New York, rated by footballguys.com
Please note: while rate-my-team is still operational, it is NOT up to date. It will still reflect PRESEASON info and analysis.Edit this team Input another team with the same league settings Your team is currently being rated by the projections of David Dodds Switch to: Maurile Tremblay Bob Henry Jason Wood
QB: Matthew Stafford, Alex Smith
RB: Marshawn Lynch, Chris Johnson, Darren Sproles
WR: Randall Cobb, Danny Amendola, Cecil Shorts, Vincent Brown, Emmanuel Sanders, Justin Blackmon
TE: Jared Cook
PK: David Akers
TD: Miami Dolphins
Let's start by remarking that we appreciate your old-school leanings: you have a team marked by strength at the running back position. Because the position is so sought after, a team constructed like this usually has a chance to make the playoffs. But with the quarterback and wide receiver both being less strong, you may need to do something to change the outlook of this team. Your deficiencies are likely to show themselves through the bye weeks, so try to manuever early in improving the quarterback and/or receiver positions before week four.
Keep an eye out for quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Andrew Luck from last year, Cam Newton the year before, Michael Vick and Josh Freeman in 2010, and Matt Cassel and Kurt Warner in 2008. All were available cheap in August, and all contributed to fantasy championship teams. Similarly, wide receivers like James Jones and Cecil Shorts were available after a lot of the drafts. Landing some of this year's top waiver players would be a huge help, so pay close attention to increased workloads, targets, injuries, etc.
Players we particularly like on this team include Cecil Shorts, Vincent Brown, Emmanuel Sanders, Justin Blackmon, and Danny Amendola. We have all these guys ranked ahead of where they are typically being drafted.Bottom line:
- With great inseason management, we think you have about a 65 percent chance of making the playoffs.
- With good inseason management, we think you have about a 45 percent chance of making the playoffs.
- With average inseason management, we think you have a 27 percent chance of making the playoffs.
We have Matthew Stafford rated #12 among quarterbacks, which makes him a viable starter if not an exciting one. And we're not crazy about Alex Smith (ranked #19 among quarterbacks) as a backup. If Stafford turns in the season we expect, this position won't ruin you, but it probably won't be a strength either. And if things go wrong, it could be a long year at QB.
Incidentally, Smith has what we project as a good matchup (BUF) during Stafford's bye.RB Summary:
Your starting running back group is a strength, particularly Chris Johnson as a second running back. We figure them at a combined 1.1 points per game better than an average opponent in this league. Our projections have Marshawn Lynch ranked 10th and Johnson ranked 13th.
Your bench also looks good. We love Darren Sproles as a third running back; he's a likely flex starter.
We might suggest adding a bit more depth here. See the end of the report for some suggestions on who to pick up.WR Summary:
We like Danny Amendola as a second WR, but we consider your starting receivers, as a group, to be a little below par. Randall Cobb is our 13th ranked WR, and we have Amendola at #16.
Your bench looks good and should help offset the unexciting starting unit. Tough to do better than Cecil Shorts at WR3. Likewise, Vincent Brown should be excellent at WR4.
Though some teams will probably be content to roster as few as four players here, it was not a bad idea to take a few extras because you're not particularly strong overall at the position. Of your remaining guys, we like Emmanuel Sanders the best, but you should keep the one you think has the best chance of putting up starter numbers. The rest might be considered expendable if you find you need roster space elsewhere.TE Summary:
Jared Cook, who we have ranked #9, is below average but probably adequate as a starting tight end. You might get by with only Cook, but some additional help here probably wouldn't hurt.Kicker Summary:
David Akers, our ninth ranked kicker, won't win the league for you, but he'll do.Defense Summary:When you don't have an elite defense, one option is a committee approach. That is, try to get two cheap defenses whose schedules fit well together. Here are a few teams who we think may be available and whose schedules fit best with the Dolphins', along with the combined schedule that each would create: Dolphins + Browns = MIA | IND | ATL | CIN | BUF | DET | BUF | KC | CIN | TB | SD | PIT | NYJ | PIT | CHI | NYJ
Dolphins + Buccaneers = NYJ | IND | ATL | ARI | BAL | PHI | BUF | CAR | CIN | MIA | SD | DET | NYJ | PIT | SF | BUF
Dolphins + Giants = CLE | IND | CAR | KC | PHI | CHI | BUF | PHI | CIN | OAK | SD | DAL | NYJ | SD | SEA | BUF
Is this a dynasty team? Click here to find out how it might look for 2014 season.
