2019 NFL Free Agents: Running Backs

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2019 NFL Free Agency: Star rating is out of five. Age listing as of Sept. 1, 2019.
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  1. Le’Veon Bell, RB, Steelers. Age: 27.
    Signed with Jets (4 years, $52.5 million)

    Le’Veon Bell is a bad presence to have in the locker room, but there’s no questioning his talent. His legs will be fresh following a year off, so he could have a huge 2019 campaign.

  2. Mark Ingram, RB, Saints. Age: 29.
    Signed with Ravens (3 years, $15 million)

    Mark Ingram has had his ups and downs in his career, but it’s been mostly up for him lately. He’s turning 30 soon, but he might be hungry to show what he’s capable of doing with the lead back job all to himself.

  3. Jay Ajayi, RB, Eagles. Age: 26.
    Re-signed with Eagles

    Jay Ajayi was excellent during Philadelphia’s Super Bowl run in 2017. He barely played last year, however, because of a torn ACL. Knee injuries can sometimes be scary for running backs, but Ajayi should be ready to go by training camp.

  4. LeSean McCoy, RB, Bills. Age: 31.
    Signed with Chiefs

    LeSean McCoy is on the wrong side of 30, but he showed some good burst during the preseason. He can still be a good starter for the next two years, and even if he regresses as a runner a bit, he still has his great receiving ability.

  5. Adrian Peterson, RB, Redskins. Age: 34.
    Re-signed with Redskins (2 years, $8 million)

    Adrian Peterson defied the skeptics last season and rushed for 1,000 yards in 2018 despite running behind an injury-ravaged offensive line. I imagine Peterson will skip training camp and sign with a team whose starting running back suffers an injury.

  6. Tevin Coleman, RB, Falcons. Age: 26.
    Signed with 49ers (2 years, $10 million)

    Tevin Coleman had the opportunity to have a dominant year as the sole ball-carrier in Atlanta when Devonta Freeman went down with an injury. Coleman disappointed, however, gaining only 800 rushing yards. He averaged 4.8 yards per carry, but that is a misleading stat which came to light because of a couple of long runs versus Arizona’s abysmal defense.

  7. C.J. Anderson, RB, Lions. Age: 28.
    It’s bizarre that C.J. Anderson was on the open market for so long. Some team finally signed him, and Anderson rewarded the Rams for doing so. Anderson had two terrific performances down the stretch in relief of an injured/resting Todd Gurley. Anderson is still just 28, so he can be a starter.

  8. Marshawn Lynch, RB, Raiders. Age: 33.
    Signed with Seahawks

    Marshawn Lynch still looked like he had plenty left in the tank this season, averaging 4.2 yards per carry behind one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL. Lynch turns 33 in April and could sign with a contender on a 1-year deal.

  9. Alex Collins (RFA), RB, Ravens. Age: 25.
    Alex Collins showed some good running ability in 2017, nearly hitting 1,000 rushing yards on just 212 carries. He regressed in 2018, however. The Ravens split too many carries with him, so it didn’t seem like Collins could ever get into a rhythm.

  10. Spencer Ware, RB, Chiefs. Age: 27.
    Signed with Colts (1 year, $1.3 million)

    It’s easy to forget that Spencer Ware was a decent starting running back prior to the Kareem Hunt draft pick. Ware nearly rushed for 1,000 yards in 2016, but missed all of 2017 with a knee injury.

  11. T.J. Yeldon, RB, Jaguars. Age: 25.
    Signed with Bills

    T.J. Yeldon never developed into a strong runner after being chosen early in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft. However, he’s been a tremendous receiver out of the backfield; he caught 55 passes last year. Yeldon could be a nice weapon for a team that can figure out how to use him properly.

  12. Latavius Murray, RB, Vikings. Age: 29.
    Signed with Saints (4 years, $14.4 million)

    Latavius Murray turns 29 this offseason, but he doesn’t have lots of mileage on his body, as he’s carried the ball 200-plus times just twice in his career. Murray is a decent runner who can be an effective receiver out of the backfield.

  13. Doug Martin, RB, Raiders. Age: 30.
    Doug Martin just turned 30, but he didn’t play too poorly for the Raiders. He averaged 3.9 yards per carry despite running behind one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL. He can still be a fill-in starter for a team with an injury at the position.

