Archive for Player Analysis

Draft Day Decision: Why The Steelers’ Markus Wheaton Is Not A Must Draft

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

In the wake of the news that Martavis Bryant will miss the first four games of the season due to suspension, all eyes understandably have fallen on Markus Wheaton and his potential for a 2015 breakout.  Who else does the team have?  Rookie Sammie Coates has not received stellar reviews and may lack consistency (at least initially).  Darius Heyward-Bey?  Does anyone really believe?

The team could go tight end heavy, with rookie Jesse James likely seeing a bump, but we all know rookie tight ends are tough to trust.  At the end of the day Ben Roethlisberger will have few trustworthy alternatives, at least at the start of the season, so Wheaton is clearly the guy, but just what should we expect?

After virtually redshirting in his rookie year (6 catches on 13 targets), Wheaton was impressive last season posting 53 catches, 644 yards and 2 TD.  Let’s take a look at what the experts were saying about him prior to entering the NFL: Read more

Deep League Sleeper: Could The Redskins’ Matt Jones Emerge As A Viable Option?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Alfred Morris is going to be the Redskins starting running back, at least to open the season.  Of course he’s seen his production decline in each of his first three seasons:

  • 2012 – 1,613 yards, 4.8 YPC
  • 2013 – 1,275 yards, 4.6 YPC
  • 2014 – 1,074 yards, 4.1 YPC

He had some terrible months last season, including a 3.2 YPC in October and 3.3 in December so you have to wonder if a slow start could lead to a change in the backfield?

Enter Matt Jones, a surprising third round draft pick this past season.  He’s been impressing thus far this preseason, while seeing time with the first team offense: Read more

Draft Day Decision: Does Drafting An Early Round Tight End Make Sense?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Tight end is a position that is often a frustrating one for fantasy owners, though that doesn’t mean that they aren’t willing to reach for the top options.  We all know that Rob Gronkowski, when healthy, is going to be the elite option in the league.  Now in Seattle Jimmy Graham remains at #2 and while Greg Olsen was already third on our list the injury to Kelvin Benjamin cements him in that spot.

The real question is, who’s next and are they worth drafting?  Let’s take a look, by ADP, and try to determine if there is value in the selection or not:

TE 4 – Travis Kelce – Kansas City Chiefs
Average ADP – 52.0

He posted 67 catches for 862 yards and 5 TD last season, taking advantage of the pathetic performance of the wide receiving corps.  Sure the team added Jeremy Maclin, but there’s little reason to think that Kelce won’t continue to be among the best receiving threats the team has. Read more

Should Eddie Lacy Be Ranked As The Top Running Back In The League?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Prior to the injury to Jordy Nelson we had Eddie Lacy slotted as our fourth running back in non-PPR formats:

  1. Jamaal Charles – Kansas City Chiefs
  2. Adrian Peterson – Minnesota Vikings
  3. Le’Veon Bell – Pittsburgh Steelers
  4. Eddie Lacy – Green Bay Packers

We all know that Bell would be the top option, if it weren’t for the suspension that will cost him the first two games of the season.  That’s still the case, but the question is if Lacy now jumps over him…  And Adrian Peterson…  And Jamaal Charles…  The quick answer is that he does and it’s not because of a dramatic shift in offensive approach. Read more

Two Late Round Running Backs Worth Targeting

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Are you in an extremely deep fantasy league and are searching for running backs to stash in the tail end of your draft?  Here are a few names that may not even be drafted, but have the potential to emerge as viable options if/when an opportunity arises:

Josh Robinson – Indianapolis Colts
Frank Gore is the top running back for the Colts, but he is 32-years old and certainly has a lot of wear and tear on his body.  It’s not unthinkable that he breaks down, at some point, and that would open the door for an alternative to step up and assume the job.  Conventional wisdom would be Dan Herron stepping in, and that’s certainly the most likely scenario.  However this year’s sixth round draft pick, Josh Robinson has the potential to quickly emerge. Read more

Buy’em or Deny’em: Has Davante Adams Become A Top 20 Wide Receiver?

by Ray Lin

Whoa Nelly! Barely four days after Kelvin Benjamin suffered a torn ACL in practice, the fantasy world was dealt another crippling blow to the early round WR corps as Packers star wide out Jordy Nelson also tore his ACL in a preseason matchup Sunday against the Steelers.  The non-contact injury occurred on his second catch of the game from Aaron Rodgers, in which his knee buckled as he turned to accelerate upfield. Our thoughts are with Nelson as the consensus Top-5 wide receiver will face a long road back to the best offense in football, but now the attention turns to the fantasy impact. Immediately Rodgers’ value will take a hit and keeper/dynasty owners of Nelson will also scramble to fill a huge hole at WR1.

