Talk amongst yourselves
18 Feb 2010
You might have suspected this question was coming. Who seems to rank among the league's most underrated fantasy propositions heading into 2010?
Posted by: Bill Barnwell on 18 Feb 2010
60 replies , Last at
24 Aug 2010, 2:42pm by
Andre Johnson. I don't think he will ever be properly appreciated.
I also wouldn't be surprised if Josh Cribbs winds up being a fantasy factor...
By whom? He'll be the top receiver off the board in most drafts. The media may not fellate him as much as they do the flavor-of-the-year receiver (Larry Fitzgerald last offseason, Randy Moss the year before), but fantasy players are usually high on Johnson.
In real life he's underrated, but in Fantasy Football, Andre Johnson is almost always regarded as a top 3 WR and I haven't seen him go later than the 2nd round in the past 3 years.
Going into this year, he's probably the consensus #1 WR in FF (Wayne being the only guy close after Moss' off year, Fitz's new QB, and Calvin Johnson having big question marks because of his team)
I guess this is what I meant... I guess he's rated well in fantasy, but I get tired of hearing nothing about him in the public media, especially seeing him kill my Colts year after year...
so I guess my official submission is Cribbs...
Andre Johnson kills the Colts every year? To what end? A total of 1 win, in 2 games per year for his whole career? Colts fans are NOT allowed to complain about anything Texans related with their results in that matchup.
Greg Jennings. He had a bad year and will fall in Fantasy drafts, but he's on a team that passes all the time and is willing to throw deep, but were just largely unable to this year because of O-line problems. If the O-line improves a bit, Jennings is the one who sees the gains.
Brady will probably be underrated, and maybe Moss along with him. I kinda expect them to be #1 QB/ #1 WR next year. Phil mentioned Ricky Williams, which is a good pick (not that he should go in the first several rounds, but certainly will be drafted below where he should).
Felix Jones may be a good bet as well, as I don't expect the Cowboys to hang onto Marion Barber as a starter (and if they do, I'll be sad).
I have a hard time projecting Brady. He's clearly not going to go before Manning, Brees, Rivers, or Rodgers next year, but his name might get him in the 2nd round/3rd round. He'll probably be missing Welker though, and 2007 is looking more and more like the statistical outlier than him raising his game to a new level and while Brady will probably still be good IRL, a 28 TD/14 INT (His best non-2007 season, and a year statline he's hit twice in his career and was 28 TD/13 INT last year) is not going to be a top tier fantasy QB.
He might actually still be overrated in the 3rd round next year based on hope of him returning to 2007 level as guys like McNabb, Romo, Eli, Roethlisberger, and Schaub will all be capable of putting up similar fantasy numbers in the same or later rounds, and guys like Palmer, Cutler, Favre, Hasselbeck, Garrard, and Matt Ryan could make a run at them as well.
I'm saying there's a decent chance Brady next year will be better than Manning, Brees, Rivers, or Rodgers. The biggest reason his fantasy numbers were not as good this year as 2007 was the quality of pass defenses he faced-- especially in-division (Bills, Jets, and Dolphins). I expect all of those pass defenses to regress next year.
Plus Brady will be another year removed from his knee injury, and Belichick will have freedom to buy talent this off-season (especially a RB of some sort). For a team that is perpetually against the cap, the uncapped year may prove to be especially beneficial. The Welker injury is the one negative indicator against him.
Said it all.
I don't trust the Saints to give Thomas all the goal line carries, or even a majority of them. He'll probably still go below where he should, though.
Well, Bush will be out of the picture. I'm thinking he'll put up what he was putting up towards the end of the season before last. Which would put him in the top 10
What, exactly, makes you think that Bush will be out of the picture?
Sports talk radio and sports message boards are the killing fields of intellectual discourse.
He's due a roster bonus in addition to his inflated contract that he isn't worth.
In an uncapped year. And it's not a roster bonus, it's an option that the Saints will pay in addition to renegotiating/extending the remainder of his deal. Bush isn't going to get cut by the Saints, where they would get nothing in return, and they really can't trade him due to the Final 8 and Final 4 rules. Additionally, the contract is what would prevent OTHER teams from signing him--if you don't think that it makes sense for the Saints to pay him $8 million, why would it make sense for another team to do so?
Besides, you don't cut the guy who has scored the most touchdowns on your team during the Sean Payton era and who has shown marked improvement over the course of this season, despite still recovering from a serious knee operation.
In short, people need to drop the "Reggie Bush won't be a Saint next year" talk, as it really doesn't make any sense when you actually put some thought into it.
Additionally, the contract is what would prevent OTHER teams from signing him--if you don't think that it makes sense for the Saints to pay him $8 million, why would it make sense for another team to do so?
