Detailed Top 25 RB Rankings

These are the running back rankings for a Non-PPR league.  The notations after the description represent the move in a player’s stock in a PPR league.


1. Adrian Peterson – AP has the capability to do something special this year.  With the passing game losing Rice to a hip injury for the first half of the season, there will be a few more rushing attempts in Minnesota.  Another key issue is the departure of Chester Taylor.  From what it looks like, Purple Jesus will now receive third down carries as well.  By having Toby Gerhart and Albert Young only occasionally give Peterson rest, the possibility for greatness is real.  My only question is with this heavy workload, will AP be healthy when we need him the most, the fantasy playoffs.  My guess is that he will be a little banged up by the time the playoffs come and pull a McNabb (choke).  If he stays healthy than we have the chance to see an extraordinary season from AP.

2. Ray Rice – I believe the Ravens offense will be explosive this year and Rice will be the headlining act.  Rice is a tough, quick runnner.  With his short and stocky “bowling ball” build he faces less injury risk.  He is an MJD style running back on a talented offense. He has a great O-line and a good young quarterback who loves Rice as his safety valve.  He is a very consistent pick due to the fact that if the Ravens get down early and must throw, Rice is still an integral part of the offense.  The McGahee factor is an issue, but the fact that there were trade rumors swirling around McGahee represents the Ravens lack of commit to the former Hurricane.  Just throwing this out there, Cam Cameron (Ravens OC) was the offensive coordinator for San Diego during the Ladanian Tomlinson era.  Everyone agrees Rice is an amazingly talented running back, but his one drawback is Mcgahee and even Mclain vulturing touchdowns.  The same was said about Chris Johnson and Lendale White in 2009. (+)

3. Chris Johnson – The stud of last year and the most common number one overall choice.  I am not down on CJ2k, its just that I predict a slight drop in production. I still think he puts up 1700 total yards and 12 TDs.  My biggest pet peeve with other fantasy rankings is their lack of ability to think outside of the box and forget last season’s stats.  CJ was an absolute moster last year, and I believe he will be very good again this year, but you cannot assume a repeat performance.  Of the five rushers to ever rush for 2000 yards, only Barry Sanders gained over 1250 yards rushing the following year.

4. Michael Turner – “The Burner” had his season cut short in 2009 by injury.  People were not raving about him last year, but if you project his 9.5 games played over a full 16 game season, he comes out with 1450 rush yds and 17 TDs.  Not too shabby.  That said, Turner admits to being out of shape last year.  Between improved conditioning and the Falcon’s promise to involve him more in the passing game, Turner has a very high ceiling this year. (-)


5. Frank Gore – When healthy, Gore is an animal.  The 49ers have a chance to be very good this year.  Add in a highly talented lead back and the potential for greatness is there.  However we all know the injury risk that one must take on when drafting Gore.

6. Maurice Jones-Drew – I was low on MJD before the rumors about offseason knee surgery surfaced.  Although Drew is the unquestioned lead back in Jacksonville, his team is subpar.  With an average passing game and offensive line, the original bowling ball should post solid numbers again but lacks the potential to be the #1 fantasy RB.


7. Ryan Grant – I don’t think Grant is the most talented back in the league, but he is a prime example of an opportunity player.  Grant is put in the perfect situation. The lead back for possibly the best passing offense in football.  Grant will rarely ever face eight in the box, and with an improved O-line he can be a borderline RB1.  Green Bay will be in the red zone plenty this year. Even if the offense only rushes the ball occasionally in the red zone, that is still a solid amount of chances for Grant to get in the end zone.

8. Arian Foster – This is probably the highest you will ever see Arian Foster ranked and I cannot figure out why.  With rookie Ben Tate out for the year and Slaton’s fumblitis, Foster will be the lead back.  Last year whoever came in as the starter in Houston did fantastic.  In his two games as the starter in weeks 16 and 17 last year, Foster accumulated 240 yds and three touchdowns.  A young, fresh back who will be receiving the majority of the carries, including the goal line looks, for one of the most powerful offenses in the league sounds like a bargain third round pick to me.

9. Jamaal Charles – Charles is one of the most intriguing backs this year.  He showed at the end of last year that he is one of the most talented RBs in the league.  After his performance to end the season, I do not think there is any way Coach Haley keeps Charles as the #2 RB behind Thomas Jones.  The former Jet will undoubtedly steal some goal-line carries from Charles, but do not worry, a back as talented as Charles will get more than his share of looks at the different end zone art around the league. (+)

10. Ryan Mathews – This is another very interesting scenario.  A rookie running back that may for once be overrated.  Mathews is a tremendous talent, as seen by the Chargers trading up to the 12th pick in order to choose him in the draft this year. It is unsure (before the first game) who will get the goal line carries between FB Mike Tolbert, Mathews, or even Jacob Hester.  Either way, I think Mathews will be in there at times, and on the rest of the field he should see a solid opportunity.  The O – line scares me a little with LT McNiel still in a holdout. Was Tomlinson’s 3.3 YPC due to age or the line? (+)

11. Deangelo Williams – A grossly talented back on a run first team.  Sounds great, but J-Stew has the same description.  Remember in 2008 Deangelo finished the season on a tear amassing 20 total touchdowns on the year. If Stewart gets injured, Deangelo is a  top five back.  Until then, he remains a good RB2.

12. Rashard Mendenhall – With the decision coming out before the first game that Isaac Redman would be receiving goal line carries, Mendys stock drops.  I was not sold on Rashard talentwise, but his opportunity was too much to pass up.  Now that Tomlin reports Rashard is not receiving goal line carries, (which I believe because Redman looked good in the preseason) Mendy can drop from his early second round ADP to a mid third round choice.  Tomlin did note that Mendy would stay on the field for third downs. A good RB2 with some upside.

