There may not be much football happening on the field, but fantasy football is in preseason mode. Earlier this week NFL.com released their 2010 fantasy football player rankings. Teams that score an average of less than 11 points per game naturally don't see many of their players on the list of top fantasy performers. Still, there are a handful of players from the St. Louis Rams that did make the cut. Let's take a look at which Rams players made the list and the likelihood of them adding any value to your fantasy team.
#13 RB Steven Jackson - Jackson was a reliable fantasy performer last season, racking up more than 1,400 yards on 324 carries. Of the 15 games he played in, he topped 80 yards 10 times and topped the 100 yard mark 7 times. Yardage-wise, that's about as reliable as it gets. However, there's one thing that kept SJ39 from being the kind of fantasy stud that can carry a team: touchdowns. The Rams anemic offense rarely put the ball in the end zone. It was also a one trick pony offense, so opponents just walled off the goal line and kept SJ39 from scoring. Jackson has a better offense around him this season, but does it have enough punch so that he can find the end zone more often? Jackson could either be a nice catch late in the first/early in the second round, or he could be a tough decision with other impact fantasy players at other positions available with the same pick.
#145 WR Donnie Avery - Somebody has to catch the ball for the Rams this season, right? If the Rams quarterback and receiving situation works out as envisioned, then Avery should be the man working mid-range and deep routes. Avery is also in his third season, when many receivers blossom having picked up their team's offense and the speed of the NFL. He'll be worth keeping an eye on. Right now, it's just too hard to tell.
#173 WR Laurent Robinson - This is probably the Rams receiver I'd try to grab with a late pick. Sure, he only played three games last season, but he caught just about everything that was thrown to him and put up some yards to go with his catches. Odds are that Robinson will again emerge as the Rams go-to receiver given his fit in the system, regardless of which QB is throwing him the ball. He has to stay healthy too.
#199 QB Sam Bradford - The debate about whether or not Bradford will start the season under center (or in the shotgun) for the Rams rages on. Regardless of where he is in relation to the field for the season opener, he should probably be on your bench or the waiver wire in your fantasy league. It's not that I don't believe in the kid - I do - but it's tough for a rookie QB to put up the kind of numbers you need for fantasy gold right away. Watch for Bradford to become a nice bye week or mid-season replacement in your league.
And those are the only Rams on the top 200 list. K Josh Brown should be a decent addition. I think the offense will at least be marginally better which should give Brown more chances to put the ball between the uprights. Also, don't forget he's money from 50+ yards and plays half his games in a dome.