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Doug Orth | Archive | Email |
Staff Writer


Top 200 Big Board, Non-PPR: Version 2.0
Preseason Matchup Analysis
9/3/15

PPR | 0.5 PPR | Non-PPR

A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Day 3 of Big Board Madness is here. The world got to experience my Top 200 PPR Big Board to begin September and the half-point PPR Big Board one day later. Can you really stop yourself from looking at another one?

We are on the back stretch of the preseason and the most serious fantasy owners will almost certainly use the next week-plus to cram anywhere from five to 40 or so drafts into a 10-day window. The inevitable major preseason injuries have happened, providing significant boosts to the fantasy stocks of a mid-round player like Davante Adams or a late-round flyer like rookie Devin Funchess. We know as much as we are going to know until the season starts (at least until the next news blurb we read from a beat writer throws into question everything we thought we knew about the team they cover).

Before I get to the boards, I would like to remind readers about two key points:

1) I doubt you will find another draft board like this one and further doubt you will find a similar set of rankings anywhere else. The standard the industry uses to measure accuracy among analysts is overall scoring, but I am more concerned with projected consistency and matchups. Consistency tends to lead to big fantasy numbers at the end of the season and championships while inconsistency and bad matchups at the wrong time usually lead to frustration. Someday, I hope the industry catches on to my way of thinking. Until then, I’ll try to win as many titles as possible and help you do the same.

2 ) Much like the past three seasons, I want to provide readers with a clear risk sign. If a player is a moderate risk – be it due to injury, off-field, etc. – you will see a next his name. If I feel a player is a severe risk, you will see a next to his name. While I feel like I have accounted for each player’s “risk” with their spot on the Big Board, you may be more or less inclined to deal with that risk than I am. This is just another way of helping you take a look at the board and quickly identifying which players stand a good chance to frustrate you at some point this season.

As I have done in previous years, I have taken the additional step on the final set of Big Boards to designate players to their “fantasy position”. Keep in mind that just because there may be 12 teams in your league, it doesn’t mean there are 12 players worthy of being designated as a QB1, RB1, WR1 or TE1.

QB1/RB1/WR1/TE1 – A player I am comfortable starting every week, regardless of matchup.

1/2, 2/3, 3/4 (All positions) – A player that can occasionally post numbers with a player in the tier above him, but is usually either too inconsistent to be considered in that tier or has a poor track record of staying healthy.

QB2/TE2 – A bye-week or matchup-based quarterback or tight end.

RB2/WR2 – A back or receiver that can post RB1/WR1 numbers with high upside, but has an obvious flaw that makes him less consistent than a RB1 or WR1.

RB3/WR3 - Usually is an inconsistent “splash” player that can win his fantasy team with a huge performance, but is best utilized when the matchup is right.

RB4/WR4 – Usually a steady, lower-upside option that can be spot-started and used as a bye-week fill-in. In some cases, he is a high-upside player blocked by two top-level players in front of him.

RB5/WR5 – Usually a “handcuff”, but a player who is on the roster generally to keep the ship from sinking due to injury.

RB6/WR6 – Extreme longshots due to any number of factors, but with enough talent to be viable at some point in fantasy.

I have taken the additional step this year of adding color to the “Pos” column below; it is my hope taking this step will further enhance an owner’s ability to delineate where one tier ends (regardless of position) and where another one begins, essentially using the same concept NFL teams do with a horizontal board during the NFL Draft. (Although it is not a perfect example, here is the kind of thing I am talking about in case the term “horizontal board” is unfamiliar to you.) The change of colors from blue to white don’t necessarily represent rounds here, but tiers.

Let’s revisit the color-coding system before we start:

Red – A very difficult matchup. For lower-level players, a red matchup means they should not be used in fantasy that week. For a second- or third-tier player, drop your expectations for them at least one grade that week (i.e. from WR2 to WR3). For elite players, expect them to perform one level lower than their usual status (i.e. RB1 performs like a RB2).

Yellow – Keep expectations fairly low in this matchup. For lower-level players, a yellow matchup is a borderline start at best. For a second- or third-tier player, they can probably overcome the matchup if things fall right. For the elite players, expect slightly better than average production.

White – Basically, this matchup is one that could go either way. In some cases, I just don’t feel like I have a good feel yet for this defense. Generally speaking, these matchups are winnable matchups for all levels of players.

Green – It doesn’t get much better than this. For non-elite players, the stage is basically set for said player to exploit the matchup. For the elite player, this matchup should produce special numbers..

