The top 5 players I’ll be avoiding when drafting my fantasy football team this season:
Hakeem Nicks (WR) | New York Giants
Between stopping voluntary OTAs because of his contract negotiations, his injury-plagued season in 2012, and wide receiver Ruben Randle in the rearview mirror; I’d personally stay away Hakeem Nicks this fantasy football season. Once Randle is given the opportunity by the Giants, he will start to take away targets from Nicks. Nicks will surely have something to prove being in a contract year, but we’re not sure if he’ll be on the field to prove enough.
Eddie Lacy (RB) | Green Bay Packers
Eddie Lacy has never been the fastest guy on the football field. His 5’10”, 228 pound frames suggests that. Lacy is a power back that muscled his way through SEC teams in the past. He will now be going up against much bigger, more physical defenses in the NFL and this worries me in terms of fantasy value. He will get his shot to start the season, but the Green Bay Packers have others waiting to get their chance as well, such as DuJuan Harris, rookie Jonathan Franklin, Alex Green, and James Starks. Lacy must prove himself or fantasy owners will be highly-disappointed with the first year back.
Ahmad Bradshaw (RB) | Indianapolis Colts
After OTAs, Ahmad Bradshaw is looking like he’ll be the starting tailback for the Colts. You’re probably thinking to yourself, then why is he on your ‘player’s to avoid’ list? Simply put, Vick Ballard. Bradshaw has been productive on the field when he plays. The past couple seasons, we’ve seen his name show up constantly on the ‘game-time decision’ pages. He’s just 27 years-old, but in my opinion it’s an old 27-year-old running back. I see Ballard taking over the starting job in training camp, or at the latest in the first few weeks of the regular season.
Jonathan Stewart (RB) | Carolina Panthers
As Jonathan Stewart looks like he’ll lead the Panthers in carries this season, his health has always been a major concern. This offseason has been no different. Stewart had surgery on BOTH his ankles and as some think he’ll be ready for training camp, I don’t want anything to do with him on my fantasy team. Plus, DeAngelo Williams is still in Carolina and will take carries away from Stewart, especially if Stewart’s ankles start acting up.
Michael Vick (QB) | Philadelphia Eagles
Last but not least, Michael Vick. While many fantasy owners will think Vick will fit perfectly into Chip Kelly’s offensive scheme, I think it just calls for a quicker injury report for the soon to be 33-year-old quarterback. Many think Kelly’s offense will be a mirrored image of what he ran at Oregon. I’m not buying that. Fast paced yes, but more controlled then his days at Oregon. I think he will exploit the two tight end set similar to what Bill Belichick does with the New England Patriots. Chip Kelly has stated that he would like to name Vick his starting QB before the start of training camp. As a side note, Kelly has always liked Nick Foles dating back to his days when he used to coach against him at the University of Arizona.