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Thursday, August 14, 2014

32 Bust Candidates

I am thinking about Dwayne Bowe today.  Here's a guy who has shown that he's got some serious skills, but he just seems to struggle to consistently put it all together.  He was awesome in the Chiefs' playoff game last year and he's really the only game in town as far as top end pass-catchers go in Andy Reid's offense.  But man, I just don't know.  He really wasn't very good last year with 57 receptions on 105 targets.  I just can't believe that he's going to produce this year.

And Greg Jennings is going three and a half rounds later.

Let's see if we can do this same thing for every team in the league:

Arizona - Larry Fitzgerald.  Look, Fitz will be really good again this year but I believe Michael Floyd emerges as the #1.  Floyd is going 12 picks later.

Atlanta - Jacquizz Rodgers.  I don't believe that Rodgers will do anything this year, frankly.  Donald Brown is going at almost exactly the same pick.

Baltimore - Ray Rice.  How is he still going in the late 4th round?  I expected to get Rice as a super bargain this year but it doesn't look like the case.  He was horrible last year, there ain't much tread left on the tires, plus he's suspended for two games.  The next five RB's off the board are CJ, Joique, Tate, Miller, and Ridley.  I will take any of them, plus Richardson who is being taken almost exactly where Rice is.

Buffalo - Sammy Watkins.  Look guys, it's Sammy.  Sixth round for a rookie WR with a suspect QB and mediocre offensive line?  Too rich for my blood.  Terrance Williams, Reggie Wayne, and Kendall Wright are all going later.

Carolina - Jonathan Stewart.  Why, Brainiacs, why?  Stewart won't help you.  Move along.  I realize it's the 13th round, but please take Donald Brown instead.

Chicago - Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery.  I'm totally hedging my bet here.  All I know is if all of the weapons in this offense get anywhere close to their projections Jay Cutler is a first round pick next year.  I'll take a good RB ahead of them every time, like a Gio or Ellington.  At WR I'd rather have Antonio Brown, which seems crazy but I'm just drawn to guys that get the full load.

Cincinnati - Jeremy Hill.  He could produce this year, but he's a rookie and Gio is the man.  I'd rather have D-Will or Andre Williams a couple of picks later or maybe wait a round and gamble on Khiry instead.

Cleveland - Terrance West.  Cleveland is a tough one.  Everyone there seems fairly valued, but I think I'll wait 13 or 14 picks for my high-upside rookie RB and take Hyde or Freeman instead. (Though I really do like West behind a fragile Ben Tate.)

Dallas - Jason Witten.  I'd rather take Jordan Reed nine picks later.

Denver - Peyton Manning.  Yes, I'm on that train.  He's got to slow down sometime and he can't replicate what he did last year.  He should have a fine season, but 8th overall is kind of crazy to me.  I'll take the Jimmy Graham or Demaryius Thomas and then grab Aaron Rodgers in the 2nd round.

Detroit - Golden Tate.  I'm not buying it.  Late 6th round is too much for me when you could get a solid RB option like Bernard Pierce (a bit of a gamble, but at least he gets the full load for two games) or a different WR like Kendall Wright.  And, honestly this is the spot in the draft where I'm lookng for a QB like Cutler or Romo even though they are going 11 and 13 picks (respectively) later than Tate.

Green Bay - Everyone not named Aaron Rodgers.  I'd rather have Murray, Bell, Ball, or Gio than Lacy.  Antonio Brown over Nelson.  I'd take the RB over Cobb with Ellington going one pick later.  Boykin in the 10th seems too high.  Starks in the 13th isn't likely to pan out.  Richard Rodgers in the 14th?  Maybe you'll have something there but he'd be your TE2 that late and I'd much rather have Kelce one pick later.

Houston - Andre Brown.  Okay, that's cheating.  This is a tough one though, folks.  I suppose it's Foster here since he's going next to Gio and nine picks before Ellington.

Indianapolis - Hakeem Nicks.  Ninth round is pretty high for a third receiver.  Well, it's borderline for your fantasy squad's WR3, but it's kind of crazy when your WR3 is his own team's WR3 in real life.  Josh Gordon is going one pick later, but that will change when we hear about his possible suspension.  Boldin is there and predictable, Kenny Stills goes eight picks later and has more upside.

Jacksonville - Marqise Lee.  Another tough squad to find a bust is Jacksonville.  I'll go with Lee since Brian Hartline is drafted one spot later and is almost assuredly going to outproduce Lee this year.

Kansas City - Bowe, for reasons already stated.  And, I'll tell you who it isn't the bust - Travis Kelce.  I like him a lot this year and you can get him for nothin'.

Miami - Mike Wallace.  I sort of like Wallace to bounce back this year, but I probably won't see it happening if he goes in the 6th round of my drafts.  Cooks, T. Williams, Wayne, Wright, and even Decker feel like better options.

Minnesota - Cordarrelle Patterson.  Guys, can we just... Can't we kind of... I mean, we sort of need to... Cordarrelle Patterson in the 4th round?!?  I mean, I like his RAC ability too... and he does sort of remind you of Terrell Owens if you squint real hard, but the 4th round is crazy.  Me, I'll go with DeSean eight picks later, Floyd nine picks later, Hilton 13 picks later, or Torrey Smith 17 picks later.  And there are more.

New England - Tom Brady.  It seems like really good value at #61, but you can get Cutler at #97 or Cam Newton at #82.  Plus guys like Romo, Ryan, Rivers, Griffin, and Kaepernick are all going quite a bit after Brady.  #61 doesn't seem like good value anymore.

New Orleans - Khiry Robinson.  This another tough one since I find that Saints players are mostly underrated this year.  Robinson in the 8th round is a gamble.  If you are ready for a risky play at that point in the draft it could pay off, but I will generally prefer an Ahmad Bradshaw 16 picks later.

New York Giants - Rueben Randle.  At the end of the 7th round, Randle won't be on any of my teams.  Amendola is going 17 picks later.

