The 2024 NFL Draft is in the books, and the biggest wave of free agency is over. That makes it a perfect time to take stock of NFL rosters as we head toward the 2024 season. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be looking at the quarterbacks, running backs, and pass catchers for all 32 NFL Teams. I’ll be ranking each unit 1-16 in their conference. When it comes to taking stock of the whole unit, it’s not just about star power but depth.

After starting with quarterbacks, it’s time to talk backfields. In recent years, the committee approach to running backs has increased to the point that 144 running backs recorded fantasy points in 2023. Today, I start with the NFC, looking at the bottom eight units in the conference.

No. 16: New York Giants

On the Roster: Devin Singletary, Eric Gray, Tyrone Tracy, Jr., and Gary Brightwell

About: The Giants lost Saquon Barkley, so this was always going to be a bit of a fall off. But it was more than a little surprising to see how they played a running back-rich free agent period, then mostly ignored the position in the draft. I don’t want to seem like I’m picking on the Giants, but after not being impressed with their quarterback room, I’m not high on this group of rushers, either.

The Giants did acquire Devin Singletary, who is the leader of the group. He has experience with Brian Daboll, and he was good for the Texans last season, finishing as RB32. I like Singletary, and I like him as a cheaper veteran pickup for 2024. But he’s about the only reliable option in the room right now. Aside from Singletary, the Giants have past prospects in Gray and Brightwell, along with a late-round selection from this year’s draft in Tracy. That doesn’t leave a lot of great options behind a middling line with a sketchy pass offense. Outside of Singletary, I’m not betting on any of them for decent production this season.

No. 15: Dallas Cowboys

On the Roster: Ezekiel Elliott, Rico Dowdle, Royce Freeman, Deuce Vaughn, Malik Davis, and Snoop Connor

About: The Cowboys have a lot of guys on the roster, but they don’t have a lot of great production. The team does welcome back Elliott, who spent 2023 with the Patriots. Last season, Zeke finished as RB30, becoming the guy for the Patriots in the back half of the season when Rhamondre Stevenson was lost for the year.

Behind Zeke, the Cowboys have Dowdle, who was an effective contributor in 2023. He rushed for 361 yards and caught 17 passes in 2023. Beyond that, the team has a mixture of prospects, like Vaughn and Connor, and veteran depth guys like Freeman. It’s not a great room, but if pressed, I like Zeke better than anyone on the Giants’ roster, which helped vault Dallas off the bottom rung.

No. 14: Minnesota Vikings

On the Roster: Aaron Jones, Ty Chandler, Kene Nwangwu, Myles Gaskin, DeWayne McBride

About: This is another group that signed an aging veteran to a one-year deal to lead the room and then has a bunch of prospects. When last we saw Jones, he was dominating for the Packers in the playoffs. But all that came after a season in which he struggled to stay on the field. He managed less than 700 yards in just 11 games last season. That’s a concern for a Vikings team that needs production behind a young QB.

After Jones, the top reserve is Chandler. He showed flashes, rushing for 461 yards and catching 21 passes. But could Chandler carry a heavy load over the season? That’s still a question. There is potential for the Vikings, but still some questions, so I have them lower.

No. 13: Washington Commanders

On the Roster: Austin Ekeler, Brian Robinson, Jr., Chris Rodriguez, and Jeremy McNichols

About: The Commanders are in the midst of an overhaul when it comes to the roster. For the running back room, that means the addition of a veteran in Ekeler. While he didn’t have a great 2023, Ekeler has been a weapon in the past and likely will be used well by Anthony Lynn. He has 440 career receptions and 30 receiving touchdowns. He figures to primarily assist in that way, while Robinson is likely more of the early down runner.

Robinson had a decent 2023, rushing for 733 yards and five touchdowns. Beyond that, the Commanders have a couple ofdevelopment prospects in Rodriguez and McNichols. There’s potential in the group, but it didn’t rise to the level of some other rooms for me.

No. 12: Arizona Cardinals

On the Roster: James Conner, Trey Benson, DeeJay Dallas, Michael Carter, and Emari Demarcado

About: The Cardinals are an interesting group, and it starts at the top with Conner. He’s had a strong run for the Cardinals, rushing for 2,574 yards and 29 touchdowns in three seasons—more than his four-year production for the Steelers. He’s at the top, but durability has always been something of a concern and remains such.

Behind him, the Cardinals have compiled some depth. The team grabbed Benson in the draft, and I loved the landing spot. I think he’s the future in the backfield. In addition, they have depth with Dallas, Carter, and Demarcado, who showed some flashes filling in last season. I like the options for this group and the direction the Cardinals are moving, which was enough to bump them up from where they were a year ago.

No. 11: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

On the Roster: Rachaad White, Chase Edmonds, Bucky Irving, Sean Tucker, and Patrick Laird

About: The Buccaneers are an interesting group. The team is led by White, who had a phenomenal sophomore season. He rushed for 990 yards and six touchdowns, catching 64 passes. That helped him to an RB4 finish. The problem is the depth behind him. Edmonds is a veteran who hasn’t done much in the past few seasons, while Irving and Tucker are raw prospects. It could be a good group, but the lack of certainty in the room had me drop the Buccaneers despite my affinity for White.

No. 10: Carolina Panthers

On the Roster: Chuba Hubbard, Jonathon Brooks, Miles Sanders, Raheem Blacksheer, Mike Boone, and Rashaad Penny

About: The Panthers are trying to rebuild again. This time with Head Coach Dave Canales and around second-year quarterback Bryce Young. The team snagged a running back—Brooks—in the Second Round of the draft, and he figures to be a weapon. But he’s coming off injury and is part of a crowded group.

The rest of the roster includes Hubbard, who rushed for a team-leading 902 yards and five touchdowns in 2023. He showed he could be an effective weapon last season, and now it’s fair to wonder what the split will be. The biggest question is Sanders, a veteran who signed a big deal last off-season and flamed out in 2023. But he remains in the mix—along with newly added veteran Penny, who has a history with Canales. It’s an impressive room, albeit one without a clear sense at this point of roles and production. It felt right seating them here, about the middle of the NFC.

No. 9: Seattle Seahawks

On the Roster: Ken Walker III, Zach Charbonnet, and Kenny McIntosh

About: The Seahawks might feel a bit low. I get it. The team has a great tandem leading the room with Walker and Charbonnet. The two combined for 1,362 yards, nine touchdowns, and 62 receptions. That gives them a formidable group to lead the Seahawks’ ground attack.

The problem is the depth behind that group. McIntosh was a late round selection last season, then the Seahawks have some undrafted free agents filling out the roster. This could be a team that scoops up a veteran after cuts, but for now, they land in the middle of the pack in the NFC for me because of the lack of depth.

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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