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We still have one week left until the Fantasy playoffs begin for most leagues, and there's no question, it's a big week. And it's one we're going to be facing without some pretty big names at the running back position: Jonathan Taylor, Aaron Jones, Alvin Kamara, AJ Dillon, David Montgomery, Brian Robinson, Antonio Gibson, and Cordarrelle Patterson are all on bye weeks, while Kenneth Walker, Joe Mixon and others are dealing with injuries. 

That's going to be tough to account for, and it's going to force you into using some players you might otherwise try to avoid. It's the kind of week that tends to render words like "start" or "sit" moot – in one league, I'm missing Kamara, Montgomery, and Gibson; the two best active running backs on my roster before waivers run are Jaylen Warren and Zamir White. Yikes. 

Of course, once we get past this week, bye weeks will be in the rearview mirror for good. Injuries, of course, won't be, and they'll surely shape countless Fantasy championships, and that's one thing I want to focus on this week. You'll find my Week 14 rankings for running back below, but first, let's take a look at some rough tiers for the RB position with an eye on the playoffs. I'm going to break things up into four tiers:

And this last tier might be the most important one to keep in mind when thinking about your bench. You hopefully won't need to start too many of those players, but I think every single one of them should probably be rostered in most of your 12-team leagues, for the simple reason that, in most of those cases, if something happens to the starter, any one of them would be a must-start player – and would likely rank ahead of any of the guys in the third tier at this point. That probably isn't the case for, say, Mike Boone or Keaontay Ingram or Kyren Williams, who aren't as much a priority. 

Hopefully we won't need the likes of Mason or Harris or Kelley in the Fantasy playoffs; that would mean bad things for some of the players who got us here. But injuries happen and you need to be prepared. 

Here are my initial rankings for Week 14:

  1. Christian McCaffrey vs. TB
  2. Austin Ekeler vs. MIA
  3. Derrick Henry vs. JAX
  4. Rhamondre Stevenson @ARI
  5. Joe Mixon vs. CLE
  6. Dalvin Cook @DET
  7. James Conner vs. NE
  8. Tony Pollard vs. HOU
  9. Nick Chubb @CIN
  10. Saquon Barkley vs. PHI
  11. Travis Etienne @TEN
  12. D'Andre Swift vs. MIN
  13. Ezekiel Elliott vs. HOU
  14. Miles Sanders @NYG
  15. Najee Harris vs. BAL
  16. Zonovan Knight @BUF
  17. Jeff Wilson @LAC
  18. Rachaad White @SF
  19. Dameon Pierce @DAL
  20. Devin Singletary vs. NYJ
  21. D'Onta Foreman @SEA
  22. Leonard Fournette @SF
  23. Jamaal Williams vs. MIN
  24. Latavius Murray vs. KC
  25. Jerick McKinnon @DEN
  26. Michael Carter @BUF
  27. Isiah Pacheco @DEN
  28. Raheem Mostert @LAC
  29. Kareem Hunt @CIN
  30. Gus Edwards @PIT
  31. J.K. Dobbins @PIT
  32. James Cook vs. NYJ
  33. Travis Homer vs. CAR
  34. Tony Jones vs. CAR
  35. Mike Boone vs. KC
  36. Rex Burkhead @DAL
  37. Samaje Perine vs. CLE
  38. Joshua Kelley vs. MIA
  39. Dontrell Hilliard vs. JAX
  40. Chuba Hubbard @SEA
  41. Alexander Mattison @DET
  42. Kenneth Gainwell @NYG
  43. Keaontay Ingram vs. NE
  44. Jaylen Warren vs. BAL
  45. Nyheim Hines vs. NYJ
  46. Jamycal Hasty @TEN
  47. Godwin Igwebuike vs. CAR
  48. Jordan Mason vs. TB
  49. Boston Scott @NYG
  50. Matt Breida vs. PHI