Fantasy Football RB Handcuffs

Frank AmmiranteSenior Sports Writer
Last Updated: Sep 20, 2023

Welcome to the fantasy football running back depth charts and handcuffs page.

Be sure to use it as a guide for you to understand which running backs have the lead role and who is next in line in the backfield.

By deciphering each team’s depth chart, you’ll have an edge on your opponents when it comes to finding the next running back who can take the job and run with it, also known as handcuffs.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the running back depth charts for each NFL team.

Fantasy Football RB Depth Charts & Handcuffs

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You can also get a sense of where each running back stacks up among the broader player pool with our fantasy football rankings.

Now, on to the RB handcuff breakdowns, outlined in the table below.

Fantasy Football RB Handcuff Rankings

RkTeamRunning BackNext In LineWatchJob SecurityNotes
149ersChristian McCaffreyElijah MitchellJordan MasonGREAT
2CowboysTony PollardRico DowdleDeuce VaughnGREAT
3FalconsBijan RobinsonTyler AllgeierCordarrelle Patterson (Q)GREAT
4RaidersJosh JacobsZamir WhiteAmeer AbdullahGREAT
5TitansDerrick HenryTyjae SpearsJulius ChestnutGREAT
6JaguarsTravis EtienneTank BigsbyD'Ernest JohnsonGREAT
7SeahawksKenneth Walker IIIZach CharbonnetDeejay DallasGREAT
8BengalsJoe MixonTrayveon WilliamsChris Evans (Q)SOLID
9PatriotsRhamondre StevensonEzekiel ElliottTy MontgomerySOLID
10BuccaneersRachaad WhiteSean TuckerChase EdmondsSOLID
11BillsJames CookDamien HarrisLatavius MurraySOLID
12RamsKYREN WILLIAMSRonnie RiversZach EvansSOLIDWilliams has emerged as the bellcow.
13DolphinsRaheem MostertSalvon Ahmed (Q)Devon AchaneSOLID
14CommandersBrian RobinsonAntonio GibsonChris RodriguezSOLID
15CardinalsJames ConnerKeaontay IngramEmari DemarcadoSOLID
16PanthersMiles SandersChuba HubbardRaheem BlackshearSOLID
17BrownsJEROME FORDKareem HuntPierre Strong Jr.SOLIDExpect Ford to carry the load.
18ChiefsIsiah PachecoJerick McKinnonClyde Edwards-HelaireSOLID
19TexansDameon PierceDevin SingletaryMike BooneSOLID
20SteelersNajee HarrisJaylen WarrenAnthony McFarland Jr.SHAKY
21VikingsAlexander MattisonTy ChandlerKene NwangwuSHAKY
22LionsJahmyr GibbsCraig ReynoldsZonovan KnightCOMMITTEE
23EaglesD'ANDRE SWIFTKenneth Gainwell (Q)Boston ScottCOMMITTEESwift looks like the best bet in Philly.
24ColtsZACK MOSSDeon JacksonJake FunkTEMPORARYMoss is getting a lot of work for the Colts.
25ChargersJoshua KelleyElijah DotsonAustin Ekeler (Q)TEMPORARY
26PackersA.J. DillonPatrick TaylorAaron Jones (Q)TEMPORARY
27BroncosJavonte WilliamsSamaje PerineJaleel McLaughlinCOMMITTEE
28JetsBreece HallDalvin CookMichael CarterCOMMITTEEThis is an ugly committee right now.
29RavensGus EdwardsJustice Hill (Q)Melvin GordonCOMMITTEE
30BearsKHALIL HERBERTRoschon JohnsonTravis HomerCOMMITTEEWe could see a change in this backfield soon.
31SaintsKendre MillerTony JonesAlvin Kamara (SUSP)COMMITTEE
32GiantsMatt BreidaGary BrightwellEric GrayTEMPORARY

Fantasy Football RB Backfield News

Now, on to the latest happenings in backfields, which are all current as of Wednesday, Sept. 20.

Rams: Kyren Williams emerges as the bellcow

With Cam Akers deactivated for Week 2 and now on the trade block, Kyren Williams continues to carry the load for the Rams. In Week 2, Williams handled 78% of the rush attempts with 80% route participation.

  • Kyren Williams Fantasy Tip: We’re seeing phenomenal usage for Williams, as he clearly has earned the trust of the Rams’ coaching staff. We can consider him on the RB1/RB2 fringe for the foreseeable future.

Browns: Expect Jerome Ford to carry the load

Nick Chubb is out for the season, which provides Jerome Ford an opportunity to carry the load for the Browns. Ford looked terrific on Monday Night Football, rushing 16 times for 106 yards and adding 25 receiving yards.

  • Jerome Ford Fantasy Tip: While the Browns brought back Kareem Hunt, I’m still betting on a 60-40 split in favor of Ford, which is still a rock-solid role in today’s NFL. Consider Ford as an upside RB2 going forward.

Eagles: D’Andre Swift looks like the best bet in Philly

D’Andre Swift balled out in Kenneth Gainwell‘s absence last Thursday, putting up 175 rushing yards on 28 carries. You have to think that Swift has earned the lead role in this backfield, but there’s the risk that Gainwell will still take away touches.

  • D’Andre Swift Fantasy Tip: I envision this backfield eventually turning into something similar to last year, where Swift plays the Miles Sanders role, and Gainwell retains his change-of-pace usage. For now, we’ll be cautious in considering this a committee.

Prepare for your fantasy NFL drafts with more tips

Colts: Zack Moss is dominating the touches

Zack Moss returned to action in Week 2 and completely dominated the touches for the Colts, handling 86% of the rush attempts and putting up 91% route participation. This keeps him on the RB2 radar going forward, until Jonathan Taylor returns (if that ends up being the case).

  • Zack Moss Fantasy Tip: I’d bet that once Taylor is eligible to return from PUP (Week 5), he’ll be back in the mix. Taylor doesn’t have any leverage on the Colts and the team’s asking price is too high. Until then, enjoy the ride with Moss, but it feels like it’ll be temporary.

Jets: This looks like an ugly committee right now

Not only is the Jets’ offense a disaster with Zach Wilson under center, but they’re now using a three-way committee between Breece Hall (36% rush attempts, 26% routes), Dalvin Cook (36% rush attempts, 24% routes), and Michael Carter (18% rush attempts, 38% routes).

  • Breece Hall Fantasy Tip: Hall is clearly the most talented back here and should see increased usage sooner rather than later. But for now, it’s hard to trust him as anything more than a FLEX play. This is a low-volume offense with limited scoring upside right now.

Bears: We could see a change in this backfield soon

D’Onta Foreman was a healthy scratch in Week 2, where Khalil Herbert (47% rush attempts, 44% routes) led the way over Roschon Johnson (27% rush attempts, 36% routes). However, according to Dan Graziano of ESPN, it’s only a matter of time before Johnson becomes the 1A in this backfield.

  • Khalil Herbert Fantasy Tip: This is bad news for Herbert, especially on a Bears team that looks like the worst team in the NFL right now. Chicago could prefer to see what they have in the rookie Johnson. I’d leave both players on your bench for Week 3 until we see more clarity.


Frank Ammirante

Frank Ammirante is a Senior Sports Writer at The Game Day. Previously, he wrote for 4for4 Football and RotoBaller. Frank is a member of the Fantasy Sports Writer's Association while maintaining an active presence within the community. He has competed in industry contests like the Scott Fish Bowl, The Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational, and more. Frank will be making his debut in Tout Wars this year. He's got a diverse sporting background, but specializes in football and baseball.

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