Early 2015 Rankings: Top 12 Wide Receivers (Post Free Agency): How Highly Ranked Is Beckham & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Last year’s rookie wide receiver class was historically good, and you could argue for three of them to already be ranked among the Top 12 in the league (though, at the end of the day, Mike Evans fell just short).  While that’s certainly going to skew some people’s opinions on how this year’s rookies will produce, let’s take a look at how the sophomores and all the rest rank at this point (remember, these rankings could change significantly between now and fantasy draft time):

  1. Dez Bryant – Dallas Cowboys
  2. Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh Steelers
  3. Calvin Johnson – Detroit Lions
  4. Demaryius Thomas – Denver Broncos
  5. Jordy Nelson – Green Bay Packers
  6. Julio Jones – Atlanta Falcons
  7. Odell Beckham Jr. – New York Giants Read more

Now In Cleveland, Could Rob Housler Finally Live Up The Breakout Hype?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Rob Housler has long been considered a potential breakout tight end, though he never seemed to get that opportunity in Arizona.  Part of the issue has been injuries, but over the past few years the numbers have simply regressed at an alarming rate (partly thanks to the presence of Bruce Arians and the scheme he was running):

  • 2012 – 45 receptions (68 targets), 417 yards, 0 TD
  • 2013 – 39 receptions (57 targets), 454 yards, 1 TD
  • 2014 – 9 receptions (17 targets), 129 yards, 0 TD

He was surprisingly behind the likes of John Carlson (33 receptions for 350 yards) last season, but he lands in an ideal location to rebuild his value.  The Browns are void of talent in the receiving game, thanks to the departure of TE Jordan Cameron and the suspension of WR Josh Gordon.  Sure the team brought in Dwayne Bowe, but that doesn’t mean much. Read more

Early 2015 Rankings: Top 12 Running Backs (Post Free Agency)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Usually we have a pretty good feel for the top of our running back rankings, though that’s hardly the case at this point as we head towards 2015.  A three-game suspension to Le’Veon Bell, who likely would’ve been at the top of the rankings, has helped to send things into chaos.  Throw in question marks up and down the rest of the rankings for various reasons and there’s little doubt that these are going to change between now and the beginning of the season.

How do they look at this moment?  Let’s take a look:

  1. Eddie Lacy – Green Bay Packers
  2. Matt Forte – Chicago Bears
  3. LeSean McCoy – Buffalo Bills
  4. Jamaal Charles – Kansas City Chiefs
  5. Marshawn Lynch – Seattle Seahawks
  6. Le’Veon Bell – Pittsburgh Steelers
  7. Arian Foster – Houston Texans Read more

2015 Rankings: Top 12 Quarterbacks (Post Free Agency)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The NFL Draft is still a few weeks away (which also means we have a few weeks until our projections can become crystal clear), so there is no doubt that these rankings will change between now and the start of the season.  That said the free agency period caused us to reevaluate our early rankings as NFL franchises made some bold moves.

How far does Drew Brees fall, thanks to the remaking of the franchise?

Does Brees’ loss (aka Jimmy Graham) push Russell Wilson up the rankings significantly?

Here’s our first look on how our quarterback rankings look:

  1. Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts
  2. Aaron Rodgers – Green Back Packers
  3. Matt Ryan – Atlanta Falcons
  4. Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks
  5. Peyton Manning – Denver Broncos Read more

2015 NFL Mock Draft (v6.0) – Post Free Agency Fallout (Amari Cooper Falling & More)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

This is our sixth stab at projecting the 2015 NFL Draft, but there’s a lot of time and likely going to be a lot of things between now and draft day.  That’s why we are going to be updating this every two weeks for now, with more frequent updates as the draft gets closer.

