Community Tailgate: Who Will Lead NFL In Rushing?

We’re still a few weeks away from the start of regular-season battles on the NFL gridiron, but there’s no offseason when it comes to debate amongst fans. This summer, we launched a new series here at PFR known as the Community Tailgate. What’s the Community Tailgate all about? Well, it’s pretty simple. Every weekday, we’ll highlight one of the top stories going on in the NFL. Then, in the comment section below, we want you to weigh in and let us know what you think.

Of course, while the debate may get spirited, we ask that it all stays respectful. If you need a reminder of our rules, please check out our commenting policy. Basically, we ask that you refrain from inappropriate language, personal insults, and attacks. Speaking of commenting: we’ve made it much easier to leave a comment here at Pro Football Rumors. You are no longer required to be a registered user – simply put in your name, email address, and comment and submit.

Today, we’re shifting our focus to a position that has evolved significantly over the last decade or two. For the most part, NFL running backs are no longer expected to carry the ball 350 times in a season, with most teams employing a backfield that features multiple ball-carriers who share the load.

The reduced workload for top running backs means that, with a few exceptions, we won’t see many ball-carriers approaching the 2,000-yard mark anymore. A year ago, only one back ran for more than 1,400 yards, with DeMarco Murray racking up 1,845 — Le’Veon Bell finished second, with 1,361.

According to betting site, both Murray and Bell are among the top candidate to lead the NFL in rushing yards in 2015, but it’s former MVP Adrian Peterson who is viewed as the favorite. Peterson turned 30 this year, and he missed all but one game in 2014 due to legal troubles, but he has made it his goal to shoot for an outrageous 2,500 rushing yards, and he has a history of defying the odds — his 2,097-yard season in 2012 came after he returned from an ACL tear.

Besides Peterson, Murray, and Bell, several of the usual veteran contenders are near the top of Bovada’s list of favorites for the rushing title, including Marshawn Lynch, Jamaal Charles, and LeSean McCoy. The site also gives younger backs Eddie Lacy, Jeremy Hill, and C.J. Anderson strong odds of challenging for the crown.

What do you think? Who will lead the NFL in rushing yards in 2015? Will it be a veteran like Peterson or Murray, or will a younger player earn the honor for the first time in his career?

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11 comments on “Community Tailgate: Who Will Lead NFL In Rushing?

  1. Nodair

    Charles most yards overall from scrimmage

  2. Jarrett

    Player: Marshawn Lynch
    Team: Eagles

  3. Mike

    Lesean McCoy

  4. Troy

    Player:Lesean McCoy
    Go Hawks

  5. Todd

    Eddy Lacy will bring home the title if GBs line can stay healthy. Losing Nelson wont be as big of a deal if they figure out a way to make his production up on the ground. I see more run plays for Lacy now, and with that OLINE(when healthy), they are easily one of the best rushing teams in the NFL….with the best QB to draw attention from the run.

    • Rory Parks

      I’d have to agree. The group of wideouts behind Cobb is not especially inspiring, and Lacy just looked so explosive last year. Even with Rodgers under center, one would think they’ll run a little more after the Nelson injury. The rest of the candidates, with the possible exception of Lynch, have some question marks; the only question mark with Lacy is whether or not he will get enough touches to get the crown. Otherwise, he’s in a prime position to succeed.

  6. Dallas Robinson

    Lot of good arguments here. Murray won’t get the touches to take home the title, and I have concerns about the offensive lines in KC, Denver, Buffalo, and Seattle. The Packers will pass too much for Lacy to come close, so I guess I’ll bite the bullet and take Charles, even though I worry about their front five.

  7. Sam Robinson

    If Charles had a better line, I would take him. But I’ll go with Hill. Their offense seems to be geared around him, although Anderson’s chances improved significantly yesterday.

  8. Bernaldo

    No doubt about it; Adrian Peterson. Never, ever bet against Adrian Peterson!

  9. Rob DiRe

    I am going to back Adrian Peterson this year. Can’t see the Bills having a leading rusher, with horrible quarterback play and Fred Jackson stealing carries. Le’Veon Bell’s suspension knocks him down a peg, and DeMarco Murray splitting carries takes him out.

    Eddie Lacy and Jamaal Charles won’t get the carries, for Lacy because they will throw too much and for Charles because they will limit his touches. Marshawn Lynch could push it, but the offensive line is a little weak. Not that the Vikings is tops in the league, but can’t argue with betting on the best player when no one else separates from the pack.

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