Using the Explosion Index to Look for Breakout Running Back Candidates
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A number of weeks ago I listed the running backs in the 2013 draft class based on an Explosion Index, which is basically just an average z-score for the following measures: weight, 40 time, vertical leap, and broad jump. Of the incoming rookies, Christine Michael looked the best on that measure. I thought it might be a good exercise to go through some recent entrants to the NFL and look at their Explosion numbers so that we can put them in context should their opportunity situations change. Below I’ve listed all of the backs that averaged more that a .30 on the Explosion Index (the average of their z-scores for the three measures is .3 or greater). I left on the names of guys that you couldn’t actually get for cheap so that you can understand the athleticism of the guys you can get for cheap. For instance, you can’t actually get Doug Martin for cheap anymore. But you can see the names of guys who actually have better Explosion Index numbers, like Bernard Pierce of the Ravens. Both David Wilson and DeMarco Murray will cost something to acquire in a fantasy draft, while guys like Ryan Mathews, Mikel LeShoure and Ryan Williams will be a lot cheaper.