Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Seven Guys I'm Buying by: Pat James

 The following buy picks are based solely on their average draft position (ADP).  I say this often, but it should be repeated, every player has value at some point.  You may not like Jamaal Charles this year due to injury concerns or the addition of Peyton Hillis, but you better be scooping him up if he slips to the 5th round.  With that established, here are the players I'll be buying in the 2012 Fantasy Football Draft.
Matt Ryan, QB Atlanta Falcons (ADP:  7.03)
  The Falcons have brought in former Jaguar Offensive Coordinator Dirk Koetter to open up the passing game.  Atlanta reportedly wants to rely less on Michael Turner, while focusing on getting their stud receivers the ball this season.  Ryan has no shortage of weapons this season.  Roddy White, Julio Jones, Tony Gonzalez, Harry Douglass, and a little Sproles-style back in Jacquizz Rodgers will all be utilized in 2012.  A positive to Ryan's game is that he seldom turns the ball over, averaging less than 12 interceptions per season over his last three.  He won't compile the stats of a Rodgers, Brees, or Brady, but he will serve as a great middle tier option if you choose to stock up on backs and receivers early.

DeMarco Murray, RB Dallas Cowboys (ADP:  2.03)
  I'd go as far as taking Murray with the 11th overall selection.  Murray appeared in roughly eight games last year as the full-time starter.  This included a 250 yard performance against the Rams and two more 130 yard performances against the Seahawks and Bills.  The only negatives I can come up with Murray is that he didn't get into the endzone often last year, scoring just twice.  That number is sure to increase  in a full 16 game season. His competition is dwindling as Felix Jones has recently failed his conditioning test and his ankle is fully healed from last season.  Jones is a great pick for drafters who neglect an RB in the first round, setting them up with a Brees/Murray or Gronk/Murray combo.

Trent Richardson, RB Cleveland Browns (ADP: 2.01)
  The Browns drafted Richardson with the 3rd overall selection in the 2012 draft with high hopes.  The Browns have publicly stated he will get the vast majority of carries.  In PPR leagues, Trent will be even more valuable due to his pass catching abilities.  He is truly an all-around back that boasts quickness, power, great hands, and adequate pass blocking ability.  Most rookies don't get enough snaps to be considered a fantasy RB1 because they have glaring weaknesses that require them to be subbed out in certain situations.  Richardson will be on the field pretty much every down.  An added plus is that he's remained healthy to this point in his football career.  I'd take him late first round ahead of Darren McFadden.

Torrey Smith, WR Baltimore Ravens (ADP: 7.08)
  Torrey Smith enters his second professional season as the most talented receiver on the Ravens' roster.  When evaluating a player, it's a mistake to only look at last years statistics.  You must also evaluate how the players situation has changed, if it has at all.  Torrey Smith has a few factors that suggest an uptick in his statistics for 2012.  First, he will participate in the first full off-season and training camp of his career, which should help immensely.  Smith also revealed he played the entire season with a hernia, which likely slowed him down a little.  He is now fully healed from that injury.  Lastly, Smith is the only receiver on the roster that has the speed to create his own separation.  He developed chemistry last year with Flacco and set a slew of Ravens rookie receiving records.  I expect receptions, yards, and touchdowns to all increase from last year.  As a late 7th round pick, he makes for an excellent WR3 or even a low end WR2.

Eric Decker, WR Denver Broncos (ADP: 6.09)
  Decker had a marvelous first half of the 2011 season, scoring 7 of his 8 touchdowns in the first 9 games.  Decker fell off the map statistically once the Broncos turned to Tim Tebow as their quarterback.  With Manning under center, Decker should put up numbers similar to the first half of last season across the entire season.  Early reports out of Broncos camp indicate Decker is Peyton's favorite receiver and at times he seems locked on him. At a late sixth round pick, Decker is a middle of the road WR2, but an excellent WR3/Flex option.  I expect around 1,000 yards and 8-10 touchdowns.

Greg Olsen , TE Carolina Panthers (ADP:  13.08)
  Olsen will finish the 2012 season as Top 5 tight end in fantasy points.  Jimmy Graham's rise to fantasy stardom was kick started by Jeremy Shockey vacating New Orleans and allowing him to step into a featured role.  Well, Olsen finds himself in that exact same situation this year. He'll be the top dog in Carolina with Shockey not being resigned.  Olsen and Shockey combined for about 80 receptions, 1,000 yards and 9 touchdowns in 2011.  He has a chance to be the Gronk/Graham of 2012.  Olsen is in line for about 75 receptions, 1,100 yards, and 8 touchdowns

Reggie Wayne, WR Indianapolis Colts (ADP:  7.10)
  Wayne will make a return to the top ten in fantasy point production.  In most PPR leagues, Wayne finished inside the top 25.  Wayne's situation has improved considerably this year.  The Colts have added one of the most NFL-ready quarterbacks to ever come out of college in Andrew Luck.  The Colts defense will continue to struggle, which means the Colts will have to throw the ball more than they'd like.  Wayne was targeted 121 times last year, but only 77 were deemed catchable passes, he finished with 75 receptions.  This year, Luck will target him about as often, but will put more passes on the money.  I wouldn't be surprised with 85 receptions, 1200 yards, and 8 touchdowns.

Guest Blogger:
Pat James
@fantasyfbwiz on twitter

Fantasy Football Beasthouse would like to publically thank Pat James for this article.!