Fantasy Football drafts are now starting to heat up. But if you haven’t been paying attention to the preseason, you better start shuffling those pre-draft rankings. The Carolina Panthers and Green Bay Packers have already seen their WR1 go down to ACL injuries.
Whenever a WR1 goes down, there’s always the chance that the W3 on that team will burst onto the scene and turn your fantasy squad into an instant contender. But be careful, don’t bank on that happening. In the case of the Green Bay Packers, second year WR Davante Adams is more likely to be the guy who WILL burst onto the scene. Having arguably the best QB in the game throwing him passes, Adams instantly slides into the WR2 slot for the Packers. It will be interesting to see how the Packers will use Adams because Randall Cobb is more of a slot guy, than an outside the numbers type WR. Given the overall offense in Green Bay (QB, WR1, RB1), Adams stock is soaring through the roof faster than Pets.com during the tech bubble. If you look at the latest Yahoo PPR rankings, Adams is now ranked as the #24 WR. That’s ahead of guys like Sammy Watkins, Roddy White, Pierre Garcon, and Steve Smith. Make sure you are on the lookout for Adams if he is still hanging around in rounds 5-6. If you do take him and plan to keep him locked into that WR2 slot, you better make sure to have a stud as your WR1 just in case he underwhelms.
On the other side of the spectrum, there is the value of the Carolina Panthers WR Devin Funchess. When Funchess was drafted in the second round this year, QB Cam Newton was licking his chops. Who wouldn’t want to throw to two guys on the outside who are over 6’4″? Another huge WR is exactly what Newton needs, considering how inaccurate of a passer he is. Too bad he will have only one to throw to this season. Fast forward to preseason 2015, and now last year’s first round draft pick Kelvin Benjamin, tears his ACL. Now, instead of flying under the radar as Benjamin’s sidekick, the rookie is being thrust into the WR1 role. While Benjamin excelled in the role last year with 73 receptions for over 1,000 yards and 9 TDs, it is pretty unrealistic to expect Funchess to do the same. Look for Newton to rely even more heavily on this TE1, Greg Olsen. Olsen has become one of the best fantasy tight ends in the game. Olsen is the pass catcher you want to grab on the Panthers this season. Funchess has jumped up to #47 in the Yahoo rankings. WR to consider who are ranked lower than him are Malcom Floyd, Terrance Williams, Rueben Randle, and Cecil Shorts.
Whatever you do, do not put all of your title hopes on either of these guys. Adams is the guy with the higher ceiling and is more likely to be a solid contributor. But make sure you have plenty of depth, to go along with a top 5 WR1.
Good luck to all in the upcoming weeks, and if you already had your draft and took either of these guys…you got what you deserve. NEVER have a draft before the last week of the preseason.