With at least three rookies rushing for 1,000+ yards and with five backs facing the legitimate prospect of rushing for 1,500 yards this year, running backs are clearly having a banner year. Check out our NFL picks for the Top 5 running backs in football in 2012.
1: Adrian Peterson – There’s just no doubt about this one. AP came off of a torn ACL at the end of last year and has 1,600 rushing yards in just 13 games, averaging a stunning 6.04 yards per carry. He’s also one of the league’s leaders in rushing attempts with 265, and he is one of the five running backs with at least a total of 10 TDs on the campaign.
2: Arian Foster – Foster is overlooked because he is averaging just 3.85 yards per carry this year, but he leads the league in total carries (298) and total touchdowns (16). When all is said and done, Foster will have at least 1,500 all-purpose yards for the third straight season, and he has hit double digits in TDs on the ground as well.
3: Jamaal Charles – Just how good of a back do you have to be in order to be fifth in the league in rushing when you’ve got two of the worst quarterbacks in the league rotating as starters? Charles isn’t the flashiest back, and he does only have five TDs all year long, but he has 1,220 yards and is one of the three true running backs in the league averaging more than 5.0 yards per carry.
4: Marshawn Lynch – Beast Mode is back, and he has been awesome this year. Lynch has 1,266 yards on the ground and a total of nine touchdowns. He isn’t a great pass catcher, but he does get the ball a ton, and the offense for the Seahawks revolves around his ability to get yards between the tackles.
5: Doug Martin – Martin has been the most explosive of the rookie rushers this year, as he has 11 TDs and a total of 1,612 all-purpose yards. Martin has touched the ball 299 times already in his first year in the NFL, and he has had six games out of eight with at least one TD since Week 7.