Key:
OVR – Overall Rank
PR – Position Rank
FPts – Fantasy points scored
FPts/ G – Fantasy points/game
Success score (SSI) – The sum of several position-specific attributes that I feel are important to fantasy production, weighted and scored. A perfect score is 1000, but it may help to move the decimal point one spot to the left and think of each score as a percentage. It may also help to think of the final score as the likelihood that player will produce at the level I have projected him if his current environment stays roughly the same as it is now.

Here is the scoring system that I used to rank the players in the non-PPR format:

 Non-PPR Big Board - Top 200 (175+25)
OVR PR Pos Player Risk Tm Age SSI FPts/G FPts 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 RB1 Adrian Peterson MIN 30 908.0 19.9 79.5
2 2 RB1 Marshawn Lynch SEA 29 897.2 17.8 71.0
3 3 RB1 C.J. Anderson DEN 24 897.2 18.8 75.0
4 4 RB1 LeíVeon Bell PIT 23 912.2 15.0 30.0
5 5 RB1 Eddie Lacy GB 25 866.6 15.8 63.0
6 1 WR1 Antonio Brown PIT 27 898.6 15.4 61.5
7 6 RB1 Jamaal Charles KC 28 884.2 15.4 61.5
8 2 WR1 Julio Jones ATL 26 894.4 17.1 68.5
9 3 WR1 Demaryius Thomas DEN 27 897.9 14.0 56.0
10 1 TE1 Rob Gronkowski NE 26 905.0 12.0 48.0
11 4 WR1 Dez Bryant DAL 26 902.4 15.5 62.0
12 5 WR1 Odell Beckham Jr. NYG 22 903.9 15.6 62.5
13 6 WR1 Randall Cobb GB 25 800.2 15.6 62.5
14 1 QB1 Andrew Luck IND 25 896.5 27.2 108.6
15 7 WR1 Calvin Johnson DET 29 881.4 13.5 54.0
16 8 WR1 A.J. Green CIN 27 845.5 11.9 47.5
17 7 RB1 Justin Forsett BAL 29 841.5 13.5 54.0
18 8 RB1 Jeremy Hill CIN 22 848.7 17.4 69.5
19 9 RB1/2 DeMarco Murray PHI 27 806.1 15.1 60.5
20 10 RB1/2 Matt Forte CHI 29 876.2 14.4 57.5
21 9 WR1/2 Alshon Jeffery CHI 25 832.8 11.8 47.0
22 11 RB1/2 Mark Ingram NO 25 764.4 15.3 61.0
23 12 RB1/2 Frank Gore IND 32 804.4 13.9 55.5
24 10 WR1/2 Brandin Cooks NO 21 747.1 12.0 48.0
25 2 QB1 Aaron Rodgers GB 31 886.4 26.7 106.9
26 2 TE1 Jimmy Graham SEA 28 874.3 10.9 43.5
27 13 RB1/2 Lamar Miller MIA 24 797.7 10.0 40.0
28 11 WR1/2 Jordan Matthews PHI 23 776.1 11.5 46.0
29 12 WR1/2 T.Y. Hilton IND 25 758.6 10.9 43.5
30 14 RB1/2 LeSean McCoy BUF 27 798.7 14.4 57.5
31 15 RB1/2 Chris Ivory NYJ 27 671.6 12.8 51.0
32 13 WR1/2 Brandon Marshall NYJ 31 786.4 11.5 46.0
33 14 WR1/2 Andre Johnson IND 34 739.3 9.5 38.0
34 15 WR2 Davante Adams GB 22 823.2 13.1 52.5
35 16 WR2 DeAndre Hopkins HOU 23 830.7 11.8 47.0
36 3 TE1 Greg Olsen CAR 30 798.0 10.1 40.5
37 16 RB2 Latavius Murray OAK 25 740.5 12.1 48.5
38 17 WR2 Amari Cooper OAK 21 768.8 10.0 40.0
39 4 TE1 Travis Kelce KC 25 804.9 9.8 39.0
40 18 WR2 Mike Evans TB 22 837.1 10.8 43.0
41 3 QB1 Russell Wilson SEA 26 820.3 26.8 107.0
42 4 QB1 Drew Brees NO 36 865.1 26.0 103.8
43 19 WR2 Jarvis Landry MIA 22 751.3 9.5 38.0
44 20 WR2 Keenan Allen SD 23 740.3 10.5 42.0
45 17 RB2 Ameer Abdullah DET 22 788.8 12.6 50.5
46 5 QB1 Peyton Manning DEN 39 872.4 23.5 94.1
47 18 RB2 Melvin Gordon SD 22 803.9 12.5 50.0
48 19 RB2 C.J. Spiller NO 28 768.7 10.0 40.0
49 6 QB1 Ben Roethlisberger PIT 33 873.3 20.1 80.4
50 20 RB2/3 Todd Gurley STL 21 802.0 7.8 15.5
51 21 RB2/3 Arian Foster HOU 29 780.0 0.0 0.0
52 21 WR2/3 Golden Tate DET 27 674.6 7.0 28.0
53 22 WR2/3 Julian Edelman NE 29 728.1 7.9 31.5
54 23 WR2/3 Emmanuel Sanders DEN 28 719.3 8.5 34.0
55 22 RB2/3 Alfred Morris WAS 26 784.9 10.9 43.5
56 23 RB2/3 T.J. Yeldon JAC 21 732.3 9.9 39.5