New York Jets - Michael Vick.  Really tough one here, but I believe that Geno Smith will be the starter so Vick going in the 14th round won't work if he doesn't play.  Certainly it could be a steal if he does play, so if you get an every-week starter at QB and you want to burn a bench spot on a QB2 you might be able to generate a trade chip late with Vick. Nevertheless, if he doesn't play he'll be worth less than even EJ Manuel or Jake Locker.  Alright, moving along... this was a toughie.

Oakland - Maurice Jones-Drew.  I think Mojo could do some damage this year, but he is in a timeshare and he hasn't been himself in recent years... and he's being drafted ahead of Bernard Pierce, Steven Jackson, and Fred Jackson.  I think I'd rather take a chance on Pierce blowing up in weeks one and two than Mojo getting his, ahem, mojo back.

Philadelphia - Jordan Matthews.  I'm not buying it.  Not 14 draft positions ahead of Greg Jennings.

Pittsburgh - Ben Roethlisberger.  Taking Ben in the 10th round is too high.  Not because I particularly like Andy Dalton or Johnny Manziel, but because you should be using your 10th rounder to fortify your flex position with some depth like Ahmad Bradshaw or Steve Smith.

San Diego - Malcom Floyd.  He's just never healthy.  I'd rather have Cotchery 16 picks later.

San Francisco - 49ers DST.  If you take a DST in the 8th round you better not miss.  There is just too much variability here, plus they've dealt with some injuries.  The Broncos come off the board 12 picks later and the Browns (who I love this year) are available 60 picks later.

Seattle - Percy Harvin.  Hey, maybe he steps right up and delivers on his big, big potential.  I'm not going to find out with a 5th round pick.  Harvin has never had 1,000 yards in a season and never had seven touchdowns, plus he was out almost the entire year in 2013.  He proved what he is when in Minnesota - around 850 yards and six TD's.  I need more in the 5th, and I think I'll get it with Michael Floyd.  I also prefer T. Smith, Hilton, Maclin, Sanders and more.

St. Louis - Zac Stacy.  28th seems about right, but I'd much rather have Ellington at #30.  I also prefer Gerhart, Jennings, and Mathews.

Tampa Bay - Austin Sefarian-Jenkins.  Okay, he's fine as a late round gamble, but if that's what we're doing let's take Travis Kelce eight picks later.

Tennessee - Justin Hunter.  This Just-in... Hunter's not as good as Greg Jennings, who is being drafted 13 picks later.

Washington - Roy Helu.  Not buying it.  Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.  Give me C.J. Anderson with the next pick or Donald Brown ten picks later.

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Case for This Year's Surprise at RB

The (impressive) content below was written for all you Brainiacs by my man George Banko at http://fantasyfootballhelpers.com/  Check them out and give him a follow @gbanko4.

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Famed musician Duke Ellington and Arizona Cardinals running back Andre Ellington have something in common. While Duke Ellington was pretty good at swing, the ADP (average draft position) of Arizona Cardinals running back Andre Ellington is also swinging — upward. But is the second-year running back worthy of RB1 value for 2014?


Ellington burst onto the scene last season in the absence of now-retired Rashard Mendenhall. In his first career start midway through 2013, Ellington rushed for 154 rushing yards on 15 carries and one touchdown against a bad Atlanta defense.
His 15 carries in that game were the most he ever registered in his young career, though he later matched that amount against a much tougher Seattle Seahawk defense in Week 16. Seattle held him in check during that affair, but Ellington still came away with a respectable 64 rushing yards on 4.3 yards per carry.
Even though he started just one game, Ellington’s 5.5 yard per carry was a league best in 2013 and he fell just 36 yards short of eclipsing Rashard Mendenhall for the team’s rushing title.


But the ground game wasn’t the only place Ellington was effective. He also caught 39 passes for 371 yards, showing good versatility in the receiving game with quarterback Carson Palmer. He was especially effective on the slip route over the middle of the field and on screen passes. The infamous missed wheel route, which would have won Arizona the game against St. Louis had Palmer connected with Ellington, is also in the RB’s repertoire.  


Ellington is primed to step into the No. 1 role for 2014 with Mendenhall gone, and  Stepfan Taylor and plodder Jonathan Dwyer are expected to back him up. With neither of the backups posing a substantial threat, Ellington will certainly see more carries this season, but with great power comes great responsibility. There are questions Ellington you should consider before you can pencil him in as an RB1 on your draft board.


What Type of a Player is He?


At 5’9, 203 lbs, Ellington isn’t a big running back that grinds out yards and runs people over. He’s an explosive back who does his best work out in space where he can elude defenders. His quick lateral cutting is one of his best assets, as shown in this video here.




His Role in the Passing Game


Ellington’s receiving ability meshes well with the Cardinals. In 2013, Arizona passed the ball 57 percent of the time, which ranked in the middle of the road but their 422 total rushing attempts ranked in the bottom 15. They aren’t the most pass-happy team in the league, but they do tend to chuck it a little more.


Also, wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd are among the best wide receiver tandems in the league and should draw plenty of double teams. The attention they create should clear the way for Ellington on underneath routes against slower linebackers.


Palmer targeted Ellington 57 times last season as part of a crowded group of receivers where Fitzgerald, Floyd, and slot-guy Andre Roberts accounted for 324 of the Cards’ 574 targets. With Roberts now on the Redskins and Ellington seeing more snaps, more opportunities for targets should arise for Ellington this season.


His Workload


Ellington is expected to see around 20-25 carries per game in 2014, which will be a huge undertaking for a guy his size. It’s not so much that Ellington can’t handle being a bell cow, it’s just his smaller frame may lend itself to big hits which lend themselves to injury.


Ellington’s receiving potential can’t be disputed though. He’s an RB1 in PPR (points per reception) leagues in 2014. Ellington averaged 3.8 targets per game last season playing in roughly 30-40 percent of the team’s total snaps. Those numbers could easily double in 2014. Also, with the kind of offense Arizona runs, coupled with a quarterback who always throws for a lot of yards in Palmer, and you have a good forecast for a 60-70 catch, 300-400 yard receiving season for Ellington.


