Dynasty owners: take 10
Posted Apr. 26 at 11:01 PM
A lot was said about the 2009 draft being a fairly weak one, and it might turn out that way. There appear to be at most 3 good quarterbacks, just a handful of future starters at running backs, and an utter mess at wide receiver: the most talented players have some major question marks.
Still, my initial reaction is that there are definitely some players I'm interested in adding to my dynasty team. At least 10, in fact.
1. Knowshon Moreno, Broncos. It used to be that owners would do cartwheels when the Broncos selected a running back, any running back. Fifth-rounder Ryan Torain went high in most rookie drafts a year ago. But with a new coach in place and a glut of backs on Denver's roster, it's tough to know how Moreno will pan out as a rookie. But no matter: He has the talent to start and contribute as both a runner and receiver, and the other backs in Denver aren't even guaranteed a roster spot, let alone a role.
2. Donald Brown, Colts. Indianapolis didn't waste much time getting Joseph Addai involved after drafting him in the first round three years ago, and Brown won't be much different. The Colts like to use two backs, which will keep Brown from having a big season, but half the work from the get-go is a real possibility.
3. Chris Wells, Cardinals. Edgerrin James may have already been released as I write this, and the Tim Hightower Era is over before it began. Arizona will probably use a two-back system, but Wells looks like the more talented, dangerous player.
4. Shonn Greene, Jets. Perhaps when Rex Ryan looks at Greene, he sees LeRon McClain, the fullback turned punishing tailback who had a breakout rookie season when Ryan was in Baltimore last year. Presumably Thomas Jones will ultimately show up in camp and start for the Jets, with Leon Washington the No. 2, but Greene will be next in line and starting by next season (Jones is 31) -- and that's assuming Jones' wishes for a new contract don't get uglier.
5. LeSean McCoy, Eagles. A Brian Westbrook-McCoy tandem could be a reality as soon as this year. And considering Westbrook turns 30 before the start of the season and last played 16 games...um...never, McCoy is a guy to own in almost every league.
6. Michael Crabtree, 49ers. Most viewed Crabtree as the top wideout in the draft, although not the Raiders -- and nobody was excited enough about him to trade up when he slipped to No. 10. Regardless, it won't be surprising if he starts right away, which makes him the best dynasty pick of a shaky class.
7. Percy Harvin, Vikings. OK, he tested positive for marijuana at the combine and might be a bit of a head case, plus there's an injury concern (foot/ankle). You don't have to give him a big contract, you're drafting him for talent. A boom/bust pick, but nice upside.
8. Darrius Heyward-Bey, Raiders. Maybe Al Davis is senile, but the top wideout drafted and fastest player in the draft, going to a two team with almost a total void at the position, is at least worth a roll of the dice.
9. Kenny Britt, Titans. I've seen Britt compared to Brandon Marshall (in a good way); a tough player who can go over the middle and fight through tacklers after the catch. The fact that he goes to a team desperate for talent at wideout is a bonus.
10. Mark Sanchez, Jets. I live in the New York area, so it's tough not to get caught up in the hype. Regardless, few would argue that he's likely in a better situation than Matthew Stafford. He's not throwing to Calvin Johnson, but he's got a better offensive line, far better defense, and should be supported by a better running game, too. He may not be this year's Matt Ryan, but maybe he'll be Joe Flacco.
There are other players to consider: wideouts Jeremy Maclin, Hakeem Nicks and Brian Robiskie, and tight end Brandon Pettigrew in particular. Weak draft or no, there should be enough talent at the skill positions to help your franchise -- maybe not this year, but in the years to come.
Posted by Farhan Hassan | Apr. 28 at 01:08 AM
Nice article, though I am not sure why there is such a sentiment that this draft is weak. Last year, at this time, I don't recall a lot of hype for players like Steve Slaton or Matt Ryan. In fact, it was alomost treated as a given that the Falcons would be "rebuilding" for a long time. In retrospect, last year's rookie class was very strong but I think it is too premature to say that this year's class is weak, esepcially given the sheer number of wide receivers taken in the 1st round as well as 3 running backs taken in the first round (not to mention that the running backs seem to have gone to places where there may be lots of opportunity for them to produce).
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | Apr. 28 at 01:26 AM
It's true that it's too early to say if this is a strong or weak draft. What is interesting though is that GMs weren't taking as many skill position players as high this year as they were last year. Example: A year ago there were 11 running backs drafted in the first three rounds. This year there were only 6 taken that early. The numbers are more similar at WR and QB, but last year was a pretty weak WR class (no first-rounders at all). This one is better than that, with a bunch of first-rounders, but it still looks like kind of a suspect group at the top.
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