Brown, Dolphins159074.422327.358
8.Rudi Johnson, Bengals161,4584.34903.9125
9.Cadillac Williams, Buccaneers141,1784.16814.164
10.Steven Jackson, Rams151,0464.123207.4107
11.Kevin Jones, Lions136643.601095.558
12.Brian Westbrook, Eagles126174.0161610.179
13.LaMont Jordan, Raiders141,0253.835638.0113
14.Warrick Dunn, Falcons161,4165.152207.645
15.Willis McGahee, Bills161,2473.851786.458
16.Reggie Bush,† Saints *131,7408.7847812.9197
17.Chester Taylor, Vikings *154874.202927.116
18.Corey Dillon, Patriots127333.521818.2136
19.Jamal Lewis, Ravens159063.421916.047
20.DeAngelo Williams,† Panthers *111,9596.310786.5199
21.Frank Gore, 49ers146084.811318.737
22.Cedric Benson, Bears92724.1033.007
23.Julius Jones, Cowboys139933.912186.253
24.Willie Parker, Steelers151,2024.7521812.154
25.Tatum Bell, Broncos159215.331045.884
26.Domanick Davis, Texans119764.233378.665
27.Reuben Droughns, Browns161,2324.033699.526
28.Deuce McAllister, Saints53353.611176.937
29.Curtis Martin, Jets127353.311184.959
30.DeShaun Foster, Panthers158794.3237210.939
31.Mike Anderson, Ravens *151,0144.2421211.8137
32.LenDale White,† Titans *131,3026.6621915.6267
33.Fred Taylor, Jaguars117874.13836.436
34.Joseph Addai,† Colts *139114.951809.0106
35.Chris Brown, Titans158513.8032713.177
36.Dominic Rhodes, Colts131183.00887.346
37.Thomas Jones, Bears151,3354.351435.597
38.Ahman Green, Packers52553.301477.706
39.Ron Dayne, Broncos102705.10175.714
40.Mewelde Moore, Vikings166624.323399.236
41.Brandon Jacobs, Giants16992.600--74
42.T.J. Duckett, Falcons143803.106310.585
43.Cedric Houston, Jets123023.70668.329
44.Sammy Morris, Dolphins16583.60546.818
45.Ladell Betts, Redskins123383.80787.828
46.Ryan Moats, Eagles72785.1171.839
47.Mike Sellers, Redskins1511.00726.088
48.Kevan Barlow, 49ers125813.312417.837
49.Duce Staley, Steelers51483.90345.714
50.Lee Suggs, Browns8151.90264.306
51.Greg Jones, Jaguars145753.82656.546
52.Priest Holmes, Chiefs74513.801979.473
53.Ciatrick Fason, Vikings13621.900--46
54.Najeh Davenport, Packers51053.5031.526
55.Laurence Maroney, †Patriots *111,4645.2817010.0116
56.Antowain Smith, Texans *166594.01463.835
57.Marion Barber, Cowboys135383.911156.453
58.Michael Turner, Chargers163355.910--33
59.Michael Pittman, Buccaneers164366.213008.324
60.Marshall Faulk, Rams162924.502916.617
61.Samkon Gado, Packers85824.13777.776
62.Chris Perry, Bengals142794.603286.425
63.Shawn Bryson, Lions163064.802847.718
64.Maurice Morris, Seahawks162884.11489.615

*New team for2006 season †*College stats

SI.COM

For David Sabino's expanded analysis of the top 10 ateach position, go to SI.com/fantasy.

TWO PHOTOSHEINZ KLUETMEIER (BROWN); MICHAEL C. HEBERT (MCALLISTER)TWO PHOTOSJEFF LEWIS/US PRESSWIRE (SELLERS); AL MESSERSCHMIDT/WIREIMAGE.COM (TAYLOR)