The 2009 NFL season is right around the corner and fantasy football drafts are in full swing.
Whether you’re doing an online draft with your friends around the country or are huddled up at a round table, make sure that you step up to the line fully prepared for the drafting ahead.
Of course, every single season there are players with high expectations that turn out to be complete busts and there are those somewhat unknown players that emerge as the NFL’s elite.
When starting off the draft you are going to want to make sure that you grab a player that is from the cream of the crop.
In order to have a successfully functioning team it is vital that you have a star running back. The reason for this is because there are not that many of them out there and if you skip on one early in the first couple of rounds; your team could soon be in disarray.
In this year’s draft there are only two sure things at running back though. You can’t go wrong by taking Vikings’ back Adrian Peterson or Falcons’ back Michael Turner. The rest of the running backs have big names attached to them like the Chargers; LaDanian Tomlinson, but I wouldn’t be sure I would want them as the number one pick on my team.
This year’s running back sleeper is the Chicago Bears Matt Forte and the bust is the Panthers DeAngelo Williams. Forte had over 1200 yards rushing and almost 500 yards receiving as well as 12 total touchdowns.
This came in his first season as the Bears premier running back and I would look to him to have an even better season coming up. With the Bears addition of the overrated baby Jay
Cutler at quarterback, Forte will be looked to carry the load for the Bears all season.
And unlike many of the other teams in the league, Forte is not part of a double-back system so he will be getting almost all the carries this season.
Do not draft DeAngelo Williams too high, please. Yes, if you look at his stats from last season they are mind-boggling. He actually led all running backs in fantasy scoring last season. But this will not repeat itself.
Back up running back Jonathan Stewart had almost 100 less carries than Williams and still had 10 touchdowns. If anything Stewart will put up better numbers this season and that means a significant drop in touches for Williams.
Williams will still have a solid season; just make sure that you don’t jump on him to early in the draft.
When it comes to NFL wide receivers, they are in a similar fantasy situation as the running back class.
There are also only two sure players at this position, the Cardinals’ Larry Fitzgerald and the Patriots’ Randy Moss. Both of these players are complete freaks of nature and there isn’t a secondary in the league that can stop these two monsters on the field.
If you can get one of these players in your draft you will be happy all season, for sure. they might even be worth more than a running back with a big name in the first couple of rounds.
Don’t be afraid to take these two guys early.
Unlike running backs, there are a plethora of wide receivers in this year’s draft.
This year’s wide receiver sleeper is the Bills’ Lee Evans and the bust is the Colts’ Reggie Wayne. Evans had a very disappointing season last year by barely cracking the 1000 yard mark and amassing only three touchdowns. With the acquisition of Terrell Owens, the defense will not be able to double team Evans anymore like he has been his entire career in Buffalo.
Sam Gerb can be reached at email@example.com.