Evan Silva

Goal Line Stand

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Silva's Post-Season Top 150

Monday, January 28, 2013



Tenth Round

109. Joique Bell -- The Lions view Bell as a change-of-pace back only, but he could make the coaching staff think twice if Mikel Leshoure continues to plod along as Bell rips off impressive gains between the tackles. Already a major asset in the passing game, Bell also averaged 5.0 yards per carry in 2012 and can make defenders miss. He'll be a sneaky RB3/flex fantasy pick.

110. Martellus Bennett -- Bennett got off to a blazing start in his first year with the G-Men before a knee injury and Eli Manning's "tired arm" took their toll on the tight end's numbers. If Eli gets it together and the Giants re-sign Bennett, Black Unicorn could be a high-scoring value pick in 2013.

111. Fred Jackson -- F-Jax is coming off a sluggish, injury-riddled year in which he was severely outplayed by C.J. Spiller. Now entering his age-32 season, Jackson figures to take a backseat in Doug Marrone and Nathaniel Hackett's Bills offense. He'll be a relatively low-upside RB3/4 pick.

112. Greg Olsen -- Olsen was Carolina's No. 2 receiver in 2012, as Brandon LaFell battled injuries and ineffectiveness and Louis Murphy and David Gettis made next to no impact. Tight end-friendly OC Rob Chudzinski has departed, and the Panthers will likely upgrade opposite Steve Smith. Olsen can be a competitive low-end fantasy starter, but he's not likely to be a difference maker.

113. Kyle Rudolph -- Rudolph was a big-time red-zone presence in his first season as a full-time starter, but his production was heavily touchdown dependent as he racked up mediocre catches and yards. While Rudolph will return as a candidate for 8-10 touchdowns, he doesn't separate consistently enough from pass defenders to be anything more than a mid-range to low-end TE1.

114. Bernard Pierce -- Pierce runs with power and deceiving speed, and really came on down the stretch of his rookie year. Ray Rice is Baltimore's bellcow back, but Pierce has earned a 6-10 touch-per-game role as a sophomore. He should have some standalone flex value when bye weeks hit, and could approach RB1 production if Rice got hurt. Pierce is a starting-caliber talent.

115. Antonio Gates -- Atrocious offensive line play and a second performance dip in as many years by Philip Rivers combined to torpedo Gates' 2012 fantasy season despite consistent health. Although Gates still runs well and can wall off defenders in power-forward fashion, he would need a major turnaround from San Diego's overall pass game to rediscover start-worthy fantasy stats.

116. Bryce Brown -- New Eagles coach Chip Kelly is a running-game innovator and consistently used two-back rotations at the University of Oregon. Although Brown remains a raw project after his first NFL season, he's talented enough to become the 1B to LeSean McCoy's 1A. Sheer run-game volume will rise in Philadelphia, giving Brown a shot to be an oft-used change-of-pace back.

117. Beanie Wells -- Returning from persistent knee woes late in 2012, Wells looked like a shell of his old self and probably should've been benched for performance down the stretch if it weren't for his attitude. Wells has a clean slate under Arizona's new staff, but Bruce Arians favors Ryan Williams. Wells' utter lack of passing-game value also makes him a misfit for Arians' pass-first scheme. Perhaps Arizona will trade Beanie before camp to a location better suited to use him.

118. Alshon Jeffery -- Although hand and knee injuries curtailed Jeffery's 2012 playing time, he displayed an ability to make big catches in traffic and gave Chicago's offense a shot in the arm when healthy. There is some Vincent Jackson to his game. Brandon Marshall was a ball hog this past season, but new coach Marc Trestman will likely prioritize more diversity in the pass game.

119. Andre Roberts -- Amid league-worst quarterback play, Roberts emerged as a quality NFL starter in 2012. A poor man's Antonio Brown, Roberts is a movable wideout who can defeat coverage at both Z and slot receiver. New coach Bruce Arians tutored Brown with the Steelers and used T.Y. Hilton similarly with the Colts. The facts that he still must "compete" with Michael Floyd for targets behind Larry Fitzgerald and Arizona has yet to unearth a viable signal caller keep Roberts in the WR4 range. There is still some sneaky upside here because Arians leans so heavily in the pass.

120. Jay Cutler -- Underwhelming statistically since his early-career Broncos stint with Mike Shanahan, Cutler needs a legit No. 2 receiver to emerge and the Bears to make a commitment to the passing game in order to realize his fantasy potential. There is some reason to believe Alshon Jeffery and Marc Trestman can make it happen, but for now Cutler is just an interesting QB2.

Eleventh Round

121. Josh Freeman -- Although Freeman's final stat line looks strong on paper, the tape tells a different tale. He's skittish with bodies around him, throws inaccurately in short to intermediate areas, and is frighteningly reliant on players around him to succeed. The Bucs are expected to sign competition for Freeman before camp. He's an obvious overvalued candidate for 2013 drafts.

