The Writing Staff “My Guys” for 2016

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At some point in time in every fantasy football fan’s mind, a sense of loyalty and backing of certain players forms and takes place. They are someone that you would go to bat for every single time, causing you to really plant your flag on them, putting your name and reputation on the line, riding it out through success or failure. They are “Your Guy.”

In anticipation for The Fantasy Footballers “My Guy” episode, we asked each of the writers and our editor/coordinator who they are putting their stamp of approval on.

Zach Ertz, TE Philadelphia Eagles

Kyle“Zach Ertz is currently going in the 9th Round of PPR drafts as the 10th TE off the board. I love that value. He finished 2015 on a tear commanding a ridiculous 28.8% of the team’s targets those final three weeks. If he can stay healthy, I love him in Doug Pederson’s system regardless of what QB starts in Philly.”
Kyle Borgognoni, @kyle_borg

DeVante Parker, WR Miami Dolphins

Ryan“My Guy this year is DeVante Parker. Gase’s offense is good to wide receivers. Questions still abound in the running game between who to pick between Foster and Ajayi Week 1 and moving forward, and they will have to throw it a ton this season. Parker is built to be the big play guy and score double digit TDs. There is still not a ton of tape on him so he has the element of surprise while defenses have plenty to key on Landry.”
Ryan Weisse@TheFantasyFive

John Brown, WR Arizona Cardinals

Marcus“I will stick with my gut and say John Brown is My Guy this year. I feel like he has an all-around skill set. Speed for days, tougher than most would think and excellent route runner.  “Fitz” is great, but age is catching up with him eventually and Floyd would have shown it if he were going to be elite by now. I could easily see 90 receptions, 1250 receiving yards, and 9 touchdowns for Brown this year.”
Marcus Meaney, @badfish211

Lamar Miller, RB Houston Texans

nate“My Guy has to be Lamar Miller going into the 2016 season. Everyone knows Miller was vastly underutilized in the Miami Dolphins offense. Last season Lamar Miller was 18th in rushing attempts (194), however, he managed to outscore (fantasy numbers) 12 RBs that were ahead of him in rushing attempts including Latavius Murray (266). Miller is now on an offense that will give him the ball until he throws up and then give it to him again. How can you not be excited for a running back that makes the absolute most out of his opportunities and has just been awarded a much heavier workload with the Houston Texans? Lamar Miller is without a doubt, My Guy!”
Nate Hamilton, @DomiNateFF

Jarvis Landry, WR Miami Dolphins

Keaton“My love for Jarvis Landry is documented but here I am again to plead his case.  Jarvis Landry is currently going as WR 16 in PPR formats.  Considering Landry finished as WR 8 last year, drafting him in the middle of Round 3 is a steal.  Jarvis still holds value in standard formats. It is no accident that he finished in the top 10 amongst WRs last season in total yards, yards after the catch, receptions, and targets.  He has a strong rapport with Ryan Tannehill and he has spent the offseason working with Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. to improve his footwork and get a better feel for playing as an outside WR. (Source comes from James Walker-ESPN).  He’s also a 3rd year WR… if you’re into that sort of thing. #JarvisIsMyCopilot ”
Keaton Denlay, @KeatonDenlay

Jay Ajayi, RB Miami Dolphins

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 5.09.06 PM“It starts with two words: Eye Test. Last season, he jumped off the screen to me when he did get some work. He hasn’t had much success in preseason but does that actually matter? The reports about Ajayi not being able to catch are overblown; he was a three-down back in college. While Boise State might not have played against top level competition, he posted insane numbers in his final college season, 2014:
[lptw_table id=”28121″ style=”default”] He fell to the 5th Round of the 2015 NFL Draft. Many considered him to be the third best RB in the draft talent wise, behind Gurley and Gordon. However, a devastating knee injury from 2011, yes 2011, scared NFL teams away from drafting him. Before the Dolphins signed Arian Foster, I projected Ajayi to have top 10 RB upside with new head coach, Adam Gase, coming in. Now we can only hope for RB2 numbers, depending on the timeshare in the backfield, or if Arian can’t hold up. He’s still My Guy.”
Brooks Carmean, @brookscarmean

