Top-10 preseason questions

While there are plenty of situations around the NFL that are crystal clear, I do feel there are also a lot of them this year that are fluid and won’t sort themselves out until we’re well into training camps and the exhibition season – so August could be a pretty chaotic month in the fantasy world.

There are always questions that need to be asked as we head into each preseason, but this year many of these key questions have significant fantasy implications.

I probably have about 40 questions that I’d like to see answered – and we’ll obviously be all over them this summer. But for the purposes of this post here’s the top-10 on my mind:

Will Robert Griffin III be back?

He said as the team wrapped up their off-season that he’s ahead of schedule with his recovery from ACL and LCL surgeries, and that he’s had no setbacks and is confident he’ll be ready to participate when training camp opens. He’s been through this process before, so he should know what it’s like. If he’s back to his old self, then the team will continue to use plenty of zone-read plays, which means his upside is still high. His completion [...]

Plan on drafting Marshall

The Broncos today traded WR Brandon Marshall to the Dolphins for a 2nd round pick in next week’s draft, along with what is reportedly another 2nd round pick in 2011’s draft. Marshall was a restricted free agent until yesterday, when he signed his $2.521 million tender from the Broncos, which facilitated the trade. And today, he signed a massive 4-year, $47.5 million extension with Miami, which included $24 million guaranteed.

It’s always difficult to evaluate any acquisition involving a troubled player or anyone with issues off the field, but if we can assume the Dolphins did as much due diligence as possible and that Marshall’s going to make minimal waves for Bill Parcells and head coach Tony Sparano, this is an excellent move for Miami. Especially since their division rival in New York added wideout Santonio Holmes this week, the Dolphins simply had to find a way to add a legit #1 receiver for their offense, and they certainly did so by bringing Marshall into the fold.

Starting QB Chad Henne is a work in progress, but he has all the tools to be a nice NFL starter for years to come. He has a strong arm, showed the ability last year [...]

RB Keeper Overviews

Note: Ages are accurate as of midseason 2010.

What’s interesting about this position is how watered down it is. Because so many backfield are utilizing two (even three) players in a rotation, the number of clear studs is low. And while there are more players these days than usual who do have some value now due to a fairly large role, they’re still in situations that prevent major fantasy production. We’ve also seen fewer legitimate developmental prospects at the position and a lot of players who are kind of in limbo, with little long-term potential and even questionable short-term potential.

I’ll start off this section with the (surprisingly few) players who are clearly slam-dunks for those in keeper leagues: Adrian Peterson (Min, 25), Steven Jackson (Stl, 27), Chris Johnson (Ten, 24), Maurice Jones-Drew (Jac, 25), and Ray Rice (Bal, 23).

It's probably a little early to proclaim Ray Rice as a legit fantasy stud for the long-term, but the guy was incredibly impressive in 2009 – and he's very young

These five players are clearly the cream of the crop, and with youth on their side. Rice may not be a legit top-5 overall RB over the next few years, as the [...]

Rookie keeper rankings overall

In case you haven’t noticed, we posted on Friday our “Post-Draft” Rookie Report. We did so after our annual pow-wow at the FantasyGuru.com nerve center on Friday. Each year, we gather our main contributors and go over all 32 teams and their key players to prepare for our magazine and the whole season.

Speaking of the gathering, we did so in our new office building. I’ve been looking to buy a building for quite some time, and with this current economy and real estate market, this year was the time. We literally just moved in officially last week, and the building is awesome. We’ve got high-speed internet, of course, but also Direct TV with TIVO so we don’t miss a thing during the season. This is a big relief for me, since I’ve been going out of my mind the last 3-4 months coordinating the building improvement and doing a lot of work myself. But it’s now done – just in time for the magazine push.

Here's a shot taken from the FantasyGuru.com nerve center on 5/1. Each year after the draft we gather with our key staff members to go over all 32 teams, their players, and everything else. It's [...]

Sneak peek at this year’s rookie class

Just got off a long conference call with our guys Greg Cosell and Adam Caplan and went over most of the rookies in this class. Adam’s been at the Senior Bowl and Combine, as has Greg, and Greg’s broken a lot of these guys down on film. He still is, but he’s seen most of the guys.

We’re using their info and analysis as the foundation of this year’s rookie content, along with opinions from Tony Pauline from TFYDraft.com, so rather than rush to put up rankings and analysis in March, which is meaningless to most, we’re taking our time to make sure we have these players scouted correctly.

Of course a lot of the real analysis for 2009 will be catered to the teams these players get drafted by, but here are some initial thoughts that will wind up being the foundations of our scouting of these players. If a skill player is truly worth mentioning, he’s mentioned below.

Quarterbacks

Matthew Stafford is clearly the best prospect at this position this year, and it’s not really close. He has all the necessary throwing tools to be high-end NFL QB, including a [...]

About John Hansen

John Hansen

Specializing in football, Hansen is one of the most connected fantasy writers in the country.

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