A fantasy draft is all about obtaining the most value with each selection. There is value available throughout a draft, and grabbing it is one of the most important keys to a successful fantasy team. In an attempt to point out this value, we asked our staff to look through the top 150 players and identify players that should outperform their draft position.
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Players Receiving 5 Votes
Matthew Stafford, Detroit
Bloom: Stafford's 2015, much like the Lions', was seen as a disappointment. That perception ignores the change in the Lions offense mid-season that brought out some of Stafford's best play of his career. After new offensive coordinator Jim Bob Cooter was installed, Stafford was a top 12 fantasy quarterback, and he was top 6 after the bye, which only excluded a lost game in London when the Lions when mostly going through the motions. While Calvin Johnson retired this offseason, the Lions also added Marvin Jones to fill the void, and young weapons like Eric Ebron and Theo Riddick should only get better as they get into the prime of their careers. With a full offseason to work on Cooter's offense, Stafford is more than ready to sustain his second half production.
Hindery: Stafford finished the 2015 on fire (19 touchdowns and just two interceptions in the second-half of the season). We have seen mid-career fantasy breakouts at quarterback often over the past decade (Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger, Drew Bres, etc.). At age 28, Stafford might be following a similar path. In Jim Bob Cooter's scheme, the game finally seemed to slow down for Stafford. The loss of Calvin Johnson could also be a blessing in disguise. Instead of dealing with specially designed new coverages every week (and feeling compelled to force the ball to the superstar regardless), Stafford will see teams play the Lions more traditionally. He will be tasked with spreading the ball around to the pass catching crew of Golden Tate, Marvin Jones, Eric Ebron, Theo Riddick and Ameer Abdullah. There are enough weapons for Stafford to pick up where he left off last season and emerge as a true QB1.