Tennessee Titans: Derrick Henry ranked fourth-best running back

CBS Sports ranked the top ten running backs in the NFL, and Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry was ranked fourth.

Derrick Henry has been in the news recently as we are now less than a month away from the deadline where the Tennessee Titans and Henry have to come to agreements on a long-term contract or else he will have to play on a franchise tag for the 2020 season.

Now, CBS Sports has ranked the top ten running backs in the league, and Henry was ranked outside the top three, which seems pretty crazy after how well he played during the 2019 season.

Henry led the league in rushing yards with 1,540 rushing yards and won the rushing title for the 2019 season. He also tied for the most rushing touchdowns during the season with 16. It’s hard to get much better than that, but that isn’t enough for Patrik Walker of CBS Sports to put Henry at the top of the list, or at least in the top three.

“The King is here,” Walker wrote.

“Yes, you can attribute some of the turnaround in Nashville to Ryan Tannehill. For the most part, however, it was Henry strapping the Titans on his back and bulldozing through opponents in 2019. When Tannehill couldn’t get things going, Henry took the ball and became a man possessed — especially when it mattered most. In the playoffs, he rushed for an eye-popping 182 yards and 195 yards respectively in the upsets over both the New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens, and on the road… and with both teams throwing the kitchen sink at him. He could only be stopped by the eventual Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs, but the aforementioned playoff performances let everyone know his regular season was no fluke.

“And what a regular season it was, with Henry taking the NFL rushing title with a career-high 1,540 yards to go along with 16 rushing touchdowns, and those who believed he was simply a bowling ball found out he can navigate around the pins at-will; as evidenced in the All-Pro adding another 321 receiving yards to his resume last season.”

The three running backs that landed in front of Henry are Saquon Barkley at No. 3, Ezekiel Elliott at No. 2, and Christian McCaffrey at No. 1.

I think it’s fair to say that McCaffrey and Elliott are elite and the best that the NFL has to offer, but you can’t tell me that Barkley is better than Henry.

Don’t get me wrong, Saquon has put together two great seasons in his first two years in the NFL, but if we’re going off what each running back has done in the past two seasons, Henry has nearly 300 more rushing yards and eleven more touchdowns than Barkley.

After the 2019 season, I see McCaffrey, Elliott, and Henry as the elite running backs in the league with Barkley, Nick Chubb, Todd Gurley, and Dalvin Cook being ranked Tier Two running backs behind the three elite running backs in the league.

Next: Derrick Henry long-term contract could be coming

This ranking goes to show that Henry could be seen as vastly underrated compared to other running backs in the league. That might be because the Titans have been virtually irrelevant nationally since Henry came into the league, but I have a feeling that all of that is about to change.

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