With all the talk about running backs and their value several questions arise in my mind. How good are these guys? Do I only remember 1st round busts because of Trent Richardson? Is the running back going extinct or will it rise again? Not sure I can answer any of these questions but lets take a look at the hardware.
I took a look at every running back selected in Rd 1 from 2010 to 2020 listing their years as primary starter, pro bowls, 1st team all-pro recognition and their super bowl championships. I choose these because presumably when teams are selecting these players they are expecting them to start, to earn some honors and hopefully win some rings. Other metrics that might be useful in analyzing this further are total tds, combined yards, rushing titles, number of thousand yard seasons. I won't cover these here but they might be worth looking at if folks have deeper interest.
All data come from Pro Football Reference. PFR tracks years as a primary starter I am using their criteria. Note Running Backs have less available Pro Bowl or All Pro Spots to get selected than other positions.
9th- CJ Spiller- 3 years starting, 1 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB
12th- Ryan Mathews- 5 years starting, 1 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB- Injuries really felled him
30th- Jahvid Best- - 2 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB- explosive but cursed
28th- Mark Ingram- - 5 years starting, 3 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB
3rd- Trent Richardson- 3 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB- LOL
30th- Doug Martin- 7 years starting, 2 PB, 1 AP, 0 SB
31st- David Wilson-- 0 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB- Nasty neck injury
0 RBs taken- Gio Bernard was first off the board in round 2
0- Taken Bishop Sankey was first off the board at pick 56
10th- Todd Gurley- 6 years starting, 3 PB, 2 AP, 0 SB- Only played 6 seasons but was elite in most of them
15th- Melvin Gordon- - 7 years starting, 2 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB- Underrated back
4th- Zeke- 7 years starting, 3 PB, 1 AP, 0 SB
4th-Leonard Fournette- - 5 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 1 SB- Old school runner probably would have been a beast in a different era.
8th- Christian McCaffery- - 4 years starting, 2 PB, 1 AP, 0 SB- Injuries are the reason his years starting and accolades are so low. One of the best in the game right now
2nd- Saquon Barkley- 4 years starting, 2 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB-Injuries have cost him
27th- Rashad Penny- - 0 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 0 SB
31st- Sony Michel- 2 years starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 2 SB- Had a really good game against the Rams in the SB in 19, only two carries for them in the game in 22. Weird career
24th-Josh Jacobs- 4 years starting, 2 PB, 1 AP, 0 SB- He's on the rise
32nd- Clyde Edwards-Helaire- 1 year starting, 0 PB, 0 AP, 1 SB- Got benched mid way through last season, no carries in SB
Let me know what you all think, particularly what metrics might be more useful.