Where are the Touchdowns, Man?


Ellington only found pay dirt three times on the ground in 2013. While some of his red zone ineffectiveness could be blamed on his lack of carries, most of it could be blamed on the Cardinals’ preference to pass the ball into the end zone.


On the ground, Ellington carried the ball 14 times in the red zone, which was good for 66.7 percent of the team’s total red zone carries. His three goal-line carries (from inside the five-yard line) accounted for 100 percent of the team’s goal line carries. Ellington was the only running back to accomplish that feat, and says more about the Cardinals’ passing game than it does about Ellington.


In the receiving game, the Cardinals just didn’t utilize Ellington that much in the red zone. He registered just .33 targets per game in the red zone in 2013, good for just 7.4 percent of total red zone targets. Fitzgerald was Palmer’s favorite in this category, as he accounted for 35 percent of the teams’ total red-zone targets.


The good part about this is that although Ellington didn’t have a lot of opportunities for goal line carries, he didn’t squander the few chances he had. He scored on 2-of-3 goal line touches in 2013, and you just have to hope Arizona finds themselves in more goal-line situations this year.


The Cardinals Philosophy


In offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin’s first year in 2013, the Cardinals turned themselves around dramatically from their disastrous 2012 performance where they trotted up several below average quarterbacks which zapped the fantasy value of nearly every offensive player on the field including Fitzgerald.  


Goodwin erased those bad memories quickly in 2013. The Cardinals found a more reliable quarterback in Carson Palmer, who played an entire season and threw for a respectable 4,274 passing yards despite 22 interceptions. Larry Fitzgerald returned to his pro-bowl form with 954 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns, while Michael Floyd broke out 1,041 yards and five touchdowns of his own.


There’s no doubt the Cardinals are a much-improved offense from over a year ago and they have young emerging stars in Ellington and Floyd to go along with a good mix of veterans in Fitzgerald and Palmer.


Final verdict


All the potential is there for Ellington to put together RB1-like numbers in 2013. You’ll just have to monitor his health and examine how much of a toll an increased workload will impact his undersized frame. He’s an high-end RB2, borderline RB1 in 2014. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

16 Wide Receivers in Their Second Year

By Adam Filadelfo (@Frostt24)
 
It has long been said that the third year tends to be when all of the stars align for NFL receivers and you begin to see them reach their ceiling.  But, that may be shifting to year two.  Many savvy fantasy owners are starting to note that wide receivers playing in their second season in the NFL have an even earlier chance to breakout these days. Those receivers may or may not make much of an impact in their rookie seasons but come their sophomore season, could explode and help carry a fantasy team to a championship. 2013 saw receivers Alshon Jeffery and Josh Gordon breakout in just their second season just to name a couple. Fantasy owners are expecting a new group of second year wideouts to make names for themselves and help carry their teams to glory in 2014.

Marlon Brown- Baltimore Ravens- Marlon Brown made a name for himself last season becoming a viable target in a weak passing game for the Baltimore Ravens in 2013. With defenses keying in on Torrey Smith, Marlon Brown took advantage of his opportunity and ran with it. Hauling in 49 receptions of the 81 thrown his way, Marlon Brown finished his rookie season with 524 yards and seven touchdowns in the 14 games he played. He originally took over for the injured Jacoby Jones and managed to stick around even after Jones returned. Along the way, Brown averaged almost seven fantasy points per game and the addition of Steve Smith may take away a few targets from Brown but Marlon Brown wasn't much of a deep threat anyway but more of a red zone target for Joe Flacco. Fantasy owners should be able to grab Brown late in drafts as he is poised to have a very good sophomore season in 2014.

Robert Woods- Buffalo Bills- In 14 games played in 2013, Robert Woods saw 86 targets and finished with 40 catches for 587 yards and three touchdowns. He averaged over 5.5 fantasy points per game and could have had better numbers if not for an injury that took him out of two games. Woods was starting to gel nicely with fellow rookie quarterback E.J Manuel until an injury derailed Manuel as well. If Manuel can improve just a little in his second year, and defenses game planning for rookie receiver Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods can improve on his rookie numbers and help fantasy owners who grab him a little later in their drafts.

Terrance Williams- Dallas Cowboys-The second year wideout for the Boys is in a great position to improve on his first year in the NFL. With defensive coordinators honing in on Dez Bryant, and the Cowboys defense looking like it may actually be worse than last season, the Cowboys will have to throw the ball a ton and Romo is going to have to look for other receivers besides Dez. This bodes well for now second year wideout Terrance Williams who finished his rookie campaign with 74 targets and 44 receptions for over 700 yards and five scores. He also averaged just under seven fantasy points per game and having almost a full season under his belt, should be a great addition to fantasy rosters in 2014.

Jarrett Boykin- Green Bay Packers- When Randall Cobb went down with an injury early in the season, Cobb owners were left scanning the waiver wire for receiver help. Little did they know they only had to look a little way down the Packers roster to find a very viable replacement. In the 12 games that Boykin played, he had 82 targets and 49 receptions to go with the 681 yards and three touchdowns. He also averaged over seven fantasy points per game and most of that was done without Aaron Rodgers. Fantasy owners should expect better numbers in his second season with a healthy Aaron Rodgers and James Jones in Oakland. 

DeAndre Hopkins- Houston Texans- The only thing that possibly held back the rookie receiver in 2013 was the shoddy quarterback play. If the quarterback was even somewhat competent, Hopkins could have been a breakout receiver in his first year in the NFL. With a new head coach that likes to throw more than he likes to run, DeAndre Hopkins could very well be the stud wideout that he was projected to be when the Texans drafted him in 2013. He finished his rookie season seeing 93 targets and 52 catches for over 800 yards with two touchdowns. He averaged just under six fantasy points per game and fantasy owners should expect those numbers to increase in what is expected to be a pass heavy offense.

