2014 Team-By-Team Analysis

2014 Draft

2014 Draft

Here we go. Another draft in the books, another season on the horizon. 13th for us, to be exact.

Our second auction draft was completed and one thing is certain, there are no fish. Every single one of us (this is the fourth straight year we’ve been together) is getting really, really good at this. It continues to be a tradition of fun and friendship, but make no mistake about it, all 12 of us take this very seriously and it shows in the draft results. After all, there is a lot of dough on the line.

Trendy players go for a lot, ugly players go for a little, values are understood, and advantages are hard to come by. The biggest take away from the 2014 draft? This league has officially developed from a novice league to an accomplished one.

Not one person left yesterday’s draft feeling elated about their team. Go ahead, try to find a clear-cut favorite. Don’t worry, I’ll wait. 

Having said that, here are my impeccable team-by-team rankings.

Note: “X-Factor” is each team’s player that will have the most impact on their respective roster. You know, the boom or bust type guy that could change everything.

Porter

I’ll get my team out of the way first here.

To be honest, most of my starters I never even remotely expected to be on my team (sans Kendall Wright, Jordy Nelson, and some bench guys). But, I wasn’t about to let the guy coming off the greatest offensive and fantasy season in NFL history go for less than $50. So I stole snagged him.

I’m a little weak at WR2/Flex with Kendall Wright and Mike Wallace, but still hopeful Gordon plays at least eight games—and I do think those guys (Wallace and Wright) could have big seasons, but I guess I’m naturally biased since I drafted them…but then again these are MY rankings, so fuck you guys.

I’d consider my depth above average as well, with a considerable amount of “pop” players.

Ps. Kendall Wright ($6) had 94 catches last season (he only scored twice though). That’s more than Dez Bryant, Alshon Jeffrey, Demaryius Thomas, Josh Gordon, and Jimmy Graham.

If he adds, say, six or seven scores, he could be a top-12 PPR WR.

Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Josh Gordon

In nomination order…

 

Tepel

Clearly Tepel wanted Jimmy Graham, and he made sure he got him, for $52. Not sure that’s a great price, but he definitely has the best TE in FF. On the flip side, Russell Wilson for $3 is excellent value, as is Marques Colston for $13.

Tep is strong at TE and WR, but weaker at RB with Le’Veon Bell as his No.1, and Danny Woodhead as his No. 2. Bench is solid, which could help.

Playoffs: No
X-Factor: Danny Woodhead

 

Damien

Good value at QB again (seems to be the theme of the draft), snagging Aaron Rodgers for $36. Julius Thomas is a stud as well, but Damien definitely paid for his services ($43). While his other-than-Rodgers-And-Thomas-And-Andre Ellington core players certainly have upside, question marks plaque them.

Victor Cruz – Coming off a season where he had only 4 TD’s and less than 1,000 yards (first time in his career). Eli Manning is coming off his worst season of his NFL career, as well. Giants offense looks dreadful in preseason.

Jeremy Maclin – Upside in Eagles offense, but is very fragile. Can he really play 16 games? Also, he’s never had 1,000 yards.

Rashad Jennings – Another Giant? Yikes.

I would consider Damien’s bench below average.

Playoffs: No
X-Factor: Tavon Austin

Linto

For some reason Linto decided to pay $17 for Nick Foles (eh value), after getting Colin Kaepernick for $9 (decent value). That’s $26 on two QB’s, and fortunately for us—unfortunately for Linto—he can only start ONE QB. In essence, for about $10 more, he could have gotten any QB he wanted.

With that being said, he still managed to construct a solid team. I love Foles this year, WRs are solid with Keenan Allen and Alshon Jeffrey, RB’s are a little weaker—but decent—with Gio Bernard (PPR +) and Toby Gerhart.

Depth is below average, but Linto will certainly be competitive.

Playoffs: No
X-Factor: Brandin Cooks

 

Goodman

And again, another great QB value here—Drew Brees for $36.

