Running backs are in a strange place in today's NFL. We keep hearing about how easy it is for teams to find them anywhere in the draft -- and some of the best in the NFL have indeed been acquired for very little outlay -- but the position clearly has value.
Doug Martin re-signed in Tampa Bay on a five-year, $35.75 million contract with $15 million guaranteed, despite having only two good seasons since being drafted in 2012. Lamar Miller signed a four-year, $26 million contract ($14 million guaranteed) with the Texans. The Rams a year ago selected Todd Gurley with the 10th overall pick in the draft despite him recovering from a torn ACL and being unable to provide any pre-draft workouts. Gurley was a transformative player when he eventually got on the field, rushing for 1,106 yards and 10 touchdowns while winning rookie of the year honors.
Ezekiel Elliott, the No. 1 running back prospect in the 2016 draft, has the chance to make a bigger impact than Gurley. Elliott, in my opinion, is the best back to come along for the better part of a decade -- since Adrian Peterson in 2007.