Adrian Peterson 2012
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The Super Bowl is over. The smoke has cleared and the confetti has been swept away. What better time to start looking ahead at the 2014 fantasy football season and the LestersLegends early running back rankings.
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1. Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings
A down year for Adrian Peterson consisted of 1,437 total yards and 11 touchdowns. I’ll take that kind of production all day (pun intended). Norv Turner has had a great history of success with running backs of a similar ilk (Emmitt Smith and LaDainian Tomlinson). Look for big things from AP.
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2. Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs
Andy Reid knew how to get the very best of LeSean McCoy, which made him a perfect fit for Jamaal Charles. Charles combined for 1,980 total yards and 19 touchdowns. Another stellar season should be in store for this electric back. Charles could easily be the first pick, especially in points-per-reception (PPR) leagues.
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3. LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles
LeSean McCoy finished with 2,146 total yards and 11 touchdowns. He was a perfect fit for Chip Kelly’s up-tempo offense and put the concussion concerns to bed en route to the rushing title. McCoy could also be the first pick, particularly in PPR leagues.
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4. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks
Marshawn Lynch showed everybody that he’s “’bout that action, boss”. Beast Mode compiled 1,573 total yards and 14 touchdowns. He averaged 96 yards per game while scoring four touchdown during the Seattle Seahawks’ Super Bowl run. He’s a power back. Use accordingly.
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5. Matt Forte, Chicago Bears
Matt Forte had a lot in common with Charles and McCoy. They all are dual-threat backs that thrived under a new coach. Forte finished with 1,933 total yard and 12 touchdowns under the vision of Marc Trestman. He should continue to put up impressive numbers.
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6. Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers
Eddie Lacy put any weight issues to bed by rolling for 1,178 yards and 11 touchdowns even as Aaron Rodgers was limited to nine games. Lacy added 257 receiving yards to show he’s not one-dimensional. As long as there isn’t a sophomore slump, Lacy should be a strong RB1 in 2014.
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7. Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Doug Martin was limited to six games, which netted him 522 total yards and one touchdown. Tampa Bay was dysfunctional at the time of his season-ending injury. The Bucs made strides throughout the year and Bobby Rainey and Mike James had some solid moments as replacements. Lovie Smith will want a run-first offense, which bodes well for Martin. He should also be very active in the passing game a la Matt Forte.
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8. DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys
DeMarco Murray was limited to 14 games, but he finished with 1,474 total yards and 10 touchdowns. The talent and explosiveness cannot be questioned. Durability is another issue.
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9. Zac Stacy, St. Louis Rams
Zac Stacy, at 5’8″ and 224 pounds is a wrecking ball. In his final 12 games he averaged 92.5 total yards and 0.7 touchdowns. He comes with some risk, but also brings plenty of reward potential.
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10. Le’veon Bell, Pittsburgh Steelers
Le’veon Bell was limited to 13 games last year, but still managed to accumulate 1,259 total yards (96.8 yards per game) and eight touchdowns. He’s a big back at 6′ 1″ and 244 pounds with soft hands (45 receptions).
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Matt Prater
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Here’s a look at the LestersLegends Super Bowl XLVIII fantasy football team kicker rankings.
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1. Matt Prater, Denver Broncos
2. Steven Hauschka, Seattle Seahawks
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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Here’s a look at the LestersLegends Super Bowl XLVIII fantasy football team defense rankings.
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1. Seattle Seahawks
2. Denver Broncos
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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Julius Thomas
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Here’s a look at the LestersLegends Super Bowl XLVIII fantasy football tight end rankings.
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1. Julius Thomas, Denver Broncos
2. Zach Miller, Seattle Seahawks
3. Jacob Tamme, Denver Broncos
4. Luke Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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Demaryius Thomas stiff arm
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Here’s a look at the LestersLegends Super Bowl XLVIII fantasy football wide receiver rankings.
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1. Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos
Demaryius Thomas averaged 89.4 yards and 0.9 touchdowns during the regular season. He has 15 receptions for 188 yards and a pair of touchdowns in two playoff wins over the San Diego Chargers and the New England Patriots. He will have his work cut out for him against Richard Sherman and the Seattle Seahawks secondary. At 6’3″ and 229 pounds with speed and athleticism to burn, he should be able to hold his own against their physical secondary.
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2. Eric Decker, Denver Broncos
Eric Decker averaged 98.2 yards and 1.6 touchdowns in the last five games of the regular season, but has taken a little bit of back seat in the playoffs averaging 52.5 yards. Decker is 6’3″ and 214 pounds with deceptive speed. If Sherman is holding down Thomas, Peyton Manning won’t hesitate to go to Decker.