57 24 RB2/3 Carlos Hyde SF 23 680.1 8.0 32.0
58 24 WR2/3 Allen Robinson JAC 22 733.1 10.0 40.0
59 25 WR2/3 Anquan Boldin SF 34 695.0 10.0 40.0
60 25 RB2/3 Doug Martin TB 26 707.7 11.0 44.0
61 26 WR3 DeSean Jackson WAS 28 676.5 9.9 39.5
62 27 WR3 Charles Johnson MIN 26 699.4 9.3 37.0
63 26 RB3 LeGarrette Blount NE 28 659.7 12.0 36.0
64 7 QB1 Matt Ryan ATL 30 841.9 22.7 90.6
65 27 RB3 Andre Ellington ARI 26 711.1 10.4 41.5
66 28 RB3 Danny Woodhead SD 30 697.3 8.9 35.5
67 28 WR3 Sammy Watkins BUF 22 732.9 8.0 32.0
68 5 TE1 Tyler Eifert CIN 24 768.3 9.4 37.5
69 29 WR3 Jeremy Maclin KC 27 661.6 7.0 28.0
70 30 WR3 Mike Wallace MIN 29 727.0 10.3 41.0
71 29 RB3 Rashad Jennings NYG 30 611.7 10.6 42.5
72 30 RB3 Joique Bell DET 29 636.8 8.9 35.5
73 31 RB3 Jonathan Stewart CAR 28 744.9 10.9 43.5
74 31 WR3 Steve Smith BAL 36 711.2 10.3 41.0
75 32 RB3 Joseph Randle DAL 23 756.1 11.4 45.5
76 6 TE1 Martellus Bennett CHI 28 715.0 6.3 25.0
77 32 WR3 Vincent Jackson TB 32 720.8 9.0 36.0
78 8 QB1 Philip Rivers SD 33 846.1 20.2 80.8
79 9 QB1 Matthew Stafford DET 27 807.9 19.9 79.4
80 33 WR3 John Brown ARI 25 722.4 10.1 40.5
81 34 WR3 Eric Decker NYJ 28 681.5 7.5 30.0
82 35 WR4 Steve Johnson SD 29 711.3 9.4 37.5
83 36 WR4 Martavis Bryant PIT 23 588.9 0.0 0.0
84 33 RB4 Ryan Mathews PHI 27 614.7 7.6 30.5
85 37 WR4 Eddie Royal CHI 29 653.6 9.0 36.0
86 38 WR4 Nelson Agholor PHI 22 672.0 7.0 28.0
87 34 RB4 Shane Vereen NYG 26 628.9 8.5 34.0
88 7 TE1/2 Jordan Cameron MIA 27 707.5 8.6 34.5
89 39 WR4 Kendall Wright TEN 25 700.1 9.6 38.5
90 10 QB1/2 Eli Manning NYG 34 868.2 21.4 85.4
91 11 QB1/2 Tony Romo DAL 35 785.3 22.8 91.3
92 40 WR4 Roddy White ATL 33 690.1 9.8 39.0
93 35 RB4 Tre Mason STL 22 639.2 10.6 42.5
94 36 RB4 Giovani Bernard CIN 23 650.4 6.1 24.5
95 41 WR Pierre Garcon WAS 29 709.2 8.3 33.0
96 8 TE1/2 Vernon Davis SF 31 780.1 9.8 39.0
97 12 QB1/2 Teddy Bridgewater MIN 22 802.1 22.4 89.7
98 13 QB1/2 Sam Bradford PHI 27 758.6 18.6 74.5
99 42 WR4 DeVante Parker MIA 22 562.9 4.3 17.0
100 43 WR4 Brian Quick STL 26 631.4 7.6 30.5
101 44 WR4 Devin Funchess CAR 21 613.0 9.3 37.0
102 45 WR4 Larry Fitzgerald ARI 32 677.1 8.5 34.0
103 14 QB1/2 Ryan Tannehill MIA 27 804.2 18.7 74.8
104 15 QB1/2 Tom Brady NE 38 736.9 0.0 0.0
105 9 TE1/2 Kyle Rudolph MIN 25 745.8 8.8 35.0
106 37 RB4 Reggie Bush SF 30 612.3 6.9 27.5
107 38 RB4 David Johnson ARI 23 589.2 6.6 26.5
108 39 RB4 Knile Davis KC 23 646.7 6.6 26.5
109 40 RB4 Matt Jones WAS 22 588.2 6.3 25.0
110 10 TE1/2 Antonio Gates SD 35 625.8 0.0 0.0
111 46 WR4 Markus Wheaton PIT 24 564.4 8.0 32.0
112 41 RB4 Darren McFadden DAL 28 503.5 5.4 21.5
113 42 RB4 Alfred Blue HOU 24 620.8 12.3 49.0
114 43 RB4 Isaiah Crowell CLE 22 680.1 7.0 28.0
115 44 RB4 Ronnie Hillman DEN 23 579.4 2.8 11.0
116 16 QB2 Cam Newton CAR 26 820.2 20.4 81.4
117 47 WR4 Rueben Randle NYG 24 702.9 9.8 39.0
118 45 RB4 Tevin Coleman ATL 22 616.6 8.4 33.5
119 46 RB4 Bishop Sankey TEN 22 670.1 5.0 20.0
120 48 WR4 Terrance Williams DAL 25 621.7 8.3 33.0
121 11 TE2 Dwayne Allen IND 25 582.6 6.1 24.5
122 12 TE2 Delanie Walker TEN 31 700.0 6.3 25.0
123 17 QB2 Carson Palmer ARI 35 808.1 20.2 80.8
124 13 TE2 Jason Witten DAL 33 675.0 6.3 25.0
125 14 TE2 Owen Daniels DEN 32 596.1 6.8 27.0
126 47 RB4 Duke Johnson CLE 21 681.1 9.4 37.5
127 18 QB2 Andy Dalton CIN 27 690.8 19.1 76.2
128 19 QB2 Colin Kaepernick SF 27 787.5 21.3 85.1