  14. Isaiah Crowell, RB, Jets. Age: 26.
    Signed with Raiders

    Isaiah Crowell has a lot of natural talent, and he flashed it early in 2016 before the Browns had offensive line issues. However, he’s been a disappointment since. He struggled in 2018 outside of three games. Crowell has motivational issues that he must overcome.

  15. Peyton Barber (RFA), RB, Buccaneers. Age: 25.
    Re-signed with Buccaneers (1 year)

    Peyton Barber is a tough runner who gained 871 yards last year despite running behind a poor blocking group. Barber shouldn’t be a starter in the NFL, but he’s a top-tier backup.

  16. Theo Riddick, RB, Lions. Age: 28.
    To say that Theo Riddick is not a good runner is being kind, but he’s a strong pass-catching threat out of the backfield. Riddick has logged 114 receptions in the past two years and should still be a viable third-down receiver for his next team.

  17. Frank Gore, RB, Dolphins. Age: 36.
    Signed with Bills (1 year, $2 million)

    Frank Gore somehow was able to fend off Kenyan Drake as the starting running back, averaging 4.6 yards per carry behind an offensive line that wasn’t very good. He plans to return for 2019 despite turning 36 in May.

  18. Carlos Hyde, RB, Jaguars. Age: 28.
    Signed with Chiefs (1 year, $2.8 million)

    Carlos Hyde won the Most Unimportant Player of the Year Award in 2018, so he’s lucky to be getting a two-star rating in free agency. Hyde was absolutely useless for both the Browns and Jaguars last year, but he’s still just 28 and has some talent, so perhaps he can rebound.

  19. Darren Sproles, RB, Eagles. Age: 36.
    Re-signed with Eagles (1 year)

    Despite his age, Darren Sproles can make some nifty moves to pick up big gains once in a while. Unfortunately, that won’t last much longer.

  20. Jalen Richard (RFA), RB, Raiders. Age: 25. — Tendered by Raiders (2nd round)
  21. Bilal Powell, RB, Jets. Age: 30. — Re-signed with Jets
  22. Jeremy Hill, RB, Patriots. Age: 26.
  23. Mike Davis, RB, Seahawks. Age: 26. — Signed with Bears (2 years, $6 million)
  24. Alfred Blue, RB, Texans. Age: 28.
  25. Rob Kelley (RFA), RB, Redskins. Age: 26. — Signed with Saints
  26. Raheem Mostert (RFA), RB, 49ers. Age: 27. — Re-signed with 49ers (3 years)
  27. Buck Allen, RB, Ravens. Age: 28. — Signed with Giants
  28. Ty Montgomery, RB, Ravens. Age: 26. — Signed with Jets
  29. Zach Zenner, RB, Lions. Age: 27.
  30. Malcolm Brown (RFA), RB, Rams. Age: 26. — Re-signed with Rams
  31. Jacquizz Rodgers, RB, Saints. Age: 29.
  32. J.D. McKissic (RFA), RB, Seahawks. Age: 26.
  33. Chris Ivory, RB, Bills. Age: 31.
  34. De’Anthony Thomas, RB/ST, Chiefs. Age: 26. — Re-signed with Chiefs
  35. Benny Cunningham, RB, Bears. Age: 29.
  36. Cameron Artis-Payne, RB, Panthers. Age: 29.
  37. Corey Grant, RB, Jaguars. Age: 27. — Signed with Packers
  38. Alfred Morris, RB, Cardinals. Age: 30.
  39. Kapri Bibbs, RB, Packers. Age: 26.
  40. LeGarrette Blount, RB, Lions. Age: 32.
  41. Kenjon Barner, RB, Panthers. Age: 30. — Signed with Falcons
  42. Fozzy Whittaker, RB, Panthers. Age: 30.
  43. Stevan Ridley, RB, Steelers. Age: 30.
  44. Jon Hilliman, RB, Giants. Age: 23.
  45. Shane Vereen, RB, Saints. Age: 30.
  46. Charcandrick West, RB, Chiefs. Age: 28. — Signed with Colts
  47. Byron Marshall (RFA), RB, Redskins. Age: 25.
  48. D.J. Foster (RFA), RB, Cardinals. Age: 25. — Re-signed with Cardinals
  49. Daniel Lasco (RFA), RB, Saints. Age: 31.

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