Archive for rbs

2018 Bold Prediction #2

2018 fantasy football bold predictions smitty
smitty fantasy football advice

Ok, everyone, here is the second-added Bold Prediction for the 2018 fantasy football season. Each season, I crank out 10-12 deep/bold predictions, and while Alvin Kamara and DeAndre Hopkins cracked the list last year, I plan to nail more in 2018, don’t you guys worry! Here is the second one for 2018… enjoy!

View Bold Prediction No. 2

Smitty’s #2 and final Bold Prediction is in!

2017 fantasy football bold predictions smitty
smitty fantasy football advice

Ok, everyone… is the #2 and Final Bold Prediction for the 2017 fantasy football season. Every year I’m asked to come up with a deep call, and I have 1-2 of those huge, huge deep calls. This one is also pretty awesome in the sense that these two players are not starters, but they can win you your league if they land.

View Final Bold Prediction No. 2

Smitty’s New #6 and #7 Bold Prediction Released!

2017 fantasy football bold predictions smitty
smitty fantasy football advice

Ok, everyone… here are new Number 6 & 7 Bold Predictions for the 2017 fantasy football season. Every year I’m asked to come up with a deep call, one that claims that a WR3/4 will be a WR1, or back-up RB will eventually be a top 8-12RB… well, here are two of those calls right here!

View Bold Prediction No. 6 and 7

2017 Rookies: Running Backs

WAIT! You have TWO simple options.

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One Deep, Deep Sleeper RB To Own!

smitty fantasy football advice

Want a Deep, Deep Sleeper Running Back heading into 2016 fantasy football drafts? Here is one runner that needs opportunity to succeed, but he has some pretty awesome hidden appeal. The risk is super-low, if not near zero, yet the reward is extremely-high.

Mike Gillislee | RB BUF

This kid is exciting. He runs hard and he has some monster stat lines despite the limited usage in 2016. Before we get into the details, look at these stat lines from 2015:

Wk Opp Ru Yds Avg TD Rec Yds TD
13 HOU 7 41 5.9 0 1 5 0
14 @PHI 3 24 8.0 1 1 6 0
15 @WAS 4 81 20.3 1 2 2 0
16 DAL 9 93 10.3 1 2 16 0
17 NYJ 24 28 1.2 0 0 0 0

As you can see, the guy averaged 5.7 yards-per-carry in 2015, and that’s even if you included his rough outing in Week 17, where he rushed 24 times for only 28 yards. Take that game out and he averaged over 10 yards-per-carry. I know, it’s a small sample size, and you can play the “take out this game and then…” game all day long with all kinds of players, but the truth is, I admit there isn’t much at all go to go on here. It kind of reminds me a lot of when we talked up Michael Turner as a top 5-10RB entering his 2007 campaign. He was about to get traded out of San Diego, but in the final hour he didn’t. We had a small sample size to go on, but I saw elite talent in both his numbers and his footage. His per-touch production was just monstrous, and while we had to wait one more season after that 2007 season, he proved us right in 2008, as he became of the best fantasy football running backs in the game for a handful of years. I am not sure what kind of opportunity exists for Gillislee entering 2016, as we don’t truly know what that Bills’ coaching staff is thinking. We do know three things, though… 1) Karlos Williams is suspended for the first four games of the 2016 NFL season, 2) The Bills run over 30 times per game, 3) LeSean McCoy is oft-injured, and has concussion risk… That second part, where the Bills run 30+ times per game, this means that Gillislee, even with a healthy LeSean McCoy, has a big stage to perform on for the first 1/4 of the season. He is the current No. 2 in Buffalo. That’s nice production right out of the gate (while NOT starting). And, given his per-touch production, I believe we ‘could’ (I repeat ‘could’) see him make a bid for being the future of that Bills’ rushing attack. Now, one fumble or injury can squash this entire thinking, and coaches can ruin all kinds of hopes in these kinds of situations. This is a deep, deep call. The talent is there, my friends, I see it. However, talent doesn’t ALWAYS translate into fantasy dominance. Trade on the cheap for the guy in dynasty and scoop him up in all redraft leagues near the very end of the draft. His ADP is non-existent in most cases, meaning no one is really drafting him – yet. McCoy owners might (and should, so be sure to grab him if you own Shady), but his risk is zero and his upside is gigantic. He is a fun stash to own in 2016!

