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NFL running back rankings Week 10: Derrick Henry, Christian McCaffrey near the top

Vincent Frank

NFL running back rankings Week 10 edition. We’ve seen a ton of players at this position perform at a high clip over the past several weeks.

Saquon Barkley has returned to pre-injury form for the surprising New York Giants and looks like a true All-Pro. Multi-time rushing champion Derrick Henry is turning in a tremendous 2022 season. Meanwhile, new San Francisco 49ers star Christian McCaffrey remains the best dual-threat player at this position.

It’s in this that we provide you our NFL running back rankings heading into Week 10 of the 2022 season.

Related: Sportsnaut’s NFL wide receiver rankings for Week 10

10. Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals

nfl running back rankings: joe mixon
  • Joe Mixon stats: 151 attempts, 585 rushing yards, 3.9 average, 585 rushing yards, 38 receptions, 272 yards, 857 total yards, 8 TD

Coming off a five-touchdown outing against the Carolina Panthers last week, Mixon is finally living up to the hype. In the eight games prior to that this season, Mixon averaged just 3.4 yards per rush.

However, a lot of that has to do with the Bengals’ lackluster offensive line play. Just ask quarterback Joe Burrow (30 sacks this season). With that said, Mixon is still on pace to put up a career-best 1,618 total yards in 2022. This has him on firm standing in our latest NFL running back rankings.

9. Miles Sanders, Philadelphia Eagles

nfl running back rankings: miles sanders
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
  • Miles Sanders stats: 131 attempts, 656 rushing yards, 5.0 average, 11 receptions, 42 yards, 698 total yards, 6 TD

Sanders, 25, couldn’t have picked a better time to put up a career-best performance. The former second-round pick from Penn State is slated to hit free agency next March and will now likely cash in big time.

Sanders has put up north of 70 rushing yards in four of his past five outings. He’s coming off a 93-yard, one-touchdown outing in a win over the Houston Texans last week. Now on pace for nearly 1,400 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns, Sanders has proven himself to be one of the best NFL running backs this season.

8. Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders

nfl running back rankings: josh jacobs
Bob Self/Florida Times-Union / USA TODAY NETWORK
  • Josh Jacobs stats: 138 attempts, 743 rushing yards, 5.4 average, 25 receptions, 172 yards, 915 total yards, 6 TD

Yet another impending free agent, Jacobs also couldn’t have picked a better time to enjoy a career-best performance. He’s also one of the only feel-good stories for a disappointing Raiders team this season. That includes three 100-yard rushing performances through eight games.

Jacobs, 24, is averaging a resounding 3.3 yards after contact, up from 2.0 a season ago. He also has 201 yards after the catch through the air, which is simply insane given that Jacobs has put up just 172 receiving yards on the season. Yeah, this former first-round pick from Alabama is on one right now.

Related: Sportsnaut’s Week 10 NFL QB rankings

7. Kenneth Walker, Seattle Seahawks

nfl running back rankings; kenneth walker
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
  • Kenneth Walker stats: 111 attempts, 570 rushing yards, 5.1 average, 12 receptions, 48 yards, 618 total yards, 7 TD

Since taking over for the injured Rashaad Penny, this reigning Heisman finalist has looked every bit the part of the NFL Rookie of the Year. In fact, he’s tied the great Curt Warner for the most consecutive games among rookies with rushing touchdowns (five) in Seahawks history.

Over the course of the past four games, Walker has tallied 424 rushing yards at a clip of 4.8 yards per run while scoring six touchdowns. Right now, he’s among the best NFL running backs. Don’t expect that to change any time soon.

6. Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings

nfl running back rankings: dalvin cook
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports
  • Dalvin Cook stats: 131 attempts, 608 rushing yards, 4.6 average, 19 receptions, 119 yards, 727 total yards, 6 TD

Consistently good. That’s been the name of the game for Cook since Minnesota made him a second-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. The Florida State product has tallied north of 1,300 total yards in each of the past three seasons. He’s now on pace to do just that again in 2022 despite dealing with nagging injuries.

While Cook has only one 100-yard rushing game this season, he has put up north of 70 yards on the ground all but twice. That’s absolutely huge in that it’s creating a ton of balance with Kirk Cousins on the Vikings’ offense.