Schedule AnalysisGreen means GO (good matchup), red means STOP (bad matchup). Main starters highlighted At the bottom of the table, the Relative Strength row shows you how strong we project your team to be, relative to your usual strength, in that week. This accounts for byes and matchups.
- Please note that the Relative strength numbers above account for both byes and matchups.
- Remember that you might have starters on bye in a given week, but still have a high relative strength. This could occur because of favorable matchups, or it might be because you are projected to be missing less production than an average opponent will (your opponents have to deal with byes too).
- Week 9 presents moderate bye week issues: Matthew Stafford, Justin Blackmon, Cecil Shorts, and David Akers are not playing.
- Darren Sproles is out in week 7, but your opponent will likely have comparable issues with byes.
- Jared Cook is out in week 11, but your opponent will likely have comparable issues with byes.
- Chris Johnson and Vincent Brown are out in week 8, but your opponent will likely have comparable issues with byes.
- In weeks 4, 5, 6, and 10 you'll probably be better off than your opponent, as far as byes are concerned.
Potential Free AgentsListed in order of preference. We don't know exactly who is available in your league, but here is a list of players who might be available and could be upgrades over some of your depth players, listed in order of preference. Your players are listed in red for comparison. Players who might not mesh well with the bye weeks of your key players are grayed out.
QB: we don't necessarily recommend any roster moves here. RB: Joique Bell (9), Kendall Hunter (9), Bryce Brown (12), Daniel Thomas (6), Isaiah Pead (11), Michael Bush (8), Isaac Redman (5), Bilal Powell (10), Shonn Greene (8), Knile Davis (10), Mike Tolbert (4), Marcel Reece (7), Chris Ogbonnaya (10), Mike Goodson (10), Rashad Jennings (7), Zac Stacy (11), Christine Michael (12), Knowshon Moreno (9), Roy Helu (5). WR: Justin Blackmon (9), Sidney Rice (12), Brian Hartline (6), DeAndre Hopkins (8), Alshon Jeffery (8), Denarius Moore (7), Greg Little (10), Brandon LaFell (4), Nate Washington (8), Stephen Hill (10). TE: Kyle Rudolph (5), Jared Cook (11), Owen Daniels (8), Antonio Gates (8), Jordan Cameron (10), Fred Davis (5), Dwayne Allen (8), Martellus Bennett (8), Brandon Myers (9), Jermaine Gresham (12). PK: Josh Brown (9), David Akers (9), Steve Hauschka (12), Blair Walsh (5), Kai Forbath (5), Dan Bailey (11), Adam Vinatieri (8), Mike Nugent (12), Mason Crosby (4), Greg Zuerlein (11). TD: Cincinnati Bengals (12), Arizona Cardinals (9), New York Giants (9), St. Louis Rams (11), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5), Denver Broncos (9), Minnesota Vikings (5), San Diego Chargers (8), Cleveland Browns (10), Atlanta Falcons (6), Tennessee Titans (8), New York Jets (10), Washington Redskins (5), Miami Dolphins (6).
Projections and Player Summaries
Alex Smith - It's easy to forget after the performance of Colin Kaepernick, but Alex Smith was actually enjoying his best season ever before a concussion and the play of Kaepernick derailed it. Through eight weeks he was the 15th amongst quarterbacks in fantasy points, which is as close as Smith has ever come to sniffing QB1 territory. His completion percentage (70.2%) would have been tied for the fifth best of all-time had he finished the year and he raised his yards per attempt almost a full yard higher than his career best. Smith steps into a very good situation in Kansas City and it's easy to wonder if he can match his production from the first half of 2012. He arguably has better weapons in Jamaal Charles and Dwayne Bowe, but he will not enjoy the same protection behind Kansas City's revamped offensive line. That lack of protection leads to injury concerns, but a need to scramble could lead to more rushing yards for Smith if he can stay healthy. While many of Smith's struggles early in his career were attributed to a lack of stability, Head Coach Andy Reid does not believe that this change will have the same effect on Smith. At the NFL owners meetings this offseason Reid said of the change: "I think the last couple years, that will carry over. And he did, he had a ton of change. Most quarterbacks that go through that, they're ruined. They never come out on the positive side. They get crushed. But he was able to work through all that. Even the year before Jim [Harbaugh] got there, you could see him, his production starting to go up. But what he was doing there, the terminology will be very similar; scheme for the most part will be very similar. I don't think it will be a big transition."