Watch Mike Gillislee in action!

This Player has been added to the Bold Predictions List.

Risky RBs for 2016?

smitty fantasy football advice

Each and every fantasy football season, a grip of big name players hold a ton of risk heading into the months of July, August and September. When does that risk outweigh the reward? Let’s dig into a handful of Risky Running Backs heading into 2016. Keep in mind, though, a player may be listed below and still be worth the risk, so read the write-up for each player!

Note: I’ve already written a ton on Devonta Freeman, a player that would normally top such a list. To read more on his 2016 value, click here.

Risky RBs for 2016

Jamaal Charles
Thomas Rawls
DeMarco Murray
Eddie Lacy
Carlos Hyde
Melvin Gordon
Jeremy Langford

2016 Rookie Analysis (in May)

smitty fantasy football advice

Let’s be honest, you can’t rank and rerank the fantasy football rookies enough in the months of January through July. ADP Data changes by the week, sometimes by the day, and our own personal evaluations change extremely fast just by watching tape and reading current news. So, with that said, it’s time to start from scratch and rank/analyze this 2016 Fantasy Football Rookie NFL Draft Class. Enjoy.

Elite Potential

1. Ezekiel Elliott (RB) DAL

He is the consensus 1.01 in any format. If you aren’t drafting him at the 1.01, let’s say due to team need, you’re making a HUGE mistake. He is the 1.01, conversation over. If you really feel you want to roll with a wide receiver, or another rusher, trade down and get a ton, because you will get a ton. Dallas is the perfect landing spot for Zeke, as he will now run behind one of the best offensive lines in the NFL, and he has one of the best wide receivers on the outside (Dez Bryant) keeping defenses honest. Granted, a truly elite rookie season might require a relatively healthy Tony Romo, but even if injury strikes a touch at the QB position, even Dez Bryant owners now have a sense of production protection built into the situation, as Zeke will help that offense stay relatively balanced should it be without Romo for an extended period of time. All that said, Zeke owners need Romo in the lineup for truly elite numbers this upcoming season. If Romo stays relatively healthy all year, expect elite fantasy RB1-type numbers out of this on-the-rise rookie rusher.

2. Kenneth Dixon (RB) BAL

Here is the deal, folks. No player in this 2016 NFL Draft Class even sniffs Elliott’s talent level, except Kenneth Dixon. Who would I rather have on my team if I was a coach? Elliott, no question. That said, the only reason this draft class is completely flat after the 1.01 is because not one rusher, other than Elliott, was drafted as the uncontested starter for his team. If Dixon had landed in Dallas and Elliott still went somewhere solid, like Miami, you’d have two-man tier in Elliott and Dixon, and even though Zeke would still be the consensus 1.01 in all formats, Dixon would at least command some consideration. That’s how good he is. He is a beast and his talent jumps out on tape. I mean JUMPS out! Watch below and see for yourself. Now, he is in a decent scenario, with only Buck Allen and Justin Forsett ahead of him, so don’t sleep on him as the second-best player in this 2016 NFL Draft class. Should you take him at 1.02? No, not necessarily. Use current ADP data all the way up until your league’s rookie-only draft kicks off. Here is a fresh look at Rookie-only ADP Data, where he currently sits at 1.05-1.06. Not to confuse matters with what I just said about ADP Data, but I will say this… this class is so iffy from 1.02 on down, I wouldn’t blame anyone for drafting Dixon at 1.02 just to ensure that they got Dixon.. I’ve considered it and will continue to consider it heading into a draft where I hold the 1.02. Sometimes it’s worth getting your guy, especially when the risk is low, and given this class is kind of flat, the risk is low spending a 1.02 on anyone you feel has the tools to be not just great, but elite. If starting, Dixon could absolutely be elite.

Potential Fantasy WR1 Upside

3. Laquon Treadwell (WR) MIN

I’m changing my tune a bit on this kid. I have watched a lot of game footage this week and I am going to speculate that he puts my concerns to ease as he matures. My concern is lack of speed. That said, he is still young, and given his ability to go up and get a ball, and given the fight in many of his big plays after the catch, I think this kid will work hard and get quicker. Anquan Boldin, along with many other strong fantasy football wide receivers, have proven that speed isn’t a requirement for becoming elite. It’s definitely a red flag that needs to be considered at the rookie evaluation stage, sure, but the more film I watch on this receiver, the more I like him. I am not sure if he will ever be a top 5WR in fantasy, but he has enough talent in every non-speed category that he has a shot at eventually being a fantasy WR1.