With that in mind, let’s take a look:

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jameis Winston – QB – Florida State
It’s obvious that the current Tampa Bay leadership doesn’t feel like Mike Glennon is going to be their long-term solution at QB.  When you have a chance to address the spot you do, so look for them to either select Marcus Mariota or Jameis Winston with the top pick.  At this point it looks like Winston could be the preferred pick (after Mariota’s performance in the National Championship Game, but don’t be surprised if they flip-flop with almost every mock until the draft. Read more

Does Duron Carter Have Sleeper Value in 2015?

by Ray Kuhn

Potential and buzz. After the 2014 CFL season, that is what was surrounding Duron Carter as he sought employment from an NFL team.  However as you know, situations like this are never as simple as they seem.

For starters, the majority of us have never seen Carter play live. But does that even matter?

Carter has a superstar pedigree, his father is Cris Carter, and he is also looks like he emerged straight out of wide receiver central casting. The younger Carter is 6-foot-5 and weighs in at about 205 pounds and certainly proved himself as a top receiver in the past two seasons.

Read more

2015 NFL Mock Draft (v5.0) – Post-Combine Fallout (Kevin White On The Rise & More)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

This is our fifth stab at projecting the 2015 NFL Draft, but there’s a lot of time and likely going to be a lot of things between now and draft day.  That’s why we are going to be updating this every two weeks for now, with more frequent updates as the draft gets closer.

With that in mind, let’s take a look:

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jameis Winston – QB – Florida State
It’s obvious that the current Tampa Bay leadership doesn’t feel like Mike Glennon is going to be their long-term solution at QB.  When you have a chance to address the spot you do, so look for them to either select Marcus Mariota or Jameis Winston with the top pick.  At this point it looks like Winston could be the preferred pick (after Mariota’s performance in the National Championship Game, but don’t be surprised if they flip-flop with almost every mock until the draft. Read more

Third Year Receiver: Could Kenny Stills Be A Breakout Candidate?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Prior to the 2014 season we had labeled Kenny Stills as a potential sleeper (click here for the article). While he didn’t fully breakout the way we had hoped, we may have been a year too early with the label. He will be entering his “magical” third season in the NFL, and while a lot can change between now and the start of the season he appears to be in line for a major role in the offense.

With injuries piling up, Stills came alive in the second half of the season:

  • First 8 games – 24 receptions, 373 yards, 1 TD
  • Final 8 games – 39 receptions, 558 yards, 2 TD

Overall he averaged 14.8 yards per catch, helping to dispel the notion that he is nothing but a boom or bust receiver. Coming out of college, that certainly wasn’t the scouting report. Walter Football said (click here for the full report): Read more

Is Virgil Green A Potential Breakout Candidate In 2015? You’d Better Believe So…

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

According to Mike Klis of The Denver Post (click here for the article):

“The Broncos and their two-time Pro Bowl tight end Julius Thomas haven’t formally split, but they seem to be headed their separate ways.”

There is still time for the Broncos and Thomas to work out a deal, but with each passing day that seems to become less and less likely.  Where he lands and if he is simply a product of Peyton Manning is a story for another day, the question for today is if the Broncos already have an in-house replacement. Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Could Stevie Johnson Return To Fantasy Relevance?

by Ray Kuhn

It might seem like ancient history, but in the not so distant past Stevie Johnson was actually a pretty good wide receiver. At this point, in early February, it is hard to look at much in fantasy football with too much certainty. However that also doesn’t mean we won’t try, as it is never too early to lay the groundwork for 2015.

First, let me qualify the statement about Johnson being a pretty good receiver. The three year stretch spanning the 2010, 2011 and 2012 seasons were very kind to him, but at the same time it also seemed like he was overrated as his public persona out-shined what he actually produced on the field. Regardless of that, it is hard to ignore the numbers that he put up with, for the most part, a sub-par supporting cast.

  •   2010: 82 receptions/1,073 yards/10 TD
  •   2011: 76 receptions/1,004 yards/7 TD
  •   2012: 79 receptions/1,046 yards, 6 TD Read more