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Breaking down the best running backs in the XFL through Week 2

XFL running backs remain lower in the productivity tiers than other positions as Week 3 dawns. We break down the stats.

St. Louis Battlehawks running back Matt Jones is tackled by cornerback Josh Hawkins as linebacker Tegray Scales dives for the ball during the first quarter in an XFL football game at Globe Life Park. Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The XFL heads into Week 3, and the running back position remains a clear step back from the pass catchers. This is a passing league, and the best running back is several steps back of the best wide receivers. Two games worth of statistics is usually too small a sample size to draw hard and fast conclusions, but with the rules and performances to date, this might be the easiest conclusion to draw for now.

It’s notable that four of the top 16 rushing totals belong to quarterbacks. Jordan Ta’amu, P.J. Walker, Quinton Flowers, and Cardale Jones are all showing off their wheels. Flowers has yet to emerge as a starter, but given the struggles of Aaron Murray and Taylor Cornelius, it could happen sooner than later. The other three quarterbacks are showing what a dual threat quarterback can do, with those three teams arguably the three best in the league to date.

Matt Jones is emerging as a workhorse back, while most every other team prefers to operate with a committee approach. Of course, given Jordan Ta’amu’s scrambling skills, it makes sense the BattleHawks don’t need to focus on another running back.

This is a position where for many of these players, it’s a little more difficult to figure out where usage rates will change. Some players had big Week 1s and slow Week 2s, while otherwise were vice versa. This is a position we’ll need probably two more weeks to figure out if a team is sticking with a committee, or if a single back is emerging.

Below is a rundown of the top running backs, sorted by rating. DKFP stands for DraftKings Fantasy Points.

XFL RB stats through Week 2

PLAYER POS TM DKFP ATT YARDS AVG TD
PLAYER POS TM DKFP ATT YARDS AVG TD
Matt Jones RB STL 11.2 37 129 3.5 0
De'Veon Smith RB TB 8.3 27 125 4.6 0
Jordan Ta'amu QB STL 25.3 17 109 6.4 0
Cameron Artis-Payne RB DAL 18.7 16 105 6.6 2
Jacques Patrick RB TB 7.1 22 105 4.7 0
Kenneth Farrow RB SEA 7 17 84 4.9 0
Elijah Hood RB LA 3.2 22 74 3.3 0
Lance Dunbar RB DAL 12.1 11 69 6.3 0
Ja'Quan Gardner RB SEA 3.2 19 63 3.3 0
Jhurell Pressley RB DC 6.5 23 63 2.7 0
James Butler RB HOU 14.8 16 58 3.6 2
P.J. Walker QB HOU 27.5 8 53 6.6 0
Quinton Flowers QB TB 3.1 10 49 4.9 0
Darius Victor RB NY 4.7 12 48 4 0
Trey Williams RB SEA 9.7 11 45 4.1 0
Cardale Jones QB DC 19.8 10 42 4.2 0