Matthew Stafford - after being labeled an 'injury risk' after his first two seasons, Matthew Stafford has played in 32 consecutive games. Even more impressive, he has over 10,000 yards passing in that same timeframe, and 61 passing TDS. Last season, he attempted over 725 passes, and even chipped in a career high 128 rushing yards and four rushing TDS. However, by the end of the season, the offense was just trying to force the ball into Calvin Johnson. This year, Stafford still doesn't have a legitimate #2 wide receiver on the opposite side of the field from Megatron. Nate Burleson is entering his 11th season, and the rest of the receivers on the team are under achievers or completely unproven. Stafford should have another year of throwing for more than 4500 yards passing, but unless he can spread the ball around a little more, the result will still be a disappointing season for him and the Lions.
Chris Johnson - Chris Johnson has been a workhorse running back for the Titans for each of the five years he has been in the league, never rushing for less than 1,000 yards in a season. He is most known for his 2,000 rushing yard season in 2009 and has only surpassed 1,300 yards since then. Johnson has outstanding speed and can score from anywhere on the field. He is a patient runner with explosiveness to reach a hole and dart for open space. Johnson has seen his yards per carry fluctuate over the last few years and the Tennessee offensive line could be partly to blame. This off season the Titans bolstered their offensive line in an effort to improve the running game as well as pass protection. Former Jets starting running back Shonn Greene signed with the Titans in the off season, but Johnson is expected to be the team's lead back and workhorse. The rumblings around Tennessee suggest a return to a more run-oriented offensive attack in 2013. This approach makes Johnson an appealing fantasy choice once again.
Marshawn Lynch - Marshawn Lynch was a first-round draft pick by the Buffalo Bills in 2007, and was traded to the Seahawks during his fourth season in the league. He has been a great fit in the Seattle offense, and was a top-five fantasy RB in each of the last two seasons. Lynch is known for his intense running style: he runs with relentless effort and determination, using sheer will to keep his balance and moving forward after contact. With the Seahawks' addition of WR Percy Harvin to keep defenses honest, Lynch should face fewer eight-man fronts this season and another top-five fantasy finish is a realistic possibiliy. But there are concerns. First, Lynch has suffered back spams for several seasons now. While they did not cause him to miss an regular season games in 2012 (and caused him to miss only one game in 2011), they frequently limited him in practice and caused him to be listed as questionable nearly every week. Second, Lynch has a June trial date for a DUI he was arrested for last year. If he is convicted, he'll face a two-game suspension to start the year. Third, Lynch has struggled with ball control, and now that the team has terrific depth at running back (in Robert Turbin and rookie Christine Michael), a poorly timed fumble could open the door for another back to steal carries. All that said, Lynch's proven track record and upside potential will ensure that he's off the board by the middle of the first round in most fantasy drafts.
Darren Sproles - Darren Sproles has a well defined role for the Saints and has been extremely effective in the offense. He has had his two most productive seasons in the NFL as a member of the Saints, after leaving the Chargers after the 2010 season in free agency. Sproles broke the NFL record for most single-season all purpose yards his first year with the Saints in 2011 with 2,696 yards and had career highs with 603 yards rushing, 710 yards receiving and a combined 9 TDs. He is also the first player in NFL history to have over 2,200 all purpose yards in four different seasons. He continued that success. He enters the 2013 season as a 30-year old, but continues to be both quick and fast. He has averaged 80 catches per year as a Saint and should continue to be an effective outlet for Drew Brees.
Danny Amendola - With Wes Welker gone, Danny Amendola already had to pick up the role of 'slightly undersized receiver with great hands and fantastic ability after the catch'. Now with the news that tight end Rob Gronkowski is going to have back surgery in June--on top of the quartet of arm surgeries he already had and an infection--Amendola could become even more critical to the offense and quarterback Tom Brady, who has lost most of his safety blankets to injury and Denver. Luckily Amendola is just hitting his stride. While his season-end numbers have never been all that great--the last two years due to injury--that was in part because of the misfiring offense of the St. Louis Rams. Amendola has the ability to really take advantage of what a quarterback like Tom Brady has to offer, and with Gronkowski and fellow tight end Aaron Hernandez possibly missing the start of the season, Brady could rely on him a lot. If that happens, it's only a matter of staying healthy.
