Football is Back: Fantasy Preview Part 3, WRs, TEs, K, D, Top 100
By: Brian McLaughlin
In the final installment of this 3 part 2011 fantasy football preview I will feature the top 30 Wide Receivers along with the top 12 tight ends, kickers, and Defenses. At the end there will also be a top 100-cheat sheet. This should get have you prepared and ready to dominate your upcoming draft!
Wide Receiver is almost as important a position as running back in fantasy football. You may not want to reach for a receiver but you also do not want to sleep on them either. Everyone will go after running back and quarterback, but receiver can be the position that make or break your fantasy team. Here is the top 30 for 2011:
- Andre Johnson- Johnson might be the top wide out in all and football and this year he will also be the top wide outin fantasy football. Last year Johnson compiled 1,216 yards and added 8 tds. I fully believe that Johnson will top those numbers this season as I look for Houston to have a better season overall and Johnson will be a very big part of that. Do not be afraid to go after Johnson in the bottom of the first round in your draft.
- Roddy White- 2010 was the breakout year that everyone had waited for from White. He had 115 receptions good for 10 tds and 1,389 yards.While it may be tough to top those gaudy numbers, White should have another monster season. Matt Ryan is coming into his prime, and the Falcons added Julio Jones which should help create less double teams and more one on one situations for White. I look for around 12 tds and over 1200 yards in 2011 from White.
- Larry Fitzgerald- Well as we all know, 2010 was not the greatest season for one of the game’s top wide receivers. However Arizona finally has a quarterback that can get the ball to Larry Fitzgerald and with his unbelievable skill set and the fact that he is on a contract year, this could be a very big season from the all pro. If Kolb can be the QB that Arizona has said he can, then Fitzgerald should have no problem hitting totals of 8-12 tds and 1200-1250 yards.
- Calvin Johnson- This is another wide receiver that has elite talent but is dependent on his quarterback. Matthew Stafford needs to be healthy in order for Johnson to have that Moss/Owens type of fantasy season. He may very well be the most talented and physically gifted wide out in the NFL and will still get his, but he can be the top fantasy receiver with a healthy QB. Either way Johnson will get double-digit scores and go for over 1,110 yards.
- Vincent Jackson- Jackson is a guy who wants to get paid. How do you get paid? You need to perform and put up some big numbers. 2010 was a lost season for V Jax but he seems to be ready to make an impact in 2011. The last time Jackson played a full season in ‘09 he had 1,167 yards and 9 tds. This season I expect Jackson to be even better than in 2009 as both he and QB Philip Rivers should have big seasons. It would not be shocking to see Jackson have a career year and finally get paid in the off-season.
- Hakeem Nicks- I love third year wr’s and that so happens to be the year Nicks is entering. He is the clear-cut number one wide out in New York and is coming off of a season in which he saw the end zone 11 times. I like Nicks to continue his growth in this league and to be a top fantasy wide receiver again this season. Look for Nicks to be right around 12 tds and 1100 yards in 2011.
- Greg Jennings- Jennings is a Fantasy stud and should be so again this season. He potentially has the top QB in the game throwing to him and has all the talent in the world. He put up numbers of 1.265 yards and 12 tds a season ago and should be right around those numbers again this season.
- Reggie Wayne- Wayne is a very solid fantasy wide out and barring the health of Peyton Manning Wayne should be so again this season. I do not expect Wayne to hit his numbers from last season in terms of yardage (1,355) but I would look for Wayne to potentially see the end zone more than 6 times in 2011. Keep an eye on how the Peyton Manning situation goes and draft accordingly.
- Miles Austin- Austin burst onto the fantasy scene in 2009 with 1,320 yards and 11 tds, but had a set back last season with only 1041 yards and 7 scores. This year I see Austin returning to more of the 2009 form especially with the return of his QB Tony Romo. The combo seems to have a nice rapport and Austin is primed to have a bounce back season.
- Mike Wallace- Wallace started his career as a guy who was just a deep threat and not much else, and now has become a complete wide out and number 1 target of Big Ben in Pittsburgh. Wallace had 1,257 yards and 10 scores last season. He may not reach those big numbers, but he should still be a top 10 fantasy wideout in 2011.
- Desean Jackson- Fraction Jackson is primed for a monster season. He is the top deep threat in the NFL and he should improve from his 6 tds and 1,056 yards from a season ago. D Jax has Vick throwing to him and should find the open field often this season.
