The Fantasy 3: Who to Avoid in 2016

There are always players everyone seems to want when draft season rolls around. And many times, buyer’s remorse sets in around October – sometimes sooner. Save yourself the trouble and avoid the following players this year.

Jamaal Charles

Nothing will keep fantasy owners from drafting running backs quite like hearing the words “30 years old” or “recent knee injury”. While the KC workhorse isn’t quite of age yet (29 until December), the RB is coming off his hi-res-186038894-running-back-jamaal-charles-of-the-kansas-city-chiefs_crop_exactsecond ACL tear in 5 years. And, yes, Charles managed to bounce back with authority in 2012 after his first major injury by rushing for a career-best 1,509 yards. He’s an outstanding pass catcher out of the backfield and mixes power with elusive quickness. There’s no doubting the talent or the work ethic of Charles. But when does the body refuse to do the things it used to be able to do? No one can put an exact time or number on that question, but, again, when you start pushing 30 and you’ve had multiple knee operations, you start to get your answer.

In addition, the Chiefs will likely be more apt to dispelling Charles from time to time with Spencer Ware and Charcanderick West in order to save their stud back for the stretch run in December and possibly January. While that’s probably great news for KC fans, it’s disheartening for fantasy owners who want and expect Charles to produce numbers of old.

LeSean McCoy

A couple things bother me about McCoy this year. First, Rex Ryan offenses never seem to be all that innovative or productive as far as individual stats go. Few players in that system end up producing gaudy offensive numbers. GettyImages-488589822.vadapt.980.high.22McCoy has all the tools and the talent to be very productive and to be on someone’s roster within the top 20 picks of a draft. But how he is used in the offense is where the question marks come into play.

Secondly, McCoy’s drop off as a top RB hasn’t exactly happened overnight. His lack of TD productivity has been evident over the past 4 seasons and his drop in yards after contact has fallen in each of the last 6. Add to the equation that Karlos Williams has proven to be a RB1 and that McCoy has dealt with injury in 4 of his 7 seasons in the league.

A lot of experts are high on McCoy and expect big numbers from him – especially in PPR leagues. Suffice to say, I’m not one of them. But, hey, I don’t claim to be an expert either.

Dez Bryant

This is a complicated one. It was just one year ago that Bryant was a sure-fire top 2 WR, who garnered much 1st round consideration. However, a disappointing 2015 season coupled with more foot problems (a third surgery) makes the all-pro wide receiver a questionable draft choice early on. You also have to consider the health and 10405206-largedurability of Tony Romo this season.

So when I say to “avoid” Dez, I mean stay away from reaching on him in one of the first 2 rounds. His value has declined – but many magazines and media publications still tout him as a top 5 WR. And knowing that, people are guaranteed to eye him with one of their first two picks for sure. I’m warning against that. In the event your league is full of smart fantasy players (or guys who read this column), you may find him in the 3rd round and, then, by all means pick him up.

Another interesting note on Dez – the Cowboys have a very favorable schedule, especially the first couple months. It’d be a savvy move to grab Dez – even if it means drafting him in one of the first two rounds – and use him as trade bait after a month or so of what can expected to be very productive fantasy output.

Feedback is always welcome through the website in the comments box or on my Twitter feed — @brian22goodwin.

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Author: Brian Goodwin

An educator for 15 years. I have a passion for sports and a passion for writing about sports. I'm very excited to run this blog and have conversations with people about relevant topics, mostly pertaining to sports but also in all aspects of life.

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