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The 5 O'Clock Club: Poll Rewind - rating the rookie RBs

It’s 5 o’clock somewhere…

Green Bay Packers v Carolina Panthers Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The 5 o’clock club aims to provide a forum for reader-driven discussion at a time of day when there isn’t much NFL news being published. Feel free to introduce topics that interest you in the comments below.

Welcome to the Poll Rewind series!

As you probably know already, each 5 o’clock club post ends with a poll question. Usually, the results are forgotten within a day or two, but no longer!

For the rest of this month we will be re-visiting some (not all) of the results of polls that were published from June to December 2017.

We go back to 5 September 2017 when fantasy owners across the country and around the world were making picks in their fantasy drafts as the NFL season was about to begin.

The poll that day asked:

Question 1: Which ROOKIE running back would you draft first for your fantasy team?

  • Christian McCaffrey39%
  • Leonard Fournette 23%
  • Dalvin Cook 16%
  • Samaje Perine 12%
  • Joe Mixon 10%
  • Alvin Kamara 1%

The list was clearly segmented, with Christian McCaffrey — a guy who had generated tons of hype before the draft and through the off-season — generating a lot of buzz as a rookie who could contribute right away to a fantasy team.

The guy no one was really excited about? Alvin Kamara, who was a 3rd round draft pick who had gone to the Saints to play behind Mark Ingram and Adrian Peterson.

So, what actually happened with these guys?

Kamara turned out to be the best rookie RB in fantasy, due in part to being healthy for all 16 games.

Leonard Fornette, in just 13 games, actually scored at a slightly higher rate of 14.94 points per game, slightly ahead of Kamara’s 14.46 per game.

Dalvin Cook lasted only 4 games before losing the rest of his rookie season to injury, but in those four games, he scored at a 13.6 ppg pace.

McCaffrey turned out to be just a middling choice as a fantasy back, scoring at just over half the rate that Alvin Kamara put up.

Perine in 16 games, and Mixon in 14 games, were underwhelming, and probably weren’t worth a fantasy draft pick in many leagues.

2018 Running backs

There are a number of running backs in this year’s draft who have people excited, with Saquon Barkley firmly ensconced at the top of the list. One has to wonder if there is a dark horse or a “sleeper” out there that is going to make some NFL front office look as smart as the Saints looked last year.


In 2018, which of these sophomore running backs will have the most yards from scrimmage?

This poll is closed

  • 29%
    (120 votes)
  • 42%
    (174 votes)
  • 19%
    (82 votes)
  • 8%
    (37 votes)
413 votes total Vote Now


Who will score the most points in fantasy in 2018?

This poll is closed

  • 16%
    Saquon Barkley
    (70 votes)
  • 33%
    Zeke Elliott
    (140 votes)
  • 16%
    Alvin Kamara
    (67 votes)
  • 10%
    Leonard Fornette
    (44 votes)
  • 6%
    Dalvin Cook
    (27 votes)
  • 3%
    Christian McCaffrey
    (15 votes)
  • 2%
    Ronald Jones II
    (12 votes)
  • 5%
    Derius Guise
    (23 votes)
  • 1%
    Nick Chubb
    (5 votes)
  • 2%
    Sony Michel
    (10 votes)
413 votes total Vote Now