Da'Rick Rogers- Indianapolis Colts- 2013 saw a small sample size of what Da'Rick Rogers can do seeing how he only played in the final four games of the season. In the four games he did play, he saw 23 targets and hauled in 14 balls. He had almost 200 yards receiving with two touchdowns and averaged just under eight fantasy points per game. With the Colts expecting to throw the ball all over the field, Rogers could have more of a role going forward in his second season with the Colts.

Ace Sanders- Jacksonville Jaguars- Fantasy owners don't really have much of a reason to draft Ace Sanders based on his 2013 numbers. Sanders played in all but one game in his rookie season and only managed to average under four fantasy points per game but did see 85 targets and hauled in 51 of them for almost 500 yards and a touchdown. With a competent quarterback under center in 2014, Ace Sanders could be a secret weapon for fantasy owners in his second year in.

Cordarrelle Patterson- Minnesota Vikings- Cordarrelle Patterson is expected to make the most noise out of all the second year wideouts as far as fantasy owners are concerned. Some drafts have him going very early and fantasy owners are expecting Josh Gordon like leaps and bounds in 2014. The second year receiver played in all 16 games in his rookie year and managed to turn it up towards the end of the season. He finished with 78 targets and 45 receptions for 469 yards and four scores. He was also valuable in leagues where owners got points for return yards. Figuring to be a more integral part of the Vikings passing game in his second season, fantasy owners should expect quite the uptick in his 6.5 fantasy points per game. 

Aaron Dobson- New England Patriots- The Patriots will need second year wideout Aaron Dobson to improve on his rookie numbers if they want to make a deep playoff run in 2014. An injury cut Dobson's rookie campaign a little short and allowed him to play in only 11 games where he had 74 targets with a very mediocre receiving corps. Dobson did manage to record over 500 yards through the air with four touchdowns and averaged almost seven fantasy points per game. Fantasy owners are expecting Aaron Dobson to take a step forward in his second season with the Patriots and become the deep threat the Patriots and Tom Brady desperately need.

Kenbrell Thompkins- New England Patriots- Another second year wideout for the Patriots, Kenbrell Thompkins is expected to take another step in the Patriots offense. He also played in 11 games like fellow rookie Aaron Dobson and recorded 32 receptions on 70 targets. Thompkins had slightly less yards than his teammate Aaron Dobson with 466 yards with the same amount of touchdowns. He also averaged almost the same amount of fantasy points per game with 6.4. Both second year receivers are expected to make the Patriots offense better in 2014.

Kenny Stills- New Orleans Saints- The second year wide receiver for Drew Brees is expected to take a major step forward in 2014. Playing in all 16 games for the Saints in his rookie season, Stills finished with 51 targets and 32 catches for 641 yards and five touchdowns. He also averaged just under six fantasy points per game and is expected to have an expanded role in his sophomore season.

Zach Ertz- Philadelphia Eagles- Even though the second year tight end isn't technically a wide receiver, he is expected to play an even bigger role in his second season for the Eagles. He finished his rookie season with 56 targets hauling in 36 of them for 469 yards and four touchdowns. He averaged under five fantasy points per game and should see more balls thrown his way than fellow tight end Brent Celek making Zach Ertz a popular pick among fantasy owners waiting on a tight end in their drafts. Being a focal point in a Chip Kelly offense doesn't hurt either.

Markus Wheaton- Pittsburgh Steelers- In his second season with the Steelers, Markus Wheaton is expected to become more involved in the offense and compliment Antonio Brown now that Emmanuel Sanders is catching passes from Peyton Manning in Denver. The second year wideout didn't see much action in his rookie season where he only played in five games and saw 13 targets. In a pass first offense that Todd Haley likes to employ, fantasy owners can expect Markus Wheaton to improve on those numbers based upon being he needs to take the next step forward for the Steelers to make strides in the AFC. 

Keenan Allen- San Diego Chargers- Coming off his rookie of the year 2013, Keenan Allen isn't the quintessential breakout star in his second season, but fantasy owners should expect for him to improve on the 105 targets and 71 receptions for over 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns he posted in 2013. He also averaged double digit fantasy points per game in only his first year in the NFL and with a full season under his belt, should have another productive fantasy season in his sophomore year.

Tavon Austin- St.Louis Rams- Was there a more disappointing rookie in 2013 than Tavon Austin? All the hype Jeff Fisher gave his rookie receiver heading into the 2013 season was for naught. Austin had a couple of games where he made fantasy owners think it was time for him to breakout but Austin just couldn't sustain the numbers on a consistent basis. He played in 13 games and saw 69 targets and caught 40 of them for over 400 yards with four touchdowns. He averaged just under seven fantasy points per game and is expected to have a bigger role in his second season but it still remains a question as to how the Rams actually intend to use him. 

Justin Hunter- Tennessee Titans- The second year wideout for the Titans didn't post numbers that would make fantasy owners look twice at him heading into 2014 but Justin Hunter could become an important piece for the Titans and Jake Locker in 2014. With defenses having to watch Kendall Wright, Justin Hunter could reap the benefits of being a relatively unknown in his second year in. His rookie numbers saw him see only 42 targets in the 13 games he played and managed only 18 receptions for 354 yards and four touchdowns. He averaged 4.6 fantasy points per game and with an expanded role in the offense in his second year, Justin Hunter could position himself as quite a sleeper in 2014.

Friday, August 1, 2014

You're (possibly) Invited: Readers vs. Writers League

You think you're ready for this?!?  Let's see what you got.

Check it out, Brainiacs!  Adam Filadelfo and I have set up a fantasy football league this year that will have you, dear reader, face off against some of the writers, bloggers, and site owners in the fantasy football industry.

Just shoot me an email at dave@thefantasysportsbrain.com and I'll pick a small number of lucky winners at random.  We're thinking of setting up with two divisions if the numbers work out evenly.

Don't be skerred. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

The Peyton Manning Effect (Drafting a Top QB)

Something special for you today, Brainiacs.  My man James "Hatty" Hatfield (@hattywaiverwire) is bringing a fresh perspective for you here, and it's on something I wouldn't normally suggest.  He's talking about the concept of drafting a QB early.  (Perish the thought!)  As always, Hatty brings it full force.  Check it out below, and give him a follow on Twitter or cruise over to his site (link at the bottom):

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The question arises of when should you draft your QB and is Peyton Manning worth it and can he repeat in 2014?

