We’ll be through the halfway mark after this weekend’s action and there are some burning questions being asked by my valued readers… Here are a few that came up this week.
Johnsonvile from Jacksonville asks, “Okay, so we know Larry Johnson likes to slap a B*!$#, and the Chiefs are doing their best to lose enough to get what they want come draft day, but what does that mean for Larry Johnson for the next few weeks after he gets back? I kind of want to drop the clown and pick up Ryan Torain – what do you think?”
I love me some brats, sir – yummm…. Anyway, I don’t think you lose much by giving Larry the axe for a stretch run that could bonus you a productive kid in Denver’s system. The Broncos might just do alright having a rushing attack, and it’s possible that Torain starts to produce as soon as he gets a look. Now, you know, before he gets 15 carries and goes off, would be a good time to take that chance. LJ the beater is already gone for Week 10, and that leaves only a few weeks for him to make an impact for your team before the playoffs. If you are looking for a way to win a couple games, and you don’t have room to let Larry sit, I’d go ahead and go for a guy like Torain. Maybe even Kevin Faulk or Dominic Rhodes this week instead. But I like Ryan, and I think he has lots of upside. Larry is still running for a bad team – so take a chance if you get the chance. Yum, bratwursts.
Red Red Ryan asks, “I’m in a keeper league and would love to get rid of some age to get some youth – I think there are some good rookies coming up, and I was wondering what you thought about giving up some solid players now for rookie draft picks this year – how’s the class coming up? I have Torry Holt, Hines Ward, and DeAngelo Williams (I know he’s not old, but J-Stewart is behind him).”
Red, the gods still aren’t doing you well, eh? Going down in the dumps, looking for youth? Fair enough – this is what I see from the incoming class…
Studs: Michael Crabtree, Jeremy Maclin, Beanie Wells, LeSean McCoy, Knowshon Moreno, Darrius Heyward-Bey, Percy Harvin: These guys all look to be fantastic pro prospects. Maclin is unbelievable fast and has solid size, Crabtree is a beast and has the physical to play right now, and I can’t say enough about Well, McCoy, and Moreno – and Bey and Harvin are elite prospects as well. 7 good ones if they all come out.
Good with Upside: Sam Bradford, Mathew Stafford, C.J. Spiller, Juaquin Inglesias, Demetrius Byrd, Chase Coffman, Tim Tebow?: I like Bradford a lot, and Stafford has a nice arm, but this group has some questions (besides Chase, he seems solid as an NFL TE) – Even with all Tebow’s skills, I wonder how he projects at the next level – some upside there, sure, but does he have enough with his arm?
Solid, not studs, worth looking at drafting: Javon Ringer, James Davis, P.J. Hill, Derrick Williams, Brian Robiskie, Mark Sanchez, Brandon Pettigrew, Arian Foster: Some good college players here, and some project solid at the next level, I’m just not completely sold on any of them quite yet. Ringer sure works hard though.
Sleepers: Jarrett Dillard, Ramses Barden, Sammy Straughter: These young receivers have all the moves and ability, now we’ll see how they can use it.
Something like that. I don’t know if I’d give Tory away just yet, he might make a return on your investment here in the next couple weeks, but if you can get a younger player with some upside and a 1st round pick, you might want to look at that. He is getting older. Hines has been solid for most of the season, and I think his style of play keeps him active and productive for a while here, but he could be a guy to look at getting a pick for, sure. I think 1st round rookie picks are big, and there looks to be about 10 guys from this class (i’m assuming at least a few of my “upside” guys become really good) that should be there for you with middle round picks. Remember though, young receivers don’t lose much value staying in and while Crab and Maclin and Heyward all have that “now” ability, they could hang out and play some college ball for a while too. As for the running backs, if they are NFL graded they will likely come out, saving some wear on those legs is a smooth move. I would keep DeAngelo around unless you get a good deal for him – he’s a young runner with solid upside. He does a lot of things well and he’s proving that this season. I know he has a stud behind him, but none of the guys you listed are assured to go to a place where they will be the guy. You have a solid youngster in Williams, might as well hang onto him.