Justin Blackmon - Things were starting to look up for the Jaguars passing offense last year when Cecil Shorts broke out and Justin Blackmon contributed in a big way in his rookie season. Fast forward to the 2013 season and that unlikely promising duo at wide receiver took a major hit with the news of Blackmon being suspended for the first 4 games of the season. In his rookie season Blackmon totaled 64 receptions, 865 receiving yards, and 5 touchdowns. Those numbers are very impressive for a rookie, and even more impressive with having the lack luster duo of Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne throwing you the ball. Blackmon has all the talent in the world to succeed on the football field but the one constant that has always seemed to hold him back, is his off field character issues and struggles. Let's hope that this 4 game suspension is a wakeup call for him, and that it helps spiral his NFL career rather then put it in a tailspin.
Vincent Brown - Vincent Brown is a promising receiver whose NFL career has yet to really get going. As a rookie in 2011, his playing time was rather limited. Heading into 2012, however, he looked like the Chargers best receiver. He made big plays throughout training camp and the preseason, consistently outperforming the team's higher-profile free agent acquisitions that year, Robert Meachem and Eddie Royal. But a gruesome ankle injury suffered late in the preseason (on a spectacular touchdown catch) caused him to miss the entire regular season. Before his injury, Brown showed the ability (during the preseason) to run good routes and consistently make tough grabs. Brown doesn't have true breakaway speed, but he is a promising possession-type receiver who could be an effective redzone threat. His 2013 prospects look fairly bright. He is fully recovered from last year's ankle injury, and with the injury to Danario Alexander, Brown seems a lock to start and a favorite to be the Chargers' top wide receiver. Because he's so unproven, and because the Chargers' passing offense may struggle if the offensive line and quarterback play don't significantly improve, Brown should not be drafted as anything better than a fantasy WR3, but he does have WR2 upside potential.
Randall Cobb - In only his second NFL season, as essentially the #4 wide receiver on the team, Randall Cobb had a breakout season, posting almost 1100 yards receiving and eight touchdowns. With Greg Jennings in Minnesota and Donald Driver retired, Cobb is will be on the field for almost every offensive play that Green Bay runs this season. Cobb is a dangerous guy with the ball in his hands, and he's a big play threat that the Packers love to use in different ways. If he can post WR17 fantasy stats as a #4, imagine how well he'll do as an every down player.
Emmanuel Sanders - The Pittsburgh Steelers have decided to match the one-year, $2.5 million tender offer restricted free-agent WR Emmanuel Sanders signed with the New England Patriots. The team now will work hard to see if they can sign Sanders to a long-term extension. Mike Wallace (Dolphins) moved on in free agency and the team needed to keep Sanders around to start in 2013. He'll take over Wallace's role as the primary deep threat for the Steelers but needs to stay healthy in order to play up to his potential. Last year was the first season Sanders was able to stay healthy for the full 16 game schedule. His 75 targets ranked third on the team in 2012 and that number should go up this year. The second year under offensive coordinator Todd Haley should be smoother than 2012. Sanders commented on why the team was out of sync. "We had a new offensive coordinator. At times, we weren't on the same page. And that's obvious." Sanders said. He's never scored more than two receiving touchdowns in a season but with an expanded role that should go up as well.
Cecil Shorts - Cecil Shorts is the type of player that always gets overlooked throughout his football career but never gets discouraged. The Jaguars drafted him in the fourth round out of Mount Union in 2011, and used him sparingly in his rookie season. Now 2012 rolls around and Shorts puts up outstanding numbers with 55 receptions, 979 receiving yards, and 7 touchdowns in 14 games. Shorts is the type of player that takes pride in proving people wrong by his strong athletic ability and play on the field. With the suspension to Justin Blackmon, Shorts will be counted on even more when the Jaguars open up their 2013 season. Shorts was outstanding down the stretch for the Jaguars posting 523 yards and 4 touchdowns (and 60 targets) in his last 6 games before being placed on the injured reserve (concussion) for the Jaguars final 2 games.
Jared Cook - Cook has not turned his wide receiver-like athleticism into steady production through four NFL seasons. He was signed to a long-term deal to rejoin Head Coach Jeff Fisher from his early seasons with the Titans. Tight ends in St.Louis have been one of the least-targeted groups in the entire NFL for over a decade. Cook has functioned as a slot receiver and offers yet more speed in the passing game along with Tavon Austin and Chris Givens.