13. Cedric Benson Benson was one of the most surprising backs in 2009.  He was not flashy, but he was a true grinder.  The man whose mug shot we all remember from the 2009 offseason put up over twenty five carries in six games last year and over 34 carries three different times!  That kind of wear and tear cannot be sustained for long periods of time in todays NFL.  Benson should put up solid numbers again this year, but I would rather have other running backs at his third round ADP. (-)

14. Stephen Jackson – Stephen Jackson WAS the Rams offense last year.  After drafting Sam Bradford the Rams are aiming to change that, but Jackson is already at the tail end of his prime. He has been the feature back for too many years for my liking.  Over 1500 carries in six years with an additional 280 receptions is too much mileage for a first or second rounder.  With Bradford at quarterback, SJax should continue to face eight defenders in the box the majority of the time.  As much as I like him as a real running back, Jackson probably will not be on any of my fantasy teams this year. (+)

Tier 4

15. Jahvid Best – Best looked like he was playing against a college defense in the preseason the way he made defenders miss.  His combination of speed and agility in incredible.  If he can stay healthy, which is a big if with his style, he has the chance to be phenomenal.  Had he not injured his neck at the end of last year, Best may have went higher than Spiller.  Instead he landed with the up and coming Lions offense.  I think he has the ability to really break out this year.  A decent RB2 with very good upside. (+)

16. Jonathon Stewart – The second part of the Dueling Panthers.  J-Stew showed at the end of last year that he has top tier running back talent.  The Panthers continue to say they will be a run first team.  With the two running backs they have on their roster, why not.  Stewart is a low end RB2 to start the season, but if Deangelo goes down, bump Stewart into Tier 2.  Stewart also seems to be prone to injury.  A bit of a risk, but very high possible reward. (-)

17. Shonne Greene – Rex Ryan’s supposed “bell cow”.   I think Greene should take Thomas Jones’ position, with LT being the Leon Washington prior to the leg injury.  Shonne’s stock is definitely higher in Non PPR leagues, as his reception total should be nothing to brag about.  Still a solid, consistent RB2. (-)

18. Knowshon Moreno – Knowshon begins 2010 with another injury (hamstring).  He should play week one but we are not sure if he will be 100%. Moreno when healthy is a solid RB2.  He has the talent to become a RB1. However the questions remain will he stay healthy and will McDaniels offer him the opportunity.  Considering the coach drafted him 12th overall in 2009 with his first ever draft pick, I think he will.  A bit of a risk, but a fairly solid RB2 with some upside.

19. Pierre Thomas – Pepe Le Pew presents an interesting option at RB.  He is the favored back in one of the best offenses in the NFL.  Last year he could not put up any consistency with Mike Bell and Reggie Bush around.  With Bell now in Philadelphia, Thomas and Bush look to see their roles expanded.  How far is the question.  Thomas will have big games and disappointing ones.  An inconsistent RB2 with upside.

20. Beanie Wells – Another young, talented back.  With Derek Anderson at the helm, the Cardinals offense can go a few different ways.  The first being a chaotic, unorganized offense that tries to force the ball to Larry Fitzgerald.  The second being a ground and pound game that features Wells, with Hightower coming in on third downs.  In this scenario Anderson would only need to occasionally make solid passes which I think is reasonable.  Another possibility is Wells solidifying his pre-draft label of being injury prone.  And the final and most unlikely scenario is Derek Anderson returns to his pro bowl form giving Wells the opportunity to run all over the place.  I would say 1,2, and 3 are realistic.  A low RB2 with some upside.

Tier 5

21. Jerome Harrison – One of my biggest targets this offseason, Montario Hardesty, had his season cut short by an ACL injury.  Harrison will now have less of a threat for the lead back role.  I think James Davis can make a push by the end of the season, but to start the year look for Harrison to see a large amount of carries.  This team has an underrated offensive line.  Harrison makes for a prime example of a player to get on your team only to trade high (after week 5 against Buffalo).  He should be a good RB2 until something changes.  Harrison has the makings of  Cedric Benson in 2009.

22. Matt Forte Forte has the chance to return to fantasy prominence in 2010 after his sophmore slump.  Forte has never been a great between the tackles rusher, but I think he can play the Marshall Faulk role in Martz’s offense (to a lesser degree of course).  Forte has great hands out of the backfield and runs good routes.  Chester Taylor is a bit of an issue, but I believe Forte will still be the majority shareholder of the Bears backfield.  A RB2/flex with upside.

23. Justin Forsett –  Forsett is another back who closed out well last season.  He averaged 5.4 YPC on over 100 carries, and also displayed good hands.  Pete Carroll has named Forsett the starter for now, so we will see where this opportunity takes Forsett.  A risky RB2/good flex with solid upside. (+)

24. Ahmad Bradshaw -As a Giants fan, it pains me to say it but Jacobs will probably never be the same.  He is a huge guy who can beat up defenses, but I think the hits he gives and takes are catching up to him a little.  It is now Bradshaw’s turn.  After still showing great burst with injuries to both feet last year, if he comes back healthy Bradshaw can be a very solid RB2.b

25. Joseph Addai – As much as I dislike his running ability to Donald Brown’s, Addai remains the starter due to his pass protection and familiarity with the offense.  I think there is a decent chance he is unseated as the starter (at the least sees his role diminished) by the seasons end.  However it is currently the start of the season and Addai should be very solid.  Another good draft and trade candidate (around week 5 after he faces Kansas City sounds about right to me).

Honorable Mention

Lesean McCoy – I have the Eagles starting RB lower than most rankings.  There could be a little bias coming in, but I think between Weaver, Mike Bell, and Vick, McCoy will not receive a big share of goal line carries.  This leaves him more in the low end RB2/flex range.

Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams – They both have good potential with decently high risk of injury.  Brown is a higher risk/reward candidate with Ricky having more stability.

Michael Bush – Once his hand heals, I believe he will overtake McFadden for the starting RB role.

Felix Jones – Great talent, but can he stay on the field.  Also how will that Cowboys O-line shape up?

C.J. Spiller – Another amazing talent.  Will he see enough touches with Fred Jackson healthy to be a RB2?

Donald Brown – Can this be the year he takes over for Addai?  If it is then he is a top 20 back.

Marion Barber – Does he have the burst that Jerry Jones hyped up in the offseason?  If so can he stay healthy?

Fred Jackson – He was a top target of mine before the Bills drafted Spiller.

Reggie Bush – He looked very good in the preseason.  He makes for a good flex in PPR leagues.

Kareem Huggins – Will likely be the starting back in Tampa by seasons end.

