Free agency started with a bang and now we are into a slow burn. Here is a look at some of the more fantasy football relevant 2013 NFL Free Agency news:
Percy Harvin: The biggest news item came before free agency hit, when Percy Harvin was traded to the Seattle Seahawks for a first, third and seventh round pick. All in all the trade was probably the best for both teams. Harvin, Frazier and Ponder were not the best of friends, so the Vikings were not in the best bargaining position, but still came away with a first round pick. Of course Harvin is the crown jewel here and worth more than what they gave, but as Mick Jagger says, “I was raised by a toothless, bearded hag.” Wait, let me check on that.
His fantasy impact should remain solid as a top 10 receiver with upside for more, but the biggest beneficiary will be Russell Wilson, who gets one of the most dynamic receivers in the game on his side. The fact that Harvin’s yards after the catchin 2013 were ranked fifth with 542 and he only played in nine games is amazing. Wilson can let Harvin do all the heavy lifting while he naps. Harvin’s versatility will add to Wilson’s versatility and cause defenses to lean back on their heals while Marshawn Lynch plows them over. It will be hard to stop the Seachickens in 2013.
Mike Wallace: Wallace was helped in his career by Ben Roethlisberger’s ability to elude defenders while allowing Mike Wallace to use his speed to get deep, but there have been plenty of fast receivers that failed miserably in the NFL. Wallace is a good receiver and as we saw with Vincent Jackson last season, ability often wins out. The Miami Dolphins sure hope it will at least. Ryan Tannehill is still young and showed promise his rookie year. Wallace has plenty of upside and there’s no reason to think he won’t put up top 20 wide receiver numbers.
Greg Jennings: So far the news for Jennings has been poor to not good. The rumor-mill hasn’t linked him with any teams except for his backup plan of the Packers. I am a little surprised just based on the fact he is still a top player when healthy and finished last season strong after returning from injury. We’re still in wait and see mode with Jennings, but for fantasy purposes it will be hard to top Aaron Rodgers as your quarterback. Resigning with the Packers is probably the best for his fantasy production and bad news for James Jones enthusiasts.
Jared Cook: The potential laden Cook signed with the St. Louis Rams for what looks to be 8 million dollars cash per year. He has great potential and added to the young pair of receivers, Chris Givens and Brian Quick, as well as an explosive running back Isaiah Pead, there should be plenty of potential all around, but putting it all together is going to be difficult. The biggest question will be Sam Bradford. He has yet to show he is a better than average NFL talent. Cook is still laden with potential, but I’m not sure if this will be the season he unladens it all over the field.
Steven Jackson: The two teams most interested in jackson are the Falcons and the Packers. Both teams need him and the Packers are trying to drive his price down by hosting Peyton Hillis for a look-see. The Falcons project to give him more goal line looks, but the Packers offense and Jackson’s ability in the passing game, make him valuable there as well. Either way, I’m like his outlook for 2013.
Reggie Bush: All signs point to him signing with the Lions, which would skyrocket his upside. Last season Lions running backs caught 105 passes (4th in the league) and Bush would be in line for a big chunk of those, along with a big split of the rushing attempts. He still comes with some risk, but I have high hopes if he lands in Detroit.
Shonne Greene: The Titans lare poised to sign Greene as their goal line back. Last season the Titans had a total of 9 rushing attempts inside the 5 yard line, so yeah, Shonn Greene will need that team to get better and fast (as well as himself).
Tony Gonzalez: Gonzo will return for his 58th year in the league, or somewhere near. He finished last season as the third best fantasy tight end after a hot start and a total collapse by others at the position. He’s a top 10 tight end even in his golden years, but you can’t draft him as the third best with much confidence anymore. He was cheap last season, but will probably be overpriced this season.
Anquan Boldin: The guy could catch a cold in a CDC clean room, but he’s still not a good fantasy wide receiver. Now that he’s with the 49ers there’s little chance he will see any improvement in targets, which is what he would need in scores to be worth owning.
Ryan Fitzpatrick: The beard is loose! Run for your lives! And if you get far enough away there’s no chance he’ll hit you with a football. The Cardinals are looking to add to their stable of old and young nags, so now that Fitz is on the market, the chances are about 100% that he ends up in Glendale.
Martellus Bennett: The Black Unicorn is now a Chicago Bear. The Bears needed a tight end like nobodies business. Thanks Mike Martz! Bennett should fill the role well and become the #2 red zone target quickly. I don’t see any reason not to expect a top 12 season out of him. And since I live in Chicago I might actually start reading the paper to get my Bennett sound bites.
Darrius Heyward-Bey: DHB has had his ups and downs as a Raider and now he’s really down, as in out. His Al Davis induced draft slot and contract didn’t help him, but neither did his inconsistency. He’s still talented enough to land a starting gig elsewhere. If it’s the right one for fantasy production, he still might be worth a late pick.
Laurent Robinson: He was released after a year and four concussions. I, along with the rest of the world, said that signing him after his big touchdown year in Dallas was ill-advised, but the guy was only able to play five games due to concussions and then is released after being cleared physically, even though there isn’t a very good chance he’ll ever be able to play football again. I’m just not sure how you pass a physical by NFL doctors, but aren’t allowed to play in the NFL? Shouldn’t one of the criteria of passing your physical be that you could play in the NFL?