Let's first take a look at the numbers; Peyton Manning cleared 406 fantasy points (using a standard scoring model and if your league has a custom scoring model that downplays QBs then this article is not as relevant) followed by Drew Brees at 348, then the rest of top 10 had 282-253 fantasy points.  Peyton Manning was a true difference maker in 2013 and Drew Brees was not too far behind.  Peyton Manning will not toss 55 TD's again in 2014 but you have to give Peyton Manning and Drew Brees some real consideration for your first round pick since they do have the potential to be such a considerable difference in fantasy points to the next QBs.

I would argue that if you are not going to get Manning or Brees then you wait until round 4 or 5 for your QB draft.  QB #3 through #16 scored between 282 to 225 fantasy points.  Most owners will not start drafting a back-up QB until after round 5 so you can just sit tight if you don't get Manning or Brees.  Aaron Rodgers should be considered as a top 3 QB but it appears Green Bay has finally found a running game and it's hard to believe Rodgers will throw over 340+ fantasy points in 2014, but you can gamble if you want.  Peyton didn't lose much of anything coming into 2014 and in fact I would argue that he has a better group of WR's this year and potentially the same ground game as well.  

So the question remains do you think Peyton can do amazing things in 2014?  Drew Brees has shown time and again that he is a safe QB to draft and if he is there in round 2 of the draft I would have a hard time not picking him up.  If Peyton is available with your first round pick he appears to be a safe option going into 2014 that he can throw over 340+ fantasy points and show a clear differentiation between the #3 through $16 QBs.  If you do draft Peyton with your first pick and people give you a hard time, then shake it off and remember the numbers.

Numbers talk and haters walk.

Good luck in 2014 and if you need some draft guide assistance check out the Hatty Waiver Wire Guru 2014 Draft Guide

Monday, July 14, 2014

18 Potential Bouncebacks Waiting to Happen

By Adam Filadelfo (@Frostt24)

Every year, there are players who underachieve in fantasy football. The question owners need to ask themselves is why did a particular player have a down season? There are a number of reasons. Maybe there was an undisclosed injury, maybe the offense around the player in question wasn't as good as it was in previous years. It is up to fantasy owners to decide whether or not a player can rebound from a poor season to return to the player everyone knows he can be. Here is a list of players that did not live up to expectations in 2013 and who could return to form in 2014. It is because of their poor performance last season that they will probably drop in drafts and therefore could provide value in later rounds of drafts for owners willing to forget last year and focus on this upcoming season. First, let's take a look at the quarterback position.

Sam Bradford
- Before an ACL injury caused Bradford to miss nine games, Bradford looked like he was finally starting to become the quarterback the Rams were hoping for when they drafted him a few years back. In the seven games Bradford played, he averaged 20.5 fantasy points per game and threw 14 touchdowns to only four interceptions. With what looks like a stellar defense on paper and a competent ground game led by Zac Stacy, Bradford could be the perfect bounce back candidate heading into fantasy drafts in 2014.

Jay Cutler- While it may be difficult to call Jay Cutler a bounce back player, he did have a disappointing 2013 due to an injury that caused him to miss six games. Even in the 11 games he did start, his numbers were not that impressive. Cutler threw for over 2,600 yards and 19 touchdowns while tossing 12 interceptions to go along with those numbers. He averaged under 20 fantasy points per contest and if he can stay healthy for an entire season, playing under quarterback guru Marc Trestman could give Cutler the fantasy season owners have been waiting for.

Robert Griffin III- This is the most obvious bounce back player heading into 2014 for me. The Redskins did everything possible to make RG3 a top quarterback and he is a full season removed from knee surgery. With DeSean Jackson and a healthy Jordan Reed, RG3 could very well be a top fantasy signal caller this season. His 2013 numbers weren't what owners were looking for seeing how his rookie season in 2012 was something special. Last season saw RG3 play 13 games before getting benched and threw for over 3,200 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also rushed for 484 yards which was due more to his knee injury than anything else. He averaged 21 fantasy points per game down from the 24 he averaged in his rookie season. Fantasy owners should expect a return to glory this season for the third year quarterback.

Eli Manning- Eli may very well be the most difficult fantasy player to figure out over the last couple of seasons. He threw nine more interceptions than he did touchdowns in 2013 and the offense around him struggled as well. Eli averaged under 17 fantasy points per week and wasn't considered an option at his position for most of the season. While Eli could very well be a bounce back player heading into this season due to a new offensive coordinator, his numbers have been trending in the wrong direction as of late. 2012 saw Manning average 19 fantasy points per game which was just slightly better than his 2013 numbers. While it may be hard for fantasy owners to consider the youngest of the Manning brothers a fantasy starter every week, it is possible for Eli to improve on his dismal 2013.

Matt Ryan
- Matt Ryan had a disappointing season simply because practically every weapon he had missed time for one reason or another. The offensive line around him fell apart due to injury and after a while, Ryan's fantasy season fell apart as well. He passed for over 4,500 yards regardless but only threw 26 touchdowns. Not the numbers fantasy owners would expect from an elite fantasy quarterback. With a healthy offensive line to protect him and his two favorite weapons in Roddy White and Julio Jones back in the fold for 2014, owners should expect a Matt Ryan like season in 2014.

Now it's time to take a look at some of the disappointing running backs from last year that fantasy owners can expect to rebound in 2014. These backs underperformed for their fantasy owners last year and did not play up to the potential fantasy owners know they can play to.

Doug Martin- An injury cut Doug Martin's sophomore season short but he wasn't exactly tearing up the field while he was playing. In the six games Muscle Hamster played in, he averaged under 10 fantasy points per game. The shoulder issue could have contributed to his poor performance before he went out and now that he is over the injury, could go back to the running back fantasy owners fell in love with in 2012 when he averaged 16.5 fantasy points per game.