Ladanian Tomlinson – Can 21 show some of his legendary quickness?  He looked to be in good shape in the preseason and with that O-line I think Tomlinson has flex possibilities.

Brandon Jacobs – I hope Big Papa returns to glory, but I just don’t see it.

Cadillac Williams – Still currently sitting as the starter in Tampa.

I see the first tier as sure fire RB1s, barring injury.  The second tier should also be solid RB1, but they have a lower ceiling and a higher risk of injury.  The third tier players all have the potential to be RB1, but all of them carry some sort of risk with them, age, injury history, or lack of experience.  The fourth tier consists of young RB who have the potential to really step into the fantasy limelight.  The final tier, the fifth, is full of players with question marks or lacking significant upside.

Hopefully this will help you realize why I have these RBs ranked where they are.  Check out my WR rankings, and continue to check back because more updates will be coming throughout the season on McShaft’s Fantasy Football Insight.


Dirt’s Top 5 Sleeper/Underrated WR

Guest Writer: Dirt

Dirt’s Top 5 Fantasy Sleeper/Underrated Wide Receivers ( Non PPR)

1) Dwayne Bowe: Most of the WR fantasy football headlines lately have gone to the studs of last year (Austin, Marshall, Wayne).  With Dwayne Bowe’s draft stock is not as high as some of those wideouts, he becomes a good value pick. It is easy to look past receivers like Bowe who have spectacular talent and are still relatively unproven. However with the coaching changes that took place in Kansas City and a new high-powered running back tandem of Charles and Jones, Bowe is poised to have a comeback year.
2) Devin Aromashodu: Never heard of him before, you might want to check him out during Chicago’s struggles last year. With Quarterback Jay Cutler, Aromashodu may have been the only constant in that offense down the stretch in the last four games of the year last year. Aromashodu managed 282 yards receiving and 4 touchdowns in those four games. Things to know about Aromashodu are that he definitely is not as fast as Knox and Hester (who the hell is) however he has the strength to create space from the defenders. We all know how fickle of a player Jay Cutler is, but under Mike Martz this offense is destined for a way better fantasy year and it seems as if Cutler found a receiver even he can get along with.
3) Mike Wallace: An absolute must have in your fantasy league for this year. Wallace proved twice last year that he can make the same Super Bowl MVP type catches as Santonio Holmes, and he might even be a little bit quicker than the former Steeler. Yes, Big Ben will not be throwing him the rock until about week 5 however his big play ability makes him a stud sleeper to be taken probably in the 7th or 8th round of your draft. DO NOT be the guy who tries to wait on him and he gets taken if he falls to you in the 7th or 8th you need to pull that trigger.
4) Wes Welker: The white ninja out of Texas Tech has proven that he in fact is not human. He tore his ACL and injured his MCL at the end of the season last year (that’s January). He has come back from what should have been a yearlong recovery in just seven months. If that is not impressive enough, he miraculously seems to have most if not all of his cutting and turning ability back. I probably should have him as the number one sleeper with Brady being in a contract year, however preseason is preseason and whether that leg is going to hold up or not is still yet to be determined. Being as Welker is predominantly used out of the slot, he is in a position that requires a lot of cutting and turning up field coupled with the possibility of incurring some massive hits over the middle.
5) Braylon Edwards: Admittedly Braylon left some of his hands in Cleveland when he left, however he never forgets them in prime time games.  With his competition suspended for the first four weeks of the season (Holmes) and 5 Prime Time games this year he should produce. Edwards and Holmes are both in contract years.  If there was ever a year for this guy to blow up,  this would be the one.  Edwards has a high-powered running back tandem between LT and Big Greene with an even better offensive line look for the screens and play actions to open up big plays for Edwards. The best part this guy could be your # 3 receiver and you should be able to target him around the 8th or 9th round.

Other notables

Eddie Royal- With the departure of Marshall to Miami someone in Denver has to catch the ball. With Josh McDaniels moving Royal back to the slot (where he had his fantastic rookie campaign), he is back on track to have some good numbers. He has not shown much this preseason, but hey neither has the Cowboys star studded offense (0 TD’s in the preseason by the first team offense.)

Jacoby Jones- It was extremely hard not to put this guy on the top 5 list, with a lot of people targeting Andre Johnson in the 1st round of the draft and Houston’s recent struggles in the backfield (with the exception of Foster) someone else is going to have to step up and make some plays. Based on this preseason, Jones has taken Walters spot as the # 2 receiver for Houston and is going to get his fair share of targets.

T.O. – As much as it pains me to watch this character obtain any type of success, it seems as if he is ready to put his last two seasons behind him and take on a secondary receiver roll which will greatly increase his and C.O’s production this year.  With a veteran QB like Palmer, Benson running the ball with a chip on his shoulder, and a big Super Sleeper TE ( Gresham), this offense is ready to make a Super run.

Top 50 WR Rankings Non-PPR 

First rankings of the site …

These are the Top 50 Wide Receiver rankings as of 9/1 (with some updates) for a Non-PPR league.

Notations represent the movement in a PPR league

(+)/ (-)  up/down

Tier 1

1. Randy Moss – Every report out of the Pats camp has had Randy in amazing shape.  Being in his contract year, he wants to get paid and make “Straight Cash Homey” one last time. When Moss wants to play, it is still damn near impossible to stop him.  Especially with a 100% Brady and a relatively healthy Welker to run underneath.  He caught a 65 yard bomb in the Pats preseason game Saturday night.  Brady just missed Moss on what would have been another fifty yard bomb in the Pats second preseason game.  Almost everyone has Andre at #1, but I think Moss has a higher ceiling than Andre without much more risk.  15 Tds and 1300 yds is very likely. (-)

2. Andre Johnson – Can’t go wrong here.  A physical freak in an offense with little changes. His production over the past few years is consistently great.  Andre had 7 receptions for 79 yards in less than a full game in Saturday nights preseason game against the Cowboys.  If you are looking for consistency, in 2009 Andre had at least 60 yards in every game after week 1.  That is a rarity from the volatile WR position.  Johnson logged over 100 receptions, 1500 yds and  8 Tds the past two years and I see the same type of production in 2010. I have him as #1a in Non-PPR format, but make that #1 in PPR.  (+)

