Walter - I feel your pain re SD; they have had a huge injury list! I thing I note - doing analysis for AFL Australian football - is that teams with a huge injury list often underperform when they begin to get players back from injury; this is often because the injured players return a week too early and fail to fire (or get re-injured); also the players who have been carrying the extra load for them tend to relax that week; the trend in the AFL is that these teams generally miss the spread (often by a lot) as the year goes on - but they sometimes have 1 (maybe 2) unexpected wins against unwary middle to lower ranked teams. They may fire against JAX this week, but I would like a SD expert to tell us if the recently returned players are likely to improve.
Speaking of injuries - these are good reasons for being confident on TB and DEN this week. Harry Young, Melbourne
There will be many more 2011 Fantasy Football Rankings and features in the late spring and summer, including tons of 2011 Fantasy Football Mock Drafts and Player Rankings. I'll also have an extensive 2011 NFL Fantasy Football Preseason Stock Report. Follow me @walterfootball for updates.
Walt would you say it's a good idea to draft all the Rams receivers to the bench after you've got your starters? Seems like a surefire way to guarantee Brandon Lloyd-like production. For what it's worth, I bet Josh McDaniels sees Wes Welker in Danny Amendola.
--> Yeah, that's my thinking. If you can get Danario Alexander and Mark Clayton, I think you should do it. At least right now anyway. Things will be much clearer after a couple of preseason games.
I don't like Jimmy Graham in round six if you can wait until nine or ten to get Pettigrew (i like getting starks or knox there as a solid backup/trade chip). Also, I am ridiculously high on Bradford, and I think he is worth a start in 12 team leagues.
--> I love Jimmy Graham. He's going to score a ton of touchdowns in New Orleans' offense; Drew Brees really looked for Graham quite frequently in the red zone during the second half of the 2010 season.
Fantasy 101 Walt: If you take a QB in the 2nd round, you probably shouldn't use two more picks on QBs. Why not take Snelling (who will likely start for Atlanta when Turner gets hurt) instead of a 3rd QB? Actually, why not take ANYBODY except a 3rd QB who will never start for you?
--> Fantasy 102 Too Many QBs: If your starting quarterback gets hurt, you should have a good backup just in case. Sam Bradford is going to be a stud. Yes, I did take three quarterbacks, but Jay Cutler was a Round 13 selection, for crying out loud. Cutler will start for some teams in certain fantasy leagues; Jason Snelling may never be as valuable. With Tom Brady, Bradford and Cutler, I can trade one of those guys to a quarterback-hungry team for someone much better than Snelling.
Walt- I really appreciate what you do. This site is one of the best in the business, and you seem to be right on the money when identifying sleepers. However, I think you're way off base on Michael Vick. Even if he only plays 10 games, you're not going to get 0 points for the other weeks because you can play a backup. With Vick's high point average for 10 games and a back up (Kolb, Flacco, Cutler, etc.) for the other 6, you still will probably have the highest point total at the QB position at the end of the season.
--> That's a very good point. I can't see QB Dog Killer being nearly as dominant as he was last year, but he'll still be a top-three fantasy quarterback as long as he remains healthy. Maybe I'll move him up a bit in my rankings - but I still won't draft him in any of my leagues because I don't want to be in a position to root for him.
I have had Jamaal Charles in my keeper league for a few years now and I have some doubts about him as well. He's definately not a top five pick. However, to say he's one dimensional and only catches passes...really? He obviously doesn't get enough carries and not nearly enough touchdowns, but when you rush for 1,467 yards and have 468 recieving yards I don't think you can call him a one-dimensional RB.
Jamaal Charles just catches passes? 230 carries, 2nd in rushing yards. 9th in terms of receiving yards among RBs. So if a guy is second in an area and ninth in another and is analyzed as one dimensional you would think that dimension would be the area where the player ranks higher. 14th in receptions among RBs so not great PPR value. Really poor "Analysis"
--> Ugh. I didn't mean Jamaal Charles can't run the ball. I know what he rushed for last year. I'm projecting him to rush for 1,275 yards this season. I know he can run the ball.
I meant Charles is one dimensional in that he catches passes, but doesn't get 250 carries won't be in position to score many touchdowns. I'm going to publish an article on this soon.
I don't understand the fascination with Brandon Marshall. Yes, the guy has talent, but it's very difficult to produce in an offense that isn't committed to the passing game. Just ask Anquan Boldin.
--> Brandon Marshall produced last year. He caught 86 passes for 1,014 yards in 14 games. The problem was his low touchdown total of three. That will not happen again. First of all, that's an insanely low touchdown percentage that is bound to rise by default. And second, the Dolphins will sign a veteran quarterback who will be able to find Marshall in the end zone.
Marshall is extremely undervalued right now. If he's able to shake off what happened with his crazy wife a couple of months ago, he'll be awesome this year.
I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on drafting in a 3WR league (no flex) Walt. Those are the kinds of leagues I play in and mock for, and I feel like the WR depth is also fairly thin.
--> I'll have a write-up on this later, but in such a league, you have to take a receiver in the first three rounds, and two in the first five rounds. You can use my rankings and bump up receivers just a bit.
Not sure what that guy's talking about with the 30 touchdowns and 10 interceptions being rare comment....It's not that uncommon. Peyton's done it twice. Threw 49 and 10 and 31 and 9. Brady threw 50 and 8. Does that not count? Rodgers has done it. Steve Young threw 35 and 10. What's that guy talking about?
--> Thank you! If Matt Cassel can go 27-7 last year, 30-10 shouldn't be so difficult for quarterbacks. I have Philip Rivers throwing 31 touchdowns to nine picks this season, and I don't think that's unreasonable.
I never even knew that pre-season football was a good way to identify sleepers, but apparently it is because he was talking about a breakout year for Josh Freeman and Mike Williams based on their pre-season performances as well as others that turned out to be correct. The pre-season stock up, stock down section of this site is my favorite because of that.
--> Thanks, David! I first discovered how valuable watching preseason games was back in 2007. I noticed that Tom Brady's first read on nearly every single play was a then-relatively unknown Wes Welker, so I recommended Welker as a late-round flier. Ever since, I've watched every single preseason game, and I feel like that has helped me a lot in terms of fantasy football. Assuming the preseason isn't canceled, I'll have the preseason stock pages posted once again this August.
Is it crazy of me to consider ranking LeGarrette Blount ahead of Maurice Jones-Drew?
--> Definitely not. I might move Maurice Jones-Drew down a bit in my 2011 Fantasy Football Running Back Rankings. I've read multiple reports in the past few days indicating that the Jaguars are concerned about Jones-Drew's surgically repaired knee. They plan to decrease his workload, so Rashad Jennings is worth looking into as a late-round flier.
From Nick B:
Yes. I hate Matt Cassel. I hate him so much... That... it... it... flam - flames. Flames, on the side of my face, heaving... breath -, heaving breaths. Heaving breath... LOL I'm not the only person who's seen Clue.
--> I'm glad a few people got that reference. I had the hots for Miss White. Clue is one of my favorite movies of all time, and I highly recommend it for anyone who hasn't seen it.