Continuing my review of 2006 rookie coaches to see if there are any parallels to 2007.
Dick Jauron - Buffalo Bills
2005 Fantasy Impact: RB Willis McGahee, WR Lee Evans, LB London Fletcher, LB Angelo Crowell, DE Aaron Schobel, DB Terrence McGee
2006 Fantasy Impact: QB J.P. Losman, McGahee, Evans, Fletcher, Schobel,
What Happened? - The Bills suffered through another tough season but improved their record from 5-11 to 7-9. QB J.P. Losman developed into a reliable fantasy option and WR Lee Evans became a fantasy star. Willis McGahee and the defense continued to produce for fantasy players. Childress solidified a crumbling team, but other than Losman there wasn't much change for fantasy players.
Who could be this year's Dick Jauron? -- Ken Whisenhunt in Arizona. A developing quarterback, a pounding running back and a young defense that continues to improve. The offensive line still holds back the team though. Although the QB (Leinart) becomes a fantasy option, there's not much change for fantasy players. A two game improvement for the Cardinals seems reasonable.
Gary Kubiak - Houston Texans
2005 Fantasy Impact: RB Dominick Davis, LB Morlon Greenwood, DB Dunta Robinson
2006 Fantasy Impact: RB Ron Dayne, WR Andre Johnson, Greenwood, Robinson, LB DeMeco Ryans
What Happened? - Kubiak lost Davis and managed to replace him with a mash-up of third-rate fantasy RBs Ron Dayne and Wali Lundy. A former NFL QB himself, Kubiak was expected to unleash the long-awaited potential of QB David Carr---which never happened, though WR Andre Johnson did breakout. The defense was suddenly full of young fantasy stars which caught most people off guard. The team improved from 2-11 to 6-10, which also caught a lot of people off guard
Who could be this year's Gary Kubiak? -- Bobby Petrino in Atlanta. Like Kubiak, Petrino is expected to unlock the potential of his quarterback, but that might not happen for him either. A breakout for Michael Jenkins or Roddy White could still happen with the offense more focused on the pass. The running game of Dunn and Norwood should carry the team, and the young defense has plenty of breakout candidates.