This makes no sense.
Agreed. If the Saints cut Bush, another team won't have to pay him $8 million.
I'm also skeptical that Bush leading the Saints in touchdowns over the last four years is indicative of his value in any way. I'd say it's a function of:
1. Bush being the only running back on the Saints roster all four years.
2. Brees spreading the ball amongst many different receivers, depressing any single receiver's touchdown numbers.
In fact, the primary reason I can see for the Saints retaining Bush is merchandising. He's an incredibly popular player with an incredibly well-selling jersey.
As for his on-field value, he hasn't been a big bust, as some say. He's a valuable multi-purpose back, after all. However, he's not worth $8 million for that.
After the last time someone trotted out that silly touchdown statistic, I looked up Reggie Bush's stats and compared them to Darren Sproles. Sproles has been comparable if not better over the same time period and I think Bush is probably worth no more salary-wise than Sproles is (6.6 million if I've got the latest information. Additionally, Bush gets more TDs because the Saints spread it around quite a bit. Thomas, Bell, Hamilton, and even Evans most recently at running back and an unbelievable number of targets at WR and TE (Dinkins, D. Thomas, Shockey, Meachem, Moore, Colston, Henderson. I think that a better description would be the percentage of team touchdowns that Bush is responsible for, which probably isn't anywhere near as impressive relative to what other players who are paid similar amounts of money.
Also, in terms of receiving and rushing, Thomas has more touchdowns than Bush. Bush did have three punt returns for touchdowns in 2008, but none in 2007 or 2009. Those return TDs would give him 23 TDs to the 22 that Thomas has over the same time period, but his 15 fumbles (7 lost) to Pierre's 3 (1 lost) really tell the whole story. Bush as a player is not worth what he will be paid if he stays with the Saints.
Agreed, if they keep him at that cost, its because his marketing value pays for it, not his on-field value.
I was talking about if they were to TRADE him to another team, which would be their only true option. Cutting him outright would be the most stupid thing for them to do, as they get nothing in return for doing so.
Bottom line is that Bush will be a Saint in 2010 and in 2012 after the lockout is over.
Pierre Thomas is a terrible fantasy RB. The Saints have too many RBs, and even though Thomas is the best of the bunch, they often prefer Bell on short yardage situations (i.e. TD dives). And really, for the most part, they get into the end zone via passing.
(Thomas burned me in 2009 FF. I would not draft him again.)
No, he's not. In my PPR league he ended up in the top 15 for RBs, and that's with his injuries. I had to start him in the playoffs after all my other #2 RBs got hurt, and he did well enough for us to pull out a close game and win the league title.
Even if he's not a TD machine, he won't hurt you. That's great for a guy you can usually get in the 5th or 6th round!
Agreed. We are talking about the same Offensive Coordinator that was there when the Marshall Faulk theory was created. And it's not like Forte had a particularly bad year last year in terms of yards... he had 1400 combined rushing and receiving yards he just only had 4 TDs on the year. Major bounce back year next year. I'm already trying to figure out what round he's going to be going in because acquiring him is a a top priority for me.
Jamaal Charles: he was the most underrated fantasy player THIS year. Go check out his stats...
stop saying jamaal charles is underrated, i want to get him as late as possible next year.
my list of underrated players:
Jamaal Charles is going 18th
Pierre thomas is going 41st
Deangelo and jon stewart but only if one of them gets moved to another team 12th and 46th respectively
Sidney rice 34th
^^ According to fantasyfootballcalculator.com/adp.php ^^
These look like huge bargains. If Rivers is going on average at 36th overall then why would anyone take Manning 14th or Brees 15th when they can get the same production 2 rounds later?! Gates is going on average as the third TE. Who in their right mind wouldnt take him as the first TE?! Sidney rice will be underrated because people are thinking he will suck without favre... but favre last year and Tarvaris at the end of two years ago were pretty similar. I dont think there will be much of a drop off if they get rid of favre. Yeah odds are Rice will be worse this coming year, but he was so good that even with a drop off he will be a steal at 34th. And if deangelo or jon stewart gets traded, the starter in carolina should go 4th behind CJ, MJD, and AP. Depending on where the other guy gets traded to, he could go as high as the first round as well.
