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Fantasy football start/sit advice, Week 2: Running backs

We break down the top starting options at running back this week, along with some players who should be avoided.

William Hauser-USA TODAY Sports

Week 2 of the fantasy football season is here, and we're back with another crop of start/sit options. With the season still young, patience is needed for your high draft pick studs. Don't panic over Adrian Peterson or Doug Martin yet, and definitely don't start Jalen Richard this week. Week 2 is not the time to radically remake your lineups.

That said, there are still plenty of borderline players who could be started or sat in any given week, depending on the matchup. With that in mind, we'll pick three running backs worth taking a shot on in Week 2, along with three backs you should probably sit.


Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (vs. New Orleans Saints)

There will be no committee in New York this week. Jennings handled 18 of the team's 24 rushing attempts last week, putting up 75 yards in the process. He's well ahead of Shane Vereen and gets a dream matchup with the Saints' defense, which once again looks like it'll be one of the worst in football.

Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys (@ Washington)

Elliott didn't quite have a great debut in Week 1, rushing for just 50 yards on 21 carries. But he did find the end zone for fantasy owners and will continue getting heavy workloads with Dak Prescott under center. Look for Elliott to live up to his RB1 expectation this week when he faces a Washington defense that just got chewed up by DeAngelo Williams.

Ryan Mathews, Philadelphia Eagles (@ Chicago Bears)

Still underrated at this point, Mathews had a quality Week 1 performance with 22 carries for 77 yards and a touchdown. His lack of involvement in the passing game makes him a tougher PPR sell, but Mathews is set to succeed as Philly's clear No. 1 back. He will be a borderline RB1 play in standard leagues against the Bears this week.


Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons (@ Oakland Raiders)

The committee is on in Atlanta, which is bad news for fantasy owners who drafted Freeman in the second round. He had nearly even carries with Tevin Coleman, but Freeman was far less effective with the ball (40 total yards on 15 touches, compared to 117 on 14 touches for Coleman). The Raiders' defense is possibly a friendly matchup and Freeman should still see enough catches to be a PPR asset, but he's no longer a must-start in standard 10- or 12-team leagues.

Jeremy Langford, Chicago Bears (vs. Philadelphia Eagles)

Langford is getting a heavy workload, which will likely prop up his RB2 value. But if he continues averaging just 3.4 yards per carry (as he did last week) then it's hard to see Chicago committing to him as a workhorse for much longer. Langford has to be more effective with his carries, and he's hard to recommend as a flex play this week against an underrated Eagles' run defense.

T.J. Yeldon, Jacksonville Jaguars (@ San Diego Chargers)

With Chris Ivory still on the shelf, Yeldon will continue being the Jaguars' No. 1 back. But man, was he brutal in Week 1. Handed a golden opportunity to run away with the starting job, Yeldon instead put up a putrid 39 yards on 21 carries, with a 5-yard touchdown run salvaging his fantasy day. The Chargers have a beatable defense with Joey Bosa missing another week, but fantasy owners can't confidently rely on Yeldon yet. He's a low-floor RB3 until proven otherwise.