- Dwayne Bowe- Bowe really came into his own last season and should continue to be a top fantasy wide out. He may not hit 15 tds again this season but he should stay over 1,100 yards and go for around another 12 scores.
- Marques Colston- I still really like Colston and think it is only a matter of time before he explodes for a monster season. This could be that year. He still remains the top target for one of the best qbs in the game and the Saints should again throw the ball a lot this season. I’ll go out and say that Colston can go for 1,100 yards and 10 scores this season. He has had some injury history in the past, which should be the only thing to slow him down.
- Mike Willaims- What a rookie season Williams had last season recording 964 yards and 11 scores. He should only continueto get better and should be an intriguing pick come draft day. He should be a very solid number two WR.
- Santonio Holmes- I like Holmes this season. He will play a full season in 2011 unlike last season (barring injury) and with the departure of Braylon Edwards, he should be the franchez’s top target. Holmes can be a very good number 2 wide out given his opportunistic situation in New York.
- Brandon Lloyd- Not usually a big Brandon Lloyd fan but he is the only real target in Denver and if Orton is the QB he should have every opportunity for another big season.
- Stevie Johnson- The Bills got rid of Lee Evans and will go with Johnson as their Number 1 guy. Johnson had a big season last in 2010 and while he may not put up as high of numbers, all signs point to another solid year.
- Dez Bryant- Here is a guy with all the talent in the world but I am not sold on his work ethic. If Bryant shows that he is 100 percent committed then he would be higher on this list. It is hard to pass the talent but I will have to see something in the preseason before I am sold.
- Jeremy Maclin- The Eagles Number 2 receiver is dealing with an illness that still has been unspecified. He has missed all of camp and you will have to monitor his situation in the pre season. When healthy Maclin is much higher on this list and a top WR2.
- Percy Harvin- This is Harvins third year in the league and if he is healthy he could be a very solid fantasy player. He is the number 1 target for Donovan Mcnabb and he should have a solid year if he casn get the migraine headaches under control. Monitor his situation and if he seem healthy go after Harvin, it could be his breakout season.
- Mario Manningham- the Giants number 2 wide out had a big season in 2010 with 9 trips to the end zone. There is no reason to think Manningham will not improve as a player this season and he could be even better this season.
- Chad Ochocinco- I really like the OchoCinco- Brady Combo. This will be the first time Ocho plays with a top flight QB and should rise to the occasion
- Brandon Marshall- I love Marshall’s talent but I dislike his QB situation. Buyers beware with Marshall.
- Anquan Boldin- Boldin should have a better year this season than last. He will be more comfortable with the Ravens offense and with QB Joe Flacco.
- Austin Collie- Collie was having a big season until his season ended due to injury. If he and Manning or healthy, Collie will be a solid WR3
- Wes Welker- Chad OchoCinco could open up things for Welker over the middle of the field. You can’t go wrong with Welker on your fantasy roster.
- Steve Smith- The Panthers veteran wide out still has some talent and if he can get some consistent QB play, he could be a solid WR again.
- Kenny Britt- Big second season for Britt and he is another one of these 3rd year receivers. Now with Hasselbeck throwing to him he could duplicate those numbers.
- Mike Sims-Walker- Sims Walker landed in St Louis on an incentive laden deal. Early reports show that he is working well with Sam Bradford, and Sims-Walker could be a sleeper in this year’s draft.
- AJ Green- The Bengals rookie has all the talent in the world and will be the top receiver on their roster, he could have a breakout rookie season.
