Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
Today we are going to discuss which players to avoid in your NFL fantasy draft when it's your turn to step up to the podium.
Making one bad choice won't necessarily kill your entire draft, but it can put you behind the "eight-ball."
And picking any of the 10 players listed below isn't necessarily a bad thing, if you get them for the right price. It's just at their current level, you are in danger of paying too high a cost for the value we think they are likely to produce.
For our purposes we are using fantasyfootballcalculator.com to determine a player's average draft position.
C.J. Spiller, RB, Buffalo (ADP 5.4) - Spiller has crazy-good skills, but has never carried the ball more than 216 times in a single season either with the Bills or in college at Clemson. Buffalo offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett recently was quoted as saying the Bills are going to run Spiller "until he throws up." Fantasy owners must be concerned as to whether he can play all 16 games at a 300-plus attempt workload.
Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle (7.0) - The Seattle tailback carried the ball 315 times last season (1,590 yards) and a total of 600 times over the past two campaigns. And they were almost all "hard carries." Lynch isn't the kind of back to scamper out of bounds, as he frequently tries to run through linebackers and defensive backs and not around them. Fantasy owners also have to worry that the Seahawks offense is too one-dimensional, particularly with the loss of newly-acquired wideout Percy Harvin. Can the threat of a gimpy Sidney Rice or Golden Tate keep defenses from putting up nine-man fronts? Seattle has two nice youngsters behind Lynch on the depth chart in Robert Turbin and second-round pick Christine Michael, who could steal a portion of Lynch's workload.
Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans (20.2) - Make no mistake, Brees is a great quarterback. He's thrown for 5,000 yards in three of the past five seasons. That's not the question. The question is whether he should be picked one round ahead of Aaron Rodgers (25.4) and two in front of Peyton Manning (34.9). Given that head coach and play caller Sean Payton has said he would like to run the ball more, we think fantasy owners should still be selecting a running back or receiver in the second round and pick a quarterback later in the draft.
David Wilson, RB, New York Giants (26.9) - Wilson is an explosive back with go-the-distance speed, but he's going to share the backfield with Andre Brown and the bigger Brown is likely to get the goal line work. Given those parameters wouldn't you rather have a workhorse back like DeMarco Murray or Eddie Lacy?
Daryl Richardson, RB, St. Louis (47.1) - Richardson may have won the starting job, but I'm not sold that this isn't a three-way RBBC with Isaiah Pead and rookie Zac Stacy. I'd rather gamble on Ahmad Bradshaw (53.5) or Montee Ball (53.8) both of whom should see a higher percentage of the workload than Richardson.
Ryan Mathews, RB, San Diego (47.6) - The addition of Danny Woodhead in the offseason is going to take a big bite out of Mathews' fantasy value. Woodhead is a better receiver, rushes for a higher yards-per-carry and has lost just three fumbles in four seasons. Mathews could eventually lose the starting spot if he continues to put the ball on the carpet (12 fumbles in three seasons).
Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets (64.1) - Ivory has a stunning 5.1 ypc average over his career, but that was in an offense where defensive coordinators were busy defending Brees and the receiving corps. With the Jets, he's going to see a lot of eight- and nine-man fronts and it's likely to be a struggle for every inch.
Miles Austin, WR, Dallas (80.8) - Austin still has name recognition, but fantasy owners know that he's at best the No. 3 option when Tony Romo goes back to pass. Dez Bryant is the man and tight end Jason Witten is the next go-to guy and safety value. Coupled with his frequent injuries, Miles just isn't worth an end-of-the-seventh round selection when you could choose No. 1 guys in Stevie Johnson or Greg Jennings.
Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle (86.5) - Wilson had a magical rookie season, winning the job from Matt Flynn and taking his team to the playoffs. But Wilson threw the ball just 393 times on the run-oriented Seahawks and passed for 3,118 yards. he won't have Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice's health is in question.
Antonio Gates, TE, San Diego (95.7) - Gates has lost more than a step and while he's still a favorite target of quarterback Philip Rivers (49-538-7), you can select Greg Olsen (69-843-5) or Jared Cook in the following round and you are likely to get better results.
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