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Ranking and Scouting Top Player Picks for 2010 Fantasy Football


By R.C. Fischer

RB PP ATT:  A Metric to Help You Make the Top / Best Picks for RB

PP-ATT for Running Backs (2009 Games 1-15) is a RB’s total Fantasy Football points (Rushing/Receiving) compared to their attempts (rushing attempts + receptions).

Data Note: 
  • We typically run ’09 Fantasy Football stats based on just Games 1-15, as Game 16 usually throws off the “normal” performances/stats.

  • We do have partial games measured in fractions where we can account for it, so a player who played 1st half and was injured and couldn’t play for 2nd half, would have a 0.5 games played for that game.

  • Standard fantasy football scoring, no bonuses


I have been looking at a Metric to study Fantasy Football performance based on “opportunity”. A statistic similar to a “points per minute” in basketball (or rebounds per minute, etc). In Basketball it is used as a way to judge players that maybe have their stats “pushed” a bit by the number of minutes that they are on the court (opportunity, in a sense) or vice-versa, it can find a player that is really performing well in limited minutes – then you are left to drool at the possibility if you extrapolate the numbers with more playing time/minutes.

In that same vein, I ran a Metric on RB’s called Points Per Attempt (PP-ATT).  PP-ATT for Running Backs (2009 Games 1-15) is a RB’s total Fantasy Football points (Rushing/Receiving) compared to their attempts (rushing attempts + receptions).

Logic follows that players that have a high PP-ATT, if given more attempts or their situation has changed to take more of the workload then these players (theoretically) could really “breakout” in 2010. Players that get plenty of “attempts” already – we might be able to judge between the “great” vs. those not so great that just compiled stats on a lot of “attempts”.

More attempts or carries could take a toll on smaller RB’s, so maybe the “smaller” RB’s will never be able to get those high “attempts” counts – that has to be factored in before rushing too far ahead of this. The only RB’s under 200 pounds (trusting listed weights) on the Top 20 PP-ATT list are Forsett (194) and Bradshaw (198).

Top 20 BEST PP-ATT for RB’s 2009 (100+ carries – Games 1-15)

  1. 0.86 = Chris Johnson, TEN
  2. 0.84 = Pierre Thomas, NO
  3. 0.80 = Ricky Williams. MIA
  4. 0.80 = Michael Turner, ATL
  5. 0.79 = Frank Gore, SF
  6. 0.77 = Adrian Peterson, MIN
  7. 0.77 = Jonathan Stewart, CAR
  8. 0.76 = Ray Rice, BAL
  9. 0.75 = Ahmad Bradshaw, NYG
  10. 0.75 = Maurice Jones-Drew, JAC
  11. 0.75 = Ronnie Brown, MIA
  12. 0.74 = Justin Forsett, SEA
  13. 0.71 = Beanie Wells, ARI
  14. 0.71 = Joseph Addai, IND
  15. 0.71 = Jamaal Charles, KC
  16. 0.71 = Tim Hightower, ARI
  17. 0.71 = DeAngelo Williams, CAR
  18. 0.68 = Jason Snelling, ATL
  19. 0.68 = Rashard Mendenhall, PIT
  20. 0.68 = Felix Jones, DAL

Couple of thoughts from the list:

Pierre Thomas at # 2 overall, very interesting

I really loved PT going into 2009; he averaged 12.0 ppg last season (throw out game 16 and the one game early on where played like 2-3 plays). Just looking at games where he had 10 or more carries, Thomas averaged 13.8 ppg, which is Top 10 fantasy football ppg scoring territory among RB’s. Thomas frustrated me at times in 2009, especially when Sean Payton would interject Mike Bell on goal line situations and Reggie Bush would wake up every so often. Now Mike Bell is gone (PA), and Mike Bell had a very underrated season.

Thomas scored 0.84 PP-ATT in ’09 (147 carries, 39 rec), following up an impressive 0.93 PP-ATT in 2008 (129 carries, 31 rec). Thomas went for 0.75 PP-ATT in very limited time in 2007 (52 carries, 17 rec). Every season Thomas earns more carries and receptions, and maintains a high PP-ATT. If PT gets 200+ carries in 2010, his could be a great draft pick value in 2010 after the typical first wave of RB’s are taken.

Is Ahmad Bradshaw (# 9 overall in PP-ATT) one to watch in 2010?

Bradshaw continues to wrestle carries away from Brandon Jacobs? I didn’t really have him on my radar until I started running this number. Jacobs will be 28 years old, and Bradshaw 24 this upcoming season. What if Bradshaw takes over the majority of the carries in 2010 due to performance, or a Jacobs injury? Jacobs had a PP-ATT of 0.59, 33rd best among RB’s in 2009….a huge drop from his great 0.90 per game 2008. In limited time in 2008 (67 carries, 5 rec) Bradshaw had a PP-ATT of 0.72, followed by the 0.75 PP-ATT in 2009.

An additional 100 “attempts” in 2009 for Bradshaw (which would take/project him to only 220 carries, + 30 catches as an example), and he moves into a top 10 RB fantasy football PPG performer. In 2009 Bradshaw was 28th in fantasy football PPG among RB’s, yet he is taken about 35-40th +/- in most Mock Drafts I have participated in pre-season. With more carries/receptions Bradshaw’s 2010 projections could easily move into the top 20 best RB’s for 2010. Could wind up to be a great later round steal.

