With the NFL Draft behind us, it’s time to take a look at which rookies have the most potential to make an impact on your 2012 fantasy football team. Last year bucked the trend as Cam Newton, AJ Green, Roy Helu, and DeMarco Murray all had very relevant fantasy seasons with the biggest surprise being Newton. This article will go over the household names and whether or not we believe they will have value.
Robert Griffin III WAS | QB
RG3 is one of the most hyped fantasy rookie QBs that we have seen in a while. Some of that is due to the success of Cam Newton last year but there is some weight to people being so high on Griffin. We saw thru Tebow and Newton how having a QB that will get 50-75 yards rushing a game can yield huge returns even if they don’t throw for a ton. Griffin should get plenty of yards with his legs but the main reason for the success of Newton and Tebow last year were their rushing TDs – it is such a huge bonus when your QB finds pay dirt with his legs. Heading into this season we do like Griffin and figure he is a nice upside QB2 in 10 team leagues and is certainly someone to target in dynasty leagues.
The number one overall pick has all the tools to be a great quarterback and we figure he will become one eventually. For this season however, we like him only as a QB2 and a few rounds after when we would take RG3. Luck is more of a pocket passer (however, don’t under estimate his running ability as it does reminds us of Aaron Rodgers) and he has all the pressure on him in the world as Indy will look at him as the reason Manning is no longer in town. We do like the fact that the Colts drafted his favorite target/tight end from Stanford but that is not enough to give us the confidence he will completely exceed all expectation his rookie season.
Trent Richardson CLE | RB
The Browns moved up one spot in the draft to ensure they could land Richardson. Many scouts are comparing his abilities to Peterson when AP first came into the league. Now, we don’t necessary see that just yet but the Browns are already committing to Richardson – stating he will be the every down back and starter coming into training camp this year. With these reports out there, people will start to want to take Richardson as high as the first round but we caution all owners. Remember Ryan Matthews a few years back, the same reports did come out about him and he did start however, he ended up splitting carries the entire season. Richardson is still a solid pick due to the fact that one must believe he will get the bulk of carries but as of now we are thinking right around pick 30 is the right spot to draft this young back.
Justin Blackmon JAC | WR
Out of the all the wideouts in the this year’s class Blackmon has the biggest upside long term. He is a big wideout with great hands and reminds us a great deal of AJ Green (who had a sick rookie campaign). Blackmon does have two hindering factors against him. One being his QB situation – lets just say we don’t have the biggest faith in Blaine Gabbert and two he might see double coverages. Sure the Jags signed Robinson in the off season but there is still a chance that Blackmon see the majority of double coverage. With all that said he is a sick receiver who should yield attention later in standard drafts and even more attention in dynasty drafts.
Michael Floyd ARZ | WR
Floyd might be the most NFL ready wideout in this rookie class. Floyd caught 100 balls his last season for the Fighting Irish and has only been in NFL style offenses his entire college career. He has amazing hands, big frame, making him a perfect red zone target. Furthermore, he went to a team that he will never see any type of double coverage. Larry Fitzgerald will be the player the defense is concerned about so Floyd could excel due to that fact. He really reminds us of Boldin and we believe that is why the Cards drafted him, hoping to catch lighting in a bottle again. We never like taking rookie wideouts too high in drafts but Floyd is a high end WR3 in our opinion in all standard 10 team leagues.
Doug Martin TB | RB
All last season the Bucs would get down by a little and sit there starter (Blount) for the rest of the game since they felt his hands were too much of a liability. So when they took Martin in this year’s draft one must think that he is going to be that guy that goes into the game when Blount is riding the bench. With that said Martin is an explosive back that had over 1500 all purpose yards his senior year at Boise State. So there is a good chance the bigger Blount turns into the short yardage goal line back while Martin takes over the majority of the carries.
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