Sophomore wide out Jeff Janis, last year’s 7th round pick, has flashed very intriguing potential.  However, according to wide receivers coach Alex Van Pelt he’s struggled with consistency in camp. The Packers also love their rookie 3rd round pick Ty Montgomery, who lined up out wide 75% of the time at Stanford, but the former Cardinal is obviously still learning the ins and outs of the Packer offense. Read more

Draft Day Decision: Just How Highly Should We Be Targeting Ameer Abdullah?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Ameer Abdullah is one of the hottest names as we head into our fantasy drafts.  The injury to Joique Bell has helped open the door and he has taken advantage, especially in the first preseason game as he took 7 carries for 67 yards (including a 45 yard run).  While he wasn’t much of a factor in the second preseason game the damage has already been done.  He’s being viewed as a viable fantasy option, and rightfully so, the question is how highly regarded should he be?

Abdullah certainly showed tremendous ability while in college, including back-to-back 1,600+ rushing yard seasons to close out his career.  Throw in 19 rushing TD last season as well as 20+ receptions in three straight seasons and what is there not to like?

Heading into the draft there was certainly a lot of love for him from the experts.  First, just look at who he was being compared to:

  • NFL.com – Andre Ellington
  • Walter Football – LeSean McCoy Read more

To Draft or Not To Draft: Why LeSean McCoy Is Too Risky To Invest In

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Obviously the current hamstring issue alone is enough to give us pause before selecting LeSean McCoy. At 27-years old there is a lot of mileage on his tires, including back-to-back 300+ carry seasons. In fact, just look at his touches over the past two seasons in Chip Kelly’s offense:

  • 2913 – 314 carries, 52 receptions
  • 2014 – 312 carries, 28 receptions

That’s 706 touches in the regular season, not to mention an additional 25 touches in a 2013 playoff game. That’s got to wear on you physically so it begs the question, is this hamstring injury simply a sign of things to come? Read more

Fantasy Fallout: How Kevin White’s Injury Impact Eddie Royal & Marquess Wilson

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Chicago Bears drafted Kevin White with an eye towards replacing the traded Brandon Marshall, but he requires surgery to repair a stress fracture in his shin putting his season in doubt.  While his absence isn’t going to impact the value of Alshon Jeffery (who always had WR1 value), what about the two “secondary” wide receivers in Eddie Royal and Marquess Wilson (pictured)?  Will either of them now hold value?  Let’s take a look:

Eddie Royal
He’s gotten a lot of attention and rightfully so, as we’ve heard nothing but positive statements about him coming from Bears camp.  In fact, coming off a 62 catch season for the Chargers it would’ve been surprising if he hadn’t been viewed as a potential fantasy option before White’s injury. Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Does The Injury To Brashad Perriman Make Him A Player To Avoid?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

According to Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com (click here for the article):

“There has never been a definitive timetable for Perriman, who was drafted to replace Torrey Smith as the Ravens’ deep threat. Harbaugh initially was told by the team’s medical staff that Perriman might only miss a day with a bruised knee. Since that time, the Ravens acknowledged that the injury also involves a strained tendon.”


Fallout:
It’s a different injury than Odell Beckham Jr. struggled with a year ago, but this is feeling  like a similar situation.  Obviously it’s not in regard to his production potential, but instead how the missed time could impact his production as a rookie. As the quote notes the team was looking for Perriman to be their deep threat, and he needs to have a rapport with Joe Flacco in order to thrive in that role.  After Beckham missed the preseason with a hamstring injury we were worried that the missed time could sabotage his rookie year.  Obviously it didn’t, but this time around we’d expect things to be different. Read more