Ray Rice- By averaging just over eight fantasy points per game in 2013, Ray Rice did not live up to his first round draft status last year. Facing a suspension heading into this season, Rice will not be a first round selection this time around but could provide a boost to owners that grab him later in drafts. If the issue with Rice in 2013 was really just a hip injury, fantasy owners can expect a better Ray Rice in 2014.

Trent Richardson
- While T-Rich was probably the most disappointing fantasy player last season, it is a little difficult to believe he just forgot how to play football. He was practically an afterthought when he was traded from Cleveland to Indianapolis seeing how he averaged an abysmal seven fantasy points per game and provided next to nothing in the passing game as well. While he will drop in fantasy drafts heading into this season, barring an injury, there is no reason to think T-Rich can't be a top 10 fantasy running back this year.

C.J. Spiller- Heading into 2013, the coaching staff told fantasy owners that Spiller would get the ball until he threw up. Maybe the lower body injury played a part in Spiller not seeing the ball until he puked or maybe the coaching staff was just talking but Spiller was a huge disappointment last season averaging just over eight fantasy points per contest and had only 197 yards in the passing game on 34 receptions. Spiller along with Richardson and Rice did not live up to their first round billing. Now in a contract year, Spiller has one more season to impress the Bills and fantasy owners before he's considered a bust and forgotten about.

Pierre Thomas- While fantasy owners may not consider 2013 a bust of a season for Pierre Thomas, it is possible that he has an even better 2014 seeing how he will more than likely be the starting running back this season now this Darren Sproles is gone. Thomas' value was mostly in the passing game where he had 77 catches for over 500 yards and three scores in 2013. He averaged 8.5 fantasy points per game with Sproles there and without Sproles to take catches away from him, could end up with better numbers in 2014.

While there were plenty of quarterbacks and running backs that failed to live up to fantasy expectations last season, there were also quite a few receivers as well. It's time to take a look at which wide receivers could possibly bounce back in 2014.

Victor Cruz- It's hard to blame Cruz for the down season he had last year seeing how the Giants offense as a whole failed miserably and Eli threw more picks than scores but Cruz failed to reach 1,000 yards and had just 73 catches. He averaged just under nine fantasy points per game and didn't provide the numbers fantasy owners thought they'd get when they drafted him. With a new offensive coordinator in town, the Giants offense will look to get back on track in 2014 and Victor Cruz will need to be a big part of that. Especially with Hakeem Nicks catching passes from Andrew Luck, Cruz will now start the season as the GMen's number one wideout.

Aaron Dobson- Now entering his second season in the NFL, this is the year where it is said that receivers breakout. The Patriots offense as a whole took a huge step back as far as passing was concerned and will look to get back to their strengths in 2014. If Dobson is truly over the foot injury that plagued him late in 2013, he could have the breakout season the Patriots will need from him. While his rookie campaign wasn't all that terrible, he did only average less than seven fantasy points per game and had just 34 receptions in an offense that is well known for throwing the ball all over the football field.

Brandon LaFell- While his time in Carolina was not really fantasy relevant, his new team could help propel him to fantasy stardom. His last season with Carolina, LaFell averaged just over six fantasy points per game. Most fantasy owners are expecting a chance to play with Tom Brady to boost his numbers in 2014.

Jeremy Maclin- With the entire 2013 season missed due to an ACL injury that occurred before the regular season even began, Maclin has not had a chance to show what he can do in Chip Kelly's offense. With a full training camp to play with Chip Kelly and the departure of number one receiver DeSean Jackson, Maclin could very well have one of the more spectacular fantasy seasons he has ever had. 2012 saw him average 8.5 fantasy points per game and catch 69 balls for over 850 yards. Maclin could very well end up a draft day steal for fantasy owners that remember what Jeremy Maclin is capable of.

Roddy White
- Before last season, White was a lock in for 100 catches and 1,000 yards receiving. His ankle injury caused him to miss three games and the games he did play, hampered him significantly. A healthy Roddy White in 2014 could provide fantasy owners with numbers they have become more accustomed to. Despite the down 2013, White still managed 63 catches for over 700 yards and averaged almost seven fantasy points per game.

Now it's time to look at the final position with the Tight end. While heading into fantasy drafts last year, the tight end position was considered very weak with injuries to some of the top players at the position. With most of those players considered healthy heading into fantasy drafts in 2014, let's take a look at the tight ends that could return to form this season.

Dennis Pitta- If not for the injury that took out Pitta in the preseason, he could have been one of the top fantasy players at his position in 2013. He did manage to return before  the season concluded playing in Baltimore's final four games and averaging under six fantasy points per game. The positive on those final four contests were the 20 receptions he caught for 169 yards. A healthy Dennis Pitta should perform as a top tight end for fantasy owners in 2014.

Heath Miller- In 14 games that Heath Miller played, he disappointed with under five fantasy points per game and only one touchdown. A usual red zone option for Big Ben and the Steelers, Miller should rebound from his poor 2013 to help boost the tight end position in 2014 as a tight end that fantasy owners can grab later in their drafts.

Kyle Rudolph- Quite possibly the only reason Kyle Rudolph had a down 2013 was due to the injury that forced him to play only eight games for the Minnesota Vikings last year. In those eight contests, he averaged over six fantasy points per game and caught 30 balls for over 300 yards. With Norv Turner now the offensive coordinator in Minnesota, most fantasy owners are expecting the best season from Kyle Rudolph yet. The fact that he's also a red zone option for the Vikings makes him a top player at the position for this upcoming fantasy season.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Top 200 PPR Rankings

From the Filadelfo Files...  Here is Adam's official Top 200 rankings for the PPR format, as of late June.  These rankings are subject to change, and are in fact guaranteed to change as more information becomes available.  Stay tuned for additional rankings for other formats as well as the way to get Dave's rankings absolutely free! 