Related: Sportsnaut’s Week 10 NFL offense rankings

NFL running back rankings: The elite five

5. Travis Etienne, Jacksonville Jaguars

nfl running back rankings: travis etienne
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
  • Travis Etienne stats: 120 attempts, 680 rushing yards, 5.7 average, 19 receptions, 174 yards, 854 total yards, 4 TD

Some questioned Jacksonville’s decision to deal James Robinson ahead of the trade deadline. Apparently, head coach Doug Pederson and general manager Trent Baalke knew what they had in Etienne, because, he’s been dominant since.

In the two games since said trade, the former first-round pick from Clemson has registered 288 total yards and three touchdowns. Etienne is now on pace for north of 1,600 yards as a sophomore. That’s insane given he missed his entire rookie season and it has Etienne in the top five of our most-recent NFL running back rankings.

4. Christian McCaffrey, San Francisco 49ers

nfl running back rankings: christian mccaffrey
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
  • Christian McCaffrey stats: 111 attempts, 525 rushing yards, 4.7 average, 43 receptions, 356 yards, 881 total yards, 5 TD

After playing in all of 10 games over the past two seasons, McCaffrey has returned to form as one of the top NFL running backs in the game. That’s now on the verge of being taken to a whole new level since he was acquired by San Francisco in a blockbuster trade with the Carolina Panthers.

CMC is coming off a Week 8 outing in which he threw a touchdown, ran for another score and caught a touchdown from Jimmy Garoppolo. That game also saw McCaffrey put up 149 total yards. Through eight games, he’s now on pace for 1,872 total yards. He’s also on pace to catch 91 passes out of the backfield. That’s insane.

Related: Week 10 NFL power rankings

3. Nick Chubb, Cleveland Browns

nfl running back rankings: nick chubb
Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
  • Nick Chubb stats: 149 attempts, 841 rushing yards, 5.6 average, 10 receptions, 90 yards, 911 total yards, 10 TD

Speaking of our NFL running back rankings, Chubb could very well be higher if it weren’t for the other two listed below. After all, we’re talking about a dude who has put up north of 100 rushing yards five times in eight games this season. That’s no small thing with Cleveland still waiting to get quarterback Deshaun Watson back from suspension.

After averaging nearly 1,400 total yards in each of his first four seasons, Chubb is in the midst of a career-best performance. He leads NFL running backs with 10 touchdowns and is averaging 2.6 yards after contact. That’s some elite-level stuff.

2. Saquon Barkley, New York GIants

nfl running back rankings: saquon barkley
Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports
  • Saquon Barkley stats: 163 attempts, 779 rushing yards, 4.8 average, 28 receptions, 189 yards, 968 total yards, 5 TD

Sensing a theme here? Multiple players in our Week 10 NFL running back rankings have returned to form after recent injuries. Barkley, 25, has put up triple-digit yardage five times in eight games. He’s catching 80% of his targets in the passing game and has only put the ball on the turf one time this season.

A dual-threat if there ever was one, Barkley’s performance is one of the reasons New York finds itself at a surprising 6-2. He’s also helped young quarterback Daniel Jones turn it down in New York. This should net the former Penn State star a huge pay day in free agency next March.

Related: Top 100 NFL players of 2022

1. Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans

nfl running back rankings: derrick henry
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
  • Derrick Henry stats: 183 attempts, 870 rushing yards, 4.8 average, 14 receptions, 140 yards, 1,010 total yards, 9 TD

The NFL rushing champ in 2019 and 2020 before an injury-plagued 2021 campaign, Henry has more than returned to earlier-career form. He leads the league in rush attempts, rushing yards, rushing yards per game and total touches. That’s just insane.

More to the point. Henry has put up a five-game span that’s seen him tally 678 rushing yards at a clip of 5.3 yards per while scoring seven touchdowns. He’s on pace for 2,147 total yards, which would be a career high. This has King Henry topping our most-recent NFL running back rankings.

NFL running back rankings: Just missed out

  • Dameon Pierce, Houston Texans: 678 rushing yards, 4.6 average, 3 TD
  • Rhamondre Stevenson, New England Patriots: 618 rushing yards, 4.8 average, 4 TD
  • Khalil Herbert, Chicago Bears: 586 rushing yards, 6.0 average, 4 TD
  • Jeff Wilson, Miami Dolphins: 519 rushing yards, 5.1 average, 5 TD
  • Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys: 506 rushing yards, 6.2 average, 5 TD