Fantasy Football RB Report: Saquon Barkley in a Smash Spot, Plus Week 7’s No. 1 Running Back

Fantasy Football RB Report: Saquon Barkley in a Smash Spot, Plus Week 7’s No. 1 Running Back article feature image

Jeremy Brevard, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Saquon Barkley

  • The Action Network ranked fantasy football running backs across standard, PPR and half-point PPR leagues for Week 7.
  • Here's a deeper look at five running backs that rank favorably, including Saquon Barkley and Joe Mixon.

Here’s a breakdown of five notable running backs featured in Sean Koerner, Chris Raybon and Matthew Freedman’s Week 7 fantasy football rankings.

The No. 1 RB

Todd Gurley, Los Angeles Rams

Gurley leads the league in Football Outsiders’ rushing success rate metric, and now the Rams head to San Francisco as 10-point favorites with a 31.25-point implied team total.

Per the FantasyLabs Trends tool, Gurley has been unreal with Sean McVay as the head coach:

He’s the unanimous No. 1 RB again among our rankers.

The Most Favorable Matchups

Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

In the FantasyLabs Player Models, Barkley’s median projection trails only Gurley’s. Barkley has one of the best matchups on the board against a Falcons defense graded as the fourth-worst unit, per PFF.

Additionally, Barkley owns 22% of the Giants’ target share, and the Falcons have allowed an absurd 8.83 receptions and 70.83 receiving yards per game to opposing running backs.

Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals

Mixon is averaging 21.0 touches per game this season and even though the Bengals are six-point road underdogs against Kansas City, he is a game-script independent running back. It’s a prime spot as the Chiefs grade as PFF’s No. 30 team in run defense.

Mixon possesses an average rank of 6.7 among our rankers.

Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys

Elliot’s 23.3 touches per game trail only Gurley’s this season and he takes on a Redskins run defense that is 31st, according to PFF.  Even better, Zeke is dominating red-zone usage for the Cowboys with 41% of their market share of opportunities and 70% of their red-zone carries.

Matchup Downgrade

LeSean McCoy, Buffalo Bills

It’s difficult to get excited about a team that is likely to have Nathan Peterman at the helm. The Bills are implied for a slate-low 17.75 points, and they have the second-lowest scoring rate in the league. Hard to imagine their offensive output improves in Week 7.

The Bills also own PFF’s worst-ranked run-blocking offensive line, while Colts rank No. 4 in rush defense in PFF grades.

Want another edge? Be sure to keep up with the week’s news on FantasyLabs.