Comments: Projecting Running Backs' Red Zone Opportunities (PREMIUM PREVIEW)

Comments: Projecting Running Backs' Red Zone Opportunities (PREMIUM PREVIEW)

Touchdowns are the most valuable and least predictable statistic in fantasy football. How often have you watched your star running back rack up 40 yards on a drive, take his team to the 2-yard line, and then head to the sideline to watch a second-string back punch in the score? Those "lost" points are incredibly frustrating, even if your starter winds up with 180 total yards.

But while fantasy football is a fluky game, the owners who win championships are those who roster players with maximum opportunity. For running backs, this means touches and, in particular, red zone touches. Your guy can't get the short touchdown every time. But if he gets frequent chances at it, he's way ahead of the curve. Predictability is what we're after here, and the scoring chances of a guy who consistently gets the ball at the 5-yard-line are inherently more predictable than those of a guy who has to rely on 40-yard, home-run-style touchdowns.

Even in today's pass-centric NFL, there's nothing more valuable in fantasy football than a workhorse running back who gets his team's red zone touches. Alternatively, a running back who racks up yardage between the twenties but doesn't touch the ball near the end zone can be a big liability to your starting lineup. Let's take a look at the RBs most likely to hit pay dirt this year, and those who will leave you screaming at your iPad on Sunday afternoon.

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