Jamaal Charles is underrated. :p
The reason someone would take a Manning or Brees is because they CAN'T get the same production 2 rounds later. Rivers is performing as well as Manning and Brees from an NFL standpoint, but they obliterated him from a fantasy standpoint. Brees had 36 TDs to Rivers' 29 last season, as well as more yardage. Rivers finished as QB7 in fantasy, behind Rodgers, Brees, Favre, Manning, Schaub (!), and Romo (!!!), and Brady and Roethlisberger both finished within 6 points of Rivers, to boot. I could just as easily ask why anyone would burn the #36 overall pick on Rivers when they could probably get Schaub, Romo, or Roethlisberger much later. We're really entering a golden age of fantasy QBs where there are 8 or more guys you can grab and be competitive with (and this isn't even mentioning sleeping giants like Cutler, McNabb, or Matt Ryan).
You are right. Those guys that finished with more fantasy production than Rivers are extremely good values. This makes it even more true that using an early pick on Manning or Brees seems like a complete waste. Saying that you can't get the same value 2 rounds later but then saying you can get the same value 6 rounds later is just absurd. Yahoo has Manning at 294 and Rivers at 278 giving them a whopping 16 point difference. Also throw in that LT rushed for 12 touchdowns and that is a lot of touchdowns that potentially will improve Rivers numbers next year. in 2008 Manning had 266 points and Rivers had 290. If you ask me, you are getting better production from Rivers from a fantasy stand point and you are getting him 2 rounds later. When just comparing Rivers and Manning, Rivers is the better choice because he is younger, plays for a better offense (ppg), has had more fantasy points in recent history, is more efficient (dvoa), and is getting drafted later than manning. He is underrated when compared to Manning. Brees might warrant a top pick if you think he will continue his production, but Manning is getting overly drafted because he "is the most consistent producer in fantasy football". I dont care how good he was in 2004, only how good he will be in 2010.
"You completely undermined my argument, but I'm going to pretend you supported it!"
Roddy White. Still a top-10 WR with no one noticing.
And with Harry Douglas coming back, White won't be doubled as much.
Roddy White has scored 181 and 182 points over the past two seasons (standard 1pt/10yds 6pts/1td scoring), despite playing with a rookie/sophomore. Reggie Wayne has scored 151 and 184 over the same span despite playing with Peyton Manning (and watching one of his biggest competitors for targets miss the entire season to injury). Yet, somehow, Reggie Wayne is viewed as the only guy who can challenge Andre Johnson, while Roddy White is an afterthought.
To be honest, both WRs are generic 180-point guys- the type of guys who'll get you a lot of consistent finishes in the WR5-10 range but who aren't going to blow up enough to reach the top 3. With that said, Roddy White gives you the same production as Reggie Wayne at a fraction of the cost.
You just sold me on roddy white. If his "down year" is 182 points, imagine what his upside is. Ryan in theory will only get better.
Who said anything about a "down year"? I think 182 points was a pretty typical year for Roddy. I don't think he represents a whole lot of upside beyond that, but I do think he's a very safe bet for low-level WR1 production.
Good points about White. White did a great job for my FF team in 2008. He was so good that I took Matt Ryan for 2009, who killed my team.
I don't quite understand how Ryan was awful while White was terrific, but I think it relates to the fact that White has no real competition from the rest of his team's WRs.
Yeah, White was a target whore. He finished 2nd in the NFL in targets this season with 165 (Andre Johnson was first with 171). He didn't do a whole lot with his targets, to be honest- his catch rate was 52%, which is Chris Chambersian (pre-horrific-meltdown Chris Chambers). A lot of that is on the team around him, of course- DVOA and such don't measure how good Roddy White is, they measure how good Roddy White is while catching balls from Matt Ryan who is being protected by Atlanta's offensive line who are holding off the opposition's defensive line while the other team's defensive backs are trying to cover Roddy White. White is a much better WR than his advanced stats would indicate, but at the same time, for fantasy purposes, he's something of a compiler. Which is fine- compilers' points count just as much as anyone else's.
Same as I would have said last year. Aaron Rodgers. First round production, late 2 early 3 round pick.
Well, he's definitely not overrated.
If anybody has a thought about adding him to their FF team at all, he's overrated.
Which Colts receiver gets this award? I think it's impossible to predict, but they will have five guys who legitimately could get 10 TDs and probably three who would not shock the world by getting 13-14. But who? And who gets the unlucky bounces and gets left out of the stats parade?
Of course the flipside is that they somehow end up with five WRs with 850 yards, 7 TDs, and 75 catches each. Not particularly great fantasy numbers, but a bitch to defend. I still say the 2010 Colts wil be the first team ever with four 1,000+ receivers, and in the playoffs, the RBs will be so well rested (and the D's so focused on the receivers) that the RBs'll each get 20 carries per game.
I feel like this is a big story no one is talking about. The Colts WR corps (Wayne, Clark, Gonzalez, Garcon, Collie) is going to be scary good next year. We better see some 5 WR sets.
