What You Expect is always here to provide you with details when it comes to an NFL free agent, specifically running backs. Outside of Quarterback, the free-agent running backs may be the strongest unit. We will only get into the running backs that will be free agents however there are players such as Ezekiel Elliot and Aaron Jones who may become free agents due to cap space. Elliot stated he would take a pay cut to stay with the team.
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1 Saquon Barkley
I am unsure if I am being a homer or if I truly believe that Saquon is the best free-agent running back. Barkley had an incredible season and led the Giants to the divisional round of the playoffs. Saquon has already rejected the Giant’s 12 million dollar extension thus he will become a free agent. I believe that it is mandatory for the Giants to keep Barkley thus I expect him to stay for 13/14 million a year.
Prediction: New York Giants
2 Josh Jacobs
Josh Jacobs proved all of the doubters wrong in 2022. Jacobs led the NFL in rushing yards as well as became an All-Pro running back. Jacobs has mentioned that he wants to win; however, I believe it is his time to go get paid. Jacobs does not have any loyalty to the crappy Raiders thus I expect him to go to the team that can pay him the most. Jacobs will become the highest-paid running back this offseason and will not have to worry about supporting his big family.
Prediction: Chicago Bears
3 Tony Pollard
Tony Pollard killed it this year as the Dallas Cowboys number-two running back. The Cowboys have already shown their willingness to keep Pollard. Pollard getting injured in the playoffs may mean that the Cowboys can keep both of their running backs this offseason.
Prediction: Dallas Cowboys
4 Miles Sanders
Miles Sanders is one of the unsung heroes of the NFC Champion Eagles. Sanders only was paid 1.7 million dollars thus I expect him to get more this offseason after tallying over 1,000 yards. The Eagles GM is good at keeping his core thus I expect him to be back in green.
Prediction: Philadelphia Eagles
5 David Montgomery
I personally feel that David Montgomery is a very average running back. He averages 3.9 yards-per-carry over his entire career; however, I feel he will finesse some team into thinking he is good. There is one team that I do feel Montgomery can go to and be successful. If the opportunity does present itself, Montgomery should definitely go to the Ravens. Montgomery and Dobbins together could help the Ravens win because you know they hate to throw the ball. The Raiders may also be a fit.
Prediction: Baltimore Ravens
6 Kareem Hunt
Kareem Hunt is the biggest question mark of this offseason. There will be a team that may be able to land a top 5 running back on a discount. Hunt has shown flashes with the browns in minimal time behind Nick Chubb. I expect Hunt to go to a good team that needs running back help on a one-year prove-it deal.
Prediction: Buffalo Bills
7 Devin Singletary
Devin Singletary is the odd man out. It always feels as though the Buffalo Bills never trust Singletary to carry the load of their offense. Singletary has a career 4.7 yards-per-carry; however, has never reached 1,000 yards in a season. He will go to a team who had a disappointing season and will be bargain-hunting the offseason.
Prediction: LA Rams
8 James Robinson
James Robinson showed last season that he still has juice left. Surprisingly, James Robinson is only 24 years old. He was unable to do anything with the Jets due to injury. I expect Robinson to land a short-term prove-it deal. The future Super-Bowl-winning Kansas City Chiefs love to bring in running backs who had success at previous stops so we know where he will be going.
Prediction: Kansas City Chiefs
9 Jamaal Williams
Jamaal Williams broke Barry Sanders’s Lions single-season touchdown record with 17 touchdowns. Williams has proven to be one of the best goal-line running backs in the NFL. I believe there will be a large market for Williams; however, Williams seems very happy to be in Detriot.
Prediction: Detriot Lions
10 Alexander Mattison
A lot of people may question why I have Alexander Mattison in my top 10 NFL free-agent running backs but he is only 24 years old. Mattison also provided exactly the same production as Dalvin Cook when Cook gets injured. Mattison and Cook even look exactly the same on the field. I believe a team such as the Giants or Raiders could pay Mattison as a stop-gap running back if they were to lose Jacobs or Barkley.
Prediction: Las Vegas Raiders