2022 Fantasy Football Podcast: Must Have Running Backs


Host Bobby LaMarco is joined by Gladys Louise Tyler to discuss their must-have NFL running backs for 2022 fantasy football. Tune into the podcast or check out the article below on the five must-have running backs for 2022 fantasy football. Don’t forget to check out where all these players are currently being drafted over on the Razzball ADP tool. 


Razzball Writer: Gladys Louise Tyler

Must Have Player: Austin Ekeler

Current ADP: 5th Overall 


The first one is a no-brainer. Austin Ekeler. Ekeler’s current ADP is RB8 in standard leagues. But for those of you playing PPR leagues this is where it gets interesting, Ekeler’s current ADP is RB6 in ½ PPR leagues and RB3 in PPR leagues.

And this is for good reason in 2021, Ekeler had 206 rushing attempts with 911 rushing yards…but the most important is last season he had 94 targets (1st) with 70 receptions (2nd) 15.1% target share, and he ran 393 routes (2nd).

The Chargers are seventh in plays per game played (66.35) and Ekeler had a 67.1% snap share.


Razzball Writer: Gladys Louise Tyler

Must Have Player: Tony Pollard

Current ADP: 81st Overall 


Tony Pollard…the Dallas Cowboys were second in plays per game (67.82) with Pollard getting a 33.7% snap share and a 8.1% target share. Pollard is currently RB31 in standard leagues and RB30 in ½ and regular PPR.

He finished last season as RB28.

This season expect a bigger role for Pollard. He has increased his touches each year. His second year his touches increased by 28, last year by 40, and that is not all. He was targeted 46 times with 39 receptions for an 84.8% catch rate and 337 receiving yards. Reports are he is taking snaps as a receiver in training camp. The Cowboys will be without Amari Cooper, Cedric Wilson, James Washington got hurt and Michael Gallup’s return is uncertain.

You can currently obtain Pollard in the 8th round in 12-team leagues and 9th round in 10-team leagues. So you will be getting the best handcuff to Ezekiel Elliott who will be on the field for more than 40% and get not only running back touches but will also play in the receiving game on a team that consistently plays fast.


Razzball Writer: Gladys Louise Tyler

Must Have Player: Saquon Barkley

Current ADP: 19th Overall 


Saquon Barkley RB12 and RB11 in Half PPR and RB10 in PPR. There is the worry about Barkley returning from an injury, I get it. In the last two years he has played a total of 15 games. Last season he finished with an abysmal 3.7 yards per carry. But this is 2022 and the Giants have a new head coach Brian Daboll and if rumors are true a new Barkley. Two years removed from his ACL tear and 10 months from ankle injury Barkley is reportedly showing the explosiveness and quick cuts that he demonstrated as a rookie. You remember that season where he ran for 1307 rushing yards, averaged five yards per carry, had 11 rushing touchdowns. Oh, and he was peppered with 121 targets for 91 receptions, 721 receiving yards, four receiving touchdowns and he averaged 18.4 fantasy points per game.

Barkley is according to new offensive coordinator Mike Kafka expected to be a part of the passing game. A passing game that has underachieved with Kenny Golladay, Kadarius Toney, and Sterling Shepard (who has currently fallen behind Wan ’Dale Robinson in the depth chart). Just check out the production below! And as for a running back by committee situation…well sitting behind Barkley on the depth chart is Matt Breida and Gary Brightwell. His position as workhorse RB1 should be safe in New York.

Golladay 2021 14 games, 76 targets, 37 receptions, 521 yards, 0 touchdowns

Toney 2021 10 games, 57 targets, 39 receptions, 420 yards, 0 touchdowns

Shepard 2021, 7 games, 53 targets, 36 receptions, 366 yards, 1 touchdown, currently PUP

Robinson, 5’8”, 185lb rookie whose preseason stats for game  = 3 targets, 3 receptions, -3 yards


Razzball Writer: Bobby LaMarco

Must Have Player: D’Andre Swift

Current ADP: 13th Overall 


D’Andre Swift is coming off a strong 2021 season where we caught a glimpse of his upside. In the first 10 games of 2021 prior to his injury, Swift averaged 18.7 PPR PPG. That hot start would have put Swift inside the top five in 2022. Another key that should allow Swift to build off his hot start to 2021 is the situation around him. First, his Head Coach Dan Campbell comes from the Saints staff that featured Alvin Kamara as an elite all-around back who would become the RB1 in fantasy. Next, his QB Jared Goff is no stranger to helping his RBs become elite fantasy players. Back in 2017 and 2018, Todd Gurley was the #1 RB in PPR PPG while playing with Goff in Los Angeles. Finally, the Lions boast a top three offensive line according to PFF heading into the 2022 NFL season. All these factors should allow Swift to become a top-five fantasy back this season.  


Razzball Writer: Bobby LaMarco

Must Have Player: James Conner

Current ADP: 31st Overall 


James Conner had a very productive season his first year in Arizona. Conner quietly was the RB9 in PPR PPG while scoring a ridiculous 18 total TDs in 2021. This production led to the Cardinals giving him a solid 3-year 21-million-dollar contract. More importantly, the Cardinals chose to keep Conner over incumbent 2021 starter Chase Edmonds. Now with Edmonds out the door, Conner will be the unquestioned lead back heading into the 2022 season. This is a role that Conner shined in just last year. In the six games without Edmonds, Conner averaged a ridiculous 26.1 PPR PPG. That production would have put Cooner only behind 2019 CMC as the best PPR PPG season over the past decade. This kind of production isn’t new for Conner as he averaged 21.5 PPR PPG back in 2018. Currently being drafted in the middle of the third round, Conner offers weekly RB1 overall upside in 2022.


Sources: Razzball.com, PFF, Football Outsiders, FFToday, Pro Football Reference and Sharp Football Stats.