129 48 RB4 Andre Williams NYG 23 491.9 4.8 19.0
130 49 WR5 Michael Crabtree OAK 27 619.5 7.8 31.0
131 50 WR5 Marques Colston NO 32 604.9 7.0 28.0
132 49 RB5 Roy Helu OAK 26 604.5 5.8 23.0
133 51 WR5 Brandon LaFell NE 28 633.7 6.8 27.0
134 52 WR5 Michael Floyd ARI 25 652.1 7.8 23.5
135 53 WR5 Brandon Coleman NO 23 546.7 8.4 33.5
136 54 WR5 Torrey Smith SF 26 615.8 7.4 29.5
137 50 RB5 David Cobb TEN 22 588.6 8.4 33.5
138 51 RB5 Devonta Freeman ATL 23 617.5 7.8 31.0
139 20 QB2 Jay Cutler CHI 32 699.1 18.6 74.2
140 55 WR5 Breshad Perriman BAL 21 635.5 5.8 23.0
141 52 RB5 Charles Sims TB 24 530.7 2.3 9.0
142 53 RB5 Karlos Williams BUF 22 540.4 4.1 16.5
143 15 TE2 Josh Hill NO 25 647.8 4.6 18.5
144 16 TE2 Heath Miller PIT 32 590.4 6.9 27.5
145 54 RB5 Cameron Artis-Payne CAR 25 510.6 1.3 5.0
146 17 TE2 Julius Thomas JAC 27 651.3 3.0 3.0
147 18 TE2 Zach Ertz PHI 24 679.1 3.8 15.0
148 56 WR5 Allen Hurns JAC 23 590.7 7.4 29.5
149 55 RB5 Denard Robinson JAC 24 545.0 3.0 12.0
150 56 RB5 James White NE 23 533.0 4.4 17.5
151 21 QB2 Ryan Fitzpatrick NYJ 32 592.3 17.4 69.7
152 19 TE2 Richard Rodgers GB 23 526.4 6.8 27.0
153 57 WR5 Leonard Hankerson ATL 26 486.1 5.3 21.0
154 57 RB5 Darren Sproles PHI 32 594.9 4.8 19.0
155 58 RB5 Lance Dunbar DAL 25 560.4 4.1 16.5
156 58 WR5 Victor Cruz NYG 28 575.9 3.6 14.5
157 20 TE2 Scott Chandler NE 30 609.4 4.1 16.5
158 22 QB2 Alex Smith KC 31 693.3 17.1 68.4
159 23 QB2 Derek Carr OAK 24 736.4 18.2 72.6
160 59 WR Marvin Jones CIN 25 532.5 5.1 20.5
161 60 WR5 Donte Moncrief IND 22 545.6 4.8 19.0
162 61 WR5 Doug Baldwin SEA 26 576.4 6.5 26.0
163 59 RB5 Khiry Robinson NO 25 537.6 1.6 6.5
164 21 TE2 Eric Ebron DET 22 608.5 5.1 20.5
165 62 WR5 Phillip Dorsett IND 22 511.3 4.3 17.0
166 24 QB2 Joe Flacco BAL 30 758.3 18.8 75.2
167 60 RB5 James Starks GB 29 575.9 6.5 26.0
168 61 RB5 Chris Polk HOU 25 630.1 6.0 24.0
169 62 RB5 Jonas Gray NE 25 505.2 6.3 25.0
170 63 WR6 Tavon Austin STL 24 617.8 6.6 26.5
171 64 WR6 Dwayne Bowe CLE 30 531.6 5.6 22.5
172 22 TE2 Austin Seferian-Jenkins TB 22 662.7 4.8 19.0
173 25 QB2 Marcus Mariota TEN 21 767.5 19.7 78.9
174 23 TE2 Jared Cook STL 28 653.4 6.3 25.0
175 63 RB5 Lorenzo Taliaferro BAL 23 486.4 5.1 20.5
176 64 RB5 DeAngelo Williams PIT 32 477.1 4.0 16.0
177 24 TE2 Coby Fleener IND 26 585.1 5.5 22.0
178 65 WR6 Kenny Britt STL 26 584.1 6.3 25.0
179 25 TE2 Larry Donnell NYG 26 637.1 5.4 21.5
180 26 TE2 Jordan Reed WAS 25 455.8 4.9 19.5
181 66 WR6 Kenny Stills MIA 23 491.0 2.9 11.5
182 67 WR6 Ty Montgomery GB 22 608.0 3.5 14.0
183 65 RB5 Mike Tolbert CAR 29 532.9 5.1 20.5
184 66 RB5 Terrance West CLE 24 530.7 2.3 9.0
185 27 TE2 Charles Clay BUF 26 632.9 5.4 21.5
186 28 TE2 Clive Walford OAK 23 584.5 5.3 21.0
187 26 QB2 Jameis Winston TB 21 761.2 17.2 68.6
188 27 QB2 Blake Bortles JAC 23 623.0 15.8 63.0
189 67 RB5 Jerick McKinnon MIN 23 682.1 4.6 18.5
190 28 QB2 Tyrod Taylor BUF 26 446.6 15.4 61.7
191 29 TE2 Ben Watson NO 34 581.4 4.9 19.5
192 68 WR6 Marquess Wilson CHI 22 450.8 3.8 15.0
193 68 RB5 Branden Oliver SD 24 496.6 1.6 6.5
194 69 WR6 Tyler Lockett SEA 22 463.1 3.9 15.5
195 30 TE2 Ladarius Green SD 25 572.4 5.9 23.5
196 69 RB5 Damien Williams MIA 23 483.8 4.5 18.0
197 70 RB5 Dan Herron IND 26 445.5 1.4 5.5
198 31 TE2 Virgil Green DEN 27 557.1 4.3 17.0
199 32 TE2 MyCole Pruitt MIN 23 500.7 1.8 7.0
200 71 RB6 Montee Ball DEN 24 465.3 1.1 4.5