David Akers - During his final years with the Eagles and two years with the 49ers, Akers had grown accustomed to getting plenty of kicking opportunities. It peaked in 2011 when he set the NFL single season scoring record. Last year he failed to capitalize on thirteen attempts (three from under 40 yards and ten from over 40 yards), came close to losing his job in the playoffs, and was ultimately released in the offseason by San Francisco. He joins an improving Detroit team that could again keep him busy. After two years near the bottom, the Lions climbed to 16th in attempted kicking points in 2010, 12th in 2011, and 10th in 2012. He'll be working closely with rookie holder/punter Sam Martin and long snapper Don Muhlbach, the returning starter that was re-signed. All three will be working under new special teams coordinator John Bonamego.
Miami Dolphins - In recent years, the Miami defense has been on the decline as they haven't been able to put together a complete, across-the-board effort. Specifically, led by Cameron Wake, they are excellent at accumulating sacks. They struggle, however, in almost every other statistical category and are generally a middle-of-the-pack unit. Where they seem to really struggle is at forcing turnovers. That is what keeps them from being an every-week fantasy starter.
Player News (last 7 days)
"Our view" written by footballguys.com's Cecil Lammey and Sigmund Bloom. Click here for all the news around the NFL, updated constantly.Saints | Darren Sproles receiving plenty of interest - Updating a previous report, New Orleans Saints RB Darren Sproles said on NFL Network Tuesday, March 11, that he has received interest from more than 10 teams. The Saints have not released him yet, and are hoping to work out a trade. Tue Mar 11, 08:11 PM [Link to story]
|Footballguys view: It's not going to be for a premium pick, but at least the Saints are likely to get SOMETHING for Sproles. We're likely to see a deal worked out in the near future.|
|Footballguys view: The Saints aren't going to release Sproles. Instead, they are getting plenty of phone calls about Sproles and will look to trade him. We can't imagine any team giving up a premium pick for the diminutive runner.|
|Footballguys view: We'll see if Sanders moves to a team like the Patriots or the Ravens this offseason. His speed would fit in nicely with Joe Flacco's big arm.|
|Footballguys view: We don't see any team trading for Sproles. When he's released, there should be around 10 teams interested in his services.|
|Footballguys view: We could see Sproles wind up in Minnesota where he could serve as a change-of-pace back behind Adrian Peterson. Washington has Roy Helu as their complementary back behind Alfred Morris.|
|Footballguys view: The Browns are in the market for an upgrade at the running back position. They have previously been linked to free agent Ben Tate, but Johnson may be an option for them. With his $10 million cap number we could see the Titans release Johnson if they can't trade him.|
|Footballguys view: Good luck with that. Johnson will have very little trade value. He's got an $10 million cap number in 2014, and there's still three years remaining on his contract.|
|Footballguys view: This means more of the ground game and Mark Ingram. Make sure to target him in your fantasy drafts as a RB3 with upside.|
|Footballguys view: We can't imagine the trade market is going to be white-hot for Johnson's services. He's got an $10 million cap number in 2014, and there's still three years remaining on his contract. The Titans may not find any takers for Johnson, and they may have to release him.|
|Footballguys view: The Lions are looking for wide receiver help this offseason. They could add a player like Sanders to give themselves another quality weapon in the passing game. Sanders should also draw interest from a team like the Patriots.|
|Footballguys view: The Saints are looking to free up cap space so they can sign TE Jimmy Graham. Sproles was put on the trade block, but it looks like the Saints had no takers. On the open market he could go to a team in need of a change-of-pace back and slot receiver.|
|Footballguys view: The Saints looked like they made a fundamental change to the ground game, and how they use Sproles in particular. Since he was targeted 135 times in his first year with the Saints, Sproles has seen his targets take a nosedive every year. He still could be an impact player if he ends up with a team intent on using him as the Saints did that first season.|
|Footballguys view: As expected, Amendola was injured much of last year but showed flashes when healthy. Rumor has it they were already trying to move him, but given the issues at wide receiver, they might be wiser to ride it out and find ways to help keep him on the field.|
|Footballguys view: We'd be surprised to see Johnson with the Titans in 2014. He has a $10 million cap number in 2014, and there's $4 million in dead money. We'll see if the two sides come together on a restructured deal.|