For nearly a decade Adrian Peterson and Jamaal Charles were considered the best running backs in Fantasy Football. But a week before the start of Free Agency, the Minnesota Vikings released Peterson and the Kansas City Chiefs cut Jamaal Charles.
Both backs are coming off injury plagued seasons. Peterson has played just 20 games in the last three years (missed 15 games due to suspension in 2014). Charles has played just eight games in the last two seasons and hasn't hit the 1,000 yard mark since 2014.
Both backs are on the wrong side of 30.
Both backs had big cap numbers that now saves the team some space.
So how does this impact the world of Fantasy Football?
Let's look at the team's they leave behind. Starting with the Vikings we saw a mix of Jerrick McKinnon and Matt Asiata split the workload in AD's absence a year ago. Neither rusher really emerged or took a strangle hold of the starting job.
For the Chiefs, Spencer Ware look spectacular on occasion but also looked like a bum in a handful of games. He too missed some action due to an injury in 2016, which is when we saw Charcandrick West in action. West didn't do much with the opportunity.
Both teams are in fairly the same position. They have backups that became starters a year ago, none of which proved themselves enough to ponder if these teams will target a running back in free agency or draft one come April. For now, Spencer Ware has the most fantasy value of the group, especially with the way Kansas City runs their Offense, but that could quickly change if KC picks up a Free Agent RB or drafts someone like Joe Mixon (The Chiefs don't seem to have a problem taking risky or bad PR type players, See Tyreek Hill in 2016).
As for what Charles and Peterson bring to the table, that is totally dependent on where they land. Some suitors for Peterson are rumored to be the Raiders, Seahawks, and Giants. Unlike Peterson, it doesn't seem like Charles can carry the full workload anymore, so he'll likely join a committee situation.
Will be interesting to keep an eye on both the Chiefs and Vikings backfield situation along with where Charles and Peterson end up to start the year. Stay tuned for further analysis once we get closer to the NFL Draft.