20-40th BEST PP-ATT for RB’s 2009 (100+ carries – Games 1-15)

  1. 0.67 = Thomas Jones, NYJ/KC
  2. 0.67 = Ryan Grant, GB
  3. 0.65 = Jerome Harrison, CLE
  4. 0.65 = LaDainian Tomlinson, SD/NYJ
  5. 0.64 = Cadillac Williams, TB
  6. 0.64 = Steve Slaton, HOU
  7. 0.63 = Marion Barber, DAL
  8. 0.63 = Lawrence Maroney, NE
  9. 0.63 = Michael Bush, OAK
  10. 0.62 = Correll Buckhalter, DEN
  11. 0.60 = LeSean McCoy, PHI
  12. 0.59 = Brandon Jacobs, NYG
  13. 0.57 = Mike Bell, NO/PHI
  14. 0.55 = Derrick Ward, TB
  15. 0.55 = Kevin Smith, DET
  16. 0.54 = Knowshon Moreno, DEN
  17. 0.54 = Fred Jackson, BUF
  18. 0.54 = Cedric Benson, CIN
  19. 0.54 = Justin Fargas, OAK
  20. 0.53 = Steven Jackson, STL

Thomas Jones, not in the top 20

Awesome 2009, top 10 overall RB fantasy football scorer -- but again I drill on (sorry to my regulars) the fact that 2009 was more about the Jets O-Line and game plan of force-feeding the run. On this PP-ATT Metric he is # 21. Jones is going to be trouble for the fantasy football GM that drafts him in 2010; the 2010 KC situation is nothing like the 2009 Jets one. Jones will have little impact on Jamal Charles, in my opinion (you can see more on this on a prior article).

LeSean McCoy at # 31

McCoy had plenty of opportunity in 2009 with Westbrook down often with injury. Yet, McCoy never really capitalized on it. McCoy looks like (size and performance) like he may fall into a “3rd down RB” role vs. a feature back like Westbrook. A lot Fantasy Football 2010 Mock Drafters are taking McCoy high. Andy Reid may not even be as high on McCoy’s every down prowess, picking up Mike Bell in Free Agency. Full analysis on McCoy’s 2009, and 2010 look ahead available on an article still posted on the website.

300+ Carry Club, not in the top 30

Fred Jackson (#37) and Cedric Benson both had 300+ carries in 2009, and had very low PP-ATT. Benson is very dependent on “attempts”. Will he get them in 2010? We’re pretty sure Fred Jackson won’t. Jackson’s 2009 is more about opportunities then his greatness, and now I fear Benson’s maybe the same. The question on Benson will be, will he get all the touches again in 2010? Appears that way, but if the early “buzz” on Bernard Scott’s summer workouts have some truth – that would start to cut into Benson a little bit, then watch out on a disappointing 2010 for Benson.

Chris Johnson, Adrian Peterson, Maurice Jones-Drew can get 300+ carries and keep a high PP-ATT with it. Thomas Jones, Cedric Benson, and Fred Jackson did not….is this a “tell” for 2010?

Steven Jackson is a first round Fantasy Football pick in most every 2010 Mock Draft (occasional early 2nd round), and the 40th best PP-ATT in 2009. Granted this is all the Rams had for Offense, and they wore him out. Will they do so again? Will Bradford change the landscape on it a bit? Even Jackson’s amazing 2006 was only at 0.75 PP-ATT.

Can Jackson keep up the workload given some recent injury issues and, perhaps, a new offensive scheme with Bradford in? Not that Jackson isn’t a great RB, but is he worthy of a first round draft pick? Sometimes I see him go as high as the # 5 or 6 pick overall. If he has reduced 2010 attempts, Jackson falls out of first round Draft pick value.

Over-loaded the last couple games? 24th best Jerome Harrison

That amazing run at the end of the season, watching those games -- it was comical. The Cleveland QB’s were so bad, they would just run Harrison over and over, and occasionally try to get the ball to Josh Cribbs. With Hardesty and Delhomme on the roster now, will Harrison get the ball crammed to him in 2010 as much as he did down the stretch of 2009? If Harrison doesn’t get the “attempts” – will he be worthy of some of the higher draft pick levels I see him going at on pre-season Mock Drafts? 

LESS THAN 100 CARRIES (Games 1-15) IN 2009

High PP-ATT among RB’s of interest with less than 100 carries

  • 1.08 = Willis McGahee – amazing TD count in ’09, betting against a repeat of it in 2010.

  • 0.85 = Darren Sproles – smallest back on the list, high production touches. Can he get enough touches in 2010? Likely not, likely split or defer to Mathews.

  • 0.75 = Donald Brown – better/similar to Addai, he and Addai are likely to cut into each other in 2010.

Low PP-ATT among RB’s of interest, with less than 100 carries

  • 0.57 = Shonn Greene – very weak regular season, but a much better 0.78 PP-ATT in the playoffs.

  • 0.51 = Leon Washington – horrible ’09 for him, Washington had a 1.03 PP-ATT in a limited “Reggie Bush-type” role in ’08. With the Jets game plan and O-Line, Washington (even in limited time) should have done much better. The Jets letting him go for “nothing” may be a “tell” as well.

Skill is certainly critical in analyzing any football player, but weighing in the impact of attempts (and thus projecting attempts for 2010) is just as key.


Fantasy Football Writer R C FischerBy R.C. Fischer
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