Top 12 Tight Ends
1. Jermichael Finley
2. Antonio Gates
3. Vernon Davis
4. Jason Witten
5. Dallas Clark
6. Toney Gonzalez
7. Zach Miller
8. Kellen Winslow
9. Brent Celek
10. Aaron Hernandez
11. Marcedes Lewis
12. Greg Olsen
Top 12 Kickers
1.Mason Crosby- GB
2. Stephen Gostkowski- NE
3. Sabastian Janikowski – OAK
4. Nate Keading- SD
5. Matt Bryant- ATL
6. Neil Rackers – HOU
7. Josh Brown – STL
8. Alex Henery – PHI
9. David Buehler – DAL
10. Garret Hartley- N.O
11. Nick Folk- NYJ
12. Rob Bironas- TENN
Top 12 Defenses
- New York Jets
- Green Bay
- San Diego
- New England
- New York Giants
- New Orleans
- Kansas City
- Arian Foster, RB Houston
- Michael Vick, QB Philadelphia
- Jamaal Charles, RB KC
- Adrian Peterson, RB Minnesota
- Ray Rice, RB Baltimore
- Chris Johnson (Barring Holdout) RB Tennessee
- Aaron Rodgers, QB Green Bay
- Lesean McCoy, RB Philadelphia
- Andre Johnson, WR Houston
- Rashard Mendenhall, RB Pittsburgh
- Shonn Green, RB NYJ
- Roddy White, WR Atlanta
- Michael Turner, RB Atlanta
- Darren Mcfadden, RB Oakland
- Frank Gore, RB SF
- Larry Fitzgerald, WR Arizona
- Drew Brees, QB NO
- Ahmad Bradshaw, RB NYG
- Calvin Johnson- WR Detroit
- Maurice Jones-Drew, RB Jacksonville
- Daniel Thomas, RB Miami
- Matt Forte, RB Chicago
- Steven Jackson, RB St Louis
- Felix Jones, RB Dallas
- Vincent Jackson WR San Diego
- LeGarratte Blunt, RB Tampa Bay
- Knowshon Moreno, RB Denver
- Philip Rivers, QB San Diego
- Hakeem Nicks, WR NYG
- Deangelo Williams, RB Carolina
- Greg Jennings, WR Green Bay
- Reggie Wayne ,WR Indianapolis
- Tom Brady, QB New England
- Miles Austin, WR Dallas
- Peyton Hillis, RB Cleveland
- Mike Wallace, WR Pittsburgh
- Desean Jackson, WR Philadelphia
- Marshawn Lynch, RB Seattle
- Matt Ryan, QB Atlanta
- Dwayne Bowe, WR KC
- Jermichael Finley TE Green Bay
- Peyton Manning, QB Indianapolis
- Benjarvus Green-Ellis, RB New England
- Marques Colston, WR NO
- Mark Ingram, RB NO
- Antonio Gates, TE San Diego
- Mike Williams, WR Tampa Bay
- Cedric Benson, RB Cincinnati
- Fred Jackson, RB Buffalo
- Matt Shaub, QB Houston
- Santonio Holmes, WR NYJ
- Jay Cutler, QB Chicago
- Jahvid Best, RB Detroit
- Ryan Grant, RB Green Bay
- Brandon Lloyd, WR Denver
- Tony Romo, QB Dallas
- Stevie Johnson, WR Buffalo
- Joseph Addai, RB Indianapolis
- Vernon Davis, TE SF
- Ryan Matthews, RB San Diego
- Tim Hightower- (Ryan Torian’s spot in the Running back list, Hightower looks to have won the starting spot) RB Washington
- Jason Witten, TE Dallas
- Jonathon Stewart, RB Carolina
- Dez Bryant, WR Dallas
- Jeremy Maclin, WR Philadelphia
- Brandon Jacobs, RB NYG
- Mike Tolbert, RB San Diego
- Eli Manning, QB NYG
- Dallas Clark, TE Indianapolis
- Percy Harvin, WR Minnesota
- Beanie Wells, RB Arizona
- Reggie Bush, RB Miami
- Mario Manningham, WR NYG
- Chad OchoCinco, WR New England
- Michael Bush, RB Oakland
- Ben Roethlisberger, QB Pittsburgh
- Brandon Marshall, WR Miami
- Rashad Jennings, RB Jacksonville
- Anquan Boldin, WR Baltimore
- Austin Collie, WR Indianapolis
- Tony Gonzalez, TE Atlanta
- Wes Welker, WR New England
- Steve Smith, WR Carolina
- Kenny Britt, WR Tennessee
- Mike Sims-Walker, WR St. Louis
- Matthew Stafford, QB Detroit
- Pittsburgh – Defense
- James Starks, RB Green Bay
- AJ Green, WR Cincinnati
- Montario Hardesty, RB Cleveland
- Mason Crosby, K Green Bay
- Zach Miller, TE Seattle
- Ryan Torain, RB Washington
- Julio Jones, WR Atlanta
- Sidney Rice, WR Seattle
- Pierre Garcon, WR Indianapolis
- Santana Moss, WR Washington
- Philadelphia- Defense
- Stephen Gostkowski, K New England
- Kellen Winslow, TE Tampa Bay