Every year there is a spot in the Fantasy Rankings where there is a debate about who to take at a certain spot in your Draft. That spot this year looks to be the #4 pick. Almost every Ranking and Mock Draft I have seen have Arian Foster at #1, Ray Rice and Lesean McCoy at #2 & 3. The questions start at #4 with several different players as possible choices. We will look at the options below.
The Green Bay Packers had a great season last year with a 15-1 record and the play of Aaron Rodgers was a big reason for that. The reigning MVP set a record for Quarterback rating with 122.5 while throwing 45 touchdowns and only 6 interceptions. He also threw for 4,643 yards in the league's #3 offense. The Packers have done an outstanding job in drafting for the future at the skills positions and seem to reload annually. Jermichael Finley is a Free Agent, but it looks like the Packers may retain him. The rest of his weapons-- Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, James Jones, Randall Cobb, & Donald Driver -- all look to be back for another year and will probably have a chip on their shoulder after a disappointing performance in the playoffs. Expect Green Bay to again be one of the best teams in the NFL and for Rodgers to have another outstanding season.
What more do you have to see from a Quarterback who passed for an NFL record 5,476 yards?? The New Orleans Saints were #1 in offense last year and Drew Brees completed 80 passes to 3 different receivers. Marques Colston caught 80 passes, Jimmy Graham caught 99 balls, and Darren Sproles hauled in 86 balls from the backfield. Drew had 46 touchdowns last year and his pass attempts of 657 led all Quarterbacks. Marques Colston is a Free Agent and could depart, but Drew has a tendency to spread the ball around to all of his options available to him. The schedule is also very favorable for the Saints in 2012 and Drew Brees should be able to take advantage of it.
In the "Year of the Quarterback" Tom Brady led the Patriots to the #2 offense with little help from the Running Back position and suspect play from the Wide Receiver position. Wes Welker returned from injury to have a great season, but the experiment with Chad Ocho-Cinco did not pan out. Brady still threw for 5,235 yards and 39 touchdowns in large part due to his fantastic Tight End combination. Rob Gronkowski set an NFL record for Tight Ends with 17 touchdown receptions and Aaron Hernandez was very reliable himself with 79 receptions and 7 touchdowns. Now the Patriots have Josh McDaniels coming in to help out with the offense and it is rumored that Brandon Lloyd may follow him. Randy Moss is coming back from retirement and his name has also been attached to the Patriots. New England also has 2 first round picks and 2 second round picks in the draft and could go for more help early in the draft with a Wide Receiver or Running Back. Do we really doubt Tom Brady if the Patriots get him more weapons??
The NFL's leading rusher with 1,606 yards did so with very little help from the rest of the Jacksonville Jaguars. Jacksonville had the worst offense last year and yet Maurice still had almost 2,000 all-purpose yards and 11 touchdowns. There may be a light at the end of the tunnel as Jacksonville has perhaps the most CAP room of any team and Wide Receiver is loaded with talent. If they can find a receiver to come in and help spread the field out for Jones-Drew, he may be in for a great season. Many teams have concerns at the Running Back position and could revert to a Running Back by Committee approach. If that happens, the number of "sure-thing" Running Backs to draft will dwindle in a hurry. If Jacksonville addresses the Wide Receiver position in Free Agency or early in the draft, that will mean more scoring chances for Jones-Drew. Another year of 2,000 all purpose and 12 touchdowns is definitely within reach.
It was really special to see what a healthy Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson could mean to each other. The Detroit Lions finally made the playoffs and Calvin's 96 catches for 1,681 yards and 16 touchdowns were the main reason. The Lions suffered injuries at Running Back several times last year and were still able to field the #5 offense. Stafford looked comfortable in the pocket and relied on "Megatron" often. His natural talent, size, and speed are too much to guard man to man. He often is double or triple teams and still able to make plays. With a healthy Running Back corps in place, is there a limit to what he can do?? Will we see the first 2,000 yard Wide Receiver??