Detroit Lions: Running Back power rankings heading into 2020

Kerryon Johnson, Detroit Lions (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)
Kerryon Johnson, Detroit Lions (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images) /
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Bo Scarbrough, Detroit Lions
Bo Scarbrough, Detroit Lions (Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images) /

3. Bo Scarbrough

Tim Twentyman of describes Scarbrough’s game as a “no nonsense north and south” style. I don’t know that I’d say the other backs on the roster bring ‘nonsense’ to their runs either, but watching Bo run, you get a good idea of what Twentyman is talking about. Brought on at midseason only in the face of an injury crisis at running back, Scarbrough acquitted himself well, with 377 yards and 4.3 yards per carry in a six game stint.

Scarbrough is easily the most distinctive back on the current roster, preferring to dish out the punishment rather than take it with each carry. The downside is that he’s probably the most one dimensional as well, with just one go-to move (‘the crash’) and only a single reception a year ago.

The Lions have plenty of running backs that are interchangeable to a degree, while Scarbrough is like a football Chuck Berry–he plays one speed, one style, take it or leave it. I see that as plus, but it remains to be seen just how much Darrell Bevell will value that style once he has a room full of healthy backs again.

4. Jason Huntley

The small, speedy, and shifty Huntley was a surprising draft pick in my opinion, especially after already taking D’Andre Swift. The more I think about it, this selection only makes sense if the staff thinks that Huntley is already better than Ty Johnson and will surpass him right away. For that reason, I’m starting Huntley off just slightly higher for now.

Similar to Ty Johnson, Huntley’s value is his ability to chip in with a little bit of everything: catches out of the backfield, returns, as well as spot duty running the ball. However, his size (20 pounds lighter than Ty) raises some question marks about his viability as an inside runner. JD McKissic numbers from last year (205 yards rushing, 233 receiving), plus a return touchdown or two, would be a strong rookie year for Huntley.