Nothing sticks with fantasy owners quite like getting burned by a player.
Last year, one of the runners on this list burned most of his owners. Ryan Mathews, the rookie running back who was supposed to seamlessly replace LaDainian Tomlinson in San Diego, stumbled out of the block and never recovered for his owners.
Some will write him off this year because of 2010. His average draft position has taken a hit, but still is healthy. Can he survive another bad season, though?
Shonn Greene, RB, Jets: Lots of expectations from Greene this season. Most fantasy experts are expecting a big step-up from Greene in terms of fantasy production. He still has to hold off LaDainian Tomlinson in the running game, and that means he will need to get off to a fast start.
Ryan Mathews, RB, Chargers: It might be too soon to call Ryan Mathews a bust, but another season like 2010 and fantasy owners will be busted with Mathews. Luckily, the prize tag is not as high this year as last.
Matthew Stafford, QB, Lions: Too many injuries for risk averse fantasy owners. I still am taking a shot on Stafford this year. But another broken shoulder year could be the back-breaker for Stafford’s future fantasy value. So much potential here, this needs to be his healthy season.
Beanie Wells, RB, Cardinals: Wells has not been a beacon of health during both his college and pro career. Ironically, however, the rookie running back drafted to compete with him (Ryan Williams) suffered a season-ending knee injury last weekend. This is not only Wells’ last-shot with the trust of fantasy owners but could be his last shot with the trust of the Cardinals’ coaching staff.
Michael Crabtree, WR, 49ers: Not that he is being draft high. In fact, he was not even drafted in my 12-team, 15-round keeper league. But this could be a season of fantasy redemption for Crabtree if he can get back onto the field and produce up to his potential. The key is going to be staying on the field.
Here are today’s great reads:
- Fantasy owners love numbers. Football fans love curses and jinxes. So when you combine the two, what do you get? Hate for players like Peyton Hillis, Michael Turner and Rashard Mendenhall. [The Big Lead]
- I usually do not update the status of individual team depth charts. For the most part, these stories are pretty meaningless. But sometimes a depth chart change comes across the wire that makes me take notice, and here is one: Colts’ rookie running back Delone Carter has moved up to No. 2 behind Joseph Addai, surpassing Donald Brown. Make note in your rankings. [FFToolBox]
- Rookie wide receivers … I usually just ignore them. So sometimes I miss out on a guy like Mike Williams in Tampa Bay last year, or Percy Harvin in Minnesota a few years ago. But for the most part, the good talk about rookie receivers during preseason and training camp is just noise. Enter Denarius Moore, who is generating a lot of buzz in Oakland. [Fantasy Douche]
- A look back with preseason week 2 in the books, highlighting the performances of Texans’ running backs Arian Foster and Ben Tate in particular. [Roto Arcade]
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