4. Corey Coleman (WR) CLE

I like Corey Coleman a lot. One reason is because he is in a good situation to be his team’s No. 1 wide receiver right out of the gate. If he isn’t, well, that means that Josh Gordon is back and I will be plenty happy with that news. Even if that happens, though, Gordon’s long-term future with the Browns, and NFL, is cloudy at best, so honestly, Coleman could be the WR1 in Cleveland for a decade, and it might take him 1-2 years to get settled anyway. Could he fail in fantasy? Sure. Might he not get enough targets? Sure. That said, with RG3 potentially setup to rebound in 2016, and with Josh McCown capable if need be, I think Coleman has a really productive rookie season and a bright future. I had Coleman as my No. 1 wide receiver coming out of this draft class until recently, which I address above under Treadwell.

5. Josh Doctson (WR) WAS

I like his situation a ton in Washington, and that alone gives him an edge. Both Corey Coleman and Laquon Treadwell are in good situations in terms of being their team’s No. 1 wide receiver, but Doctson has the passer that has top 4-7 fantasy upside, which typically spells more targets. As weak as this rookie wide receiver class is, all three of Coleman, Treadwell and Doctson have the potential to be low-end fantasy WR1s. I don’t think all of them will be, much depends on how each matures. Good luck ranking these three receivers, it’s tough given all the variables.

Potential RB2 or WR2 Upside or low-end QB1s

6. Devontae Booker (RB) DEN

He enters as the team’s backup, so don’t go drafting him above the players you see ranked above. However, don’t be shy about making him your 1.07-1.09 rookie-only draft selection on draft day. Most will take Henry above him, and you might want to consider that as well if given the choice. But, I rank Booker here because I think he has more ceiling. More risk, but more ceiling potential. He has a big obstacle in his way, though, and his name is CJ Anderson.

7. Derrick Henry (RB) TEN

He landed in an awful situation. Awful. The Titans went after DeMarco Murray in the off-season, and they acquired him to be the workhorse. Will the team play smash mouth football using Henry 8-10 times up the middle? Absolutely, and he will be fun to watch in those situation. Like every rusher, Murray will need a break, and that’s all this is, unless Murray gets hurt. Then I think Henry plays very well, but for how long? A season? Murray, even if hurt badly, would return to start. And, if he didn’t, I honestly can’t see Henry holding up if being given a full-time workload for anything more than 1-2 seasons. Think Brandon Jacobs, but bigger. I have been wrong about players before, so trust your gut if he is your guy, but just curb expectations a bit, as he has a potential top 5-10 fantasy rusher ahead of him, and size that usually will not translate into an every-down rusher at that NFL level.

8. Paul Perkins (RB) NYG

Sleeper Alert, folks! The Giants don’t exactly have a future stud at the position, as Rashad Jennings is not the long-term answer, and either is the dynamic third-down runner in Shane Vereen. Perkins will eventually get his shot, and if he excels, this could be that late first-round grab that turns into an unexpected gem. Don’t overpay on draft day, know your ADP data! But, don’t be shy about getting your guy either… once you get near the 1.06, just grab the players you want, don’t let ADP influence you too much, but we’re talking after that 1.06 range.

9-11. Carson Wentz (QB), Jared Goff (QB), Paxton Lynch (QB)

All three have low-end fantasy QB1 appeal, but all have risk. For more on these passers, read here.

Deeper Sleepers

12. Keith Marshall (RB) WAS

I really like Keith Marshall as a boom or bust RB pick. If given a shot, he could thrive. I mean really thrive! Don’t overpay, as you don’t need to. His resume in college is super short, so the odds are kind of stacked against him, but clearly Washington sees something. I hope they let him loose at some point, he is dynamic and fast!!!

13-14. Cj Prosise (RB) SEA / Alex Collins (RB) SEA

Both backs won’t be given an easy path to the lineup, as Thomas Rawls will get his shot, and he looked impressive last year. He did get hurt, so he has to prove he can stay healthy in 2016. If he does, it’s his job to lose. UPDATE: With CJ Prosise taking wide receiver reps in practice as of 5/9/16, and with all the recent coach praise, he looks like the sleeper to own in this backfield.