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Jeremy Maclin, WR Kansas City Chiefs

Eric“My guy is Jeremy Maclin. It’s not that I have a whole lot of faith in the upside of the Chiefs passing game with Alex Smith, but Maclin is one of those unsung guys who gets it done every year. He’s not one of those guys that will contend for a top-5 WR finish, but I’m more than happy to plug him in week after week as my third, maybe even fourth WR since he’s currently being drafted in the late fourth round. Maclin is an unsexy pick, but he’s the type of guy that builds a foundation for your team fantasy team. He’s pretty much a lock for 1,000+ yards and 8 or more TDs. Put it in the bank!”
Eric Ludwig, @FF_Gouge

C.J. Prosise, RB Seattle Seahawks

Michael“In 2016, I’ve attached myself to Seattle Seahawks RB, C.J. Prosise. I just can’t get away from him in all formats. The only time I’ve missed out on him is when someone snipes me right before I’m about to draft him, such as Jason Moore did to me in our mock draft a couple months back. What is it about C.J. Prosise that I love so much? Let me count the ways! As of this writing, the news on the presumptive starter, Thomas Rawls, is sketchy at best. Rawls has been losing some serious snaps to Prosise throughout preseason along with Christine Michael, who both have played the last two weeks in preseason play, and that’s assuming that Rawls is even ready to come back by Week 1 which is the predicted starting time. Another knock on Rawls is the drafting of three RBs during the 2016 NFL draft. Regardless of what anyone says, draft stock matters in the NFL and Prosise was the highest drafted RB of the three. While many are calling Prosise a 3rd down/pass catching back, he profiles very similarly to Ryan Mathews at 6’ – 220lbs. My last reason is very subjective, but my gut tells me I’m right, so I’m going with it. The NFC West offenses are all getting better. Arizona clearly paces the division, but Chip Kelly’s up-tempo offense should improve the league’s lowest scoring team, the San Francisco 49ers, while rookie Jared Goff and sophomore stud RB Todd Gurley lead a new-look Los Angeles Rams team looking to make a splash in a new home. I’m projecting the Seahawks to have to rely on their offense to win more games in the division, leading to more scoring opportunities across the board.”
Michael Wenrich, @mpw270

A.J. Green, WR Cincinnati Bengals

Cory“My Guy is A.J. Green. After the departure of Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu, he is in line to receive the most targets of his career as the clear option in the Cincinnati Bengals’ passing attack. Considering Green has eclipsed 1,000 yards receiving in each season since 2011, he projects to return elite value yet again in 2016. Even more, I think it is entirely possible that he finishes as a top-three option at the wide receiver position.”
Cory Evans, @CoryEvansNFL

Odell Beckham Jr., WR New York Giants

Nick“The one guy I am planting my flag in is Odell Beckham Jr. Now I know what you might be thinking, ‘Alright man, it’s easy to get behind a guy who finished in the top 5 the last two years and is a top 5 draft pick this year.’ While this is all true, I’m choosing Beckham as THE guy because I believe he is going to make that jump into the top 2 for WR scoring. Coming into this year, so many things are going his way. First, the coaching change. Last year’s offensive coordinator, Ben McAdoo, is now the head coach. McAdoo knows how special the former LSU Tiger is and will plan the offensive around him. Having that familiarity will help him succeed and get focused on the offense. Second, is rookie wideout Sterling Shepard. Shepard has gotten glowing reviews so far in camp and will take some the pressure off of Beckham. Having another deep threat will open some things up for Beckham, much more than teammate Rueben Randle did last year. Third is his schedule. The Giants have the seventh easiest schedule for wide receivers. In the NFC East, it is notorious that WR does well. He has six matchups with teams that finished 25th or worst in defense against WR in 2015. Yes, Josh Norman will improve the Washington secondary but Beckham is talented enough to beat him. In their first matchup, he caught 6 passes for 76 yards and a score, while also uncharacteristically dropping a sure touchdown after burning Norman on a deep ball. His big play ability will help land him in the top 2. Also, seasoned fantasy football players know those wide receivers are known to thrive in their third year. Beckham has already made a name for himself but isn’t done yet. I am planting my flag in Odell Beckham Jr. as he will finish in the top 2 for the first time in his career.”
Nick Martinez, @TheNickMartinez

