An Early Look At The Schedule
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An Early Look At The Schedule

If you are a Fantasy Football player (and I am guessing you are if you are reading this), this is an exciting time. The NFL Draft is less then a week away, and the NFL just put out the schedule for the year. It is always fun to look at the schedule and seeing what games are where and when, and who looks to have a good or bad schedule. I am going to look at the schedule and let you know who looks to benefit and who looks like they might struggle this year with fantasy in mind.

TEAMS WITH A GOOD SCHEDULE

New England, Green Bay, Houston, San Francisco, & Atlanta all look to have a very good schedule and are in great shape to make the playoffs again. All were very good teams last year and may have a playoff spot locked up early. That means that some of the best players in fantasy football may not be playing much during the very critical weeks 15-16 (normal fantasy playoff weeks). The list includes: Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Arian Foster, Andre Johnson, Michael Turner, Roddy White, Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, Frank Gore, Wes Welker Rob Gronkowski, Brandon Lloyd, Jermichael Finley, Vernon Davis, Matt Ryan, and Julio Jones. Make sure you have a backup plan.

TEAMS WITH A BAD SCHEDULE

New York Giants, Denver, Baltimore, San Diego, & Philadelphia have the toughest schedules for this year. All have many good fantasy players and should be playing all the way through to help you in the playoffs. The list of players includes: Eli Manning, Ahmad Bradshaw, Hakeem Nicks, Victor Cruz, Peyton Manning, Willis McGahee, Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker, Ray Rice, Phillip Rivers, Antonio Gates, Ryan Mathews, Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy, Desean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, Anquan Boldin, Robert Meachem, & Brent Celek. Remember that they do have bad schedules though and plan accordingly.

QUARTERBACKS WITH GOOD SCHEDULE

Matt Ryan, Josh Freeman, Drew Brees @drewbrees, Cam Newton, & Sam Bradford have the easiest schedules this year. Obviously Brees, Newton, & possibly Ryan would be starters for you anyway, but Freeman and Bradford could be very nice backups for you.

QUARTERBACKS WITH BAD SCHEDULE

Tom Brady, Andy Dalton @andydalton14, Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Flacco, & Ryan Fitzpatrick have the most difficult schedules. Brady is still a top 5 quarterback and Big Ben is still worthy of being your starter, but the others should be relegated to your bench.

QUARTERBACKS WITH A GOOD START

It is always nice to start the year off with some wins, and easy schedule help out in that aspect. You can always trade someone away after a hot start for somebody that you like better further down the schedule. The list of good starts is: Jake Locker, Alex Smith, Andrew Luck, Josh Freeman, Drew Brees, & Cam Newton. Only Brees and Newton look to stay in the upper tier of QBs after the first few weeks. Take advantage when you can!!

QUARTERBACKS WITH BAD START

Mark Sanchez, Andy Dalton, Michael Vick, Tom Brady, & Joe Flacco have difficult starts to the season. Only Vick & Brady are going to start for you anyway, and you don't worry about those two.

QUARTERBACKS WITH GOOD PLAYOFFS

Sam Bradford, Matt Schaub, Jay Cutler, Matt Ryan, Drew Brees, & Cam Newton have what look to be great playoff schedules. WOW, what a list!! Other than Bradford, all should be starters every week anyway.

QUARTERBACKS WITH BAD PLAYOFFS

Robert Griffin III, Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Peyton Manning, Andrew Luck, & Tony Romo appear to have the most difficult road in your playoff weeks. Some pretty big names here as well.

RUNNING BACKS WITH GOOD SCHEDULES

Michael Turner, LeGarrette Blount, Jamaal Charles, Roy Helu, & Ryan Mathews look like winners for the running backs this year. Blount may not be the starter in Tampa Bay if they draft Trent Richardson. Charles is coming back from an injury, so use caution and draft Peyton Hillis also. Turner and Mathews could be real studs for you this year.

RUNNING BACKS WITH BAD SCHEDULES

Stephen Jackson, Marshawn Lynch, Chris Johnson, James Starks, Shonn Greene, Benjarvus Green-Ellis, Jahvid Best, & Fred Jackson appear to have gotten the worst end of the deal with the schedule. Some big names here.