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3. Wes Welker, Denver Broncos
Wes Welker is averaging five catches for 38 yards. Like I said before the conference championship, if he doesn’t score a touchdown you are in for a mediocre performance. His role doesn’t afford big yardage days.
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4. Percy Harvin, Seattle Seahawks
Percy Harvin is closing out a lost season due to injuries. The talent is there. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him finally make his big splash in the biggest game of the year. Harvin is explosive after the catch. Look for Seattle to be creative in his usage.
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5. Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks
Doug Baldwin had 106 yards against the San Francisco 49ers. He is inconsistent, but is still capable of making plays, particularly if Denver keys in on Harvin and Marshawn Lynch.
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6. Golden Tate, Seattle Seahawks
Golden Tate, like the rest of Seattle’s options are inconsistent. He led all Seahawk receivers with 898 yards, but he’s a roll of the dice.
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7. Jermaine Kearse, Seattle Seahawks
Jermaine Kearse gives the Seahawks a little more size than his counterparts. Again, you are hoping for the best if you are using Kearse.
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8.Andre Caldwell, Denver Broncos
Andre Caldwell had one catch in each of Denver’s two playoff games. If Welker were to get banged up, he could see extra looks. It’s not a bet you should take though.
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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Marshawn Lynch running
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1. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks
Marshawn Lynch averaged 98.3 total yards and 0.9 touchdowns during the regular season. He runs with power, but he also has the ability to break the long run. Lynch is averaging 124.5 rushing yards per game and his three playoff touchdowns have come from an average of 28.7 yards out. Lynch has had at least 20 carries in nine games this season, including in both playoff games. Look for a heavy dose of Beast Mode to keep Peyton Manning on the sidelines. Power running has been a common theme during the playoffs. It should continue in the Super Bowl.
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2. Knowshon Moreno, Denver Broncos
Knowhon Moreno averaged 99.1 total yard and 0.8 touchdowns per game during the regular season. He has averaged 87.5 total yards and 0.5 touchdowns in the two playoff wins. Moreno is excellent at picking up the blitz and working the screen game. On the biggest stage, he will see a heavy dose of touches. Peyton Manning trusts Moreno and that goes a long way.
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3. Montee Ball, Denver Broncos
Montee Ball has averaged 12.5 touches in the two playoffs wins for 54 total yards. Even though Moreno is the clear lead back, the Broncos are committed to getting Ball involved. He may not see double-digit carries in this one as Seattle tries to shorten the game, but a short touchdown isn’t out of the question.
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4. Robert Turbin, Seattle Seahawks
Robert Turbin only had 85 touches during the regular season and six in the two playoff games. I don’t expect Turbin to suddenly become heavily involved, but he’ll likely get the touches when Lynch takes a breather. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility for a relatively unknown to make a big Super Bowl impact.
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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Super Bowl XLVIII pits the old guard against the new guard when it comes to the quarterback matchup.
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Peyton Manning came into the league in what seems to be a lifetime ago with all the expectations in the world. He has delivered on that promise over the years, including leading the Indianapolis Colts to a Super Bowl XLI victory.
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Peyton has had plenty of success with the Denver Broncos, including setting NFL records with 5,477 yards and 55 touchdowns. He is basically an offensive coordinator on the field. He always seems to be a step ahead of the defense. Even the raised stakes of the playoffs hasn’t slowed him as he has averaged 315 yards and a pair of touchdowns in wins over the San Diego Chargers and New England Patriots.
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Seattle can get pressure up front and have a talented secondary. I don’t see Peyton having a monster day, but I just can’t go against Peyton in this historic year.
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Meanwhile, Russell Wilson is the new breed of quarterback that can do damage with his arm and his feet. Wilson was a third round pick that was a bit of a surprise last year as he won the starting job over Matt Flynn.
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Wilson averaged 209.8 passing yards, 1.6 passing touchdowns and 33.7 rushing yards. He hasn’t been asked to much in two playoff wins as he has averaged just 159 passing yards, 0.5 passing touchdowns and eight rushing yards. Seattle has relied on its defense and a strong rushing attack featuring Marshawn Lynch.
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Against Denver things are likely to change. The Broncos are going to put points on the boards. As good as Seattle is on defense, I can’t see them shutting down Denver’s high-powered offense. Wilson is going to have to put the Seahawks on his back and make plays with his arm.
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Denver allowed 254.4 passing yards and 1.8 touchdowns per game during the regular season.
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While I think Peyton has the better day, I do think Wilson will put up decent numbers as well.
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Super Bowl XLVIII
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