Golden Tate, WR Detroit Lions

Ben“Golden Tate is My Guy and the player I feel strongest about in 2016. Calvin Johnson’s retirement has changed the dynamics of the Lions’ passing game. While Marvin Jones and Anquan Boldin will help make up for the loss of Johnson, I feel it is Golden Tate who will be the biggest beneficiary. I’ve believed all offseason that Tate’s aDOT (average depth of target) will increase in 2016, meaning he will be targeted deeper down the field. Boldin’s signing is further evidence to me that this will be the case. Big plays are coming for Stafford’s new #1 target. Tate, who has caught 99 and 90 balls respectively over the past two seasons, will continue to benefit from the Lions high-volume passing attack. I expect him to take advantage of his increased volume as the new #1 by turning it into a 100+ catch 2016 season. Tate is the rare and perfect case of a high floor, high ceiling option, especially in PPR, who can be counted on week in and week out, but also possesses week winning and potentially league winning upside.”
Ben Cummins, @BenCumminsFF

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 6.17.03 PM“Without picking any of the studs that are expected to be great and in the effort of keeping this interesting I’m going to go with Golden Tate. With Megatron gone those targets are going to go somewhere and while Marvin Jones will certainly get some I think Tate is the man. His value in PPR I think is underrated by a lot of people. He’s got a great chance to improve over past years in TD totals which he’s been relatively low on historically. He’ll be consistently good with some high upside and a decent floor which makes him “My Guy” for this year.”
Josh Liebmann

Will Tye, TE New York Giants

Travis“Larry Donnell had a broken bone in his neck last year. He’s since been cleared but that isn’t the sort of injury you want to hurry back from. Even if he’s 100%, he still can’t catch- his hands are terrible. It’s like he’s wearing metal gloves. Tye on the other hand, is a decent athlete with great hands. He showed a lot of promise last year when Donnell went down. The Giants are a pass heavy offense and if he becomes Eli’s safety valve he could put up huge numbers. Did I mention his ADP value? He’s basically free in both Standard and PPR drafts.”
Travis Strickland, @DFF_Travis

Sterling Shepard, WR New York Giants

brandonWe are going to finish up with My Guy and the soon to be PPR monster laying in the shadows ready to devour targets all year long, the rookie from Oklahoma, Sterling Shepard. It’s no secret who Shepard is nowadays. When using the “eye test” last year in the multi-overtime game vs. the Tennessee Volunteers, Shepard was the one in the offense the Sooners looked for to move the chains down the field. Why was that? Because his hands are made of Velcro it seems. Sterling can catch most any pass thrown his way. His routes are as clean and crisp as the elite receivers of today like Julio Jones, or even recently retired great, Reggie Wayne. He just finds a way to make the play. His first step is elusive and usually throws most cornerbacks in his trail, giving him the advantage to run across mid-field, or find his way to the corners for a pass thrown in quickly by the QB. The best part is when compared to the other rookie wideouts in NFL Analyst Matt Harmon’s “Reception Perception” like Coleman, Treadwell, Fuller, and Braxton Miller, Sterling Shepard was the highest success rate versus his coverage. In 116 attempts Sterling ranked 82.8% in man coverage, 80.2% against zone coverage, and an astonishing 91.1% when matched up in press coverage. Can’t stop! Won’t stop! His ADP has risen as the hype train has come up with the word in camp that he’s become a “lock” to play in the slot position this season. You can usually find him in the 8th Round of drafts, but if you really want him sometimes you may have to jump into the 6th to secure him, especially when drafting in a league with like-minded individuals looking for high upside for their WR3’s and 4’s.
Brandon Sanders, @brandontsanders

Make sure you check out the full My Guy episode from The Fantasy Footballers to hear Andy, Mike, and Jason’s My Guy selections. We also would love to hear who YOUR fantasy My Guy is this upcoming season, so be sure to leave us some comments below the article!

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