By: Rich Pallarino @rpallarino_
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers – Jimmy Garoppolo was traded to the 49ers a few weeks ago. This was a statement move by the 49ers. San Francisco was slated to have one of the top draft picks in the 2018 NFL Draft before this season started. They desperately needed a quarterback and did not address their need by selecting one of the top prospects at the most coveted position in all of professional sports. What’s clear is that the coaching staff and front office did not identify the talent they feel is necessary to use a draft pick on in this upcoming draft. Garoppolo is currently learning the complex system that Kyle Shanahan installs in his offenses. With Jimmy sitting out, it’ll only be more valuable to fantasy owners. He will have plenty of time to learn the system, develop a chemistry with his receivers, and it also shows that there’s a chance that the offensive weapons are necessary to win football games will be given to him in this offseason. All fantasy owners should pick-up Garoppolo for their future.
Nathan Peterman, QB, Buffalo Bills – Nathan Peterman was selected 171st overall in the 2017 NFL Draft out of the University Pittsburgh. Peterman was listed as a top ten quarterback prospect coming into the draft. He has just above average sized hands for a quarterback, a sub five 40 yard dash, and a new head coach that selected him to most likely be the future leader at the helm. Tyrod Taylor came into this season on a two year deal that may leave him a free-agent at the end of this season. Nathan threw a touchdown pass during last week’s massacre against the Saints. He replaced Taylor and it gave coach McDermott enough substance to call Peterman the start for this Sunday’s game. It’s a longshot, but Peterman is slotted to be the starter and only he can determine his future. It’s a solid time to grab Peterman for your future.
James Conner, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers – James Conner was a 3rd round pick in this past year’s NFL Draft class. Conner is in a very weird situation. He only has 19 attempts this season and has 101 total rushing yards. Now, let’s take a look Le’Veon Bell’s usage this season. Bell has 220 rushing attempts and 40 receptions coming into Week 11. He is on a franchise tag and will be a free-agent at the end of this season and will find himself in a similar situation as DeMarco Murray did at the conclusion of the 2014 NFL season. If Bell parts ways with Pittsburgh, Conner will most likely be named the feature back for the 2018 season. Dynasty owners should grab Conner while they can. He is very low on fantasy radars and will be sure to get touches if Bell isn’t wearing a Steelers uniform next season.
Samaje Perine, RB, Washington Redskins – Samaje Perine is a rookie out of Tulane University. Perine has 66 rushing attempts for 210 yards this season. Coming into the season, he was third on the depth chart. It was Rob Kelley, Chris Thompson and then Perine. Rob Kelley is out this week and Perine should be getting the majority of the touches out of the backfield for the Redskins. If Perine can capitalize on his opportunity and the absence of the Kelley, he should start to solidify himself as a potential starter for next season.
Corey Davis, WR, Tennessee Titans – Corey Davis is finally healthy and is making an impact. Davis was the 5th overall pick in this year’s draft. In four games, Davis has 13 receptions for 149 yards. The Titans have some weapons and they are a run-first team. But, next season is a big question mark for the Titans. This season isn’t exactly going according to plan for the Titans and some holes need to be filled. Eric Decker hasn’t worked out all that well, DeMarco Murray hasn’t looked like his normal self, and the receivers have been iffy all season.
While most analysts expected Davis to really make an impact this season, he has, but anywhere close to their expectations. That’s not an issue. As mentioned earlier, the Titans as a team have not lived up to expectations. This bodes very well for the rookie, Davis. He will continue to grow into the top receiver for the Titans and their future. Make him the future of your receiving corps.
Robby Anderson, WR, New York Jets – Robby Anderson is in his 2nd season with the New York Jets. Anderson has been a real bright spot for the Jets after being a question mark at the end of last season. The Jets have a ton of holes to fill and coming into the season, their receivers were a huge question mark. Some experts had them rated as the worst receiving corps in the league. Well, the Jets added Jermaine Kearse from the Seahawks and have utilized Anderson in the passing game. Robby has 35 receptions, 568 receiving yards, averaging 16.2 yards per catch, and five touchdowns this season.
What is most impressive this season for Anderson is his target numbers. In 10 games this season, he has been targeted 64 times. For a player who was did not have much hype as a top fantasy producer coming into the season, Anderson has genuinely exceeded expectations. Grab him in your dynasty league.
George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers – George Kittle is a rookie from the University of Wisconsin. Kittle has 27 receptions, 42 targets, 277 yards, and one touchdown in 9 games this season. His numbers don’t standout, but what is important are the surrounding factors for Kittle. A new quarterback is in town, a new head coach, and opportunity are all allowing Kittle to solidify himself as the top tight-end for the San Francisco 49ers for a few years to come. The tight-end position is one that is very inconsistent in fantasy football. The lack of production from the position is one that doesn’t warrant much investment. Look for Kittle to play a role in the 49ers future, but don’t expect top tier tight-end numbers.
O.J. Howard, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers – O.J. Howard is another rookie from the 2017 NFL Draft. Howard was touted as the class’ top tight-end prospect and was labeled as the most pro-ready tight-end. While Howard hasn’t had the campaign that most experts predicted, he has found the end-zone three times on just 14 receptions. The entire Buccaneers franchise is in disarray, since their defense has looked worse than 2008 economy and Jameis Winston went down with a shoulder injury.
Howard is also dealing with one of the better pass-catching groups in the entire NFL. Don’t let you O.J. Howard fantasy owners get nervous. If you own Howard in your dynasty league, consider yourself lucky. If you are looking to make an investment in the tight-end position in your fantasy league, now would be the time to do so.