Tier 2

3. Calvin Johnson – A definite dropoff after the Big 2, but Megatron is another physical freak that did not play to his potential due to injuries and a bad team in 2009.  It looks like the Lions offense has the capability to be explosive, and if thats the case Calvin will lead the way.  It sounds like he will be targeted heavily around the goaline.  Calvin has the definite possibility to move into Tier #1. Like Moss he takes a slight dip in PPR leagues.  (-)

4. Roddy White – White is a very solid WR that is moving into his third year with future star Matt Manning Ryan.  Roddy had six catches for 47 yards and a touchdown in Friday’s preseason game.  He was targeted for a second touchdown as well that resulted in a rare drop.  The past three years White has caught over 80 receptions, 1150 yds, and six touchdowns.  Last year Roddy bumped his touchdown total to 11 TDs while keeping the yard and reception minimum.  Without Matty Ice and Michael Turner being banged up at the end of last year, his numbers would have been even better.  Reliable, has upside, and on a very capable offense.  85/1300/12.

Tier 3

5. Miles Austin – Austin has the potential to be great after what he showed last season.  That being said, with such a small showing as a dominant WR he also has the potential to be a bit of a bust.  I do think  he will remain a very solid WR1 and put up great numbers.  The Cowboys offensive line does worry me a bit, which is why I have Austin in Tier #3.  A big risk with a high pick, but again the potential is there.  I would predict similar numbers to last year, except over the full season.  80/1300/11 are very solid numbers though.

6. Brandon Marshall – Marshall was the biggest offseason move in fantasy circles.  His talent cannot be denied, and should transfer to Miami successfully.  A young quarterback like Chad Henne will often lock on to a receiver as talented as Marshall as his go to guy.  Brandon had a few drops in the preseason, but has been putting in extra time in practices addressing the issue.  The Tuna would not have given up two second round picks for a player he is not going to utilize.  (+)

Tier 4

7. Greg Jennings –  Jennings is a very hit or miss WR with his big play ability.  One deep connection from Rodgers and Jennings will have a great week.  Without it, he is unlikely to put up great numbers.  He should have more trips to the end zone than his 2009 TD total of 4.  That was largely due to the offensive line’s inability to protect Rodgers in the beginning of the year.  As the season progressed, Rodgers had more time in the pocket due to better protection.  More time led to more deep balls to Jennnings.  The addition of the first round tackle Bulaga will only bring more depth to the O-line.  The number one wideout on the most potent passing offense in the NFL is a good thing to have on your team.  (-)

8. Reggie Wayne – Wayne faces more competition for targets from Peyton this year then ever before.  With Garcon and Collie showing their ability last year, Gonzalez returning healthy, and Clark at tight end, targets will be in high demand.  Wayne still remains Peyton’s favorite target at wide out and that equals good numbers in fantasy football.  I predict a slight drop in production from last year, but 100 rec, 1250 yds, and 10 TDs are pretty solid numbers to only slightly drop from.  (+)

Tier 5

9. Dwayne Bowe – I have Bowe ranked much higher than most, but everyone is raving about Bowe and his offseason work habits.  Last year at this time, HC Todd Haley had Bowe running as the third wide out in Kansas City.  This year he is giving nothing but praise for this talented fourth year WR.  With Charles, T. Jones, McCluster, and Chambers, this offense has the possibility to be much improved if Cassell and the O-line can perform.  If that happens Haley and Weis may team up to coach a surprisingly decent offense and Bowe will dominate the WR targets.

10. Larry Fitzgerald – He remains in the elite talent class of the top 3 WR, but Derek Anderson scare me at QB.  Fitz will still be a solid WR, but we should taper our expectations with the retirement of the wiley vet.  It doesn’t sound as if his preseason knee injury will be a factor in the regular season,  but an erratic one year wonder at QB will be.

11. Anquan Boldin – I am not completely sold one way or the other.  He has always been such a serious injury risk because he is such a tough player.  He does however have the potential to be very good in a possibly explosive offense with Bam Bam Cam Cameron as his offensive coordinator, Joe Flacco, Ray Rice, and a good O-line.

12. Desean Jackson – The explosive playmaker from Philly is even more hit or miss than Jennings.  Desean has the speed and talent to go higher, I am just a little taken aback by his need for long TDs.  I did not love McNabb as a quarterback, but there is no denying his strong arm.  Can Kolb get Desean the long balls or will Jackson have to take it to the crib on slants? If the player, not special teams, gets points for kick/punt returns give Desean a slight boost. Also drop him a bit in PPR leagues. (-)

13. S. Smith (Car) – Smith produced very well once M. Moore came in to quarterback the Panthers last year.  With the ground game Carolina possesses, Smith should have some room to run in the secondary.  Hopefully LaFell or Jarrett can step up as the #2 to pull away some coverage.  Weak WR1, great WR2.

Tier 6

14. Wes Welker – Welker amassed 1350 Yds while missing two and a half games last year.  If he wasn’t injured he would be a definite top 10 WR even in non-PPR.  It looks like he miraculously has his burst and cutting ability back, months ahead of schedule.  Even if not 100% now, he should be pretty damn close by the time the fantasy playoffs roll around.  With Moss and Brady in a contract year, I think Welker may be able to play at a very high level again. Bump into the top ten in PPR leagues.  (+)

15. Mike Wallace has Wallace’s ADP at 7.06 or the 31st WR off the board.  Getting Wallace as WR3 at 31st on the WR list is an absolute steal.  Wallace is taking over Santonio Holmes position (not in the smoke circle, on the field), and he has more breakaway speed than Holmes.  Wallace put up 750/6 in 2009 as the #3 WR in Pittsburgh.  Santonio put up 80/1250/5 last season.  As much as the Steelers wanted to take the PR off of Roethlisberger, they would not have traded Holmes unless they were relatively sure Wallace could replace him.  This is a spot where you can load up on other positions and be happy stealing Wallace as your WR2 while others listen to ADP. (-)

16. Marques Colston – I would not want him as my WR1, but a great WR2.  He is Brees most reliable target.  A solid 1000 yds 9 Tds is likely as long as he doesn’t get hit with an injury again.  I only have him ranked slightly lower than most because he lacks some upside in my opinion with Brees loving to spread the ball around.

