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Andrew Luck

Andrew Luck (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The 2012 NFL Draft has come and gone, but the fantasy season looms on the horizon.  My personal philosophy is TALENT over situation.  I generally utilize my pre-draft rankings based on college tape in combination with how high a player was drafted to create initial dynasty rankings.  That being said, some situations are tempting and have to be accounted for.

Quarterbacks:

1.  Andrew Luck QB/IND

Too talented and the Colts seem to have a developmental plan with weapons

2.  Robert Griffin QB/WAS

Running ability will fool some people to have him #1, but Luck a safer pick

3.  Ryan Tannehill QB/MIA

Fantasy starter upside in a few years

4.  Brandon Weeden QB/CLE

He’ll start ASAP, but how good will he be

5.  Nick Foles QB/PHI

Andy Reid can develop QBs.  Foles could pay dividends down the line for your dynasty team

6.  Brock Osweiler QB/DEN

Developing behind Peyton Manning could help him.  Has the upside of a Luck/RGIII

7.  Kirk Cousins QB/WAS

If RGIII does go down, Cousins could step in and be a spot fantasy starter

8.  BJ Coleman QB/GB

We know how well GB develops QB talent, and Rodgers still has that concussion history.  Worth a shot

9.  Russell  Wilson QB/SEA

If Flynn fails, Wilson could get a shot.  Running ability should help for fantasy.

10. Ryan Lindley QB/ARI

Not as much competition as many before him and throws some excellent balls

11. Chandler Harnish QB/IND

See Kirk Cousins, but Harnish as a longer way to go

12. Aaron Corp QB/BUF

Could be an opening on that core and Corp has pretty good tools

13. GJ Kinne QB/NYJ

I know Tebow/Sanchez are in front of him, but he has some attributes on par with them.

14. Case Keenum QB/HOU

Kubiak likes him a lot, could make the roster

15. Austin Davis QB/STL

Nice mobility, productive starter.  Could make the roster.

Running backs:

1.  Trent Richardson RB/CLE

Comes in as an every down back, stud for 5 years.

2.  Doug Martin RB/TB

Instant starter, solid runner.  Only fear is he ends up like Donald Brown, but Martin has talents in every facet of the game

3.  David Wilson RB/NYG

Great fit to compliment Bradshaw.  Not an every week starter, but in PPR could be very valuable.

4.  Lamar Miller RB/MIA

Injury issues aside, 2nd most talented back in the draft.  Can beat out Thomas and be the man in two years.

5. Isaiah Pead RB/STL

One of the better situations, but can he be an every down back like the Top 4?  That is the big question.

6.  Lamichael James RB/SF

Talent over situation.  Gore is done, Jacobs may be cut, James could have value end of the year and beyond

7.  Robert Turbin RB/SEA

Can win the back-up job to Lynch and snake carries by the end of the year.  Tough tough runner.

8.  Chris Rainey RB/PIT

Lots of catches, high upside, but likely needs developing.  Have to love the situation.

9.  Cyrus Gray RB/KC

If another injury happens, Gray can step in.  Talented player who fits very well.

10. Bernard Pierce RB/BAL

Meat and Potatoes runner to back-up Ray Rice.  Handcuff who could pay dividends at the goal line.

11. Ronne Hillman RB/DEN

Overdrafted, is he fast or quick enough for the league?  Situation is great, but be weary.

12. Edwin Baker RB/SD

Could go the way of Jordan Todman, but he is a great compliment to Ryan Mathews and doesn’t have much competition.

13. Vick Ballard RB/IND

As talented as Delone Carter, could compete for spot on the roster

14. Dan Herron RB/CIN

Talent over situation, not as good as BJGE or Scott.  Could stick on the roster though and get some PT out of necessity.

15. Terrence Ganaway RB/NYJ

Can he even beat out Bilal Powell?  Too many cooks in this kitchen for Ganaway to make it.  Maybe as a back-up FB.

