Fantasy Football Week 9: Kareem Hunt, Christian McCaffrey and other must-starts
By William Schneiderhan
Here’s this week’s edition of top 5 running backs who are must-starts in fantasy football.
Week 8’s edition of top five running backs to start in fantasy football had three of players finish as top 10 scorers in ESPN PPR standard scoring leagues. The names that didn’t make the top 10 may surprise you.
Per usual, Todd Gurley reminded owners why he is the most coveted player in fantasy football with his 33.5 points. He made it four straight games of 30+ points with that performance.
Joe Mixon finally broke out in a big way with 123 rushing yards and two scores. His first 100+ rushing yard game of the year led to 28.8 points.
James White ran for 15 yards but still had 25.4 points due to a rushing score and 10 catches for 79 yards. Saquon Barkley, 20.1 points, and Kareem Hunt, 19.6 points, finished outside the top 10. Here are the top five must-starts heading into Week 9 fantasy football.
5. Adrian Peterson, Washington Redskins
Like a fine wine, Adrian Peterson is only getting better with age. The now 33-year old has fended off father time with a resurgent year for the Washington Redskins.
Peterson was brought in after Redskins second-round pick Derrius Guice tore his ACL. What looked like a desperate move has turned out to be a great pick up.
While Peterson is questionable for the Redskins Week 9 game against the Atlanta Falcons, he is still a must-start. He went for 26.6 points with 149 yards and a score during the team’s Week 8 win against the New York Giants.
The Falcons have contained opposing running backs when it comes to rushing yards. Yet, they have still given up seven rushing touchdowns. Even if AP doesn’t go for a ton of yards, he will still look to punch the rock into the end zone.
Next: 4. Christian McCaffrey
4. Christian McCaffrey, Carolina Panthers
The Carolina Panthers are back, and they’re back in a big way. Cam Newton looks like his former MVP self, the defense is tough as nails and running back Christian McCaffrey has taken a huge step in his second year in the NFL.
McCaffrey fits right into the current trend of running backs. That being, he can run out of the backfield, run routes and catch, and he’s a three-down guy.
The second-year back went for 21.6 points during the Panthers Week 8 win against Baltimore Ravens. He had his first multi-score game of the season with one score on the ground and another through the air.
McCaffrey and his Panthers play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 9. The Bucs are very discombobulated, so the Panthers will be in the driver’s seat all game.
Next: 3. Alvin Kamara
3. Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints
Remember when it looked like Alvin Kamara was going to make the NFL his playground during Week 1-4? Well, he has come back down to Earth since.
Yes, Mark Ingram coming back has played a part. However, Kamara is still the number one for the New Orleans Saints. Therefore, owners shouldn’t worry.
Kamara went for 26.6 points in Week 8. He hauled in a TD catch and punched another score in with his feet.
The Saints host the undefeated Los Angeles Rams in Week 9. New Orleans will have to pound the rock if they hope to have a chance in this one.
Next: 2. Todd Gurley
2. Todd Gurley, Los Angeles Rams
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Todd Gurley and Kamara will be on opposite sidelines in Week 9. Gurley angered a lot of owners when he refused to score a gimme touchdown during the late stages of the Rams’ Week 8 win over the Green Bay Packers.
Still, Gurley had himself a day with 33.5 points. He ran for 114 yards, as well as 81 receiving yards and a score.
The Saints have bolstered their defensive secondary, so Jared Goff may be handing Gurley the ball a bit more. Also, he will be very active catching passes out of the backfield against the Saints linebackers.
Gurley can make it five straight weeks of 30+ points with such a performance against the Saints. Owners consider yourselves lucky with this guy.
Next: 1. Kareem Hunt
1. Kareem Hunt, Kansas City Chiefs
Who doesn’t love to watch the Kansas City Chiefs play football? They have quickly become the most explosive team in the NFL.
Kareem Hunt has been a big part of that, as he has backed up his great rookie season with a solid campaign this year. He has been the perfect complement to Patrick Mahomes.
Hunt had 19.6 points last week. He ran for 50 yards and brought in a TD grab.
This week the Chiefs play the Cleveland Browns. The Browns have given up 10 rushing touchdowns to opposing running backs, which ties them for the league lead with the Arizona Cardinals.