Tier 7

17. Malcolm Floyd– With the Vincent Jackson debacle still not showing promise, Floyd continues to disguise himself as VJax.  Like the Wallace and Holmes situation, I feel like the Chargers recognized they had a player with talent that could be placed in Jackson’s role.  I do not like Pip Rivers personality, but he can throw the ball.  I am assuming there is a good chance VJax does not play for the Chargers this year.  If he does, drop Floyd considerably.  (-)

18. Johnny Knox – Which came first the chicken (Cutler) or the egg (Bears O-line)?  I am not sure but it is disappointing to see after I was so high on the Bears offense in training camp.  I still think they have the potential to succeed with the very complex system.  Knox continues to show promise in the preseason despite Cutler’s woes. That said, I think the offense’s success determines whether Knox is good or great.  I would consider Knox a mid to low WR2 with the upside of a low end WR1.

19. Hakeem Nicks – Nicks has the potential to be the #1 on the Giants.  I may have a bit of “Homerism” here, but last year he flashed how talented he can be.  He was a little banged up, but still produced fairly well for a rookie.  I know everyone hates Eli, but he passed for 4000 yds last year and has the last name of MachineManning.  If Nicks can be Manning’s primary big play reciever to complement Steve Smith as the possesion reciever, big things can happen for Nicks. (-)

Tier 8

20. Percy Harvin – Brett’s little buddy has the chance to be a very good WR with the loss of Rice. However everything about his migraine issue scares me.  It seems like it is the type of injury/illness that can happen at any time.  If my WR sprains his ankle during the game and has to come out … bummer, but you can live with that.  However going into the season knowing there is a decent chance Percy’s migraines will return and he will miss one or more games is not something I want to deal with.  I wish him the best because it sounds like a scary issue, but he hasn’t been on any of my teams this year because of that.  Although he has moved up recently on my board.  Average WR2, good WR3.

21. Michael Crabtree – Everyone loves Crabtree this offseason but I am not completely sold.  Maybe because I am not a huge college football fan.  His recent dispute with Vernon Davis about his work ethic drops my already skeptical level of excitement for Crabtree.  Everyone says he played great last year, but he would have only put up 70/900/3 if you average it out over 16 games.  Nicks missed two games last year, so if you project his 2009 stats over 16 games, he puts up 55/900/7.  Now I fully believe that we draft for the future not the past, but I think people are “Reggie Bushing” Crabtree a little bit.  He plays on a great defensive team who is going to want to run and pass to Vernon Davis alot in the red zone.  Still an average WR2 with upside.

22. Steve Smith (NYG) – I am lower on Steve Smith than most.  I think Nicks will take over as the lead reciever and Smith will become more complementary.  He makes for a poor man’s Wes Welker.  Definitely a top twenty pick in a PPR league, but Smith loses a lot of value in non-PPRs. (+)

23. Jeremy Maclin – No one is sure what to make of the Eagles offense this year.  Even though they have looked shaky this preseason, I still think they will put up solid numbers when it counts.  Not to keep harping on the preseason, but several people are down on Maclin because he missed a few catchable balls in the Birds third preseason game.  The more important factor to me is that he was targeted 11 times by Kolb!  If Maclin becomes Kolb’s go to receiver, he can be in for a big season.

24. Mike Sims-Walker – The Hyphen had a few big games last year, but lacks consistency, health, and a good quarterback.  Last year Coach Del Rio suspended him for missing curfew.  You have to be partying pretty hard for the coach to suspend his #1 WR.  If he can stay healthy and focused, he does have very good upside.

Tier 9

25. Hines Ward – Ward has been a constant producer on the Steelers roster for the past decade.  The fact that the Seoul Survivor put up 95/1150/6 last year is amazing.  I am always a little weary of drafting older tough guys like Ward, but he would make for a very good WR3 in three wide receiver leagues.  I don’t like him as much in 2 WR leagues because reliability is trumped by upside when there are less starters.  (+)

26. Chad OchoCinco – 85 lacks the ability to be a WR1 like he was several years ago, but he should be a fairly consistent WR2/3.  Bringing T.O. to town really throws a kink into how Palmer’s targets will be divided, but I think having a good receiver opposite Chad will help.  Ocho finished the 2009 season with a touchdown in the last 4 regular season games he played.  Limited upside, but not too much risk in this pick.

27. Robert Meachem – Colston is the Saints #1 right now, but I think Meachem has the talent to compete to become Brees’ main man.  Meachem was talked about as a breakout candidate at the end of last year, but he was forgotten about this offseason due to his toe injury throughout training camp.  Now he is back healthy and is already receiving red zone zone targets by Brees in the preseason and workouts.  On 8/31, RotoWorld reported Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune believes that Robert Meachem’s “production and playing time” will be limited this season, at least in part due to offseason toe surgery. In the Times-Picayune article, Duncan mentions the exceptional talent of Meachem then talks about the toe injury saying its a “setback that threatens to limit his production and playing time” he then goes on to say “But let’s wait to see if or how much it does before casting him as a disappointment. He still has time.” So even RotoWorld, a great site for information, can be misleading at times. (-)

28. Jabar Gaffney – He continues to keep me on my toes, but I still have faith in Josh McDaniels.  McD brought Gaffney over from the Patriots, so Jabar already knows the system well.  In the final two games last year Gaffney pulled in 21/280/2 with 14/210 coming in the lone game without Marshall.  He has looked like Orton’s favorite target again this preseason.  Hmmmmm. (+)

29. Vincent Jackson – It doesn’t look like he will be playing in San Diego this season.  No matter how stubborn GM AJ Smith is, there is no reason to not get some value out of VJax.  So a trade will likely be attempted, but the issue is whether Jackson will come down on his contract terms.  At this point I will take my chances on him. There are continuously rumors of Jackson’s future whereabouts.  No matter where he goes, if a team signs him to anything close to what VJax wants he will likely be a #1 WR on that team.  To me it sounds like #1 WR on a bad team or fantasy WR2/3 status.  Not bad value this late for the risk.

