As we near August in the NFL, everything slowly begins to ramp up. First comes training camp, and with that, preseason arrives in no time. With the football season slowly coming along, that can only mean one thing - fantasy football is nearly back.
Some leagues may or may not start this month, and some in August, which means it’s time to start strategically planning out your strategies to best your buddies this NFL season.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld released a detailed fantasy preview on the Los Angeles Rams, and we’ll take a look at some of the players he suggests looking at.
2016 Pass Attempts Rank: 27th
2016 Rush Attempts Rank: 28th
2016 Play Volume Rank: 31st
2016 Yards Per Play Rank: 32nd
Unaccounted for Targets from 2016 (Rank): 297 (2nd)
Unaccounted for Carries from 2016 (Rank): 41 (21st)
Now, the two most interesting stats here are the last two, the unaccounted targets and carries from 2016. Obviously the Rams let a lot of receiving options walk in the offseason (Britt, Quick, Kendricks) and somebody needs to make up the difference in receptions. As for carries? Not many unaccounted for, as Todd Gurley returns as the bell cow, and the lone replacement (so far) comes with Lance Dunbar swapping in for Benny Cunningham, though both were more relevant as pass catching RB’s.
Woods nevertheless offers deep-league PPR appeal based on projected target volume in an otherwise unproven pass-catcher corps.
Albeit unlikely to become a serious re-draft factor, Woods is a good bet to outscore his WR60 ADP.
No arguments here. With 297 receptions not returning, somebody has to take the volume, and the likely de facto option is Robert Woods. Signed to a large deal, and battling with disappointing Tavon Austin and rookies Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds, Woods has an immediate advantage and role in an offense that sorely lacked the ability to move the chains and effectively prolong drives. This is where Woods and Kupp will do most of their damage, with the hope being that guys like Austin (not likely) and Reynolds can provide more of a deep threat and field stretching role.
McVay’s 2016 Redskins used three-receiver “11 personnel” at the sixth-highest rate (73%) in the league, so Higbee and Everett may not play together much.
While Everett is compelling Dynasty pick, he lacks re-draft and best-ball appeal.
Once again, no arguments here. For McVay’s offense in Washington, obviously it was different. They had some really good personnel at WR (Pierre Garcon, DeSean Jackson, Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson) so they likely wanted to have 3 WR’s out on the field as opposed to removing one for a 32-year old Vernon Davis. As for how this relates to the Rams, who really knows. It may be wise for the Rams and coach McVay to use 12 personnel, as having both Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee on the field can pose for some serious versatility and mismatches.
Taking the Trent Richardson career path, Todd Gurley enters his third NFL season having rushed for 90-plus yards in just one of his last 24 games with an abysmal 3.43 yards-per-carry average during that stretch.
Another concern for Gurley’s 2017 outlook is the addition of Lance Dunbar, who is expected to fill the Chris Thompson role as Los Angeles’ passing-down specialist, potentially curbing Gurley’s receiving usage. In Dallas last year, Ezekiel Elliott averaged 2.3 targets in Dunbar’s 13 games compared to 4.0 targets with Dunbar inactive.
Interesting. Evan Silva appears to be very low on Todd Gurley, though he does concede that sheer volume will work in favor for Gurley, which is evident. Outside of Lance Dunbar stealing some valuable work as a receiver out of the backfield, the Rams really don’t have another option to run the ball effectively - therefore Gurley should see plenty of work. How he produces remains to be seen.
As is, I am expecting another three-to-five-win campaign.
Clearly Silva is not a fan of the Rams’ prospects in 2017. While there has been plenty of change, it’s tough to see this roster only win three games though I guess nobody really expected the Rams to win only four games last year. This team will ride as Jared Goff does, and if the Rams offensive line is as ineffective as it was last season, the season could go badly. On paper, the team surely improved, but that’s why they play the games. Strap up for a long season!
.....oh, also, the last time the Rams went 4-12, they won the Super Bowl next year. Now, I’m not saying expect that, but it just goes to show that you can never really rule anyone out in the unpredictable world of the NFL.