RB Index, Week 11: Cam Newton among best non-RB rushers


The league's elite running backs are taking the position to new heights, but RBs aren't the only ones logging carries. Quarterbacks and wide receivers are getting some ground burn, too.

This week, I take a look at the best non-RB rushers in the league right now. So, before I return to the running back rankings, as promised last week, here are my top five non-RB rushers heading into Week 11:

1) Cam Newton, QB, Panthers: No surprise here. Newton is one of the best dual-threat quarterbacks in history, ranking third all time in career rushing yards by a quarterback (4,672). His size (6-foot-5, 245 pounds) and speed are a dangerous combination at the quarterback position, and Norv Turner does a good job getting the most out of Cam's abilities in the run game. Right now, Newton leads the league in rushing yards (352) and rushing touchdowns (four) by a non-RB.

2) Taysom Hill, QB, Saints: He's jumped into the scene as a viable weapon for the most explosive offense in the NFL. His ability to run the ball in special personnel packages puts defenses in a bind, and he can score from anywhere on the field. In nine games, Hill has amassed 27 carries for 157 yards (5.8 yards per carry) and a touchdown.

3) Tyreek Hill, WR, Chiefs: We've seen how dynamic Hill can be with the ball in his hands. The Chiefs can use him in so many different ways, because his speed and elusiveness are unmatched. On just 13 carries this season, Hill has gained 81 yards (a robust 6.2 yards per carry).

4) Robert Woods, WR, Rams: Sean McVay has done a good job of using Woods in the run game, highlighted by the wideout's 14-yard carry against the Seahawks in Week 10. The second-year Ram has 13 attempts for 111 yards this season. That's 8.5 yards per carry. The thing about Woods, who has helped make the fly sweep fashionable again, is he has the ability to read blocks, cut and make defenders miss. Seeing how he moves with the ball in his hands, I'd guess he played running back in Pop Warner.

5) Russell Wilson, QB, Seahawks: The Seahawks finally found their ground game, so Wilson isn't the go-to rusher like he was a year ago. But he's still one of the most dangerous non-RB rushers in the game. Averaging 6.4 yards per carry this season, the four-time Pro Bowler has the second-most rushing yards of active quarterbacks (3,485), behind only Cam Newton.

Just missing the cut: Patriots receiver Cordarrelle Patterson and Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota. Patterson has impressed out of the backfield while filling in for an injured Sony Michel. Mariota has demonstrated his big-play ability on the ground since entering the league in 2015.

Former NFL rushing leader and current NFL Network analyst Maurice Jones-Drew will survey all running backs and rank his top 15 each week of the 2018 season. His rankings are based on this season's efforts alone. Here is MJD's list heading into Week 11.

NOTE: Arrows reflect changes from Week 9's rankings.

Todd Gurley

Previous rank: No. 1

Gurley is still my MVP pick for the season after he put up 120 rushing yards and a TD against the Seahawks. Expect Gurley to come out on top in a battle of MVP candidates (Kansas City's Patrick Mahomes) on Monday night.

2018 stats: 10 games | 198 att | 988 rush yds | 5.0 ypc | 13 rush TDs | 40 rec | 402 rec yds | 4 rec TDs

Alvin Kamara

Previous rank: No. 3

Kamara jumps Kareem Hunt this week after another productive day against the Bengals (102 scrimmage yards and two rushing touchdowns). Sunday's performance marked his ninth game with at least two touchdowns since entering the NFL last season. His consistency is quite impressive.

2018 stats: 9 games | 123 att | 546 rush yds | 4.4 ypc | 11 rush TDs | 55 rec | 473 rec yds | 3 rec TDs

Kareem Hunt

Previous rank: No. 2

Hunt's eight-game streak with a touchdown was snapped Sunday against the Cardinals. It was Hunt's first game without a TD since Week 1.

2018 stats: 10 games | 167 att | 754 rush yds | 4.5 ypc | 7 rush TDs | 23 rec | 337 rec yds | 6 rec TDs

Melvin Gordon

Previous rank: No. 4

Against the Raiders, Gordon notched his fourth game of the season with at least 150 scrimmage yards. While he did miss Week 7 due to injury, Gordon's still a huge reason Los Angeles has won six straight and seven of its last eight.

2018 stats: 8 games | 125 att | 672 rush yds | 5.4 ypc | 7 rush TDs | 36 rec | 361 rec yds | 4 rec TDs

James Conner

Previous rank: No. 6

With Le'Veon Bell missing the entire 2018 season, it's a good thing Conner can carry the load, which he's done week in and week out. The Steelers are going to be fine -- just look at Conner's numbers.

