Friday, April 30, 2010

Offseason Minings-Draft Report-Receivers

Bringing up the rear are the wideouts. Traditionally, rookie receivers haven't had much impact. The sophomore breakout was the cliche. In recent years, rookies like Desean Jackson have turned conventional wisdom on its head. Let's take a look at the guys who could breakout this year.

Demaryius Thomas-Denver-Round 1
Not a great scenario. I don't like Denver much, and theoretically, he is behind Stokely and Royal on the depth chart. They could be starting Tebow at some point and I doubt Thomas is a jump-throw catcher.

Dez Bryant-Dallas-Round 1
Interesting. The talent is there and he should be the number 2 wr early in the year, catching passes from Romo. The problem is that everyone knows this and he isn't much of a sleeper compared to other rookies. But if he slips, he probably puts up the best rookie numbers.

Arrelious Benn-Tampa-Round 2
My favorite sleeper right now. No profile means you can take him just before your kicker. On a bad team that will throw till the end, and with a dearth of receiving threats. Chance at being the top target and putting up a classic Tampa year in the mold of Clayton, Galloway or Bryant.

Golden Tate-Seattle-Round 2
Not a great candidate to break out this year. Housh gets most of the targets in Seattle and that won't change.

Damian Williams-Tennessee-Round 3
I like Williams long term to start alongside Britt in the long term. In the short term, he is not worth drafting but keep an eye on the first few weeks for a pickup.

I'm a little bit interested in Jacoby Ford in Oakland, Mardy Gilyard in St Louis and the two Carolina guys. But like Williams, I'd rather wait and see how they do the first few weeks.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Offseason Minings- Draft Report

First, a reiteration: I don't watch much college football. I've seen a few of these players but not enough to truly judge their talent levels. Fortunately, this is not necessary for fantasy football. Value is highly dependent on situation. Situations can be analyzed independently of player ability, taking into account player type, and some faith in NFL offices to analyze talent.

Running Backs

CJ Spiller-Buffalo-Round 1
A lot of hype around Spiller will probably lead to him being overdrafted. Regardless of talent, he is at best the lead back of a losing team in a tough decision. More likely he splits carries. Worst case he is a 3rd down back. I will be steering clear.

Ryan Matthews-San Diego-Round 1
The true fantasy gem of the draft. Much like Chris Johnson 2 years ago, Matthews is entering a perfect scenario. Any half-decent running back would put up good numbers here. I don't expect Norv to continue the devotion he showed to LDT but there will be plenty of red zone chances. He has zero competition for the spot and the top passing attack in football will get him those shots. This is a top 12 back by season's end.

Jahvid Best-Detroit-Round 1
Wake me up when the Lions aren't another terrible team in a good division. Will he even wrestle the top spot in Motown away from Kev Smith? Potential late round flier, but that is all.

Dexter McCluster-Kansas City-Round 2
Probably not worth a flier. I doubt he has the talent that Charles does. They don't have a good line. Sure a schedule of soft run defenses is nice, but....there is really nothing to be excited about here.

Toby Gerhart-Minnesota-Round 2
A perplexing pick. Why not just keep Taylor. Peterson has never split carries. One play that I have seen and like from a talent perspective, but in Minnesota he has handcuff value only.

Ben Tate-Houston-Round 2
Here is a pick with some fantasy value. Houston needed exactly what Tate brings, and he should fit in nicely with Slaton in a timesplit. He should also be the recipient of goal line carries, a problem for Houston last year. He will put up points this year, probably the second highest scoring fantasy rookie.

Montario Hardesty-Cleveland-Round 2
Too many backs on a bad team to consider drafting a Brown. The only thing he does is ruin the value of Jerome Harrison.

Joe McKnight-New York-Round 4
There is some value here, given that Shonn Green is injury prone, and Tomlinson is finished. More of a mid-season pick up than a late-round flier, though. Wait and see.


