In today’s NFL, it’s all about offense. Just ask the New Orleans Saints who yet again have all the makings of an explosive offense but paired with a defense that would struggle stopping Friday Night Tykes. Of course fantasy football is even more about offenses since those are the players you are choosing to build your team around. I would love to play in a league where the offense was one unit and you built your fantasy team via defense. Put that in the good idea category.
With minicamps just finishing up and the dark period of the NFL offseason looming, I figured now was as good a time as any to take a look around the league and find some potential-laiden offenses. For each of these offenses, I’ve also listed players who could see big fantasy years, as well as some names who could be sneaky adds late in drafts for those daring enough to take the risk.
Let’s start with my OG hypetrain...
Fantasy stars: Jameis Winston, Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson, O.J. Howard, Cameron Brate
Fantasy sleepers: Doug Martin, Jeremy McNichols
Shocker, I know. My love for Winston in 2017 is well documented and I still think he has the potential to accelerate up fantasy rankings once the season starts. He finished 15th last year among QBs in total points with 262 (16.3 FPPG). However, he now has more weapons at his disposal with the signing of Jackson and drafting of Howard. Evans will obviously continue to be a beast and while the tight end duo of Howard and Brate might be frustrating at times, both will see their fair share of targets.
I know it might seem silly to have Martin in the “sleepers” category but don’t forget he’s suspended the first four games of the season. He also took a big step back last year after finishing 3rd among fantasy RBs in total points in 2015 and I’m still unsure if he’ll be able to return to that level of production. Plus, don’t sleep on McNichols, the Bucs’ 5th round pick who’s already garnered praise in OTAs and minicamps.
Fantasy stars: Marcus Mariota, DeMarco Murray, Derrick Henry, Corey Davis, Delanie Walker
Fantasy sleepers: Eric Decker, Rishard Matthews
This Titans offense has all the makings of a top 5 attack. They have a powerful run game with Murray and Henry running behind one of the best offensive lines in football. I think the signing of Decker is going to be sneaky awesome for Tennessee and Mariota’s development. As I said when he was released, Decker has had big fantasy seasons before and still has something left in the tank. I obviously don’t need to hype up Davis anymore to you all as I’ve been doing that since he was drafted by the Titans.
Bold prediction: I could see Murray being supplanted by Henry at some point this season. So, keep eyes out for that.
Fantasy stars: Carson Wentz, Alshon Jeffery, Jordan Matthews, Zach Ertz
Fantasy sleepers: LeGarrette Blount, Torrey Smith
If you want a real indepth look at this roster, read the above article. Wentz now has the number one thing a sophomore quarterback could want: a receiver who can catch. I know, it seems crazy, but it’s very important. The addition of Jeffery of course has people giddy at the potential jump Wentz could take. And let’s not ignore Jeffery himself. Yes his career has been derailed a little bit by injuries and suspensions, but he was a top 15 fantasy receiver in 2013 and 14. If he can return to being the big, dominate downfield receiver he was with the Jay Cutler Bears, he could be in for a big season in Philly.
Blount to me might be the ultimate low risk, high reward guy this year in fantasy. Heck, he’s made an entire career of that. While we have yet to see Blount have real success in recent memory outside of New England, the signs point to him being able to find the endzone—and thus, lots of fantasy points—with some regularity in Philly. He could still have another double digit touchdown season left in him (though I don’t know if I’d count on that).
Fantasy stars: Andy Dalton, Joe Mixon, A.J. Green, Tyler Eifert
Fantasy sleepers: Jeremy Hill, Giovani Bernard, John Ross
It sucked last year that Green got injured. Not just because he was on my team in one of my many leagues, but because I love A.J. Green, he’s really good, and he was on my team in one of my many leagues. But we all know what he can be when he’s fully healthy and hopefully he’ll be able to lineup with a fully healthy Eifert. This would return the core of the 2015 Bengals offense that was so explosive and had everyone thinking, “This Andy Dalton guy might actually be good”. Also, John Ross.
I have plenty of trepidation when it comes to the Bengals’ backfield simply because there are a lot of guys for really one role. However, I think Mixon will win the starting role and never look back, hence why I threw him in with the “stars”.
Fantasy stars: Carlos Hyde, Pierre Garcon, Jeremy Kerley
Fantasy sleepers: Brian Hoyer, Vance McDonald
Before you round up all your friends and grab your pitchforks and light things on fire, let me remind you of one thing: Kyle Shanahan. Do I really need to say more? Oh, I do?
This pick completely falls upon the shoulders of Shanahan being awesome and working wonders with the 49ers offense. Which can be done mind you. Shanahan has a pretty good track record when you look at the teams he has coached for and he has players here in SF who’ve all had success under him. Garcon’s best season of his career came in his second season with Shanahan in Washington where he finished 14th among WRs in fantasy that year. Hoyer was a top 25 fantasy quarterback the year he played under Shanahan in Cleveland. Hyde is just an underrated running back who’s coming off a top 15 fantasy season. There are a lot of if, ands, and buts in this scenario, but if it pans out, man will I look like a genius. And isn’t that what this is all about anyways?
Which fantasy offenses are you hyped on heading into 2017?
This poll is closed
Some other, more obvious team
Any team but the 49ers