Fantasy Football 2012: Who Should You Select with the First Overall Pick?
Alright fantasy football owners, let's just play a hypothetical game for a second. Just imagine you're lucky enough to have the first overall pick in your fantasy league.
Your brain is probably on the verge of overheating right now, as you're pondering on who you should take? With all that pressure being placed on your shoulders, you have to make a decision—and this is going to affect not only your fantasy team, but the entire league.
In that spirit, let's take a look at some players that you should consider drafting first overall if you're privileged to have the No. 1 pick in your fantasy league.
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers
Rodgers threw for a whopping 4,643 yards this past season for the Green Bay Packers while completing an incredible 68.3 percent of his passes. Oh and how could I forget? Rodgers threw an absurd amount of touchdowns—45 to be exact.
I highly doubt Rodgers will be able to repeat his historic 2011 season, but he's definitely going to come close to it.
The Packers have virtually the same exact offense from a year ago, which means Rodgers is a shoo-in to throw for 35-plus touchdowns and 4,500-plus thousand yards.
Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots
Tom Brady is like a fine wine, he only gets better with age.
Brady had yet another phenomenal season in 2011 with the New England Patriots as he recorded the second-most passing yards in a single season, 5235, while tossing 39 touchdowns.
With the rise of tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, the continued production out of Wes Welker and now the new addition of Brandon Lloyd—there's no doubt in my mind that TB12 is going to be able to not only repeat his stellar 2011 season, but he's only going to improve on it.
Arian Foster, RB, Houston Texans
Arian Foster is as good as it gets for running backs in the NFL entering 2012.
Foster continues to prove he's an elite running back; he ran for 1,224 yards and 10 touchdowns this past season as well as recording 53 receptions for a career-high 617 yards and two receiving touchdowns.
Forget about Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson on the Houston Texans, Foster is the main man for that team's offense. He is the juice that keeps the Texans' offensive attack pumping, and he could also be the juice that keeps your fantasy team winning.
LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia Eagles
Entering 2012, LeSean McCoy is the NFL's most lethal dual-threat running back.
McCoy is a guaranteed 1,000 yards rushing and is definitely a guarantee for production in the passing game.
This past season for the Philadelphia Eagles, McCoy ran for 1,309 yards and 17 touchdowns, as well as snagging 48 passes for 315 yards and three touchdowns; that's 20 total touchdowns out of your running back. You can't get much better than that.
Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit Lions
Picking a wide receiver first overall? It might seem a little crazy, but not when it's Megatron himself, Calvin Johnson.
Johnson was simply unstoppable at the wide receiver position in 2011, as he reeled in 96 receptions for 1,681 yards and an incredible 16 touchdowns.
With quarterback Matthew Stafford and Johnson continuing to grow together as one of the NFL's most dominant duos, I most definitely see Johnson producing similar stats this upcoming season.
And for all you points-per-reception players out there, Johnson's 96 receptions to go along with his 16 touchdowns were just an absurd amount of points, right? This wide receiver is more valuable than you think.
Cam Newton, QB, Carolina Panthers
This selection would likely be one of the more risky decision for the first overall pick, as there's a chance he has a sophomore slump, but he continues to develop as an NFL quarterback, then drafting Cam Newton first overall would be a genius decision.
Newton couldn't have had a better rookie season as he threw for an NFL rookie record of 4,051 passing yards while tossing 21 touchdowns. Not to mention that Newton is a dual-threat quarterback, as he acts as an additional running back to your roster. He accumulated 706 yards as well as punching in 14 scores last year.
So all in all, Newton scored 35 total touchdowns while passing for 4,000-plus yards and rushing for 700-plus yards. You can't get much better than that.
Assuming that Newton stays on track with his development, he's only going to be an even more lethal fantasy player in 2012.
Ray Rice, RB, Baltimore Ravens
Ray Rice might not produce points in the flashiest manner, but he's always racking up rushing yards, touchdowns and even receiving yards. Rice simply does it all for the Baltimore Ravens and for all the fortunate fantasy owners out there.
Rice ran for 1,364 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2011, but was even more impressive as a receiver, catching 76 passes for 704 yards while scoring three touchdowns.
You rarely see a running back not only carry your team as a rusher but could also be your fantasy team's top receiver.
Drew Brees, QB New Orleans Saints
Drafting Drew Brees first overall kind of scares me in a way. For starters, he's not even under contract with the New Orleans Saints, as well as being a member of franchise that is in a complete disarray due to the bounty scandal.
However, Brees is definitely a sure shot for production, as he is now the NFL's single season passing leader after his epic 5,476 passing yards last year.
With all the other players available, I just wouldn't touch Brees with the first overall pick.
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Be sure to check out Tony Santorsa's blog: PatriotsPlus.
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