Archive for Rotoprofessor

Fantasy Fallout: Is It Finally Time For A Ladarius Green Breakout?

by Ray Lin

Draymond Green may not be the only Green to surprise this year and come through with big money fantasy production. With the shocking announcement of Antonio Gates’ 4 game PED suspension, the window of opportunity for Ladarius Green has swung wide open for the opening month of the NFL season.

If you recall my buzzy TE article from last Fall I highlighted Green as one of the Top 5 tight end prospects for fantasy football. He rated as the fastest out of those tight ends according to his 4.45 40-yard dash time (faster than Jordan Reed and fellow 2015 breakout candidate Zach Ertz). In fact, Green’s time is faster than both Keenan Allen (4.71) and rookie Melvin Gordon (4.52). Allen is known as more of a polished route-runner as opposed to straight burner, but it’s still noteworthy that Green could potentially be the second-fastest player on the field (Danny Woodhead is the only one who clocked faster, at 4.33), at least for the first month of the season. Read more

Offseason Loser: Why Jeremy Maclin’s Move To Kansas City Isn’t A Good Thing

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Jeremy Maclin is coming off a career year, setting career highs in receptions (85), yards (1,318) and yards per reception (15.5) while also tying his career high in TD (10).  There’s a good chance that he would have been labeled an offseason “loser” regardless of where he landed, outside of re-upping with Chip Kelly and Philadelphia.  Of course, it may not have gotten any worse than seeing him reunite with Andy Reid in Kansas City.

Remember Reid was Maclin’s coach for the first four years of his NFL career.  Over that span he averaged:

  • Receptions – 64.5
  • Yards – 863.75
  • Touchdowns – 6.5 Read more

Bust Alert: Why Sammy Watkins Is Likely To Disappoint In 2015

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We all know how impressive last season’s rookie wide receiver class was, with Odell Beckham Jr. leading the way.  Included in that group was the Bills’ Sammy Watkins, the fourth overall selection in 2014, who posted 65 receptions for 982 yards and 6 TD over his rookie season.  So we’d expect growth and development in Year 2, right?  Maybe watch him rise into borderline WR1 territory?  Not so fast, as there are a slew of obstacles working against him.

New Coaching Staff/New Faces
While the Bills have always been more of a run first team, the addition of LeSean McCoy this offseason should help make that an even more dominant split.  One of the elite running backs in the league, you know he’s going to be the centerpiece of the offense.

New coach Rex Ryan believes in a ground and pound approach, and he definitely has the talent on defense to help support it.  As it is, here’s where the Jets’ offense ranked in rushing attempts during his time as head coach:

  • 2009 – 1st
  • 2010 – 2nd
  • 2011 – 16th
  • 2012 – 6th
  • 2013 – 5th
  • 2014 – 4th

This team is going to try and wear down opponents on the ground and shutting them down on defense.  Why risk making a mistake through the air?  As it is the team also added Charles Clay at tight end and Percy Harvin at wide receiver.  With a limited number of opportunities to go around and a crowded group needing to get looks, Watkins may have a tough time replicating his 128 targets from a year ago.

Poor Quarterback Play
The Bills are primed to open the season with a combination of EJ Manuel and Matt Cassell under center.  That hardly instills much confidence, simply by looking at the career completion percentage and yards/attempt from the two:

  • Cassell – 59.0% // 6.64
  • Manuel – 58.6% // 6.43

That’s poor, to say the least, and further helps to feed into the idea of focusing on LeSean McCoy and the rushing attack.

Conclusion
It’s easy to imagine fantasy owners buying into the hype of Watkins and ultimately overpaying to acquire him.  That’s not to say that there isn’t upside potential, but there are significant factors working against him and his production.

He currently has an average ADP of 46.0 and is coming off the board as the 19th wide receiver.  That’s not a terrible spot, but we simply can’t ignore the risk.  He certainly shouldn’t go any higher than that and fantasy owners may want to look in a different direction.

As of right now Latavius Murray is going in the same area of the draft (average ADP of 49.0) and you can get a similar upside wide receiver in Keenan Allen (average ADP of 55.7) in the following round.  That are gambles I’d rather take.

Sources – CBS Sports, Pro Football Reference, Fantasy Pros

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2015 Fantasy Rankings: Top 15 Quarterbacks

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Quarterback continues to be as deep as ever, making it tough to justify reaching for one of the elite (especially with questions hovering over some of the traditionally best options).  That’s not to say that we shouldn’t target one of the best options on draft day, it just means that we need to be smart about it.  Would anyone really be upset if they had to “settle” for a Matt Ryan or Matthew Stafford?

That’s a debate for another day, however, so let’s take a look at how our quarterback rankings currently look:

  1. Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay Packers
  2. Andrew Luck – Indianapolis Colts
  3. Russell Wilson – Seattle Seahawks
  4. Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh Steelers
  5. Peyton Manning – Denver Broncos
  6. Drew Brees – New Orleans Saints
  7. Cam Newton – Carolina Panthers Read more

Offseason Winner: Latavius Murray: Could He Actually Emerge As A RB1?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There had been rumblings that the Raiders were going to pursue DeMarco Murray this offseason. Whether they did and failed or it was pure speculation is irrelevant, because at the end of the day he’s not in Oakland. All the Raiders ended up adding this offseason was Trent Richardson and Roy Helu via free agency.

You would’ve thought that the team would’ve added a running back in a deep draft class. However, like free agency, that has come and gone and there was no addition.

Sure they can talk about a battle for the starting role, but is anyone buying?  Given the depth chart it’s certainly hard to imagine: Read more

Fantasy Fallout: NFL Draft Round 1: Who Is A Must Target & Who Can We Ignore?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The first round of the NFL Draft is in the books and there certainly were a few surprises, whether it was two running backs being selected (let alone coming in the first 15 picks) or the Colts adding another wide receiver to the mix.  What is the fallout from a fantasy perspective?  Let’s take a look at the skill players who were selected and see how they look for the coming season:

 

1) Jameis Winston – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Quarterback
Not a surprising pick, Winston should immediately step into the starting quarterback job and become a fantasy asset from Day 1.  He certainly has talent at wide receiver at his disposal, with Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson, as well as the developing Austin Seferian-Jenkins at tight end.  Sure we’d love to see another RB added to the mix (and maybe that comes on Day 2 or 3), but there’s potential in the three-headed monster of Doug Martin, Charles Sims & Bobby Rainey. Read more

2015 NFL Mock Draft (v7.0) – Pass Rushers Going Early & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

This is our seventh 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

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