122. Michael Vick -- The Eagles owe Vick $15.5 million next season, $3 million of which becomes guaranteed if he's on the roster beyond early February. Vick could quickly move up this list if new coach Chip Kelly commits to him as Philadelphia's 2013 starter. If he's released -- a more likely outcome -- landing somewhere like Buffalo, Arizona, or the Jets would make him a dicey QB2.

123. Daryl Richardson -- A seventh-round rookie out of Abilene Christian, Richardson flashed big-play ability by averaging 4.8 yards per carry in his first season. His role was minimal down the stretch, however, and the Rams' 2013 backfield has yet to be established. If Steven Jackson departs and Isaiah Pead continues to scuffle, Richardson's fantasy forecast could rise rapidly.

124. Knowshon Moreno -- Moreno was a late-season fantasy star following Willis McGahee's MCL tear, but there's little doubt about which Broncos back is a superior runner. Assuming McGahee doesn't suddenly fall off the cliff in his age-32 season, Moreno will enter 2013 as a handcuff only. The Broncos will also expect more from rising second-year man Ronnie Hillman.

125. Philip Rivers -- The Chargers have put together an impressive offensive staff under Mike McCoy and Ken Whisenhunt, but there's only so much coaching can do. Rivers' passing skills are eroding, and he's become increasingly turnover prone. He no longer possesses explosive arm strength. Perhaps offensive line improvements and scheme tweaks could get Rivers back into the reliable QB2 mix, but you definitely won't want to consider him a likely fantasy starter.

126. Lamar Miller -- Miller struggled for playing time as a rookie while attempting to learn Joe Philbin's offense and how to pick up the blitz. But he passed Daniel Thomas on the depth chart down the stretch and Reggie Bush is a free agent. Miller could conceivably enter 2013 as the lead back in a committee. More likely, he'll emerge as a spot starter this season and RB2 in 2014.

127. Robert Turbin -- This is what late-round fliers and fantasy bench spots are for. Turbin was a lightly used change-of-pace back as a rookie, but made remarkable strides in the passing game and added a speed element behind Marshawn Lynch off the bench. While he'd need a Lynch injury to be usable, fantasy stashers of Turbin could strike borderline RB1 gold if that happened.

128. Brian Hartline -- After opening his career with three seasons of relative obscurity, we learned a lot more about Brian Hartline the player in 2012. He's a savvy route runner with No. 2 receiver-caliber skills, but clearly isn't a No. 1. If Ryan Tannehill experiences a leap forward and Miami increases its aggressiveness in the passing game, Hartline could again flirt with WR3 production. Of course, he’s a free agent who may or may not be re-signed.

129. Jared Cook -- Word out of Nashville is the Titans will consider franchise tagging Cook if they can't sign him before the start of free agency. It's a worrisome prospect for his 2013 fantasy value. Tennessee's offense has never been creative enough to turn Cook into a full-time tight end, and Jake Locker is coming off a hugely disappointing season. Cook should want to test the market.

130. Cedric Benson -- Benson should cross his fingers that the Packers re-sign him. Otherwise, he'll likely sign somewhere around the start of 2013 training camp to compete for a timeshare job. Coming off a Lisfranc fracture, Benson can't be viewed as more than an RB4/5 at this stage.

131. Malcom Floyd -- Floyd will turn 32 years old before the start of next season, and we know what he is at this stage of his career. He's merely capable of flirting with WR3 value and was bypassed quickly by in-season street-free agent pickup Danario Alexander for No. 1 receiver duties in 2012. In 2013, Floyd will be a ho-hum WR4/5 fantasy pick with an unattractive ceiling. The healthy return of Vincent Brown could also threaten Floyd's starting job.

132. Chris Givens -- 2012 Rams first-team wideouts Brandon Gibson and Danny Amendola are impending free agents, seemingly clearing a path for Givens to take over as a starter. Just don't be surprised if Brian Quick passes Givens in 2013. Givens' route running remains a major work in progress, and Quick possesses a more diverse all-around skill set with true No. 1 receiver tools.

Twelfth Round

133. Michael Bush -- Strictly a handcuff for Matt Forte, Bush's value is wholly dependent on the Bears' feature back getting injured. Forte has done that often the past two seasons, of course, so Bush will be draft-able in 2013 fantasy leagues. He just carries little to no independent appeal.

134. Dustin Keller -- Keller isn't expected back with the Jets, which should be a plus for his 2013 fantasy outlook. An impending free agent, Keller could take off in an efficient, voluminous passing attack. He offers speed to stretch the deep middle and create mismatches in the right offense. Keller would be a savvy target for dynasty leaguers looking to buy low on a breakout candidate.

135. Jermaine Gresham -- Gresham took steps forward in 2012 before his playoff implosion, but he's not the athletic pass-game weapon draftniks billed him to be coming out of Oklahoma. He's a plodding possession threat who may lose targets if Mohamed Sanu or Marvin Jones can emerge.

136. Brandon Pettigrew -- The Lions' extreme passing volume keeps Pettigrew in the mix as a low-end TE1, but a lack of playmaking ability limits his ceiling. Pettigrew is a post-up receiver who catches check downs and does not stretch the seam. He's better in PPR than standard.

