Derrick Henry vs. Jonathan Taylor (Who Will Lead The League in Rushing in 2022?)

Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor.
Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor. / Don Juan Moore/GettyImages

Even in an age of spread offenses and air-raid offenses, Jonathan Taylor and Derrick Henry are two of the league’s best offensive weapons. 

The last three rushing titles have been won by these two, with Taylor winning last year on 1,811 rushing yards. Henry didn’t have the proper chance to defend his title since he got hurt near midseason. 

Henry is healthy now and will surely be called upon to lead the Titans’ offense with A.J. Brown and Julio Jones gone. Taylor will also be the centerpiece of his offense, even with Matt Ryan coming in to play quarterback. 

FanDuel has odds for who will be the league leader in rushing yards and Taylor and Henry are tied at +600. They both have a good chance to win the rushing title, but I’m already sold on who’d I take.

Taylor is the player to back here. He’s entering his third season and is already in his prime. The Colts still have one of the better offensive lines in the league and Matt Ryan’s presence will help open up the box for Taylor. The Colts gave Taylor the most carries in the league last season. If he’s anywhere above 300 carries – which only two players had – then I trust him to be efficient and rack up yards. 

I also have several reasons to fade Henry. The first is that Henry is bound for some regression. While his numbers were good when he got hurt, Henry was on pace for 465 carries last season. That number has to come down, as the Titans saw the injuries that can happen by feeding him too much. 

Secondly, with no true No. 1 receiver, teams are going to be in the box even more than they’ve been. We’ve seen several games where teams have dared Ryan Tannehill to beat them. That’s going to be every game in 2022. Henry is good enough to still be successful, but he won’t be the best in the league. 

The supporting cast around Taylor is just better, so I think he’ll benefit from his roster and win a second straight rushing title.

You can find Donnavan Smoot’s full betting record here.