This article is part of our College Football Fantasy Five series.
College Football Fantasy Five: Under the Radar & Undervalued Running Backs for 2022
With RotoWire recently releasing their top running backs in the College Football Draft Kit: 2022 Running Back Fantasy Rankings, it's a perfect time to highlight the players that marginally missed the list and are still hot targets in upcoming college fantasy football (CFF) drafts. If you like this list, check out other positions and the rest of our draft kit:
2022 College Fantasy Football Draft Kit
- College Football Fantasy Quarterback Rankings
- College Football Projections
- College Football Fantasy Five
- College Football Rankings
- College Football Cheat Sheet
- National Championship picks
- National Championship odds
- Heisman watch
- Heisman odds
Under The Radar and Undervalued Running Backs for 2022
5.) Kendall Milton, Georgia
This recommendation has more to do with how consistently solid Georgia's offensive line is than Milton being a breakout player as he's likely going to be part of a running back committee. It's entirely possible that Milton slots into the early-down workload with Kenny McIntosh playing more on third down. With Zamir White and James Cook both gone, the volume will be plentiful enough for Milton to have some fantasy relevance despite limited touches (91 carries for 457 yards) in his first 14 games with the Bulldogs.
4.) Eric Gray, Oklahoma
This offseason has been perplexing for the Sooners' remaining playmakers as they have been cast aside with the departure of Lincoln Riley to USC. I understand that Oklahoma will not be the best offense in football, but they still are one of the most talented teams in the country, including a potent offensive line. OC Jeff Lebby is a proven offensive mind and there's no reason to believe that Oklahoma won't still have one of the best offenses in the country. The depth chart behind Gray is extremely young which means that it's his backfield to lose and we've seen his burst/quickness which provides considerable upside in his game.
3.) Brad Roberts, Air Force
Those familiar with Mountain West football know that Air Force is one of those unique teams who have a crazy high run rate. Over the last five seasons, the team has averaged a 85% season run rate. Typically they have a large committee approach, but during the 2021 season, Roberts was a force with 299 carries for 1,356 yards and 13 touchdowns. He averaged 18.0 fantasy points per game across 13 games which is plenty good for where he's currently going in fantasy drafts.
2.) Tyjae Spears, Tulane
Spears ended the 2021 season on a tear with an average of 26.4 fantasy points over his last five games. He was a beast in the Green Wave's regular-season finale at Memphis with 30 carries for 264 yards and two touchdowns. Tulane returns nine offensive starters including an intriguing quarterback in Michael Pratt. The Green Wave's offense should be sneaky good with talented players like Pratt and Spears.
1.) Israel Abanikanda, Pittsburgh
Abanikanda is my favorite breakout running back for the 2022 season as Pittsburgh has all five starters back on the offensive line and will naturally move to a more balanced attack with Kenny Pickett in the NFL. In a committee role last season, Abanikanda was impressive at 5.3 yards per carry on 123 totes and eight total touchdowns. From Week 4 through Week 11, he averaged 16.7 fantasy points per game which seems like a realistic floor for the junior back. He can also catch the ball out of the backfield as shown below.