As we hit the rough halfway mark of the NFL season, I figured this was a good time to stop and take stock of the running back landscape for Fantasy Football. Week 9 is an especially tough one for running backs with Nick Chubb, Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard, Najee Harris, Kareem Hunt, Melvin Gordon and Latavius Murray all on a bye, which makes it even more necessary than normal to identify who, exactly, we can trust at the position. 

Depending on how you define it and limit it, you could say as many as half of the team's have a different lead back than they did back in Week 1, and while that level of turnover isn't at all unprecedented for the position, it's noteworthy, and highlights the level of uncertainty we're always dealing with at this position. So, before we get to my Week 9 rankings, here's a quick rundown of the tiers of running backs for Fantasy, starting with the guys I definitely trust to start every week no matter what and working our way down from there:

*on a bye in Week 9

The order within the tiers doesn't matter as much as the tiers themselves, so this gives me 18 players I'd say are firmly within the circle of trust – fewer in any given week due to bye weeks or nagging injuries, like the one Jonathan Taylor is dealing with right now with his ankle. That's not very many, and you could argue Conner or Elliott or some of the other guys belong there if healthy – maybe you'd even make the case for D'Onta Foreman, though I think that's an iffy case if Chuba Hubbard is healthy.

And this list could look way different next week. The fungibility of the RB position is one of the few constants in Fantasy Football – we don't know what the RB position will look like, but we know it won't look like how we expect it to for long. 

But that's how it looks to me. Right now, at least. And here are my rankings for Week 9: 

  1. Austin Ekeler @ATL
  2. Alvin Kamara vs. BAL
  3. Josh Jacobs @JAX
  4. Derrick Henry @KC
  5. Joe Mixon vs. CAR
  6. Travis Etienne vs. LV
  7. Rhamondre Stevenson vs. IND
  8. Leonard Fournette vs. LAR
  9. Aaron Jones @DET
  10. Dalvin Cook @WAS
  11. Kenneth Walker @ARI
  12. Antonio Gibson vs. MIN
  13. Raheem Mostert @CHI
  14. D'Onta Foreman @CIN
  15. James Conner vs. SEA
  16. Deon Jackson @NE
  17. Michael Carter vs. BUF
  18. David Montgomery vs. MIA
  19. Kenyan Drake @NO
  20. Khalil Herbert vs. MIA
  21. Devin Singletary @NYJ
  22. Jamaal Williams vs. GB
  23. D'Andre Swift vs. GB
  24. A.J. Dillon @DET
  25. Clyde Edwards-Helaire vs. TEN
  26. Brian Robinson Jr. vs. MIN
  27. Cordarrelle Patterson vs. LAC
  28. James Robinson vs. BUF
  29. Damien Harris vs. IND
  30. Nyheim Hines @NYJ
  31. Darrell Henderson @TB
  32. Rachaad White vs. LAR
  33. Sony Michel @ATL
  34. Dontrell Hilliard @KC
  35. Eno Benjamin vs. SEA
  36. J.D. McKissic vs. MIN
  37. Alexander Mattison @WAS
  38. Isiah Pacheco vs. TEN
  39. Jeff Wilson @CHI
  40. Caleb Huntley vs. LAC
  41. Justice Hill @NO
  42. Cam Akers @TB
  43. Phillip Lindsay @NE
  44. Jamycal Hasty vs. LV
  45. Tyler Allgeier vs. LAC
  46. Dwayne Washington vs. BAL
  47. Samaje Perine vs. CAR
  48. Raheem Blackshear @CIN
  49. Ronnie Rivers @TB
  50. Travis Homer @ARI