Perhaps no playerís fantasy stock has skyrocketed more over the last two or so weeks than Chris Ivoryís. Earlier this summer, he was going in the sixth- to eighth-round area in a number of drafts; now, heís in the fourth- or fifth-round area. Sometimes, the preseason is little more than eye candy for owners just wanting to like a player. Other times (albeit less frequently), it serves more of as a market correction on a player whose stock was far too low to begin with. In this case, I think it is the latter. In standard scoring, Ivory finished as a top-20 back last year despite fewer than 200 carries and limited involvement in the passing game (18 catches). Letís recall that Ivory achieved that status despite losing significant snaps to Chris Johnson late in the season, presumably because then-OC Marty Mornhinweg and ex-HC Rex Ryan were worried about his violent running style resulting in injury. Itís a fair point, but one that seems a bit counterintuitive for a team that didnít trust its passing attack and a coach that is synonymous for ďGround-N-PoundĒ.

Why will 2015 be any different? The first reason is new OC Chan Gailey can usually put together a reasonable efficient offense and give fantasy owners at least one worthwhile fantasy back. Gailey uses a lot of spread concepts in his offense and has the personnel to make coordinators think twice about loading the box against the Jets this year. The second reason is Ivory is one of the leagueís most difficult runners to tackle; he has finished top-three in each of the past three seasons in Pro Football Focusí Elusive Rating (which is designed to measure a runnerís ability independent of his blockers) ó first in 2012, third in 2013 and third again in 2014. Only Adrian Peterson, Marshawn Lynch, and Eddie Lacy have forced more missed tackles on a per-touch basis than Ivory the past two years. A third reason is because Gailey seems willing to do something with Ivory that no other play-caller has Ė use him more often in the passing game. Even a slight increase in receptions Ė perhaps in the 30s Ė and something approaching 225 carries should be the goal for Ivory, who just happens to be in a contract year and in an offense run by one of the weakest-armed quarterbacks in the league (Ryan Fitzpatrick). Bilal Powell should see the bulk of third-down work, but Ivory has proven he is head-and-shoulders above the competition for early-down snaps.