We live to serve, Brainiacs.  Enjoy:


1- Jamaal Charles - Running Back, Kansas City Chiefs

2- LeSean McCoy- Running Back, Philadelphia Eagles

3- Matt Forte - Running Back, Chicago Bears

4- Adrian Peterson - Running Back, Minnesota Vikings

5- Calvin Johnson - Wide Receiver, Detroit Lions

6- Demaryius Thomas - Wide Receiver, Denver Broncos

7- Dez Bryant - Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys

8-Eddie Lacy - Running Back, Green Bay Packers

9- Brandon Marshall- Wide Receiver - Chicago Bears

10- A.J. Green - Wide Receiver, Cinncinnati Bengals

11- Le'Veon Bell- Running Back, Pittsburgh Sreelers

12- Giovanni Bernard - Running Back, Cinncinnati Bengals

13- Jimmy Graham- Tight End, New Orleans Saints

14- Julio Jones - Wide Receiver, Atlanta Falcons

15- Montee Ball - Running Back, Denver Broncos

16- Antonio Brown - Wide Receiver, Pittsburgh Steelers

17- Peyton Manning - Quarterback, Denver Broncos

18- C.J. Spiller - Running Back, Buffalo Bills

19- Andre Ellington - Running Back, Arizona Cardinals

20- DeMarco Murray - Running Back, Dallas Cowboys

21- Marshawn Lynch - Running Back, Seattle Seahawks

22- Reggie Bush - Running Back, Detroit Lions

23- Arian Foster- Running Back, Houston Texans

24- Drew Brees - Quarterback, New Orleans Saints

25- Aaron Rodgers - Quarterback, Green Bay Packers

26- Jordy Nelson - Wide Receiver, Green Bay Packers

27- Alfred Morris - Running Back, Washington Redskins

28- Zac Stacy - Running Back, St.Louis Rams

29- Shane Vereen - Running Back, New England Patriots

30- Doug Martin - Running Back, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

31- Julius Thomas - Tight End, Denver Broncos

32- Rob Gronkowski - Tight End, New England Patriots

33- Pierre Garcon - Wide Receiver, Washington Redskins

34- Randall Cobb - Wide Receiver, Green Bay Packers

35- Kennan Allen - Wide Receiver, San Diego Chargers

36- Vincent Jackson - Wide Receiver, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

37- DeSean Jackson - Wide Receiver, Washington Redskins

38- Andre Johnson - Wide Receiver, Houston Texans

39- Joique Bell - Running Back, Detroit Lions

40- Michael Crabtree - Wide Receiver, San Francisco 49ers

41- Pierre Thomas - Running Back, New Orleans Saints

42- Alshon Jeffery - Wide Receiver, Chicago Bears

43- Andrew Luck - Quarterback, Indianapolis Colts

44- Trent Richardson - Running Back, Indianapolis Colts

45- T.Y. Hilton - Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts

46- Jeremy Maclin - Wide Receiver, Philadelphia Eagles

47- Rashad Jennings - Running Back, New York Giants

48- Roddy White - Wide Receiver, Atlanta Falcons

49- Ryan Matthews - Running Back, San Diego Chargers

50- Jordan Reed - Tight End, Washington Redskins

51- Ben Tate - Running Back, Cleveland Browns

52- Victor Cruz - Wide Receiver, New York Giants

53- Bishop Sankey - Running Back, Tennessee Titans

54- Wes Welker - Wide Receiver, Denver Broncos

55- Kendall Wright - Wide Receiver, Tennessee Titans

56- Michael Floyd - Wide Receiver, Arizona Cardinals

57- Vernon Davis - Tight End, San Francisco 49ers

58- Matthew Stafford - Quarterback, Detroit Lions

59- Chris Johnson - Running Back, New York Jets

60- Jay Cutler - Quarterback, Chicago Bears

61- Matt Ryan - Quarterback, Atlanta Falcons

62- Toby Gerhart - Running Back, Jacksonville Jaguars

63- Robert Griffin III - Quarterback, Washington Redskins

64- Nick Foles - Quarterback, Philadelphia Eagles

65- Ray Rice - Running Back, Baltimore Ravens

66- Jordan Cameron - Tight End, Cleveland Browns

67- Percy Harvin - Wide Receiver, Seattle Seahawks

68- Julian Edelman - Wide Receiver, New England Patriots

69- Mike Wallace - Wide Receiver, Miami Dolphins

70- Cordarrelle Patterson - Wide Receiver, Minnesota Vikings

71- Jason Witten - Tight End, Dallas Cowboys

72- Colin Kaepernick - Quarterback, San Francisco 49ers

73- Tony Romo - Quarterback, Dallas Cowboys

74- Dennis Pitta - Tight End, Baltimore Ravens

75- Larry Fitzgerald - Wide Receiver, Arizona Cardinals

76- Cam Newton - Quarterback, Carolina Panthers

77- Stevan Ridley - Running Back, New England Patriots

78- Tom Brady - Quarterback, New England Patriots

79- Russell Wilson - Quarterback, Seattle Seahawks

80- Greg Olsen - Tight End, Carolina Panthers

81- Steven Jackson - Running Back, Atlanta Falcons

82- Eric Decker - Wide Receiver, New York Jets

83- Torrey Smith - Wide Receiver, Baltimore Ravens

84- Marques Colston - Wide Receiver, New Orleans Saints

85- Danny Woodhead - Running Back, San Diego Chargers

86- Terrance Williams- Wide Receiver, Dallas Cowboys

87- Andy Dalton - Quarterback, Cinncinnati Bengals

88- Sammy Watkins- Wide Receiver, Buffalo BIlls

89- Emmanuel Sanders - Wide Receiver, Denver Broncos

90- Golden Tate - Wide Receiver, Detroit Lions

91- Charles Clay - Tight End, Miami Dolphins

92- Seattle D/ST

93- San Francisco D/ST

94- Darren McFadden - Running Back, Oakland Raiders

95- Carolina D/ST

96- Markus Wheaton - Wide Receiver, Pittsburgh Steelers

97- Dwayne Bowe - Wide Receiver, Kansas City Chiefs

98- Cecil Shorts III - Wide Receiver, Jacksonville Jaguars

99- Eli Manning - Quarterback, New York Giants

100- Knowshon Moreno - Running Back, Miami Dolphins

101- Zac Ertz - Tight End, Philadelphia Eagles

102- Tavon Austin - Wide Receiver, St.Louis Rams

103- Phillip Rivers - Quarterback, San Diego Chargers

104- Anquan Boldin - Wide Receiver, San Francisco 49ers

105- Josh Gordon - Wide Receiver, Cleveland Browns

106- Mike Evans - Wide Receiver, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

