Fantasy football: These guys should be on any PPR league owner's radar
Make sure you take an extra look at running backs who can also catch a volume of passes.
It’s over for the compact disc, fax machine and jean shorts aka jorts. Standard scoring fantasy football leagues are heading down the same path.
Many leagues now give out a full point per reception (PPR), drastically changing the values of many players. Two-down backs like Alfred Morris, Chris Ivory and even Marshawn Lynch take a hit. So do lower-volume deep threats like DeSean Jackson and Vincent Jackson. The players below are the ones to target in PPR formats.
The Doug Marrone Bills regime did not know how to use C.J. Spiller’s sizable yet unique talents. We can be sure the Saints do. Satellite backs that excel in the pass game have a long track record with Sean Payton, as evidenced by Darren Sproles/Pierre Thomas combining for 148 receptions in 2013 and Thomas/Travaris Cadet netting 83 last year. The Saints gave Spiller a $16M contract in March, the exact same as Mark Ingram. And with Jimmy Graham, Kenny Stills and Thomas all gone, Spiller will be relied upon as a core piece of the pass game.
Clean up the Landry
Jarvis Landry isn’t very big and isn’t very fast. But he’s tough, has great hands and knows how to get open underneath a la Hines Ward. That’s good, because that’s the area of the field Ryan Tannehill excels. We can expect a ton more check-downs to Landry this year, giving him 90-catch upside despite all the mouths to feed in Miami. Just don’t take him in standard-scoring leagues because his aDOT (average depth of target) will be among the weakest in the NFL.
The Woodman returns
It’s easier to go with the “zero RB” strategy in full-PPR leagues. That’s because the backs that are available to us in the later rounds are the passing-down backs, not the feature backs. One of the best third-down and no-huddle options is Danny Woodhead, who caught 76 passes and six touchdowns from Philip Rivers two years ago and then broke his leg last year. The Woodman is an ideal real-life complement to rookie Melvin Gordon, who did not show much at all in the pass game while at Wisconsin.
Todd Gurley (ACL) has avoided the active/NFI list to open camp, great news for his Week 1 status. He’s still a player to avoid. The Rams have the worst offense line in the league, a very capable No. 2 in Tre Mason and play in a rugged, low-scoring division. The bump Gurley’s ADP (average draft position) gets from this news will make him even riskier.
MLB Pickups of the Week
1. Ken Giles, RP, Phillies – Sharp owners had been stashing Giles in preparation for the Jonathan Papelbon trade.
2. Edward Mujica, RP, Athletics – Tyler Clippard is now a Met, leaving Mujica to soak up save opportunities in Oakland.
3. Rusney Castillo, OF, Red Sox – Boston might as well see what Castillo can give them in the wake of the Shane Victorino deal.