While Ivoryís stock has shot up, it sure didnít take long for the air to go out of Melvin Gordonís fantasy balloon. The No. 15 overall pick didnít help himself much with a slow preseason Ė part of which can be credited to an ankle injury and the fact that he is still learning what the appropriate amount of patience (waiting for a hole to develop) is at the pro level. We also already knew he was a work in progress when it comes to the passing game. The problem (and I acknowledge it may just be perception) is that it seems San Diego has steadily moved away from wanting to be more a balanced offense willing to live with whatever big play Gordon can provide to a team that wants to lock the rookie into an early-down role only and ride Philip Riversí right arm. Gordonís fantasy stock hasnít taken quite the tumble that Joseph Randleís has, but a player that was considered an early third-round pick a month or so ago is now usually available in the late-fourth or early-fifth round area.

There is a cluster of three backs from Nos. 107-109 I strongly advise owners to consider in all leagues: David Johnson, Knile Davis and Matt Jones. Iíve already said enough lately about Jones, who I would make a play for in any keeper or dynasty league. Johnson is intriguing because Ellington is such a notable injury risk. Sure, the rookie isnít going to be nearly as valuable in standard scoring as he would be in PPR if Ellington was forced to miss multiple weeks, but heíd be the next in line (and quite likely) to take on Ellingtonís quasi-featured role. Davis is essentially the more expensive version of James Starks for fantasy purposes. While the public has been quick to jump all over Ronnie Hillman taking significant early-season work from C.J. Anderson, they have been mum when it comes to the fact Packers HC Mike McCarthy and Chiefs OC Doug Pederson have both publicly stated they intend on giving Lacy and Jamaal Charles more rest. Davis, like Starks, is no threat to the incumbent. However, owners seem to believe once a workhorse, always a workhorse when it comes to Lacy and Charles. Iíd be stunned if owners arenít able to get a sneaky early-season flex option if they are able to draft Davis.

I touched a bit on the Cowboysí running back situation in my PPR Big Board analysis a couple of days ago, but wanted to drive home the point again with the final player I have listed. Denver appears to be on the verge of releasing Montee Ball, which would be a dramatic turn of events for a player that was considered a first-round fantasy pick last summer. I canít seem to shake the feeling that Ball isnít going to end up in Dallas if he is released over the weekend. Slim as those odds might be, I think it is worth investing a last-round pick in him for that very reason. Itís hard to say I expect a player that late could be the key to your fantasy season, but can anyone really say with any certainty if a struggling Ball still isnít better than what Dallas has in Randle and/or Darren McFadden?

Next: PPR Big Board | 0.5 PPR Big Board


Doug Orth has written for FF Today since 2006 and been featured in USA Today’s Fantasy Football Preview magazine since 2010. He hosted USA Today’s hour-long, pre-kickoff fantasy football internet chat every Sunday in 2012-13 and appears as a guest analyst on a number of national sports radio shows, including Sirius XM’s “Fantasy Drive”. Doug is also a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.