2024 Post-Draft Dynasty Rookie Rankings: Running Back

My rookie running back rankings are listed below along with tiers for the class. For more detailed breakdowns of every prospect, check out Part One and Part Two of my pre-draft rookie rankings.

Jonathon Brooks was drafted into one of the ugliest landing spots imaginable. Chuba Hubbard showed well as the starter and Miles Sanders is under contract for three more years. Most importantly, the Panthers were a hot mess with Bryce Young under center in his first season. They ranked 31st in points and 32nd in yards per game last year. On the surface, things look bleak for Brooks.

That’s what I would say…if I were a coward. In reality, the running back competition is worth discussing but won’t hold Brooks back if he reaches his potential. Sanders was one of the least efficient backs in the league last year and can be cut next offseason with very little in the way of a dead cap hit. Hubbard ranked 22nd in Next Gen’s rush yards over expected, but a second-round investment in Brooks suggests the Panthers view him as a backup. Carolina brought in quarterback-whisperer Dave Canales to fix the offense and invested heavily in their receiver room.

Canales has also talked up the team’s ground game as the focus of the offense. All the pieces are in place for the offense to turn around in a hurry and Brooks will be the cornerstone of Carolina’s ground game by midseason.

Trey Benson landed with a far better team but waited another 20 picks to hear his name called. He is also more likely than Brooks to sit for the majority of his rookie season. James Conner was fourth in rush yards over expected and sixth in success rate last year. Conner, likely 29 years old by the time you read this, is a free agent at the end of the 2024 season. Benson should flash his explosive-play abilities as a rookie and then gain considerable value in dynasty circles when Conner departs next offseason.

Even though Corum’s advanced stats were poor in 2023, he profiles as a high-success rate runner, similar to the player ahead of him on LA’s depth chart, Kyren Williams.

The Rams staff thought so as well. Corum is unlikely to have much standalone value outside of a potential goal line role as a rookie. But he enters the league as a day one target for ZeroRB drafters. Should anything happen to Williams, Corum would be in line for an absurd role.

Sitting behind Josh Jacobs, who just signed a four-year, $48 million deal, Marshawn Lloyd is a tougher buy in dynasty leagues. He never earned a full workload in college and is now drafted by a team that likely views him as a backup early in his career. The good news is that Jacobs can be cut with a post-June 1 designation next offseason for a modest amount of cap savings if things don’t work out in 2024. Realistically, he’s on the roster for two more seasons, putting a lid on Lloyd’s touch ceiling for a while.

By landing with the Chargers, Kimani Vidal vaulted up my rankings, all the way to the RB5 spot. Vidal was a small school dominator, running for 1,661 yards and 14 scores on 297 attempts in his final season. He also averaged over 20 receptions per season through all four of his years at Troy. Most importantly, GM Joe Horitz sees him as an asset both through the air and as a blocker.

With only J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards standing in his way, Vidal won the draft lottery.

The Dolphins signed Raheem Mostert to an extension this offseason, but he can be cut next year for $3 million in cap savings with just a $1 million dead cap hit. Jaylen Wright has a similar profile to Mostert with his adequate size and home run speed. Wright (5’10/210) ran a 4.38 40-yard dash. He is a perfect fit for Mike McDaniel’s offense but may have to wait a year or two to enter the mix.

Vidal was everyone’s favorite “sneaky winner of the draft.” I doubt he goes overlooked in dynasty or redraft formats. The real hidden gem is New Hampshire’s Dylan Laube. Neither Zamir White nor Alexander Mattison offers much as receivers out of the backfield and that’s where Laube shines. He posted a 68/699/7 receiving line and averaged 1.81 yards per route run in his final season.

Elijah Mitchell is entering the final year of his rookie deal and Jordan Mason has failed to unseat him on the depth chart through two seasons. Possibly looking for a new backup to Christian McCaffrey, the 49ers added Louisville’s Isaac Guerendo in the fourth round. At 6’2/221, Guerendo’s 4.33 40-yard dash gives him a terrifying combo of size and speed. He was efficient as a runner and receiver in his final season of college ball but was strictly a backup for the entirety of his six-year collegiate career.

The Jets made their backfield a nightmare via the draft. They took Wisconsin’s Braelon Allen in the fourth and then doubled back for South Dakota State’s Isaiah Davis in the fifth. Both backs are oversized bruisers who project to fill similar roles in the NFL. The Jets might want a short-yardage back to complement Breece Hall’s home-run-hunting style, but it’s impossible to say which back will claim that job this year. That is if either of them surpass Israel Abanikanda on the depth chart. I side with draft capital, though that’s only a slight lean toward Allen.