30. Pierre Garcon – This offense has so many weapons, but Garcon seems to be turning into Peyton’s big play WR.   Pierre is a fan favorite after his AFC championship performance, but I think he is a little overrated.  Garcon does have considerable upside if Peyton decides he is capable of having a bigger role.

31. Terrell Owens – In the past couple seasons it seems as though T.O. has been more humble than before.  It may be because Drew Rosenhaus told him he wouldn’t get paid if he kept blowing up, or at age 36 OchoUno may have actually matured past the level of a 13 year old.  Either way he seems excited to play with OchoCinco and Carson after being exiled to Siberia last year in Buffalo.  The hype will follow Owens wherever he goes, but I think he has landed himself in a decent situation in Cincy.  I would be content with T.O. as my WR3.

Tier 10

32. Mohamed Massoquoi – Jake Delhomme has looked surprisingly decent in his preseason work.  With a solid offensive line and Hardesty/Harrison in the backfield, Massoquoi may have some decent value.  MoMa showed glimpes of his second round talent last year with a few big games.  If Delhomme can bring some stability to the quarterback position MoMa may wake up from his sleeper status.

33. Mike Williams (TB) The guy has amazing talent.  Very few talent evaluators would disagree, but his character concerns plummeted his draft stock.  From the start of Bucs camp, reports on Williams have been great.  If he can gel with Josh Freeman once the quarterback returns from injury, he may be a great sleeper pick.

34. Jacoby Jones – Many are grasping at the fact that Walter signed a solid contract with the Texans this offseason as the reason why Jacoby is still the #3 WR in Houston.  Let’s hope the release of Antonio Bryant proved that theory wrong.  Jacoby has insane athleticism and gives Schaub two big, tall, and fast WRs.  If he can hold on to the ball, Jones has sleeper written all over him.

35. Lee Evans – With Spiller, F. Jackson, and M. Lynch, Buffalo has a slew of RB options once they are healthy.  The same cannot be said for Buffalo’s receivers.  Evans is the man in Buffalo, and their offense displayed some firepower in the preseason.  If new HC Chan Gailey can use his offensive creativity to open up the Bills passing attack, the speedster Evans could benefit.  The key here is whether Trent Edwards and the offensive line can be stable enough to get Evans the deep ball.  A hit or miss receiver with upside. (-)

36. Laurent Robinson – Robinson displayed some talent in the beginning of last year before going down to injury.  With Avery now out for the year, Robinson becomes the WR1 on the Rams offense.  He has potential with his size and speed combo.

37. Legedu Naanee – Naanee is a very physical wideout at 6’2 220.  He will be the #2 WR in a potent offense with Phillip Rivers at the helm.  I think he has a chance to put up a solid 1000 and 7Tds if he plays well.

38. Donald Driver – When a player’s upside is 1000 yards and 6TDs I cannot draft him in my top 30.  If Driver is available, I would gladly draft him as my WR4, but if not I would rather upside than average production.  In his last five games, Driver had 210 yds and 1 TD (40/0.2 avg).  He is however still Aaron Rodgers third target on the best passing offense in football.  Like all mediocre players, his value is slightly higher in very deep leagues.

39. Santana Moss – McNabb and Santana have great potential together … if it were 2004.  These two players do both possess a lot of talent and have the chance to put up numbers while playing together.  The key is they have to be PLAYING.  McNabb has already injured his ankle, and now that Moss will no longer be meeting with Dr. Galea (allegedly) it is only a matter of time before he breaks down again. (-)

40.Devin Aromashodu – I was very high on Aromashodu to start this offseason. But with Knox looking like the definitive WR#1 in Chi-town and the offensive line looking weak, the new “TJ Whosyourmama”  gets knocked a few spots down.  Everyone raves about his four game stretch last year, but Knox and/or Hester were injured during that stretch.  In these notorious four games, Aroma recorded over 80 yds once.  For being such a “big play” guy, he only averaged 12.8 yds/catch in those four games.  So Aroma has plenty of upside in the mythical Martz offense, but it comes with a good chance of being a bust.

Tier 11

41. Louis Murphy – Murphy has potential this year with an actual quarterback throwing him the ball.  With the departure of Jamarcus Russell, Jason Campbell steps up to the plate.  Campbell looked pretty sharp in the Raiders third preseason game before going down with a stinger.  If the second year receiver can gain some chemistry with Campbell while Chaz Schilens is perpetually injured, there may be some potential here.

42. Steve Breaston – His value gets a slight boost with Anderson over Leinart.  Breaston showed his talent as the #3 with Warner under center.  He hopes to make a leap in production with Boldin now in Baltimore.  He has upside, but Early Doucet is also there and the targets will not be as plentiful as last year.

43. Nate Burleson – Nasty Nate has a chance to put up some decent numbers in the, dare I say it, explosive Detroit offense.  Running on the opposite side of Calvin, Burleson should get some pretty good matchups this year.  He already knows the offense being ran from his days with OC Linehan in Minnesota, so Nate can hopefully jump right in.  As always with Burleson, staying healthy is the biggest obstacle.

Tier 12

44. Dez Bryant – Bryant, like Mike Williams, slipped in the draft due to character issues not talent.  Missing valuable practice time with the ankle injury worries me a little.  Second, Dallas’s O-line has looked abysmal in the preseason.  However Dez has decent potential this late.

45. Bernard Berrian – With Sidney Rice on the PUP list there is going to be a surplus of Favre targets for half the season.  The question is will Berrian or Camarillo step up.  I like Camarillo, but I am putting Berrian in this spot because of his familiarity with the offense.  Javon Walker may scoop some, but I don’t think he is fantasy relevant.

46. James Jones – Jones has been a sleeper for three years now.  Stop hitting that snooze button my man and overtake Driver as the starting split end.  I don’t see it happening without an injury, but Driver’s knees are not sturdy at this stage of his career.  If an injury to Driver or Jennings occurs, Jones easily bumps into the top thirty.

47. Braylon Edwards – Braylon has insane athleticism.  However you can’t just be taller and faster than everyone as a wider receiver, you need to catch the football and run routes.  This is where Edwards has a bit of a problem.  He may do decent, but how many times do you think Rex is going to let Sanchez pass the ball?  Enough to feed Braylon, Santonio, Cotchery, Keller, and LT?

