2022 Fantasy Football Injuries: Running Backs Part 2

On Wednesdays post I wrote about the top runnings backs the fantasy football community has injury concerns for. As discussed on Wednesday, in 2022 fantasy football injuries are prevalent. Today I will cover the rest of the RBs with valid injury concerns to help fantasy football players determine the degree of risk vs. reward. As always, we cannot predict injuries, but we do have medical research that helps us understand who is at increased risk. The two biggest predictors for injury that are routinely outlined in the medical literature are previous injury, and age. These alone cannot predict injury, but can help fantasy players understand risk.

Antonio gibson: ADP RB 25

2022 fantasy football injuries: Antonio Gibson

Gibson is such an interesting case this season. In his first two years in the NFL, he has finished RB12 and RB10 in half-point PPR scoring. Thats not bad! Washington invested 3rd round draft capital on Alabama running back Brian Robinson this offseason, and Rivera has stated that he wants both backs to play. Additionally, J.D. McKissick is still the pass catching back.

  • Turf Toe (2020) – Missed 2 games
  • Tibial stress fracture (2021) – Did not miss time
  • Calf strain (2021) – Did not miss time
  • Toe sprain (2021) – Did not miss time
  • Hamstring strain (2022) – TBD

On the surface, he has only missed a few games in his career. The stress fracture is the most concerning, as these injuries don’t occur for no reason. A stress fracture occurs due to overloading of the bone from some mechanical flaw. These mechanics are correctable, but this type of injury can be recurrent. The good news is this injury did not force him to miss any time and clearly did not impact his production as he still finished RB10.

We have discussed how previous hamstring strains increase the risk for a future hamstring strain by 2.7x. In Gibson’s case, this injury does not appear too serious as he has been playing in the preseason.

Overall his injury concern is not as significant as many other players at his position. Fantasy players should not let this be a factor in determining if he is worth drafting or not. 

Miles Sanders: ADP RB 29

2022 fantasy football injuries: Miles Sanders

Sanders is a player similar to Gibson, whose ADP continues to drop as reports suggest that the team is losing confidence in him, and gearing up to increase the role of his counterparts.  

Sanders has a laundry list of nagging injuries that force him to miss a game or two here and there, but no long-term injuries. He has not practiced in about two weeks due to a lingering hamstring injury. Again, hamstring injuries increase the risk of a future injury. However, the data suggest that running backs are not impacted from a performance standpoint when they return. 

As always, we talk about fantasy football injuries on the podcast and recently have discussed how previous ankle injuries can alter mechanics that may render an athlete more prone to future injuries. With two ankle sprains and numerous other injuries during his three seasons, drafting Sanders is certainly a risk. 

Ken Walker: ADP RB 36

2022 fantasy football injuries: Ken Walker
Photo courtesy of Instagram @Kenneth_Walker9

Seattle elected to draft Walker in the second round of the 2022 draft. This high capital traditionally suggests the team would like to utilize him early and often. I talked on Wednesday about his counterpart Rashaad Penny who has an impressive list of injuries himself, and the concern there.  

The current concern for Walker is the hernia repair he just underwent. Typically after this surgery, there is no aggressive physical exertion (running, lifting, etc.) for 4-6 weeks. In Walker’s case, four weeks would put him returning to activity after week one, and six weeks would return to activity after week three.

Aside from the hernia, his injury history is not overly concerning as neither on the list cost him much time. Fantasy players should understand that he may not be ready to go in the first few weeks of the season, and the coach Pete Carroll has a history of riding the hot hand. If Carroll continues this and Penny gets off to a fast start, it may be hard for Walker to get on the field. 

James Robinson: ADP RB 44

2022 fantasy football injuries: James Robinson
Photo courtesy of Instagram @James_Robinson25

Fantasy football injuries can be a real downer, James Robinson is one of my favorite players in the league and I was devastated when he got hurt last season! Jacksonville beat reporters continue to suggest that James Robinson will be ready to go in week one coming off a December 26th Achilles tear. That would have him playing 8.5 months after an injury that typically takes 9-12 months or more to return from. Additionally, 2021 first-round pick Travis Etienne is back and ready to go with his college quarterback.

The bottom line is that no running back has ever returned to be a prolific fantasy football asset after an Achilles tear. Surgical and rehab advancements are always taking place, so someday there will be a running back who returns to his prior performance level from this injury, but this has not happened yet. Fantasy players must determine if they want to gamble on Robinson being the first to return from this devastating injury successfully. Fantasy players must also consider that Travis Etienne’s injury has a more promising outlook for running backs, and Etienne is paired with his former college QB whom he has great chemistry. 

Gus Edwards: ADP RB 60

Like his backfield counterpart J.K. Dobbins, whom I discussed in Wednesday’s article, Edwards also returns from an ACL tear. Unfortunately for Edwards, his rehab process is going much slower. Edwards was recently placed on the PUP list, making him ineligible to play until week five at the soonest.

  • Ankle sprain (2018) – Did not miss time
  • Low back sprain (2020) – Did not miss time
  • ACL tear (2021) – Missed entire season

Before his season-ending ACL tear, Edwards had a relatively clean bill of health. With Dobbins set to start week one and Edwards on the PUP, it is clear he will not be impactful in fantasy in the first part of the season. Baltimore signed veteran Mike Davis and drafted running back Tyler Badie, both of whom should be given a chance to earn playing time in Edwards’s absence. Fantasy players should only consider Edwards if their league offers an IR slot, and even in that case, he may not be worth drafting. 


As always, we aim to provide the best evidence-based medical analysis for each player. Fantasy football injuries are unpredictable, but we have research-based factors that can increase one’s risk for injury. Be sure to check out our injury-specific pages to see how players historically perform after each injury!

1 thought on “2022 Fantasy Football Injuries: Running Backs Part 2”

  1. Pingback: Divisional ADP Breakdown - NFC East - Fantasy Injury Team

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