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NFL Futures: Best Bets to Lead League in Rushing TDs (2019)

by July 3, 2019

Continuing our series of NFL Futures, we’re sticking with running backs. Last week, we looked into the best bets to lead the league in rushing yards. This week, we’ll check out our writers’ favorite bets to lead the league in rushing TDs in 2019.

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First, let’s check out the odds courtesy FanDuel:

Player Odds
Alvin Kamara +600
Melvin Gordon +750
Ezekiel Elliott +800
Saquon Barkley +800
Todd Gurley +800
Chris Carson +1000
Derrick Henry +1200
Devonta Freeman +1300
James Conner +1500

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What is your favorite bet to lead the NFL in rushing in 2019?

Derrick Henry (TEN): +1200
Derrick Henry is an intriguing value bet to lead the NFL in rushing TDs this year. Henry is an absolute physical specimen who finally showed the world how dominant he can be in the second half last year. Titans coach Mike Vrabel was adamant saying he would like to build the offense around Henry this season. If he is treated as a true workhorse RB, there is no reason why Henry can’t shatter the 12 rushing TDs he put up last year. Look for Henry to see ample red zone opportunities early in the year and become a much more consistent touchdown threat all year long.
– Nic Turner (@sportzbandit)

At the end of the 2016 season, we all speculated on Derrick Henry’s potential if DeMarco Murray wasn’t also a member of the Titans. Murray had just completed a 1,600-plus total yard season with 12 touchdowns. After the 2017 season, that wish became a reality after the Titans cut Murray. However, the signing of super-satellite running back Dion Lewis again tempered expectations. After missing the playoffs in 2018, it is now clear the Titans need to center the offense around the 6-foot-3, 250 lb battering ram. Over the last four weeks of 2018, Henry led all running backs with 585 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. He has played 47 of a possible 48 games in his career, proving his weekly reliability as the true workhorse back in a conservative Tennessee offense. At +1200, Henry offers exceptional value to lead the NFL in rushing touchdowns.
– Mike Randle (@RandleRant)

Nick Chubb (CLE): +2600
Cleveland finished a middling 20th in scoring last year, but Chubb did his part with eight rushing TDs on just 192 carries. He remains the clear goal-line back on an offense that should bring more scoring chances. Baker Mayfield enters year two — year two alongside blockbuster trade acquisition Odell Beckham. Aggressive new OC Todd Monken provides another promising addition. Kareem Hunt is likely keeping Chubb as such a massive value, but Hunt won’t return until Week 10. By then, he’ll be almost a full year removed from his last regular season carry. Toss in a new coaching staff for Hunt, and it’s clear he’s a major wild card.
– Kevin English (@DraftSharks)

Saquon Barkley (NYG): +800
The reigning 2018 Offensive Rookie of the Year definitely has a legitimate shot at leading the league in rushing touchdowns for the 2019 season. In 2018 Barkley played a full 16-game season where he totaled 11 rushing touchdowns which were the fifth-most by any running back in the NFL. Also, only Todd Gurley and Alvin Kamara had a better red zone efficiency rate than Barkley last year (3.8 p/g). Furthermore, durability tends to be a huge concern for many running backs currently playing in the league. Guys like Melvin Gordon, Todd Gurley, James Conner, and Devonta Freeman have all shown an inability to stay on the field for a full season at different points. While all the previously mentioned backs are definitely capable of leading the league in rushing touchdowns, it is their health that concerns me. “But guys like Alvin Kamara have not dealt with any durability concerns in their careers either,” you say. Don’t worry. What separates Barkley from Kamara is the fact that the Giants do not have anyone else on their running back depth chart who could swoop in and vulture away a touchdown at the goal line. Despite the Saints moving on from Mark Ingram, they brought in Latavius Murray who will drive managers who have Kamara crazy in red-zone situations. As for Ezekiel Elliott in Dallas, it could very well be a toss-up between these two when it comes down to it. But I’m going to give the slight edge to Barkley mainly because the Cowboys have a lot more red-zone weapons they can go to in their artillery like Amari Cooper, Jason Witten, and Dak Prescott’s rushing ability. Aside from Barkley and Evan Engram, the Giants do not have a whole lot to rely on in their offense. Barkley will be heavily depended on in New York’s success on offense, and so a league-leading touchdown total doesn’t sound as outlandish as one may initially believe.
– Matthew Catalano (@MatthewCatala16)

Here are each of our 2019 NFL futures bets: