Who are the five highest-paid running backs currently in the NFL?

Which players at RB currently make the most in the NFL?
Philadelphia Eagles v New York Giants
Philadelphia Eagles v New York Giants / Jim McIsaac/GettyImages

In today's NFL, there really is no need to pay top-dollar for a running back, yet teams still do it for some reason, and these RBs are the highest-paid in the NFL. Paying a running back is risky business and rarely ends up being a good deal. Perhaps one of the more least-valuable positions in the NFL, teams simply do not need a $10 million per year running back to win Super Bowls.

However, for some reason, every single offseason, teams still invest top-dollar into RBs even though they can be found in the late rounds of the NFL Draft. It's a weird trend and one that sees these teams burn money. In the rare case, paying RBs can actually work out for both sides. Who are the highest-paid running backs in the NFL?

Who are the five highest-paid running backs currently in the NFL?
5. Josh Jacobs - $12,000,000 per year

Josh Jacobs replaces Aaron Jones in Green Bay, and this might be one of the rare cases where paying top-dollar for a running back is actually not a terrible thing. Jordan Love's 2023 breakout season has positioned the Packers to go all-in. They also have a ton of young players on rookie deals as well, so a move like this does make some sense.

Jacobs has rushed for 5,545 yards and 46 touchdowns through five seasons in the NFL.

4. Saquon Barkley - $12,583,333 per year

Perhaps one of the most overrated players in the NFL this century, Saquon Barkley managed to sign a contract with the Eagles worth over $12 million per season. In six seasons in the NFL, he's averaged over 4.0 yards per carry just three times and has just three 1,000-yard rushing years.

3. Jonathan Taylor - $14,000,000 per year

Jonathan Taylor might be the best pure runner in the NFL, and is getting paid $14 million per year from the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts might be ready to explode in 2024 with second-year QB Anthony Richardson and offensive-guru head coach in Shane Steichen. If Taylor can stay healthy. he is going to have a monster season.

2. Alvin Kamara - $15,000,000 per year

An all-time great dual-threat running back, Alvin Kamara's best days are behind him unfortunately. He's now playing with Derek Carr, who is a huge downgrade at QB than who he formerly had with Drew Brees. Sean Payton is also no longer in the picture, so one could argue that Kamara just might not be used to his full potential anymore.

Nonetheless, he was still able to cash in a few years ago on a contract that pays him $15 million per season.

1. Christian McCaffrey - $16,015,853 per year

The highest-paid running back in NFL history is Christian McCaffrey, who makes over $16 million per season. Frankly, McCaffrey might be the only worthwhile RB to be paying this much, as he's not only a threat with his legs, but he is a viable slot receiver as well. Heck, he could switch to being a WR full-time and would be excellent.

He's magically been able to stay healthy since arriving in San Francisco. Since beginning his career in 2017 with the Carolina Panthers, McCaffrey has just churned up yardage, but you have to wonder when all of the touches will catch up with him.