Evan Silva

Goal Line Stand

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Silva's Mid-August Top 150

Thursday, August 15, 2013

I've been rolling out Top 150 Fantasy Rankings with explanations since the end of last season, but if you're new to this column here are a few things to keep in mind:

** This is not a mock draft. Some readers believed my rankings were a mock draft after publishing the July 31 Top 150. The players are separated into packs of 12 in my attempt to clarify in which round I believe each guy belongs, based on value. It's just a way of presenting rankings that I hope makes them easier to interpret.

** I don't advocate taking Jimmy Graham with the No. 2 pick. I do think drafters should begin considering Graham as soon as the running backs they like are gone. One of the best ways to gain an edge on opponents is to become familiar with Average Draft Position (ADP), which provides a great idea of where players will be selected. There is tons of ADP data in the 2013 Rotoworld Draft Guide. So while I assigned Graham the second highest player "grade" due to the enormous week-to-week advantage he offers at fantasy football's weakest position, his late-second round ADP suggests owners can secure Graham on the turn or somewhere in round two, even if several picks go by and he's still atop your value-based draft board.

** These rankings are geared toward standard scoring (non-PPR) although there are many references to points-per-reception leagues in the one-liners following each player. Differentiating between a particular player's value in standard versus PPR is not difficult. If you think they will catch a high volume of passes, move them up.

** If you play in a two-quarterback league, bump up the quarterbacks and be instinctive on draft day. Sometimes you have to draft with "feel." I'd even consider pulling all of the QBs off your primary cheatsheet and giving them their own cheatsheet. Your goal should be to secure two big-time quarterbacks in a two-QB league, and there are only(?) 12 rock-solid, reliable every-week starters. It's a deep position in standard leagues. In two-QB leagues, the opposite is true. And if you secure two top-dozen quarterbacks, you'll be able to grab dependable running backs and receivers while your opponents reach for Daltons and Schaubs.

On to the Top 150:

1. Adrian Peterson -- Gunning for 2,500 yards. 2012 showed you don't bet against him.
2. Jimmy Graham -- Based strictly on position, fantasy's top weekly difference maker.
3. C.J. Spiller -- Monster talent & projected workload equal monster statistical upside.
4. Doug Martin -- Last season's No. 2 fantasy RB despite losing both starting guards.
5. LeSean McCoy -- Philly could push for NFL rushing attempts lead under Chip Kelly.
6. Trent Richardson -- Injury concerns overblown; will be centerpiece of CLE offense.
7. Jamaal Charles -- Weekly consistency a concern under pass-obsessed Andy Reid.
8. Calvin Johnson -- NFL's receiving leader & No. 1 fantasy WR in back-to-back years.
9. Marshawn Lynch -- League's premier tackle breaker benefits from run-heavy offense.
10. Ray Rice -- Look for increased pass-game involvement after Dennis Pitta's injury.
11. Arian Foster -- Too many injury/performance flags to justify a top-ten fantasy pick.
12. Alfred Morris -- Heavy-volume workhorse will lose passing-down work to Roy Helu.

13. Stevan Ridley -- See Alfred Morris. Ridley will be featured in revised Pats offense.
14. Matt Forte -- A PPR special; Should be good for 75-plus catches and 230 carries.
15. Brandon Marshall -- Trestman's pass-first design is good news for his top wideout.
16. Dez Bryant -- Scary to think how good Dez'll be now that his head is on straight.
17. A.J. Green -- A.J. has enormous talent, but contends with quarterback limitations.
18. Larry Fitzgerald -- Bounce-back year a virtual lock with Carson Palmer at controls.
19. Julio Jones -- Only the mouths-to-feed factor keeps him below Bryant/Green/Fitz.
20. Demaryius Thomas -- See Julio. Supporting cast affects ceiling but dominant skill.
21. Frank Gore -- Oldie but goodie benefits from league's premier run-blocking O-Line.
22. Reggie Bush -- Love his fit in Detroit; Legitimately a candidate for 90 receptions.
23. Lamar Miller -- Downhill runner with big-play ability poised for breakout campaign.
24. Chris Johnson -- Still don't trust his effort, but remade OL looks awesome so far.

25. Steven Jackson -- Bad OL & stiff movement in preseason opener are concerns.
26. David Wilson -- Elite talent but mistake prone; Wilson is an upside drafter's pick.
27. Darren McFadden -- See Wilson and replace "mistake" with injury. Contract year.
28. DeMarco Murray -- Poor OL. Will always be injury prone due to body & play style.
29. Drew Brees -- Saints defense looks terrible again, which is good news for Brees.
30. Aaron Rodgers -- OL concerns + RB upgrades may = more run-heavy approach.
31. Cam Newton -- If Cam becomes consistent, he'll lead all QBs in fantasy scoring.
32. Andre Johnson -- Andre is 32 now, but coming off his healthiest offseason in years.
33. Rob Gronkowski -- Elite difference maker; reports on rehab(s) upbeat to this point.
34. Darren Sproles -- He's a borderline RB1 in PPR. Scores weekly double-digit points.
35. Danny Amendola -- Health allowing, Amendola will score like WR1 at WR2 cost.
36. Victor Cruz -- Still only 26 years old with consecutive top-13 fantasy WR finishes.

37. Vincent Jackson -- Last year's No. 6 fantasy WR with room for TD growth (8).
38. Randall Cobb -- Movable chess piece; strong candidate for 100-plus receptions.
39. Roddy White -- Going on 32, but has been top-15 fantasy WR six straight years.
40. Marques Colston -- Highly consistent WR1/2. Underrated in real life & fantasy.
41. Pierre Garcon -- Rising as he continues to progress through August unscathed.
42. Maurice Jones-Drew -- Aging, overused RB coming off major injury on bad team.
43. Le'Veon Bell -- Has talent limitations, but should lead all rookie RBs in touches.
44. Giovani Bernard -- Won't struggle to overtake Green-Ellis as Bengals lead back.
45. Eddie Lacy -- Was dominating camp before hamstring landed Lacy on the shelf.
46. Peyton Manning -- Can be No. 1 fantasy quarterback if body holds up at age 37.
47. Reggie Wayne -- Unlikely to repeat 2012 stats, but he is still Luck's top receiver.
48. Robert Griffin III -- Continues to climb rankings with impressive rehab: My 5th QB.

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

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