137. Carson Palmer -- Palmer has lost little off his fastball at age 33, but his mobility is gone and the Raiders' offensive line cannot pass protect. It's a recipe for fantasy disaster. While garbage-time production carried Palmer's 2012 value at times, there is no reason to believe he'll become a reliable fantasy starter in 2013. He will remain on the radar as a mid-range to high-end QB2.

138. Dwayne Allen -- Allen flirted with top-ten production when Coby Fleener missed time around midseason, but was a fantasy non-factor when both Colts rookie tight ends were healthy. While new coordinator Pep Hamilton may increase Indianapolis' usage of two-tight end sets in 2013, scaling back pass volume and attempts would hurt the box score stats of Colts pass catchers.

139. Andy Dalton -- Dalton's final 2012 statistics (27:16 TD-to-INT ratio, 62.3-percent completions) look solid on paper, but his on-field performance collapsed down the stretch for a second straight year. It's fair to wonder if Cincinnati will bring in offseason competition. Dalton isn't getting better.

140. Matt Schaub -- Schaub stayed healthy in 2012, but he was the Texans' weakest link in the second half of the season, playing like a shell-shocked game manager. Houston's decidedly run-heavy offense puts an immovable lid on Schaub's fantasy upside, and he's now taking steps back.

141. Jake Locker -- Locker was always a boom-or-bust prospect, and in 2012 he looked far more bust than boom with an 11:15 touchdown-to-turnover ratio across 11 starts. Locker still has playmaking ability as both a runner and passer, so he offers potential as a high-ceiling if potentially worthless QB2.

142. Brian Quick -- The 33rd pick in last April's draft, Quick struggled for consistent playing time as a rookie after playing his college ball at small-school Appalachian State. Quick did flash in his limited opportunities, however, and is a good bet for an expanded role in St. Louis' 2013 offense.

143. Pierre Thomas -- A low-scoring utility back, Thomas is good for 9-10 touches a game and is a suitable bye-week flex option, but nothing more. He'd be less attractive in any offense outside of the Saints', and there is speculation they will cut Thomas because it'd cause no cap hit while freeing up $2.5 million in salary and bonuses. He's due a $300,000 roster bonus in early March.

144. LaMichael James -- Kendall Hunter's November Achilles' tear likely locks in James as Frank Gore's primary backup for 2013. Although Gore is showing no signs of slippage, he turns 30 in May and has nearly 2,000 carries worth of wear on his tires. James will be his explosive handcuff.

Thirteenth Round

145. Shonn Greene -- After averaging a career-worst 3.85 yards per carry in 2012, Greene will hit free agency viewed by well-run NFL teams as no better than a No. 2 back. Not expected to return to the Jets, Greene will likely be a low-upside handcuff behind a more talented starter in 2013.

146. Jon Baldwin -- Built like Tarzan, Baldwin played the 2012 season like Jane. And with a new coaching staff in Kansas City, Baldwin is an underachieving holdover without an assured role. He has caught just 41 passes for 579 yards and two touchdowns through 26 career NFL games.

147. Fred Davis -- Underutilized in Washington's 2012 passing game before tearing his Achilles' tendon in Week 7, Davis is not under contract for 2013. The Redskins will probably try to re-sign him on the cheap, but role and health are major concerns for Davis' fantasy football outlook.

148. Jordan Cameron -- 24-year-old Cameron is a former college basketball player ready for an increased role in his third NFL season. Rob Chudzinski, a former tight ends coach, has overseen career-best years from Greg Olsen, Antonio Gates, and Kellen Winslow in each of his last three coaching stops. With Ben Watson headed to free agency, Cameron is Chud's next talented pupil.

149. Heath Miller -- Miller quietly finished as the No. 4 fantasy tight end, a career best with career highs in yards (816) and touchdowns (8). His season could have been even bigger had Ben Roethlisberger stayed healthy. Unfortunately, Miller shredded his right knee in Week 16 against the Bengals, tearing his ACL, PCL, and MCL. He seems unlikely to be ready for the start of 2013.

150. Santonio Holmes -- Holmes hasn't finished inside the top-30 fantasy wide receivers since 2009, and he will undergo a second surgery to repair his Lisfranc foot fracture in February. The Jets' $45 million receiver will be no better than a late-round flier in 2013 fantasy football drafts.

Just Missed: Vincent Brown, Brandon Myers, Emmanuel Sanders, Jeremy Kerley, Sam Bradford, Darrius Heyward-Bey, Ryan Tannehill, Jonathan Dwyer, Chris Ivory, Isaiah Pead, Peyton Hillis, Felix Jones, Ronnie Hillman, Danny Woodhead, Daniel Thomas, Donald Brown, Roy Helu, Andre Brown, DuJuan Harris, Alex Green, Greg Little, Mohamed Sanu, Nate Washington, Michael Floyd, Brandon LaFell, Davone Bess, Stephen Hill, Rod Streater, Ryan Broyles, Marvin Jones, Dwayne Harris, Zach Miller, Rob Housler, Marcel Reece, Kendall Hunter, Donnie Avery.



Evan Silva is a senior football editor for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva



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