It's hard to believe that we're less than two weeks away from the start of the NFL regular season. For many fans, they're just now starting to pay attention. But for fantasy owners, for FOOTBALLGUYS, we're already many months into our preparation. As one of the contributors to the site's projections, I have had the entire league modeled and projected since late April. A LOT of things happen between then and the beginning of September. I, along with the other staff, tweak our projections and expectations in real-time. But it occurs to me that very little is ever said about the way our opinions change. This article, and others like it, will highlight qualitatively the assumptions that went into my initial projections that have since changed considerably. Enjoy.
On Second Thought...
Carson Palmer (ARI) is a risky proposition
Palmer was a Top-5 fantasy quarterback in 2015 but fell into low-end QB2 territory in 2016. There was a hope last year was an anomaly driven by injuries on the offensive line and among the receiving corps. A closer examination of Palmer’s career shows 2015 to be the outlier, and 2016 to be in-line with his normal level of play. • Yards per attempt (7.1) is closer to his career mark (7.3) than his 2015 mark (8.7) • Yards per completion (11.6) mirrors his career mark (11.7) versus the 2015 outlier (13.7) • Touchdown rate (4.4%) resembles his career mark (4.4%) versus the 2015 anomaly (6.5%) At 38 years old, we should expect Palmer to fall short of his career averages, much less exceed them as he did two seasons ago. Also, Bruce Arians has condemned the receiving corps suggesting there are only two “NFL caliber” receivers on the roster – Larry Fitzgerald and Jaron Brown. While he may have been posturing to get John Brown out of the trainer’s room, it speaks to a lack of depth which adds to Palmer’s downside and limits his upside.