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. Now, with three games of statistics, there’s little doubt that running backs will continue to see their work split between multiple backs and their total workload to be depressed in comparison to the NFL.
Of course, there will be some exceptions to the rules, but even on the run-heavy BattleHawks in an easy win, Matt Jones and Christine Michael split the workload and neither topped 15 touches. Both were viable fantasy plays though, as both found the end zone.
Marquez Carter of the LA Wildcats was the big surprise this week, as he rushed for two touchdowns and caught another, totaling 75 yards on 14 touches to go with his three touchdowns. With Elijah Hood out, Carter took over the lead back role and with the help of an efficient and healthy Josh Johnson, took advantage of scoring opportunities. Only James Butler of the Roughnecks has as many touchdowns, and he’s played in all three games while Carter has just seen action in this one matchup. Hood could be back next week, so it will be interesting to see how they handle the backfield moving forward.
Cameron Artis-Payne has been the best back in the league overall. After a down Week 1, CAP has put up great numbers, averaging 6.4 yards per carry on 29 attempts, which are the fifth-most in the league. He’s also scored two touchdowns and caught 15 of 15 targets. His 44 overall touches ranks third in the league while he’s first in fantasy points. He’s the cream of the crop so far.
The least efficient back has been Christine Michael, who has rushed 35 times for 82 yards while Lance Dunbar has been the highest targeted back, catching 20-of-23 passes. Amazingly, Dunbar plays behind Artis-Payne who has 15 targets. The Renegades have no qualms throwing to their backs, which is a great thing for DraftKings scoring.
XFL RB Stats through Week 3