48. Mike Williams (Sea) – Can he come back to relevance under his former coach Carroll?  He looked decent in the preseason and reports continue to project him as a starter once Housh is gone.  At 6-5 he can definitely be successful if used properly.

49. TJ Houshmandzadeh -I can finally spell his name without copying and pasting.  Housh has had the run around this offseason after being releasesed by the Seahawks.  He then landed himself on one of the best offenses in football, the Ravens.  No one is sure of his role right now, so he remains a flier WR5

50. Julian Edleman – Welker appears healthy and ready to go this season.  However it is still the Patriots organization, so we may be watching a robot designed to look like Welker and no one in the organization would let anyone know.  Edleman is never going to be the 50th WR.  He will either be a top twenty WR if Welker gets hurt, or out of the top fifty if Wes stays healthy.  I think it may be worth the gamble as a WR5.
When drafting I would attempt to get my WR1 in the top 6 WRs, my WR2 in the top 17, and my WR3 in the top 25.  This may sound like you must draft WR very high, but that is not true.  There are plenty of capable WRs out there that are being drafted much lower than where I have them ranked. The WRs with the biggest disparity between ADP (Average Draft Position) and my rankings are Dwayne Bowe (ADP #18), Mike Wallace (ADP #31), Malcolm Floyd (ADP #25), Johnny Knox (ADP #30), Robert Meachem (ADP #35), Mike Williams (ADP 46), and Jabar Gaffney (ADP 54).  So if things go your way you can grab one of the elite WRs with a 1st/2nd/3rd rounder, then someone like Bowe in the fourth round or Wallace/Floyd/Knox in the sixth round.  You can then grab someone like Robert Meachem in the ninth and Mike Williams/Jabar Gaffney in the eleventh round and you have a good WR corp at a discounted price.
Remember you never know how a draft is going to shape up so you must be ready for anything.  For example, lets say you already drafted your top two WRs and plan on waiting for your WR3 until the tenth round.  Once you are on the clock with your ninth round pick and you are about to take your RB3, you see Johnny Knox is still available.  At this point you have to pull the trigger on Knox unless there is a RB that has dropped as well.  Filling positions is important, but sometimes a certain player drops so far that you must take that value.  Good Luck to all, I hope this piece helps you show your league up.
One side note: I find it interesting that there are so many double first namers in the top 20 WRs … Miles Austin, Brandon Marshall, Reggie Wayne, Mike Wallace, Malcolm Floyd.

Pre-Season Edition of the “Sanctuary Faithful 2010” Power Rankings

What up fellas. After I saw what Trees had to go through with multiples on ESPN, I decided it was easier to just provide a link to this than post it on the site itself (not to mention this thing started small and turned into a novel). Trees good stuff amigo. I would love to have another power rankings around. I gotta start this off saying everyone had a great draft. Even though I got Ferd ranked last, I think he had the best moment at the draft. Good luck this season fellas.

While in the War Room of a fantasy draft (or the Laff basement) it is dam near impossible to keep your head straight.  You have Elvin claiming to blackout after his Miles Austin pick which apparently caused him to take Marques Colston instead of his “true target”.  Ferd is busy poking people and updating his status, and in the meantime drafts 12 quarterbacks.  However I think he did discover the name of our trophy while in the midst of a delicious cloud of smoke … “The Mayflower”.  Like the Juan mentioned, I thought that I went back in time and had the opportunity to sell my BP stock, the way I was trying to get rid of my picks. This with Bossington in the background throwing around pillows looking for his keys instead of realizing he drafted Kellen Winslow in the fifth round.

So as looney as those two hours were, we all know that no matter what moves we make during the season, August 15 was the biggest determiner of “The Sanctuary Faithful 2010.”  If last year someone had drafted Chris Johnson in the first, Aaron Rodgers in the second, Desean Jackson in the third, Cedric Benson in the fourth, Ray Rice in the fifth, Jamaal Charles in the sixth, Steve Smith (Gmen) in the seventh, Miles Austin in the eighth, and Vernon Davis in the ninth I don’t know if they lose a game.  So after the draft it is good to look at everyones squad as a whole and try to determine how that team stacks up against the others. What better way to do it than with a Pre-Season edition of the Power Rankings. (Odds to win the ship in parentheses. Positional Grades take quality of depth into consideration as well as starters.)

1.  The Guru (5-2) – If I’m not hoisting the trophy at the end of this year the Guru title will officially be removed. I have continuously dominated in the regular season, but just can’t finish the job. This year looks to be off to another great start with Turner, Charles, and Foster (steal of the draft) making up a solid RB corp. Moss, Bowe, and a slew of potential breakout Wrs along with Vernon Davis at TE and no weakness can be found. The only question on this team is whether or not my Qbs drink stays pinker than the Easter rabbit.

QB: A-, RB: A, WR: A, TE: A, OVR: A

2.  Sideshow Juan (3-1) – Someone is learning. After last years debacle of a team, Lungs decided to put in some work and draft a solid lineup. Take the #1 Qb in the land, young Rbs, and a stud WR along with a breakout candidate in Floyd, and you have yourself a scary team.  If he can find himself a TE, Sideshow is a serious contender for the title.  Should be a battle for the division.

QB: A+, RB: A, WR: B, TE: D OVR: A-

3.  Jude da Stanky Leg (4-1) – After a loss in the title game last year this organization is coming out with a chip on their shoulder. Matt Forte even returns to bring home the theme of redemption. Pip is a solid QB and another veteran of the complex Jude offense (Even though second round is a reach). With Jennings and Clark catching the rock this team can be dangerous if Rashard can live up to his hype, Ronnie Brown can stay healthy, and either the former Ttech stud steps up or Vjax gets traded.

QB: B+, RB: A-, WR: B, TE: A, OVR: B+

4.  Joe Jameson Sr. (4-1) – After dominating the regular season last year, The Stache fell short in the playoffs. He came back this year with another solid lineup anchored by Andre, S. Smith, Benson, and Deangelo. Put that cast with potential breakout QB Cutler, the toughest nigga with Downs Syndrome to ever live, Reggie Bush minus Kim, Hines Ward and his decent arm, and a supposedly healthy O. Diddy and I am glad the big man isn’t in my division again.

