I can't lie to you. My fantasy team bombed in 2013.
Now, 'bombed' may be a harsh word; after all, I did finish 7th out of 12 teams. However, for a guy that's used to being in the championship most years, a fantasy consolation made me about as happy as a cow at a beef market.
Finishing out of the playoffs has already made me super motivated to get started on next season's ranks (aside from being anxious for baseball season). Here's a list of guys I'm going to want to grab in my draft come August.
(Round 1ish) Drew Brees, QB, Saints – I know, I know. Quarterback is going to be deeper than ever in 2013; but I can't help it. Brees was elite as ever in 2012 and put up ridiculous numbers on a coachless Saints team. With all of the madness surrounding the team this season, he still had the most points of any QB in my league.
or also consider: Jamaal Charles
(Round 2ish) Demaryius Thomas, WR, Broncos – The guy is finally living up to his lofty expectations, racking up over 1,400 yards and 10 TDs in his first year with Peyton Manning. The question is whether or not Manning can keep up this type of production as he nears 40. With Thomas' elite size and skill set, I'm willing to take that chance.
or also consider: Brandon Marshall
(Round 3ish) Rob Gronkowskie, TE, Patriots – I still think you'll need an elite tight end in 2013. Gronk was well on his way to great numbers once again until he was derailed in week 12.
or also consider: Jimmy Graham, Matt Forte
(Round 4ish) Julio Jones, WR, Falcons – Notice I still haven't taken a running back yet? I can't help it. Jones matured into a top 10 wideout this year, Matt Ryan matured into a top 10 quarterback and Roddy White is another year older.
or also consider: Victor Cruz, Randall Cobb
(Round 5ish) Darren McFadden, RB, Raiders – When he's healthy he's consistently reliable.
or also consider: Larry Fitzgerald
(Round 6ish) Greg Jennings, WR, Packers – He might not be a Packer next year, but don't hate on the guy just because he was hurt most of the season. He can still be elite as any WR out there; just as proved in his last contest in week 17 in which he hauled in 2 TDs for 120 yards.
or also consider: Andrew Luck, Matt Ryan
(Round 7-8ish) Vick Ballard, RB, Colts – The guy put up the following fantasy totals in the closing weeks of the season: 12,10,10,6,13. It looks like the Colts have found a groove for him, all while putting up the Ws as well. Andrew Luck is amazing and we know the running game only improves with great quarterback play. I'm buying.
(Round 9-10ish) T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts – Another Colt?? Yup. Hilton has elite speed, and just like Ballard — who has been reeling in points during Colts wins — so has this young wideout. Hilton racked up 85 fantasy points during the final seven weeks of the season. And again, Andrew Luck is amazing.
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