Going into the fantasy football season, every year there are always a few players that I just need to have on my team. They could be players from my favorite team, players I think will have amazing years, or players I’ve had on previous teams. No matter the reason, I know I have got to get these guys on my team.
Sometimes I fall into the trap of reaching for players just because I want them that badly. To help you avoid that same trap, I’ll lay out the top five players that I want on my 2014 fantasy roster and I’ll give you what I think is an appropriate value.
Now of course you are going to want Adrian Peterson, Aaron Rodgers, and Calvin Johnson all on the same team, but realistically that is not going to happen. So, in this article I’ll name players you could realistically get on the same team.
5. Percy Harvin, Wide Receiver, Seattle Seahawks
We only really got to see him a few times this year, but in limited action the guy was phenomenal. I mean did you see the Super Bowl? Every time the ball touches his hands it’s a huge play. Thats why I want him.
I’m not sure if he can be a number one receiver on your team, but if you can get him as your third WR, then do it. People would point to his injury history and the fact that Seattle is a run-first team as reasons not to draft him. And they are partially right, Seattle’s run mentality could limit his targets, but Harvin has always been the type of player that makes the most of what he is given. I think Harvin could end up being a steal in the 6th or 7th rounds, but I would be okay with drafting him as high as the mid-fifth round.
4. Dwayne Allen, Tight End, Indianapolis Colts
Allen was out almost all of 2013 with a hip injury, so no one knows what to expect. What I do know is that the Colts offensive coordinator, Pep Hamilton, wants to go with a two tight-end system and that Allen is a very versatile player. I would expect to see a bit of a training camp battle between Allen and Coby Fleener to decide who the true “starter” is, but Allen had been in that role the previous two seasons before being hurt.
With a slew of weapons on the Colts roster (Wayne, Hilton, Nicks, Fleener…), Allen shouldn’t receive too much attention from opposing defenses. While he may not put up huge numbers, I think he is a guy definitely worth taking a chance on. He can probably be had in standard leagues in the last few rounds of the draft. In fact I have been able to get him with my last pick in some of my mocks.
3. Cam Newton, Quarterback, Carolina Panthers
I know what you’re thinking, he has no receivers, iffy running backs, and half of his offensive line from last season is gone. Things look bleak, he’s all alone. I get it. But the fact that he is alone is the reason I’ve got to have him this year.
Cam is going to have to do it by himself this year and to me it’s worth the risk. The passing may not be there, but I think the rushing will be greater than expected and will more than make up for the lack of receiving options. Besides, he still has an extremely reliable target in Greg Olsen. I would suggest even pairing the two on your roster. Cam’s lack of targets should scare people away, so I think late 5th or early 6th round is a suitable landing spot for him.
2. Randall Cobb, Wide Receiver, Green Bay Packers
Prior to an injury, Cobb was arguably a top five fantasy receiver in 2013. This year he will play a major role in what is shaping up to be one of the best offenses in the league. In fact, I would say that if you have any Packers on your team this year you’ll be pretty happy.
With Aaron Rodgers throwing the play and Jordy Nelson demanding attention from the defense, Cobb’s natural ability should allow him to put up some huge numbers. And lets not forget that the Packers now have the threat of Eddie Lacy in the backfield which should open things up even more for Cobb. Depending on how many receivers are taken in the first and early second rounds, I would think that Cobb could be had in the late second round or early third. If you’re lucky, people could be scared off by the injury last season and he could slip into the fourth round.
The Number 1 player that I’ve got to have on my roster this year………
Matt Forte, Running Back, Chicago Bears
This is a guy that was the savior of my fantasy championship last season. But that isn’t the only reason I want him back on my team. The 2014 Bears offense is going to be explosive and probably top 10 in the league if not top 5.
With Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery drawing the attention of opposing defenses, Forte should have plenty of room to run. In my opinion, Forte is also one of the best pass catching running backs in the entire NFL. Whether it be a standard or PPR league I want Matt Forte. I would say that fair value for Forte is early first round. He’s a top five fantasy player this year so in a standard league he will be off the board by pick number five.