RUNNING BACKS WITH GOOD START

DeAngelo Williams/Jonathon Stewart, DeMarco Murray, Marshawn Lynch, Roy Helu, Ahmad Bradshaw, & Ray Rice should start off the year in a good way.

RUNNING BACKS WITH BAD START

Chris Johnson, Donald Brown, Willis McGahee, Darren McFadden, Shonn Greene, & Benjarvus Green-Ellis have difficult roads to start the season.

RUNNING BACKS WITH GOOD PLAYOFFS

Stephen Jackson, Darren McFadden, LeSean McCoy, Jamaal Charles, LeGarrette Blount, & Michael Turner should help you in your playoffs. Put in Trent Richardson for Blount if drafted by Tampa Bay.

RUNNING BACKS WITH BAD PLAYOFFS

Frank Gore, Beanie Wells, Ahmad Bradshaw, Benjarvus Green-Ellis, Adrian Peterson, & Stevan Ridley look like they could struggle during your playoffs.

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH GOOD SCHEDULE

Vincent Jackson, Sidney Rice, Laurent Robinson, Brandon Marshall, Larry Fitzgerald, and all the 49ers have very good schedules for the year.

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH BAD SCHEDULE

Robert Meachem, Anquan Boldin, A.J. Green @ajgreen_18, and all Patriots, Raiders & Steelers receivers appear to have more difficult schedules. A.J. Green's is brutal!!!

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH GOOD START

Kenny Britt, all 49ers, Reggie Wayne, Sidney Rice, Larry Fitzgerald, & Demaryius Thomas/Eric Decker should start the year off with a bang for you.

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH BAD START

Hakeem Nicks/Victor Cruz, Andre Johnson, Steve Johnson, Santonio Holmes, A.J. Green, & Desean Jackson/Jeremy Maclin could struggle to start the year off.

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH GOOD PLAYOFFS

Andre Johnson, Brandon Marshall, Marques Colston, Steve Smith (Car), Calvin Johnson, Roddy White/Julio Jones, and all 49ers should make you happy in your playoffs.

WIDE RECEIVERS WITH BAD PLAYOFFS

Santonio Holmes, A.J. Green, Reggie Wayne, Robert Meachem, Pierre Garcon, & Miles Austin/Dez Bryant appear to have difficult schedules for.

This is just a guideline for you, I am not saying you should or shouldn't draft according to this list. It is intended to help you to plan accordingly and in case you are torn between a few players. Use at your own risk!!!

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    7 Comments

    FFToolbox.com Owner

    FYI, this post does not replace our Strength of Schedule chart (http://www.fftoolbox.com/football/strength_of_schedule.cfm).

    Posted by:
    FFToolbox 04/22/12 11:23 AM

    How can New England have a good schedule but Brady have a bad schedule? You got an answer for that "Toddy the Greek"?

    Posted by:
    Report Abuse
    KevinattheTap 04/22/12 10:36 PM

    Kevin,
    The passing defenses that N.E. play against are good and the run defenses are not. Also, since they could be playing with leads often and lock up the playoffs early they could run more to waste the clock and not risk injury to Brady. Thanks for asking!!

    Posted by:
    Todd Latzke 04/22/12 10:52 PM

    As a Sam Bradford owner in a dynasty format, start two quarterbacks league, I am hoping that the schedule does break his way in 2012. Michael Turner is an interesting case study for this upcoming season, as a lot of 'experts' are talking like he is already over the hill. The schedule does appear favorable, as the Atlanta roster looks right now, he is still the bell cow back there. It will be interesting to see if they draft a running back early( I know Atlanta has no number one pick this draft), to combine with Turner. It is always fun to try and sort out how the season may unfold schedule wise. Good stuff.

    Posted by:
    Walton Spurlin 04/24/12 05:27 PM

    It would certainly help Bradford out if the Rams can get Blackmon at #6. Turner is a concern because of his carry totals since joining the Falcons and his age. The Falcons could easily draft a running back to help out with the load and/or back up Turner.

    Posted by:
    Todd Latzke 04/24/12 06:53 PM

    Very nice, every bit of information helps.

    Posted by:
    Report Abuse
    stevedobs 04/25/12 06:09 PM

    Glad you liked it Steve. Good luck this year and thanks for reading!!

    Posted by:
    Todd Latzke 04/26/12 07:47 AM

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