QB: B, RB: B+, WR: A-, TE: B+ OVR: B+

5.  Mike McDermott (11-2) Elvon took a year hiatus, but decided to come back seeking redemption after losing in the championship last year in Fellow’s League (I forget who won). He created quite the buzz in pre-draft talk, but ended up with one of the best foundations in the league with Chris Johnson, Ryan Grant, Miles Austin, and Marquest Colston. With MSW and Felix Jones competing for the flex and this years Brent Celek at tight end, the supporting cast is there. The big question for this squad is whether or not Carson Palmer/Donny Mac can call the shots.

QB: C+, RB: A-, WR: A-, TE: B, OVR: B

6.  Johnny Drama (7-1) – Things are looking brighter for the Ping Pong Champion of L.A., although after the disaster called 2009 anything would be an improvement. Purple Jesus is Purple Jesus, but after that this is a high risk high reward team. One of the risks has already burned him, Rice being out for a sizeable amount of time hurts. Shonne Greene seems to be in line for a lot of looks but he is still very untested. I am high on K² and think that he has a good chance to produce good numbers for a fifth round QB (although not as good as Kellen Winslow). Marshall is a solid WR but if Rice and Bryant cannot play week one does Jacoby Jones or Eddie Royal have to step up into the #2WR role? Chris Cooley is another question mark as a starting tight end. Can’t wait to see whether this team ends up as a boom or a bust by the time December roles around.

QB: B, RB: A-, WR: C+, TE: C+, OVR B-

7.  The Reigning Champ with Merlot Pants (7-1) The Hangover. Trees did it last year and at the draft we all thought Bossington was also headed for a meeting with Mike Tyson’s fist. However when you look over the team it is not all that bad. He has two Gs with Brady and Gore, and a very solid WR in Welker (if he is as healthy as he looks). Spiller and Harrison can fight out the #2RB while OchoCinco and Santana battle for the #2 WR. That is not too shabby. And that is without the steal of the draft … KELLEN WINSLOW IN THE FIFTH. Don’t worry Boss we won’t let the Hat Trick happen.

QB: A, RB: C+, WR: B-, TE: C+, OVR: B-

8.  The 8th Dwarf (9-1) The only true expansion team this year, Fells had Ray Rice slip to him at #4. After that he scooped up Shia LaBeof’s new ride in Megatron. I am not super high on Boldin in the third, but still a solid WR2. Matt Ryan in the fifth was a little early, and Finley in the sixth was solid. Cadillac as a RB2 is a little shaky, but if he becomes their workhorse I think he can be serviceable. Mason, Maroney, Roy Williams, Devin Thomas, and Fred Jackson are going to have to fight it out for the flex spot. Your playing with the big boys now Fells, lets see if your game steps up with the competition.

QB: B-, RB: C+, WR: B, TE: A, OVR: B-

9.  Dean Mayo (7-1) Mauro and Stoner must have talked mad fantasy on the Gamblers Ridge golf cart a few weeks back because they both went with the high risk high reward draft strategy. Nearly every guy on this team has a question along with them, however every single one of them has the ability to produce very well. Jackson and Beanie are both beastly backs on poor offenses, while Forsett showed flashes of his talent at the end of last year. Smith(gmen), Aromashodu, and Maclin are all guys with serious potential. Shaub and Witten are two relatively safe and solid guys.

QB: A-, RB: B, WR: C+, TE: A-. OVR: B-

10.  SocialMedia MonStars (7-1) Mr. Laff was relatively quiet at the draft and now I think I know what the deal was. Either he was out with my boy JaMarcus before the draft or he was searching the Twitter feeds of the world for the hot new draft trends. Either way it worked out decent. Drew Brees is always a good start to a team. Then Dr. Facebook went with the time share running back in a potent offense method with Pierre Thomas, Joey Addai, and Marion Barber. Add in the one of the most talented wideouts in the league (even if he has a garbo QB now), Robert Meachem’s breakout potential, Lee Evans, and Smoketonio Holmes after week 4 and we are on to something. He even stays true to his fanhood by getting his one “homer” pick with Brent Celek at TE.

QB: A, RB: B-, WR: B-, TE: B+, OVR: B-

11.  Bud Fox (9-1) Turco got his target with Peyton back in town. The Sherriff wanted someone he could trust as his right hand man if he was running the show and he got him in Reggie Wayne. After that this mogul invested in two second year backs looking to be the man in their respective offense, the Semi-Seans… Knowshon and Lesean. The second WR position is questionable with Driver and now Berrian fighting it out. The Man on the Cover hopes to battle for that flex spot with the leftover wideouts.  Tony G mans the TE position.

QB: A, RB: B-, WR: C, TE: B OVR: C+

12.  DJ Deadmau5 (12-1) Not many people use their third round pick on a quarterback (Flacco) to sit on the bench behind a 41 year old, but not many people are down with Deadmau5 at first so I got faith. Eagles D in the fifth and Garrett Hartley in the tenth make up some high investments in special teams play. Antonio Gates makes for a great TE, MJD is a stud at RB, and another Semi-Sean (Desean) makes for a good WR1. The #2 at each position and the Flex are all up in the air right now. Those fighting for the spot are Tomlinson, the Migraine Man, McGahee, and Ant Gonzo. My man is going to need to pick up some serious breakout players throughout the season if he wants to get his hand on the Mayflower.

QB: B-, RB: C, WR: C, TE: A, OVR: C

There we have it boys, the pre-season special.  Don’t worry there won’t be any more this long.  Only two weeks till it starts up ….

Giants Win the Rights to the New Meadowlands Stadium

Went to the Giants Jets preseason game last night and it was sick.   I was at the stadium for the first event (lacrosse tourney), but seeing it for football was awesome.  Antrelle made a nice first impression and Victor Cruz is MY DUDE.   Besides the insanity of having to take a shuttle to the stadium from the non-permit parking, it was a great game.

The Beginning

So I had my Rider draft last night.  The next morning Mr. Laff told me about blogging and I figured I would set something up for fantasy football.  So hopefully I will keep up with this and it will allow a fantasy website to notice that I know as much or more than their writers.  Peace.