16. Michael Smith RB/TB

Could get on as a 3rd RB if healthy.  Nice compliment to the other two runners, but has an uphill climb

17. Alfred Morris RB/WAS

Shanny could use him, and he could beat out Royster.  Not talented, but fits one cut system

18. Bryce Brown RB/PHI

Has upside, but could be out of the league before the season starts.  High reward if he hits, but long road ahead

19. Chris Polk RB/PHI

Degenerative hip caused his fall, but he is talented.  Can he win the 3rd RB spot over Brown?  You decide.

20. Daryl Richardson RB/STL

Could make the team as the #3, but very developmental in instincts/cuts

21. Jonathan Grimes RB/HOU

Houston signed 3 RBs (Davin Meggett, Jason Ford, and Jonathan Grimes).  Everyone will talk up the other two, but Grimes has Ahmad Bradshaw type ability.  DEEP sleeper for the team that found Arian Foster in the rough.

22. Bobby Rainey RB/BAL

Baltimore needs to replace those RBs, and Rainey is a productive player who fits their mold.

23. Marc Tyler RB/GB

There is a need, not sure if he makes a roster, but there is upside here

24. Tauren Poole RB/CAR

Cluttered situation, but a talented player from Tennessee who showed roster skill.

25. Darrell Scott RB/DAL

Another talented back who quit on his teams.  Dallas does need someone to compete with Tanner though.

Wide Receiver:

1.  Justin Blackmon WR/JAC

Talent over situation, and though he starts from Day 1, you can’t like Gabbert throwing him the ball,

2.  Kendall Wright WR/TEN

Less downside than Floyd and a good young core where he won’t be asked to do too much.

3.  AJ Jenkins WR/SF

May be overdrafted but he will be a very productive player for the 49ers and is a great fit if they start to pass more.

4.  Michael Floyd WR/ARI

Talent is there, upside is there, but Kolb and Fitz limit it for fantasy perhaps.

5.  Stephen Hill WR/NYJ

Raw, but should start early.   Has upside of a Randy Moss, so worth a flyer if you have the time to be patient.

6.  Alshon Jeffery WR/CHI

Bears had him rated as 3rd best WR, and he can be if everything goes his way.  Will he be motivated?  If so, could be a scary #2.

7.  Mohamed Sanu WR/CIN

Doesn’t have much upside and will have to compete for the job with Marvin Jones, but if he gets the #2 spot, he can be used a lot.

8.  DeVier Posey WR/HOU

The opening is there and the talent is there, he just needs to put his head in his playbook and hunker down.

9.  Marvin Jones WR/CIN

Take your pick of Sanu and Jones.  One will work out, grab both to hedge your bets?

10.  Brian Quick WR/STL

Needs development, but situation is open.  I’ll let someone else pounce on him.

11. Chris Givens WR/STL

Slot type who is better than Greg Salas.  If he toughens up, could be a starter.  Would almost take him over Quick.

12. Ryan Broyles WR/DET

We’ll see if the ACL is healed, may need a year, but he fits so well in the slot role in the middle of the field

13. Juron Criner WR/OAK

Type of WR they need.  Big, long, possession.  Kind of have to get him on the field in this offense.

14. Greg Childs WR/MIN

Some massive upside if healthy and there is an opening to be productive.  Big time sleeper.

15. TJ Graham WR/BUF

Slot WR for them, but more talented than anyone sans Steve Johnson

16. Danny Coale WR/DAL

Not overly talented, but can fill the Laurent Robinson role.  With how much this team passes, could work out fantasy wise.

17. Rueben Randle WR/NYG

Dislike the player, but see the fit.  Probably will go too early for my tastes.

18. TY Hilton WR/IND

Jerrel Jernigan esque, but not much competition and a big bump in return yardage leagues,

19. Joe Adams WR/CAR

Adams speed with Cam Newton’s arm is very scary.  High upside pick.

