1) Aaron Rodgers- Rodgers should without question be not only the first QB selected in the draft, but the first player overall selected. Last year, Rodgers kept fantasy owners in every game by averaging a gaudy 25.6 fantasy points per game. No matter what other players owners surround Rodgers with, they can expect to win every week.
2) Arian Foster- After a slow start to the season and missing two games due to a tight hamstring, Foster had an excellent season and proved that he wasn’t a one year wonder. In 13 games, he ran for 1,224 yards, caught for 617 yards and scored 12 touchdowns (10 rushing 2 receiving). Owners can expect Foster to pick up right where he left off and expect even a bigger ’12.
3) Ray Rice- Ray Rice was as consistent as anyone last year. In only two games did he score under 10 fantasy points. He’s also a great receiver out of the backfield (76 receptions for 704 yards and 3 touchdowns). At pick #3, Rice will give owners one of the best running backs throughout he whole year.
4) LeSean McCoy- Last year, McCoy broke out and became not only a superstar but a fantasy stud. Like Rice and Foster, McCoy can catch the ball out of the backfield. However, he was much more of a receiving threat when Michael Vick wasn’t injured. In turn, Michael Vick’s health status directly effects McCoy’s production. Regardless, expect McCoy to have another big year in ’12.
5) Maurice Jones-Drew- MJD was a workforce for the Jaguars last season. He carried the ball for over 20 times in all but 6 games. With the Jaguars still questionable at the Quarterback position, MJD should continue to see lots of touches. The only issue is that the Jags will probably be behind a lot late in games causing them to throw it more, and he is starting to get older which causes some concern for injury risk.
6) Calvin Johnson- With one of the most incredible seasons ever put up by a Wide Receiver, MegaTron is most certainly worth a top 7 pick. Stafford really came into his own last season causing a sky rocket in Johnson’s numbers. He is by far the best receiver and should be taken in the top 7 even though owners may shy away because he is a Wide Receiver.
7) Drew Brees- Most people will shy away from Brees due to the offseason drama and the suspension of Sean Payton. Regardless, Drew Brees will still be playing in the same offense with the same players surrounding him. While it can be expected that his numbers will dip a little bit, it’s no raise for concern and he should, without a doubt, still be picked high.
8) Chris Johnson- CJ was a headache all year for fantasy owners. He never really got into a rhythm after holding out for so long. He only put up double-digit points in 8 games and scored only 4 times. On a brighter note, he did rush for over 1,000 yards. With a full training camp and no holdout, I think it’s safe to say owners can expect better production from CJ this year.
9) Tom Brady- Brady should be considered the pick here based on who is left on the board. Andre Johnson, Greg Jennings, and Matt Forte are all solid players, none are worth more than having a guaranteed top 3 Fantasy Quarterback.
10) Matt Forte- Before going down with an injury, Forte was a top 3 ranked running back. While there will still be concern on him coming back from the injury, look for him to put up big numbers this year. Even though he doesn’t score many touchdowns, he racks up carries and can catch the ball out of the backfield, which will result in nice yardage for owners.
11) Andre Johnson- When Schaub and Johnson are both healthy, they’re one of the toughest combinations to beat. Picking Johnson this early is a high risk/high reward type situation. If Schaub and Johnson stay on the field all year, the reward will without a question outweigh the risk and make him a steal at #11.
12) Ryan Matthews- Matthews broke out last year and turned into a solid #1 fantasy running back. He put up double-digit points in 9 games while scoring 6 touchdowns. Matthews will see the vast majority of the carries for the Chargers adding to his value
13) Darren McFadden
14) Marshawn Lynch
15) Greg Jennings
16) Rob Gronkowski
17) Larry Fitzgerald
18) Matthew Stafford
19) Jamaal Charles
20) Roddy White
21) Mike Wallace
22) DeMarco Murray
23) Fred Jackson
24) Wes Welker
*Back to Back fantasy football champion
TEAMS: Green Bay Packers, Baltimore Ravens, Philadelphia Eagles, Jacksonville Jaguars, New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks, Atlanta Falcons
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