Archive for Player Analysis

Quick Hit: Why The Panthers’ Jonathan Stewart Is Worth A Late Round Flier

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

It’s very easy to forget about Jonathan Stewart, as his career has been marred by leg injuries the last two years. It’s easy to forget that he rushed for 20 TD over his first two seasons in the league or that, over his first four years, his worst average yards per carry was 4.3 (and was over 5.0 twice).

The past two seasons he was a shell of his former self, playing 15 total games while mustering 516 yards and 1 TD on 141 carries. Many fantasy owners will probably ignore him, with the 31-year old DeAngelo Williams and Mike Tolbert also on the depth chart. However, that could ultimately prove to be a costly mistake.

He clearly appears to be healthy, after taking 4 carries for 26 yards and 2 TD in the team’s second preseason game. Read more

Will Kyle Rudolph Be The Breakout Tight End Of 2014?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There’s no questioning the ability when it comes to Kyle Rudolph, who has scored 15 TD in three seasons in the NFL. The big question is always going to be if he can stay on the field, and that is something that we have to keep in mind.

He missed time last season due to a broken foot, being limited to 8 games. However, could that injury have actually been a blessing in disguise? According to Phil Ervin of Fox Sports North (click here for the article):

“It’s the result of dieting his way to a 15-pound decrease this summer, an effort borne from rehabbing from a broken foot and amplified when Turner asked him to slim down and get ready to catch more passes.”

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Two Running Backs Most Likely To Emerge As Top 10 Option By Year’s End

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We all know that, every year, there’s at least one or two RB who enter the year outside the Top 10 who ultimately breakout (to see our current rankings, click here). Who are the most likely candidates to join the party? Let’s take a look:

 

Andre Ellington – Arizona Cardinals
The question with Ellington is going to be how often the team is willing to give him the football. Last season they were clearly limiting his touches, with 118 carries for 652 yards and 3 TD and 39 receptions for 371 yards and 1 TD. At 5’9″ and 199 lbs. it makes some sense, as they strive to keep him healthy, but we’d anticipate the gloves coming off a bit in 2014.

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How Should Johnny Manziel Be Valued On Draft Day?

by Ray Lin

While the position battle between Michael Vick and Geno Smith has been mildly interesting, there’s no doubt that the most closely monitored QB situation in fantasy has been the one in Cleveland.  Despite being the incumbent starter as the veteran with a respectable 82.6 QB rating in three starts last year, Brian Hoyer has fairly limited fantasy appeal. On the other side, we can’t seem to go a day without hearing about 22nd overall pick Johnny “Football” Manziel.

In two years at Texas A&M, Manziel averaged an impressive weekly line of 300 yards passing, 2.4 passing TDs, 83.8 yards rushing and 1.2 rushing TDs. The dual threat potential in dynasty and keeper leagues is obviously massive, but how should redraft leaguers in single QB leagues treat Manziel?

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Draft Day Decision: Victor Cruz vs. Vincent Jackson (Includes 2014 Projections)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Based on the current average ADP (courtesy of Fantasy Pros), Vincent Jackson (35.2) is going ahead of Victor Cruz (41.1). My question is why? If I had a choice between the two I would go Cruz every time, but let’s take a look:

Victor Cruz
He had a poor 2013 campaign, which included missing two games and having sub par quarterback play. Yet, he still managed to pick up 73 catches for 998 yards and 4 TD.

While the touchdowns were down, part of the problem was Eli Manning and part was due to a negative impact from the running game. Despite what they’ve shown thus far in the preseason, it’s fair to expect a significantly better year from Manning. They brought in a new offensive coordinator and there’s definitely been growing pains, but it’s likely just a matter of time. Read more

Draft Day Decision: Is DeSean Jackson Worth A Top 50 Pick? It’s Close, But Probably Not…

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Jackson’s offseason was certainly filled with controversy and ultimately led to him being cut from the Eagles and landing in Washington. Thus far fantasy owners have embraced the move, giving him an average ADP of 50.4. There’s no questioning the upside, but is he really worth that type of investment?

The first thing to note is that Jackson is leaving the up tempo Eagles offense that he thrived in. Let’s not forget, prior to the arrival of Chip Kelly Jackson’s career highs were:

Receptions – 62 (2008 & 2009)
Yards – 1,156 (2009)
Touchdowns – 9 (2009)

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Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Is The Cardinals’ John Brown A 2014 Buy Or A Dynasty League Stash?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The Cardinals John Brown has been garnering a lot of attention of late. That’s not a surprise, when the rookie third round draft pick gets this type of praise bestowed upon him by general manager Steve Keim (quote courtesy of Chris Wesseling of NFL.com):

“I haven’t seen a rookie come in and do what he’s done — and it’s early still — since Anquan Boldin,” Keim told Grantland’s Robert Mays on Monday. “This guy came through the first day, and being from Pittsburg State, has uncanny instincts, unbelievable understanding of route concepts, leverage, being in the right spot at the right time. On top of great ball skills, he has unusual speed and explosiveness.”

Brown was drafted out of Pittsburgh State, a small Division II school, and was listed at 5’10″ and 179 lbs. It certainly makes sense that he wasn’t a highly touted prospect entering the draft. Read more

Draft Day Decision: Is DeMarco Murray Worth A Top 15 Pick?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Demarco Murray currently has an average ADP of 14.0, so he’s right on the border of the Top 15 (also right on the border of going in the first round of 12 team formats). Is he worth that price tag, though?

From a pure talent standpoint it’s easy to argue in favor of it. Over his three year career he’s rushed for 2,681 yards (4.9 yards per carry) and 15 TD. On top of that he’s added 114 receptions for 784 yards and 1 TD. That’s an awful lot of production and you can argue that’s he’s borderline elite when he’s on the field…

And that’s the rub. Can Murray actually stay on the field? In 2013 he played the most games of his career at 14. In three seasons he’s already missed 11 games, meaning expecting him on the field for a full 16 game slate seems almost impossible. If he only misses a game or two he likely will still produce like a Top 10 player, but are we willing to take that gamble? Read more

Quick Hit: Is The Draft Day Price Right To Target Matt Ryan?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Considering all of the circumstances, it’s easy to come away impressed by Matt Ryan’s 2013 numbers:

439 completions
4,515 yards
26 TD
17 INT

It’s his third consecutive season over 4,000 yards and second straight with at least 420 completions. Considering that both Julio Jones and Roddy White missed significant time, the numbers look that much better.

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Top Running Back Handcuffs To Target (Terrance West, Christine Michael & More)

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

We aren’t going to call Joique Bell or Danny Woodhead handcuffs, because they hold value in their own right. We also aren’t going to focus on committees, like in New England, where there may be no clear standout option. Instead, here as a six-pack of backs currently running as the #2 on their team who could ultimately emerge as the #1 for various reasons:

 

Christine Michael – Seattle Seahawks
He’s backing up Marshawn Lynch, who we have already dubbed a bust candidate (click here to view). Lynch has gotten a lot of touches over the past few seasons (1,094 in three years, to be exact) and you have to wonder how much of a toll it’s taken on his body.

Coincidentally, do you know who Walter Football compared Michael to prior to the draft? Marshawn Lynch, of course. It should be a seamless transition and with a potential risk for injury you’d be smart to protect yourself.

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