Goodman made sure he was very strong at WR, snagging Dez Bryant and Randall Cobb, but in doing so, gave up some talent at RB with Frank Gore and Pierre Thomas. Gore is 31 years old and Thomas, while he was very good in PPR formats last season, just doesn’t scream sex as an RB 2. Would be more ideal to have those guys as your No. 2 and 3 RBs respectively.
Ps. Don’t like Martellus Bennett at TE, and would consider his bench just about average.
Playoffs: No
X-Factor: Pierre Thomas
Snake
Snake loaded up early and through the middle of his roster, with his starting RBs and WRs:
AJ Green
Antonio Brown
Montee Ball
Matt Forte
Still not sold on Ball being a “top-12” RB this year, but you have to admit, that’s a scary foursome. Nevertheless, Matt Ryan at QB is a major question mark on an awful team, with a horrendous offensive line, and injury prone WRs. Heath Miller at TE isn’t “scaring” anyone (although I personally think Miller has a big season), and Reuben Randle at Flex is far from ideal for Snake.
To make matters worse, his bench is easily the weakest in the league. If he stays away from the injury bug he should be OK, but if he doesn’t, look out.
Playoffs: No
X-Factor: Matt Ryan
Phil
Phil was, going away, the most over-zealous bidder in the room on Sunday. I think he bid on more players than he didn’t bid on. And when he didn’t bid, he encouraged others to bid. Nevertheless, per usual, he fielded a nice-looking team.
Phil’s core is rock solid with RG3 at QB, Brandon Marshall/Eric Decker at WR, Shane Vereen/Zac Stacy at RB, and Rob Gronkowski at TE.
Solid bench guys with legitimate “pop” potential include: Golden Tate, Bishop Sankey, and Kelvin Benjamin.
Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Rob Gronkowski
Jason
Don’t have many qualms about this roster. Pretty straight forward. I will say this: Jason’s top RB and top WR—DeMarco Murray (has never played 16 games) and Julio Jones (coming off foot injury), respectively—provide a major boom or bust quality. While both can be top-5 players at their respective positions, both have injury questions.
Jason’s weakest spot is arguably RB 2 with Ryan Matthews, but he did a nice job of adding depth there with Ray Rice and Joique Bell, two PPR beneficiaries.
Underrated factoid: DeMarco Murray caught 53 balls on 66 targets last season. He caught 51 in 2011 and 2012…combined.
Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Julio Jones
LaRose
To be honest, visually, this looks like the most “solid” roster in the league…as much as I hate to feed his ego.
Stafford, A. Johnson, Wayne, Lynch, Foster, Witten, Bush.
I can’t find many question marks there. Foster has a ton of injury concerns, but with that risk, comes top-5 RB potential. While Schmike’s bench is below average, his starters look pretty good on paper.
Ps. Did he really get Reggie for $21?
Some interesting anti-Bush factoids you may not know:
  • He’s already in his 9th season…NINTH! He’s 29.
  • He’s only played 16 games twice
  • And missed 4+ games three times
  • He’s only rushed for 1,000 yards twice…and barely both times
  • He hasn’t caught more than 54 balls since 2007
Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Arian Foster
Stan
On the double-kicker, $4, meltdown, Stan admitted he thought Justin Tucker was actually Justin Hunter. It wasn’t, though. And Stan, hilariously, drafted two kickers for $4. Love it.
Anyway, that was really his only falter, as Stan constructed a cute little team here.
His weak spot is Chris Johnson at RB2, but that’s totally understandable when AP is your No. 1. And, he has MJD and Stevan Ridley as his No. 3 and No. 4 RB’s, giving him some nice depth. At WR, Stan has PPR stud Pierre Garcon and fantasy whack-a-mole (sporadic weekly scoring) Vincent Jackson. Percy Harvin gives him a nice upside play off the bench, too.
Don’t see anything glaringly wrong with this team.
Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Chris Johnson
Scott
This is an interesting one for me. A lot of guys that give me the heebie-jeebies:
  • Cam Newton — cracked rib, bad WRs, awful o-line, bad RBs,…not a good offense
  • Wes Welker — his next hit could be hist last…
  • Doug Martin — Yes, he missed 10 games last season, but people tend to conveniently forget that during the six games he played in, he was bad. Really bad. He had 456 rushing yards and 1 TD in those six games. And he doesn’t catch balls. And they have other RB’s they like in TB (Mike James, Bobby Rainey).

Having said that, Scott drafted a bunch of upside guys I love:

  • Michael Floyd — breakout season candidate, like him over his teammate Larry Fitz
  • Torrey Smith — will benefit from having Steve Smith on opposite side, BAL offense is much improved
  • Justin Hunter — could be this year’s Alshon Jeffrey. He’s 6’4, 200-pounds and 23 years old.

Oh, and I haven’t even mentioned Scott owns LeSean McCoy this season, who—if you ask McCoy himself—will rush for 2,000 yards this year.

Ps. He owns Darren Sproles too (also, he wanted Foles and Jordan Matthews… we he likes Chip a little bit)

Playoffs: Yes
X-Factor: Doug Martin

 

M Gold

Mike loaded up at RB 1, Jamaal Charles and WR 1, Calvin Johnson (stealing my deadly tandem from last season), but gave up value at RB 2, Ben Tate and WR 2, DeSean Jackson in doing so.

As much as I love Charles and Calvin, I don’t love Tate and Jackson.

Also, not a fan of Aaron Dobson as a flex option and don’t think Mike’s bench is strong at all.

Oh, and about his $12 overrated TE Vernon Davis (30 years old):

  • His catch total over career: 20, 52, 31, 78, 56, 67, 41, 52
  • Add a healthy Michael Crabtree and bring-in Stevie Johnson, now you have even more mouths to feed, on a run-first defensive laden offense, and that catch total number goes down.
  • So why is he so valued? TD’s
  • Here are his career TDs season-by-season: 3, 4, 2, 13, 7, 6, 5, 13
  • Conclusion: The only way he’s valuable is if he scores 10+ TD’s. He may, but chances say he doesn’t.
  • Likely, he’ll finish with something decent, not great, like (rec/yards/TDs): 55/800/6

Playoffs: No
X-Factor: DeSean Jackson

 

Shut it down. I’m out.

ari

 

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