The bulk of the NFL playoffs are in the rear view mirror, and only one game now stands between fans and the long offseason.
With that said, fantasy football players had a great opportunity to eye up some prospects during the NFL playoffs. Several players made names for themselves, but I remember hearing some wise advice regarding such players.
Never buy too much into playoff performances.
One thing is certain during the offseason: Change. Look at Shonn Greene. Dude was destined to become the workhorse back of the Jets in 2010 after a great postseason last year. And what happened? The Jets got rid of Thomas Jones but brought in LaDainian Tomlinson, who stole most of Greene’s work.
In that light, let’s take a look at the players who most fantasy owners will over-react about when it comes to preseason rankings next year. To be fair, The All Over-Reaction Team contains both positive and negative over-reactions.
Jay Cutler, Bears
Cutler tore his MCL, his peers ripped him on Twitter and fans burned his jersey. Not great for your fantasy stock. But he will be healthy next year, the Bears will add some talent and he will finish the season as a borderline QB1.
Honorable Mention: Mark Sanchez, Jets
Sanchez had another great postseason. He limited turnovers, threw touchdown passes and beat two Super Bowl winning quarterbacks. The fantasy buzz for Sanchez will be highly audible next summer, especially if the Jets add to that potent passing attack.
James Starks, Packers
He is a rookie who had a good postseason run. Remember Shonn Greene last year? Everyone thought he would be the real deal in 2010. Ryan Grant, Brandon Jackson, John Kuhn and James Starks … that is a crowded backfield.
Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks
The Earthquake Run sent shivers down the spines of football fans. One of the best runs you will ever witness. And it created a ground-swell of support for Lynch. Just don’t pay too much in fantasy leagues for him next year.
Honorable Mention: Shonn Greene, Jets
Greene, like another Jet below, continues to play well in the postseason. That is now two in a row for the second-year runner. Still, he needs help from the Jets’ front office to get back in the good graces of fantasy owners.
Mike Wallace, Steelers
Wallace was barely notice-able for the Steelers during the AFC Playoffs and they still made it to the Super Bowl. Still, I think he is the No. 2 rising star in this offense behind Rashard Mendenhall and will have another good year in 2011.
Santonio Holmes, Jets
He scores a whole lot of touchdowns in playoff games, but disappears in stretches during the regular season. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to have him on my team in a big game. But for the fantasy game? Only at the right price, which will be hard to find next year after his postseason.
Honorable Mention: Reggie Wayne, Colts
Wayne got shut down by the best cover-corner in the NFL. Fantasy owners should take nothing from the meeting, other than Revis getting the better of Wayne this time.
Todd Heap, Ravens
Heap really had a great season across the board. It is going to be hard for him, at his age, to continue producing at a high level while staying healthy.
Honorable Mention: Rob Gronkowski/Aaron Hernandez, Patriots
Both are rookies, both had good rookie seasons. Neither really showed up for the playoffs, but the talent is evident and these guys will continue to get better.
Here are today’s great reads:
- More Santonio Holmes in the news: Obviously, Holmes is a little upset with how the Jets used him against his former team this past weekend. Holmes did catch a touchdown in the game. But like almost any high-profile receiver in the NFL these days, he did not think the ball came his way enough. [ProFootballTalk]
- Congratulations to Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, who accurately predicted the Super Bowl matchup before the start of the season. It was a little gutsy picking a Pittsburgh team that was without Ben Roethlisberger for the first four games of 2010. The Packers, on the other hand, were a trending team in the preseason. [The Big Lead]
- Bad news for Carson Palmer fans: The quarterback asked the Bengals for a trade, said that he would retire if his request was denied, and then the Bengals promptly rejected his trade request. Your move, sir. [Shutdown Corner]
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