107 - Doug Baldwin - Wide Receiver, Seattle Seahawks

108 - Ryan Tannehill- Quarterback, Miami Dolphins

109 - Ladarius Green - Tight End, San Diego Chargers

110- Johnny Manziel - Quarterback, Cleveland Browns

111- Kyle Rudolph - Tight End, Minnesota Vikings

112- Kansas City D/ST

113- Martellus Bennett - Tight End, Chicago Bears

114- Kelvin Benjamin - Wide Receiver, Carolina Panthers

115- Frank Gore - Running Back, San Francisco 49ers

116- Rueben Randle - Wide Receiver, New York Giants

117- Denver D/ST

118- Delanie Walker - Tight End, Tennessee Titans

119- DeAngelo Williams - Running Back, Carolina Panthers

120- DeAndre Hopkins - Wide Receiver, Houston Texans

121- New England D/ST

122- St.Louis D/ST

123- Kenbrell Thompkins - Wide Receiver, New England Patriots

124- Darren Sproles - Running Back, Philadelphia Eagles

125- Maurice Jones-Drew - Running Back, Oakland Raiders

126- Steve Smith - Wide Receiver, Baltimore Ravens

127- Brandin Cooks - Wide Receiver, New Orleans Saints

128- Ben Roethlisberger - Quarterback, Pittsburgh Steelers

129- Hakeem Nicks - Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts

130- Riley Cooper - Wide Receiver, Philadelphia Eagles

131- Tyler Eifert - Tight End, Cinncinnati Bengals

132- Eric Ebron - Tight End, Detroit Lions

133- LeGarrette Blount - Running Back, Pittsburgh Steelers

134- Jared Cook - Tight End, St.Louis Rams

135- Chris Givens - Wide Receiver, St.Louis Rams

136- Sam Bradford - Quarterback, St.Louis Rams

137- Houston D/ST

138- Greg Jennings - Wide Receiver, Minnesota Vikings

139- James Jones - Wide Receiver, Oakland Raiders

140- Cinncinnati D/ST

141- Coby Fleener - Tight End, Indianapolis Colts

142- Green Bay D/ST

143- Matt Prater - Kicker, Denver Broncos

144- Stephen Gostkowski - Kicker, New England Patriots

145- Danny Amendola - Wide Receiver, New England Patriots

146- Baltimore D/ST

147- Justin Tucker - Kicker, Baltimore Ravens

148- Bernard Pierce - Running Back, Baltimore Ravens

149- Lance Moore - Wide Receiver, Pittsburgh Steelers

150- Mark Ingram - Running Back, New Orleans Saints

151- Carlos Hyde - Running Back, San Francisco 49ers

152- Reggie Wayne - Wide Receiver, Indianapolis Colts

153- Jarrett Boykin - Wide Receiver, Green Bay Packers

154- Justin Hunter - Wide Receiver, Tennessee Titans

155- Mike Williams - Wide Receiver, Buffalo Bills

156- Jordan Matthews - Wide Receiver, Philadelphia Eagles

157- Kenny Stills - Wide Receiver, New Orleans Saints

158- Antonio Gates - Tight End, San Diego Chargers

159- Andre Roberts - Wide Receiver, Washigton Redskins

160- Greg Zuerlein - Kicker, St.Louis Rams

161- Christine Michael - Running Back, Seattle Seahawks

162- Heath Miller - Tight End, Pittsburgh Steelers

163- Josh McCown - Quarterback, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

164- Jacquizz Rogers - Running Back, Atlanta Falcons

165- Aaron Dobson - Wide Receiver, New England Patriots

166- Jeremy Hill - Running Back, Cinncinnati Bengals

167- Brandon LaFell - Wide Receiver, New England Patriots

168- Zach Miller - Tight End, Seattle Seahawks

169- Alex Smith - Quarterback, Kansas City Chiefs

170- Rob Housler - Tight End, Arizona Cardinals

171- Cleveland D/ST

172- Brian Hartline - Wide Receiver, Miami Dolphins

173- Carson Palmer - Quarterback, Arizona Cardinals

174- Joseph Fauria - Tight End, Detroit Lions

175- Austin Sefarian-Jenkins - Tight End, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

176- Dwayne Allen - Tight End, Indianapolis Colts

177- Marcedes Lewis - Tight End, Jacksonville Jaguars

178- Jermaine Gresham - Tight End, Cinncinnati Bengals

179- Tim Wright - Tight End, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

180- Nick Novak - Kicker, San Diego Chargers

181- Scott Chandler - Tight End, Buffalo Bills

182- E.J. Manuel - Quarterback, Buffalo Bills

183-Jace Amaro - Tight End, New York Jets

184- Owen Daniels - Tight End, Baltimore Ravens

185- Jermichael Finley - Tight End, Free Agent

186- Robbie Gould - Kicker, Chicago Bears

187- Mason Crosby - Kicker, Green Bay Packers

188- Marcel Reece - Running Back, Oakland Raiders

189- Lamar Miller - Running Back, Miami Dolphins

190- Miles Austin - Wide Receiver, Cleveland Browns

191- Dan Bailey - Kicker, Dallas Cowboys

192- Nate Freese - Kicker, Detroit Lions

193- Nick Folk - Kicker, New York Jets

194- Phil Dawson - Kicker, San Francisco 49ers

195- Martavis Bryant - Wide Receiver, Pittsburgh Steelers

196- Andre Brown - Running Back, Cleveland Browns

197- Terrance West - Running Back, Cleveland Browns

198- Jonathan Stewart - Running Back, Carolina Panthers

199- Chris Ivory - Running Back - New York Jets

200- Bilal Powell - Running Back, New York Jets