Sam Bradford-St Louis-Round 1
There is rarely a reason to draft a rookie qb. Bradford is no exception. They may let him learn, and even if he plays, he will play for St Louis. Unless you are in a league that qbs score points for sacks.

Jimmy Clausen-Carolina-Round 2
Clausen could be the exception. He finds himself in a very good position, behind a good offensive line with a big downfield target and a running game to take the pressure off. If he gets a chance to start, he could produce right away. We should have a better idea about his role close to the season but he could a flier or even a starter in deep leagues.

Tight Ends

Jermaine Gresham-Cincinnati-Round 1
Real life starter on day 1, solid fantasy backup. Talented guy provides a real threat for a Bengals team that I like.

Ron Gronkowski-Patriots-Round 2
Potentially a good situation, but it seemed like they were talking about this guy as a project as opposed a immediate impact player. Draft at risk.

Wide Receivers

coming soon....

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Offseason MInings-Marshall Plan

The long awaited Marshall trade finally happened. As much as I didn't like the move for Seattle I love it for Miami. Whereas the Seahawks were much more than a receiver away from contending, the Fins are a team I already liked to take their division and moreover, were primarily lacking a number one receiver. I'd previously mentioned they had a stable of No 3 wideouts. Now they add a top 5 talent to a team with a young qb I feel pretty good about and a top 5 running game anchored by Jake Long. It's a great team move, but how does it affect fantasy?

Not too much, in all honesty. It's a slight boost for Marshall, but he was already going top 7, and it's not that different of a situation for him.

It's a bigger boost for Henne, but not really enough to make him more than a backup. He is still a low risk backup, not the high risk type you want in the late rounds. His value is the highest in deep leagues, as he makes a solid starter that you can pick up in midrounds in 16 team leagues.

Drop in value for the aforementioned stable of Fin wideouts. Marshall tends to hog the catches. I doubt I could draft one of those guys now.

Drop for Orton but you weren't taking him anyways.

Nice boost for Ronnie Brown. Marshall means more red zone chances for Brown. Of course, Brown has traditionally been limited by injuries more than anything else.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Offseason Minings-McNabb Fallout

The 2010 season isn't going to feel quite the same. With DonnyMac in Washington, the Eagles dynasty is no more and I'll no longer have a reason to root for the green and silver. A strange thing, unlike McNair leaving Tennessee, as this time a whole team has been taken away. A strange day.

Perhaps more importantly there are fantasy implications to the trade.

McNabb: Takes the biggest hit here. His new team has decidedly worse line and worse receiving targets. I could see a big year happening, but he is decidedly a risk/reward type guy with a decently high floor in his new situation. Should be taken as a solid backup in standard leagues.

Kevin Kolb: We've seen little to nothing of Kolb, but as we have seen, situation can be everything. The Eagles are still a good offense with good protection and a top target in DJAX. If they continue to struggle with power running situations, Kolb's TD total could be decent. probably a back up, but I'm definitely interested.

Le Sean McCoy: The second year back takes a hit too, but I feel he will still be undervalued come August. The naysayers will be all over this Eagles team, but they will be decent, if not a likely playoff contender. The defense will still be tough and I don't need to go over how that helps a rb again. I like what I've seen from McCoy so far and he could finally solve the Eagles goal line problems, a year too late.

Redskins running backs: Yeah there is a boost here, but are you taking any of these guys? We learned our lesson in Denver, Shanahan with too many backs is fantasy kryptonite. On the other hand, Portis, SWP and LJ could all be out by week 6.

Desean Jackson: Minor hit. I've said it many times, top receivers get their numbers, regardless of situation. I believe DJAX is a top guy. Now, if you are expecting him to do as well as last year, you were mistaken even before this move. My money is on him finishing in the top 10 but outside the top 5. I think that is still realistic with Kolb.

Devin Thomas: I had already pegged this guy as a sleeper for 2010. While I'm now even more confident in him, I worry that this move wakes up more people to his potential. You may have to pay for him now but I think he establishes himself as the top target in Washington.