20. Devon Wylie WR/KC

If healthy, can be a dynamic weapon.  Wylie is a risky dynasty selection, but could take over for Breaston sooner rather than later

21. Keshawn Martin WR/HOU

Fits in he slot, maybe not a big time player, but could be a #4 in Houston to start the season

22. Nick Toon WR/NO

Fits to replace Meachem’s production perhaps, but injuries REALLY could crop up.

23. Rishard Matthew WR/MIA

Situation is open and a much better player than Cunningham who was drafted higher.

24. Jarius Wright WR/MIN

Really like him, wonder if he can fit into the slot for Vikings.

25. Tommy Streeter WR/BAL

High upside, but could fizzle out.

26. Marvin McNutt WR/Iowa

Very talented, but upside is limited

27. LaVon Brazill WR/IND

Pretty talented and could make the roster or at least PS

28. BJ Cunningham WR/MIA

Situation is good, talent is poor.  Think Austin Pettis’ impact last year

29. Junior Hemingway WR/KC

Big upside, but may struggle to find a spot on the Chiefs

30. Jordan White WR/NYJ

Productive WR, maybe can be a #4 or #5.

31. Travis Benjamin WR/CLE

Josh Cribbs part 2 at best

32. Tony Clemons WR/PIT

Developmental Practice Squad type

33. Jeremy Ebert WR/NYJ

Productive player, but has development to go

34. Dale Moss WR/GB

High upside player on a passing offense?  I like!

35. Eric Page WR/DEN

Very quick and fast player.  Productive and could see the roster

36. Jeff Fuller WR/MIA

Paired with his old QB.  If you get junior Fuller, you will be sitting pretty.

37. Dwight Jones WR/HOU

Fits the team well if motivated

38. Julian Talley WR/NYG

UDFA type from the school and team that found Victor Cruz.  Coincidence?  He is very talented and quick

39. Patrick Edwards WR/DET

Slot WR that could make the team if Broyles isn’t ready.

40. Chris Owusu WR/SF

Goes with the former coach.  If over concussion issues, he can be a weapon

Tight End:

1.  Coby Fleener TE/IND

Back with Luck, no real competition from vets, pass catcher and red zone threat.  Very nice

2.  Ladarius Green TE/SD

Heir apparent to Antonio Gates with huge upside.  Worth a shot

3.  Evan Rodriguez TE/CHI

Really talented pass catcher and can block some too.  No competition in Chicago really, could make a real impact.

4.  Dwayne Allen TE/IND

Sure, he has Fleener there, but in a two TE system, you have to imagine he gets his shot.

5.  Michael Egnew TE/MIA

Has some talent as a receiver, but will compete with Fasano and Clay

6.  Orson Charles TE/CIN

Great talent, but has some mental lapses.  How much PT will he get?

7,  Adrien Robinson TE/NYG

Type of TE the Giants like and he has as much talent as Ballard at the very least.

8.  Taylor Thompson TE/TEN

Huge upside, but hasn’t played TE in 4 years.  High risk

9.  James Hanna TE/DAL

Natural to take over for Martellus Bennett

10. Derek Carrier TE/OAK

For a team that has no TEs, Carrier is a player who could shoot up the roster

11. DeAngelo Peterson TE/STL

Raw, but productive TE.  Could find a role on the Rams.

12. David Paulson TE/PIT

Pittsburgh lacks TE depth, Paulson could make the team.

13. Brian Linthicum TE/NYJ

Blocking TE to Keller’s pass catching?

14. Brad Smelley TE/CLE

Tweener, but could provide an interesting threat

15. Matt Veldman TE/JAC

Has some upside catching passes.

This is an extremely deep class, especially at WR, for dynasty leagues.  Trade down in your rookie drafts if you can to pick up picks and see who pans out in camp.  Those that do may pay rich dividends.

For more from Shane P. Hallam, please follow him on Twitter.

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