2018 stats: 9 games | 164 att | 771 rush yds | 4.7 ypc | 10 rush TDs | 39 rec | 387 rec yds | 1 rec TD

Ezekiel Elliott

Previous rank: No. 7

In a huge game for Dallas, Zeke showed up and BALLED. He ran all over Philly, finishing with 19 carries for 151 yards and a rush TD, as well as six receptions for 36 yards and a receiving score. This is the player the Cowboys need every Sunday if they want to make a playoff push.

2018 stats: 9 games | 168 att | 831 rush yds | 4.9 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 35 rec | 262 rec yds | 2 rec TDs

Saquon Barkley

Previous rank: No. 8

Barkley's late catch-and-run to put the Giants in prime scoring position in their comeback win Monday night was exactly the type of big-time play I want to see. He's capable of putting the team on his back and proved the G-Men can depend on him in crunch time.

2018 stats: 9 games | 131 att | 586 rush yds | 4.5 ypc | 5 rush TDs | 62 rec | 530 rec yds | 2 rec TDs

Christian McCaffrey

Previous rank: No. 10

Unfortunately, McCaffrey's career-high three scrimmage touchdowns weren't enough against the Steelers. The second-year back now has more touchdowns (eight) than he posted all of 2017.

2018 stats: 9 games | 123 att | 579 rush yds | 4.7 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 54 rec | 439 rec yds | 4 rec TDs

Adrian Peterson

Previous rank: No. 5

With 19 carries for 68 yards on Sunday, Peterson had his fewest rushing yards in a Redskins win this season. Entering Sunday's game, the 11th-year veteran averaged 112.2 rushing yards per game in Redskins victories. It's going to be an uphill battle for Peterson the rest of the way, with the Washington offensive line decimated by injuries.

2018 stats: 9 games | 155 att | 672 rush yds | 4.3 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 14 rec | 168 rec yds | 1 rec TD

Mark Ingram

Previous rank: Not ranked

Ingram's been on fire since returning from suspension and it's time I recognize that. The eighth-year veteran took advantage of a poor Bengals defense and finished with 13 carries for 104 yards, as well as three catches for 58 yards and a touchdown.

2018 stats: 5 games | 63 att | 285 rush yds | 4.5 ypc | 2 rush TDs | 11 rec | 120 rec yds | 1 rec TD

Joe Mixon

Previous rank: No. 11

Mixon had just 61 rushing yards against the Saints, a significant drop-off from his last time out (123). He'll need to show up in a big way in Sunday's divisional clash with Baltimore if the Bengals want to stay ahead of the curve in the playoff race.

2018 stats: 7 games | 116 att | 570 rush yds | 4.9 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 21 rec | 139 rec yds | 1 rec TD

Aaron Jones

Previous rank: Not ranked

My request has been granted. The Packers are finally leaning on Jones and are seeing why I vouched for him. In a win over Miami, the second-year running back amassed 145 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries, along with three receptions for 27 yards. Green Bay has found its guy.

2018 stats: 7 games | 73 att | 494 rush yds | 6.8 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 11 rec | 78 rec yds | 0 rec TDs

Kerryon Johnson

Previous rank: No. 15

Johnson had his first career multi-touchdown game against the Bears and continues to solidify himself as the future of the Lions' backfield. The rookie is averaging 84.1 scrimmage yards per game, which would be the most by a Detroit RB in a season since my colleague Reggie Bush averaged 108 scrimmage yards per game in 2013.

2018 stats: 9 games | 103 att | 554 rush yds | 5.4 ypc | 2 rush TDs | 30 rec | 203 rec yds | 1 rec TD

Tarik Cohen

Previous rank: No. 9

Cohen continues to get it done for Chicago. Although he had less than 50 scrimmage yards on Sunday, he scored a TD in an important divisional bout. Cohen's been very good in 2018, but the Bears will likely lean more on Jordan Howard as it gets colder outside.

2018 stats: 9 games | 56 att | 224 rush yds | 4.4 ypc | 2 rush TDs | 37 rec | 435 rec yds | 3 rec TDs

James White

Previous rank: No. 12

White's production decreased with Sony Michel back in the lineup, but he has more than proven his worth to the Patriots' offense.

2018 stats: 10 games | 61 att | 230 rush yds | 3.8 ypc | 4 rush TDs | 66 rec | 562 rec yds | 6 rec TDs

Dropped out: Phillip Lindsay, Broncos (previously No. 13); Latavius Murray, Vikings (No. 14).

The Ground Index delivered by FedEx ranks NFL running back performances all season long. Check out the FedEx Ground NFL Players of the Week and cast your vote.



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