We have all heard that NFL Running Backs are a dime a dozen now. Long gone are the days of Marcus Allen, Jim Brown, Walter Payton and Barry Sanders being relevant players.
My question is this. Are they really a dime a dozen? And can they be drafted in the later rounds and be a success.
To find this out I am going to look at the leading rushers dating back to 2000 and will include Jamaal Charles. I will look at how many yards they rushed for and what round they were drafted, with UDFA being round 8.
LaDainian Tomlinson was leading rusher in 2006 and 2007 so the only thing relevant is his yardage.
This will be a two part article, in which I will use this information to build the perfect back.
2000- Edgerrin James rushed for 1,709 yards. He was drafted round 1, 4th overall.
2001- Priest Holmes rushed for 1,555 yards. He was drafted in the 8th Round.
2002-Ricky Williams rushed for 1,853 yards. He was drafted round 1, 5th Overall.
2003-Jamal Lewis rushed for 2,066 yards. He was drafted round 1, 5th overall.
2004-Curtis Martin rushed for 1,697 yards. He was drafted round 3, 74 overall.
2005-Shaun Alexander rushed for 1,880 yards. He was drafted round 1, 19th overall.
2006- LaDainian Tomlinson rushed for 1,815 yards. He was drafted round 1, 5th overall.
2007-LaDainian Tomlinson rushed for 1,474 yards.
2008-Adrian Peterson rushed for 1,760 yards. He was drafted round 1, 7th overall.
2009-Chris Johnson rushed for 2,006 yards. He was drafted round 1, 24th overall.
2010-Arian Foster rushed for 1,616 yards. He was drafted in the 8th round.
2011- Maurice Jones-Drew rushed for 1,606 yards. He was drafted round 2, 60th overall.
Jamaal Charles was drafted round 3,
Only 2 leading rushers were UDFA's (Priest Holmes in 1997 and Arian Foster in 2009). Most were in fact first rounders. One was a second rounder (MJD) and one was a third rounder (Curtis Martin).
Most of the good running backs were in fact first rounders with most taken in the top 10 among them.
To say that you can get a good RB in the later rounds is insane and so if you see a RB that will be elite, you take him. So Trent Richardson should be taken if possible.