Thursday, August 22, 2013

Paper Pigskin Point Potential AFC West Fantasy Football

Article submitted by
Darrel Wilson

This is a series on my 2013 outlook of players you would want to have on your Paper Pigskin team (fantasy football). I'll be organizing them by division. What you'll find here are my views based on years of playing experience and countless hours of geeking out researching stats, trends, and articles. I'll advise where to reach and whose hype not to believe.

Denver Broncos 283 passing ypg 115 rushing ypg (posted August 21, 2013)

QB: Peyton Manning began the 2012 season with many doubters who were unsure if he can even be an average quarterback due to neck surgery that cost him the entire 2011 season. Those concerns proved to be unfounded as Manning had one of his best years. His passing numbers from last season ranked among his 14 played as follows: yardage-2nd, touchdowns-2nd, and completion percentage-1st. With a few new toys to play with, and defense expected to take a step back, Manning might throw more often. He's as consistent as it comes, he should be among the first six off the board at his position.

RB: There are three ball carriers vying to be the man in Denver's backfield. Coach John Fox is having a difficult time choosing a clear winner because they all have flaws. Ronnie Hillman is the most explosive of the trio and is on top of the depth chart but has problems with ball security. Montee Ball has issues with pass protection, the organization spent a 2nd round pick on him and wants him to win the job because of his combination of speed and power. Knowshon Moreno runs well, catches well, and is a good pass protector, but has been plagued with injuries throughout his career; he showed his worth at the end of last season, he is the most trust-worthy of the three. Ball is the favored choice in drafts, going in the 4th or 5th. Hillman is all over the place, anywhere from 5th round to 11th. Moreno is hardly being selected, there's a legitimate chance that he can take over the job at some point this season. If you notice your roster lacks running back depth, outsmart the competition and use one of your last picks on Moreno. Whoever wins this job will be a low-end RB2

WR: This is the finest set of receivers in the realm of Paper Pigskin. Last season both Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker finished with over 1,000 yards and double digit touchdowns. Now the Broncos have added Wes Welker to the mix to cause even more havoc in the secondary. Those concerned that Welker will take away targets from the other two can relax. Denver was notorious for "11" formation, using it on 64% of their plays last season; Brandon Stokley and Jacob Tamme lined up in the slot most of the time. Welker is very successful lining up in the slot and Manning is most efficient, throwing to that position. Thomas' size, skill, and athleticism combined with the guy throwing to him makes him a top WR1. Decker is a preferred red zone target and a solid WR2. Welker will get plenty of balls thrown to him underneath, he might not catch 100 again but might lead the team in receptions which will make him a WR1 candidate in PPR leagues. If anyone can make all of these pieces fit, it's Peyton Manning; he once had three wide receivers go for 1,000 yards and 10 TDs each.

TE: Jacob Tamme was the top receiving tight end on this team last year, Joel Dreessen sees more snaps due to his blocking. However, since both are nursing injuries, Julius Thomas has stepped in and added an element that neither of possess; he's larger, more athletic, and can make more plays from the position. Put Thomas on your watch list.

Defense: One of the best units in Paper Pigskin and real life last season. They'll be missing some pieces but should finish in top 10.

San Diego Chargers 206 passing ypg 91 rushing ypg (posted August 15, 2013)

QB: Phillip Rivers appeared to be a terrible quarterback last season. Excuses? Lame duck coach, lost star receiver, injured receivers, no running game to support, horrible offensive line. All of that and was still able to complete 64% of passes. What's changed? Not much at all, the biggest positive is that the new coaching staff implemented a short passing game to protect Rivers from getting lambasted and to protect him from completing deep passes to the other team. Rivers isn't a bad quarterback but he's in a bad situation, draft and only use as a spot play because he feasts on awful passing defenses.

RB: Ryan Mathews can be a stud when given the opportunity; has a great build and is a good receiver. Unfortunately, he seems to be brittle; often leaving games or game time decision. Chargers brought in Danny Woodhead specifically to catch passes on top of changing the pace, which lowers Mathews' worth. Paper Pigskin prognosticators all seem to be down on Mathews which might be a plus for you this season. Take RM in the late 4th/early 5th. If you're in a PPR league, don't let Woodhead get past the 10th round.

WR: This really boils down to how much of a gamble you want to take. Malcom Floyd (leading wr from last year) has been a deep play threat in his career but can't stay healthy. Vincent Brown is an excellent route runner, most pundits are expecting a breakout but he too can't stay healthy. Both of these players are going between the 10th & 11th, with Brown the preferred choice. Should any of these guys get hurt (likely with their history), look out for Mike Willie.

TE: Antonio Gates has always and will continue to be a trusted target for Phillip Rivers. He's leaner than ever before in hopes of being more durable for 16 games. A lot of people are flocking to the newest flavor of tight ends. Last season was his worst as a starter; don't anticipate a repeat performance.

Defense: Solid against the run, and forces turnovers. This unit is the strong point of this team.

Oakland Raiders 255 passing ypg 89 rushing ypg

Red flag this team for inconsistency, no matter the promise showed, make them prove it first.

QB: Matt Flynn had an apprenticeship under arguably the NFL's best quarterback for four seasons. In his last regular season start he threw for 480 yards and 6 touchdowns. He was highly coveted last summer, signed by Seattle, then got beat out by Russell Wilson. Nobody knows what he can do throughout an entire season but his capability has been displayed.

RB: Darren McFadden, if healthy, can be a top five Paper Pigskin ball carrier. However, Run DMC hasn't been able to walk this way for a full season since he's been in the league. He can be had in the 3rd round of drafts and pay off big dividends because this team will have to lean heavily on his talents, but select at your own risk. Marcel Reese has tremendous value late in PPR leagues.

WR: Denarius Moore and Rod Streater are their names, both have had big games. Jacoby Ford has teased in the past also.

TE: Richard Gordan and David Ausberry are completely unproven

Defense: You'll want to find them on the schedule and play all your guys until proven otherwise.

Kicker: Sadly, he's been the organization's most consistent and exciting player for over a decade.

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