Fantasy Football Q&A 8/10: Running Backs and QB Trades
ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15: Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys carries the ball during the fourth quarter against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Divisional Playoff game at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

In this edition of Fantasy Football Q&A, we focus on depth at skill positions, differences between talents and when to pick which player. 

Today’s the day your fantasy football questions get answered. Please note that I only play dynasty leagues, so there may be times where my answers skew in that direction. You can take a look at the previous fantasy football Q&A here.

What’s the differential between David Johnson, LeVeon Bell and Ezekiel Elliott? – Paul Esden

It depends on whether you’re in a PPR or a standard league. For PPR leagues, Le’Veon Bell is the best of the three. More on that in this Q&A.

For standard leagues, however, Ezekiel Elliot is my top running back, followed by Bell and then David Johnson. Don’t worry if you miss out on one—all three are excellent choices.

Elliott led the league in rushing as a rookie last season (1,631 yards) and has an excellent offensive line to run behind. He should have another very good season this year, with a floor of eight-to-10 points. If he reaches the end zone, his totals will obviously rise.

Before Elliot’s emergence, Bell was the top fantasy running back available. When you favor in receiving yards, Bell averaged more total yards than Zeke last season. But I think Elliot does enough to close the gap between them in total yards. For me, Bell’s injury concerns are what ultimately puts him behind Elliot in standard leagues.

Most of Johnson’s value comes in Arizona’s passing game, although he collects enough rushing yards to be a very good runner too. He’s the third-best running back, not because he lacks talent, but because Elliot and Bell are so good.

Remember, it’s more about where you draft. All three of them will be gone by the middle part of the first round.

For this one, Matt Stafford’s side is more valuable. Elijah McGuire doesn’t really move the needle. I don’t see him being anything special, as he’s going to be at best the third back with the Jets.

Stafford is more valuable than Phil Rivers in dynasty football. They’re both constantly in the 4,200-yard range. The difference is age, as Stafford is seven years younger than Rivers is. Stafford can be expected to produce for another five to eight years, while Rivers is difficult to count on after next season.

Youth is very important with dynasty leagues, and when players produce to similar levels, youth can be the turning point. McGuire has a negligible impact on the trade.

If you want to add something to Rivers to get a deal done, a pick somewhere between one-fifth and two-fifths of the way through. Since different leagues have different length drafts, I’ll leave you to determine where that pick would fall in your specific draft.

I'm a student at Binghamton University. I'm a huge fan of the Mets, Rangers, Giants, and Jets, and will be covering them for the site, as well as fantasy hockey, football, and baseball. My twitter is @wmcine