Ranking the AFC West running backs from worst to best in 2023

Which running back gets the nod for being the best of the best in the AFC West?

Los Angeles Chargers v Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Chargers v Kansas City Chiefs / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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3. LA Chargers

  • Austin Ekeler, Joshua Kelley, Isaiah Spiller, Larry Rountree

The Chargers running back room is such a hard one to gauge heading into the 2023 season as it could be the best in the division if things go well but it could also be one of the worst in the entire league.

Sure, the team has a big-name player in Austin Ekeler who has been a touchdown machine over the last two years but there are reasons to be concerned. Ekeler is hitting that point in his career when a running back starts to decline and we already saw it last season.

Ekeler struggled immensely in running between the tackles. Outside of two huge games, Ekeler was one of the worst RB1s in terms of being a traditional runner. He was still an elite pass-catching option, but the Chargers struggled to protect leads as they couldn't run the ball.

Joshua Keller and Isaiah Spiller are also unproven commodities. Kelley was fine last season for the Chargers but still got hurt and doesn't offer much in the passing game. Spiller was not NFL-ready last season and he is a massive variable in 2023.

Granted, if Ekeler continues to provide what he provides and the two younger backs step up then this is a really nice room. It is such a polarizing position for the Chargers and that instability is part of the reason why the Bolts don't rank higher.