I think people have forgotten how good Gonzalez is. His numbers over his first two years are comparable to Wayne's...
Unfotunately, you cannot draft "Colts WR corps". There are too many of them to get too excited about drafting _any_ of them. I had Reggie Wayne this year and watched in horror as Collie, Clark, and Garcon took so many of his potential TDs away.
Yeah, any of them would be a good late-round pick-up.
(The obvious corollary is that Peyton is still an excellent fantasy QB.)
Jeremy Maclin. He put up similar stats to Percy Harvin in his rookie season and seemed to get better and more comfortable with each game. With defenses looking to double-cover DeSean Jackson and take away the deep pass, I expect Maclin to get a lot of catch-and-run type passes. Ditto Jason Avant.
Although, much of that depends on the QB and O-line situation of the Eagles.
Zach Miller (if the Raiders can figure anything out at QB)
Chris Cooley/Fred Davis (which ever they keep/start)
Two rules about fantasy football:
1) Don't pick a Bills kicker
2) Don't draft a Raiders's anybody
Zach Miller has talent, but until Al Davis get's traded to hell you need to avoid every player on that team.
Way back in the day, I was in a league that gave points for gross punt yards. If that league still existed, I think I would draft a Raider.
That was one peculiar league. But good logic.
Did they also give points for coaches punching assistants...? Cause that might warrant two Raiders!
Steve Slaton - Had fumble issues that were caused by a nerve injury that created numbness in his right arm. He'll be back with a vengeance if healthy.
Jeremy Maclin - Same reasons stated above
Steve Breaston - Boldin will likely be gone, making him WR #2 and he's still a great kick returner. Even with Leinart he'll still be productive.
Michael Bush - He's been great when given the ball. Fargas will likely be gone, and if McFadden continues to disappoint he'll get way more touches.
Justin Forsett - Everyone says he's undersized, but I think he'll be the primary back in Seattle next year, and have all of those cuddly soft NFC West defenses to run against...
Tashard Choice (possibly) - Seriously, he had great fantasy performances when given 12-15 touches. I'm hoping the Cowboys dump Marion Barber and let him run wild with Felix Jones out there.
Just a few off the top of my head. It really depends on how the rosters change over the next few months.
Forsett runs against Willis, Dansby, and now Laurinitis. They may have weaker lines or weaker secondaries but I found rb's in NFC west really didn't produce fantasy points. Gore and Coffee were bottled up except for a couple weeks, Sjax had like 3 td's all year, and Wells didn't really do much in an offense riding Warners arm
Frank Gore was bottled up for five weeks this year. There was his bye, the game where he got injured on his first carry, the two weeks he missed to injury, and his first game back from the injury when he was shaking off the rust. Outside of those five weeks, I would struggle to describe him as "bottled up" by any stretch. Unless, of course, your definition of "bottled up" includes averaging 134 yards and 1.2 TDs a game (that would translate to a 2150 yards, 19 score season over a full 16 games), or scoring in 82% of his contests (9 of the 11).
Frank Gore was an absolute beast on par with (or superior to) Peterson, MJD, Rice, Charles, or anyone not named Chris Johnson. Heck, for that matter, while SJax did only score 4 TDs, he accumulated so many yards that he still ranked as a top 10 fantasy RB despite missing a game. He checked in as a top-5 RB in points per game in PPR leagues.
I'd go so far as to say that two of the top 5 RBs in the entire NFL today reside in the NFC West. They're both underrated because their offenses have historically been putrid, but they have both produced in a big way for 4 straight years now. Both Gore and Jackson would make good picks for "most underrated fantasy players".
Donald Driver - Everybody says he's too old yet last year he caught 70 passes for 1000 yds and 6 TDs.
Matt Forte - Even if Cutler becomes Evil Rex Part Two, Martz will figure out how to get the ball in his best weapon's hands.
For real though, I'll go with Cutler. I like him to mesh well with Martz.
I think the fantasy football community has done a better job in recent years of adjusting to who is underrated. I see a lot of enthusiasm on here about Pierre Thomas, and rightfully so, but I've also seen a lot of talk about him in fantasy circles - and fantasy football opining isn't something I actively seek out.
Another good example is Arian Foster, although in Foster's case I think MJD's comments on him and Peter King mentioning him have done a lot to raise his profile. Foster seems like the guy that everyone agrees no one is paying attention to, so everyone is going to grab him a round or two earlier than expected, and the whole chat area on the league will go SIGHHHHHHHHHH.
As for Cutler and Forte, God that Bears offensive line scares me.
© Football Outsiders, Inc. // site design by B:COMPLEX Creative :: site architecture by Grossmont Designs // Partner of USA TODAY Sports Digital Properties