Fantasy Football: It's Draft Time

Posted on August 14, 2006

By Rocco Cavuoti

What a time of year it is…summer vacation is almost over, soon the leaves will be turning, the weather cooling off, and soon we'll all spend hours in front of our computers trying to choose who to start Sunday.

It's fantasy football season, so it's time to do some pre-draft homework.

This fantasy guide is not geared toward any particular scoring system. Each player is simply ranked strictly on yards and touchdowns. If your league gives greater merit to yards versus touchdowns, draft accordingly.

This week is a breakdown of the top 15 players at quarterback, running back and wide receiver. All Rankings are based on 2005 production, free agent movement, personnel changes and the 2006 schedule. Next week's issue will rank the tight ends, kickers, as well as team defenses.

Quarterbacks

1. Peyton Manning, IND
Despite losing "Edge", still the best fantasy QB

2. Matt Hasselbeck, SEA
Leads a great offense, proved his consistency last year

3. Tom Brady, NE
Somehow an under-the-radar fantasy QB, always productive

4. Drew Bledsoe, DAL
Was good in '05, expect monster numbers with T.O.

5. Donovan McNabb, PHI
A top-five QB before T.O., finally healthy again

6. Trent Green, KC
Always consistent, puts up great numbers

7. Carson Palmer, CIN
Should be higher; if healthy, a fantasy stud

8. Eli Manning, NYG
Should mature into better QB, but still young

9. Daunte Culpepper, MIA
A top QB but coming off injury and with new team

10. Marc Bulger, STL
Rams will run more but Bulger's production should be solid

11. Jake Plummer, DEN
WR Javon Walker makes him better, get QB Jay Cutler for insurance

12. Michael Vick, ATL
Standard Vick: 2,000 pass yards, 800 rush

13. Kurt Warner, ARI
Offense is loaded with young WRs and running back Edgerrin James in the backfield

14. Jake Delhomme, CAR
Great weapons on a good team, should be solid

15. David Carr, HOU
Eric Moulds and Andre Johnson are great targets, should have good year

Running Backs

1. Larry Johnson, KC
You know the stats…

2. LaDainian Tomlinson, SD
Should really be 1A with consistently great numbers

3. Shaun Alexander, SEA
Only downside is that he's the Madden cover boy

4. Tiki Barber, NYG
Giants simply don't win without his all-purpose yards

5. Clinton Portis, WAS
Expect the usual 1,300-1,500 and 12 TDs

6. Steven Jackson, STL
Should pile up yards now that the Rams will actually run the ball

7. Ronnie Brown, MIA
All the potential in the world, and no Ricky Williams

8. Rudi Johnson, CIN
Consistent, solid numbers week after week

9. LaMont Jordan, OAK
Raiders will run more in 2006, Jordan will be productive

10. Edgerrin James, ARI
You know he'll see the ball, but can the line block for him?

11. Willis McGahee, BUF
Great runner on a bad team, will have a solid year

12. Cadillac Williams, TB
Was great when healthy last year, can he go 16 games?

13. Warrick Dunn, ATL
Under-the-radar, but always produces

14. Brian Westbrook, PHI
Centerpiece of Philly offense

15. Dominick Davis, HOU
Passing on running back Reggie Bush says a lot, should be solid

Wide Receivers

1. Terrell Owens, DAL
He's the best, no matter what uniform he wears

2. Steve Smith, CAR
A true home run hitter, expect a career year

3. Chad Johnson, CIN
Simply an elite receiver, whether Palmer is there or not

4. Marvin Harrison, IND
The favorite weapon of the No. 1 QB, easy pick

5. Anquan Boldin, ARI
Had two 100-catch seasons in his first three years

6. Randy Moss, OAK
Always seems to be hurt, but is the main guy in Oakland

7. Larry Fitzgerald, ARI
Numbers are strikingly similar to Boldin, will get better

8. Torry Holt, STL
Don't overlook him due to his age, still a great receiver

9. Reggie Wayne, IND
Production increasing every year, should continue

10. Donald Driver, GB
With Walker gone, Brett Favre will look to him early and often

11. Chris Chambers, MIA
Underrated WR, now has Culpepper throwing to him

12. Hines Ward, PIT
Big Ben needs to be efficient and Ward is his go-to guy

13. Darrell Jackson, SEA
Should be very productive if he can stay healthy

14. Plaxico Burress, NYG
Expect 1,200 yards and 10 TDs, Manning needs him to survive

15. Derrick Mason, BAL
QB Steve McNair will need his help when escaping the pass rush

Issue 1.17: August 17, 2006

next up:

Week of August 14

August 14, 2006

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