Quarterback: Drew Brees
This is one of the best divisions at the quarterback position. Cam Newton has been phenomenal before, Matt Ryan just got off his best season, and Jameis Winston is a great young quarterback that is continuing to progress. The decision came down to who is the most consistent, which is Drew Brees.
Brees came off another stellar year. He threw for 5,208 yards, 37 touchdowns, 15 interceptions, with a completion percentage of 70%. Brees is similar to Brady in the fact that he seems to only get better with age. He’s 38 and continues to make everyone around him better, which is a big reason I believe why Adrian Peterson signed with the Saints. The development of Michael Thomas will only continue to help Brees with his production. The last time he threw for under 30 TD’s was in 2007. Weather the Saints are in playoff contention, Brees always puts up elite numbers. It does benefit fantasy owners that the Saints defense is always extremely bad and airing it out is Brees’s specialty. Until he decides to hang it up, Brees will always be in the top 5 for fantasy quarterbacks.
Running Back: Devonta Freeman
My heart wants to pick AP, since I believe he’s going to come back and dominate, but I had to give the nod to Devonta Freeman. I am a little concerned with Kyle Shanahan leaving, but Freeman will continue to dominate. He’s guaranteed to get fantasy owners 1,000 rushing yards and 10 plus touchdowns. One of the biggest features that Freeman brings to the table, if the not the biggest, is his receiving abilities. He’s so effective in the passing game. The past two seasons he had 462 and 578 receiving yards. If Tevin Coleman wasn’t in the picture stealing some rushes and passes away, Freeman hands down would be in the conversation with David Johnson, LeVeon Bell, and Ezekiel Elliott. Two more additional factors that will play into Freeman have another monster year; Freeman desperately wants a new contract and the Falcons want to prove to the NFL that they should have won the Super Bowl. This is a recipe for success.
Wide Receiver: Julio Jones
Close draw between Julio Jones and Mike Evans. Evans will have targets taken away due to the signing of Desean Jackson. Not to take anything away from Evans, he will still have a monster year, but Jackson will eat up some fantasy value. I have Jones as my 3rd ranked wide receiver behind Beckham and Brown. He’s one of the best deep threats in the game. He also has a quarterback that is great at throwing the deep ball in Matt Ryan. People might see this last season as a letdown compared to his season in 2015, but I’ll take 1,400 yards with 6 touchdowns any day of the week. The Falcons have already come out and said that they want to go to Julio more in the red zone. The fact that the Falcons want to force Jones the football even more excites me, but scares me more if I have to go against him in fantasy leagues. Expect similar receiving yards, but more touchdowns this coming season.
Tight Ends: Greg Olsen
I almost had Greg Olsen as the best wide receiver in this division. The only thing that he lagged in this past season was his touchdowns. He’s had three consecutive 1,000 yard seasons. I’ll keep this short and simple, no other tight end comes close to Olsen in this division. He’s mad about his contract and he wants a big payday one last time. Olsen will get another 1,000 receiving yards this season with about 6 touchdowns.
Honor Roll: Desean Jackson
Most people would chose Christian McCaffrey as the breakout candidate in this division. I’m not high on McCaffrey for a few reasons. The Panthers haven’t committed the starting job to him. Jonathan Stewart is still on schedule to get the bulk of the carries. This means that McCaffrey would be a glorified version of Danny Woodhead. He’s a rookie with great potential, but I won’t risk taking one of my first two picks on a rookie that is only going to be involved in the passing game.
This leads me to Desean Jackson. He had a bounce back season last year with a Redskins offense that isn’t consistent. Now he’s the WR2 in an up and coming offense. Mike Evans draws so much attention, and Jackson will finally get the one-on-one coverage that he desires. Winston’s life is going to be so easy with these two receivers. No one in the league can stay with Jackson, thus he will easily get 1,000 yards with 7 touchdowns. He will be a great WR2 for fantasy owners. He’s currently ranked at a WR #35 with an ADP of 83. This is great value in the middle of the draft. Desean Jackson is about to go back to his Philly days where he took the league by storm.