Free Agency has been a wild ride. It feels like nearly half the league has changed teams in the last week, leading to plenty of shifting value. So, for the next few pieces, I’ll be looking at some winners and losers from free agency by position. Today, it’s running backs.

Stock Up

Saquon Barkley, Philadelphia Eagles

About: Barkley is a good back. He was RB13 behind a mediocre line in a mediocre offense in New York. Now, he’s in a better situation with the Eagles. Not only do the Eagles have a more robust offense, but the team also brought in Kellen Moore to run the offense. The 2023 season wasn’t great for Moore in Los Angeles, but in 2022 in Dallas, he had Tony Pollard at RB8 and Ezekiel Elliott at RB22. Barkley figures to get the volume as a three-down option. He’s easily an RB1. It’s a great player in a great location.

Joe Mixon, Houston Texans

About: Mixon’s production and efficiency have slipped over the past few seasons, but he gets a fresh start in Houston as the lead back in a good offense. Getting a three-year extension gives him some security and shows that the Texans value his ability to contribute. In a good Cincinnati offense, Mixon was RB6 last season. He’ll get volume, and he can produce. He’s got RB1 value again in Houston.

Josh Jacobs, Green Bay Packers

About: In 2022, Jacobs received incredible volume and dominated. He finished as RB3. He signed a massive four-year deal with the Packers. He figures to get plenty of volume. While A.J. Dillon is back, it was a low-money signing. Jacobs is the featured back for a team that likes to run and knows how to use its backs. I like Jacobs as an RB1.

Zamir White, Las Vegas Raiders

About: Jacobs is gone, giving White an opportunity. Starting the final four games of the 2023 season with Jacobs out, White finished as RB9, averaging 15.2 points per game. He showed he could carry the load. So, will he get a chance in 2024? Yes, the Raiders added Alexander Mattison. But when given an opportunity to start in Minnesota, it fizzled. Mattison was released by the Vikings as a result. Mattison provides depth and will contribute, but I like White as the lead back here. If you’ve stashed him the past few years, 2024 could well be a year to cash in.

Stock Down

A.J. Dillon, Green Bay Packers

About: As noted above, the Packers re-signed Dillon. But the splashy signing was Jacobs, a three-down grinder. In 15 games and 178 carries in 2023, Dillon averaged just 3.4 yards per carry. He also wasn’t much of a factor in the passing game. He provides depth and will have a role, but Jacobs is the main attraction in Green Bay. His lack of traction in the free agent market shows that Dillion has settled into a role-player category.

Tyjae Spears, Tennessee Titans

About: Was Spears really going to be the guy for the Titans? Some thought he would be when it was clear Derrick Henry was moving on. I wasn’t so sure. When the Titans signed Tony Pollard to a three-year deal, it was clear Spears’ path to RB1 was blocked. Will he be involved? Sure, Spears was involved in 2023 and could even have a bigger role in 2024. He’s the grinder in this offense now that Henry is gone. But he’s still just an RB3 for me.

Khalil Herbert, Chicago Bears

About: Since his rookie year, we’ve waited for Herbert to break out. Now, as he enters the final year of his rookie deal, we’re still waiting. Now, the Bears are re-making their offense and brought in D’Andre Swift on a three-year deal. The team also has Roschon Johnson, who is heading into his second year. Herbert is a contributor, and he has talent. But he’s also a Sixth-Round selection entering the final year of his rookie contract. He has unknown week-to-week value in 2024 and has dwindling dynasty value owing to his lack of a long-term future.

Ty Chandler, Minnesota Vikings

About: Chandler was another darling before free agency began. While Mattison faded down the stretch for the Vikings, Chandler picked it up. From Week 10 on, he finished as RB29, averaging 10.9 points per game. With Mattison released, there was hope that Chandler might be the guy in Minnesota. Instead, the Vikings snapped up Aaron Jones on a one-year deal. Chandler will still be involved, but Jones is likely the better and lead back.

Matthew Fox is a die-hard NFL fan and Broncos’ homer. He’s a member of the FSWA. You can find more from him on Twitter @knighthawk7734 or as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast, a part of the Campus2Canton Network.

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