Buffalo Bills have a surprising running back make PFF Top RBs list

New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills
New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills / Bryan Bennett/GettyImages

Pro Football Focus is creating rankings for each position group ahead of the 2023 season and Josh Allen is ranked second among quarterbacks and Stefon Diggs is fifth among wide receivers. Those two position rankings make sense and while there may be some debate between Josh Allen and Joe Burrow at quarterback, the difference isn't that great.

The running back position is one that has underwhelmed for the Bills over the past few years and it seemed unlikely that Buffalo would have any players rank in the Top 32 rankings by Pro Football Focus. However, that wasn't the case as surprisingly Damien Harris would be ranked 24th.

"When healthy, Harris has been a productive and efficient player. He earned 86.1 and 86.8 rushing grades in 2020 and 2021, respectively. He also averaged more than 4.5 yards per carry during that time. He wasn't able to hold off Rhamondre Stevenson on the Patriots' depth chart (Harris’ hamstring injury in Week 5 didn’t help that), but Harris is still a top 32 back."

Trevor Sikkema

Health is key for Damien Harris' impact with the Buffalo Bills

As Trevor Sikkema noted at the beginning of his write up on Damien Harris, he is an effective running back but has dealt with a number of injuries in his career. In four seasons, he has never played a full regular season with 2021 being the closest with 15 games played.

Not surprising that was also the best season of his career with 929 rushing yards and 15 rushing touchdowns. The biggest issue for Harris has been hamstring injuries as he has missed at least one game in three of his four seasons with the Patriots.

Entering this season, Damien Harris is going to be a role player in this backfield primarily as the power back. The Buffalo Bills haven't really had that in their backfield with Devin Singletary being the lead back and Harris should take some pressure off Josh Allen in those short-yardage situations.

While James Cook should end the year with more touches, Harris is going to be an important part of this offense. It wouldn't be surprising if he gets close to double digit touchdowns as long as he stays healthy.