15. Jordan Howard (RB) CHI

He has a big obstacle in front of him in Jeremy Langford, but Langford is no lock to excel. So, by default, Howard has very relevant fantasy sleeper appeal!

16. Michael Thomas (WR) NO

With Drew Brees tossing him the rock, what’s not to like from a sleeper perspective?

17. Pharoh Cooper (WR) LA

Someone has to emerge as the Rams’ top wide receiver of the future. I like this receiver as a late gem!

The Rest

Sterling Shepard (WR)
Tyler Boyd (WR)
Will Fuller (WR)
Leonte Carroo (WR)
Wendell Smallwood (RB)
Daniel Lasco (RB)
Jonathan Williams (RB)
Braxton Miller (WR)
Malcolm Mitchell (WR)
Kenyan Drake (RB)
Christian Hackenberg (QB)
Deandre Washington (RB)
Hunter Henry (TE)
Austin Hooper (TE)

More Rookie Rankings

2016 Divisional NFL Playoff Rankings (Free)

smitty fantasy football advice

Looking for 2016 Fantasy Football Divisional Playoff Rankings? These rankings / cheat sheet are for fantasy football playoff leagues that play each playoff week separately, meaning you are not just drafting once for the entire length of the 2016 NFL Playoffs.

Rest of Playoffs | Divisional Only

Updated: 1/12/2016


  1. Tom Brady NE
  2. Cam Newton CAR
  3. Carson Palmer AZ
  4. Russell Wilson SEA
  5. Aaron Rodgers GB
  6. Ben Roethlisberger PIT
  7. Peyton Manning DEN
  8. Alex Smith KC
  9. Brock Osweiler DEN


  1. Stephen Gostkowski NE
  2. Chandler Catanzaro AZ
  3. Graham Gano CAR
  4. Steven Hauschka SEA
  5. Chris Boswell PIT
  6. Brandon McManus DEN
  7. Cairo Santos KC
  8. Mason Crosby GB

Running Backs

  1. David Johnson AZ
  2. Eddie Lacy GB
  3. CJ Anderson DEN
  4. Spencer Ware KC
  5. Jonathan Stewart CAR
  6. Ronnie Hillman DEN
  7. James Starks GB
  8. Christine Michael SEA
  9. Marshawn Lynch SEA (inj)
  10. DeAngelo Williams PIT (inj)
  11. Fitzgerald Toussaint PIT
  12. James White NE
  13. Cameron Artis-Payne CAR
  14. Charcandrick West KC
  15. Brandon Bolden NE
  16. Steven Jackson NE
  17. Andre Ellington AZ
  18. Mike Tolbert CAR
  19. Juwan Thompson DEN
  20. Bryce Brown SEA
  21. Fred Jackson SEA

Wide Receivers

  1. Antonio Brown PIT (inj-monitor up to kickoff!)
  2. Julian Edelman NE
  3. Demaryius Thomas DEN
  4. Doug Baldwin SEA
  5. Emmanuel Sanders DEN
  6. Larry Fitzgerald AZ
  7. Michael Floyd AZ
  8. Martavis Bryant PIT
  9. Randall Cobb GB
  10. John Brown AZ
  11. Jeremy Maclin KC
  12. James Jones GB
  13. Tyler Lockett SEA
  14. Davante Adams GB
  15. Tedd Ginn CAR
  16. Devin Funchess CAR
  17. Brandon LaFell NE
  18. Danny Amendola NE
  19. Keshawn Martin NE
  20. Markus Wheaton PIT
  21. Jermaine Kearse SEA
  22. Philly Brown CAR
  23. Jordan Norwood DEN
  24. Jerricho Cotchery CAR
  25. Albert Wilson KC

Tight Ends

  1. Rob Gronkowski NE
  2. Greg Olsen CAR
  3. Travis Kelce KC
  4. Richard Rodgers GB
  5. Heath Miller PIT
  6. Owen Daniels DEN
  7. Vernon Davis DEN
  8. Cooper Helfet SEA
  9. Andrew Quarless GB
  10. Luke Willson SEA
  11. Jermaine Gresham AZ