2013 Fantasy Football: Projecting Top 10 Picks for Next Year

Matt SchreiberAnalyst IIIJanuary 3, 2013

2013 Fantasy Football: Projecting Top 10 Picks for Next Year

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    If 2012 was any indication of what 2013 fantasy football might be like, I have a solid idea of who the top 10 guys taken off the board will be.

    I have put together an ordered list of the top ten picks of a generic 2013 fantasy football draft.

    Players missing out on the top ten picks include: LeSean McCoy, Trent Richardson, Stevan Ridley, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, A.J. Green, Demaryius Thomas, Brandon Marshall and Chris Johnson.

    Draft is based on a 10-team league and the standard scoring system listed below.

    Standard Scoring System:

    25 passing yards = 1 point

    10 rushing yards = 1 point

    10 receiving yards = 1 point

    Passing touchdown = 4 points

    Rushing touchdown = 6 points

    Receiving Touchdown = 6 points

    Interception thrown/fumble lost = -2 points

1. Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota Vikings

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    No surprise here whatsoever. Adrian Peterson had more yards after contact in 2012 than most running backs put up all year. He is a freak of nature, rushing for 2,000-plus yards a year after tearing his ACL.

    After getting passed on in the first (and, in some cases, second) round, most drafts in 2012, fantasy owners were kicking themselves in the head for not selecting him when they had the chance.

    Whoever is lucky enough to get the top pick in their fantasy football draft in 2013 would be foolish to not take Peterson.

2. Arian Foster, RB, Houston Texans

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    Arian Foster led the league in total touchdowns in 2012 with 17 (15 rushing) and finished in the top five in rushing yards with 1,424. After being selected number one overall in most drafts in 2012, his one-spot drop-off only speaks to how tremendous Peterson has been, as Foster did not fail to meet owners' expectations.

    Peterson was the top pick for a couple of years before being plagued by injuries. Whoever misses out on Peterson with the second pick should be happy to get the consolation prize in Foster.

3. Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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    You may think I am crazy for having Doug Martin ahead of Ray Rice here, but the guy is a stud. Since he exploded onto the scene week 9 with a 51-point performance against the Raiders, he has been one of the top fantasy running back.

    The Ravens don't give the ball to Rice as much as the Buccaneers give it to Martin.

    With a year of professional experience under his belt, he will come out even stronger next year.

4. Ray Rice, RB, Baltimore Ravens

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    As much as I like Ray Rice as a top-five pick, I do have some doubts as the Ravens don't utilize him nearly as much as they should. In six of 16 games in 2012, the Ravens gave Rice 20 or more carries. That's not nearly enough for a guy who could potentially go for 2,000 yards in a season.

    He is clearly one of the best running backs in the league and is a dual threat to catch and run out of the backfield.

    I just feel more comfortable with Peterson, Foster, and Martin.

5. Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle Seahawks

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    Marshawn Lynch ended the 2012 regular season scorching hot. He rushed for 100 yards or more in each of the last four games and added a total of six touchdowns in that span.

    If that's any indication of what 2012 will be like for Lynch, he is worthy of a top-five pick in any fantasy draft. Russell Wilson makes him better, as both are capable runners and defenses don't know which guy to zone in on. 

    He was third in the NFL in rushing yards only to Alfred Morris and Adrian Peterson. He had 10 100-yard rushing games in 2012.

6. C.J. Spiller, RB, Buffalo Bills

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    I have loved C.J. Spiller since I watched him shred apart opposing defenses in his collegiate years at Clemson. Now that he has emerged as the lead back in Buffalo, the sky is the limit for what he can do.

    He even has the potential to be the best running back in the league. 

    Health has been an issue with Spiller in 2012 but, as long as he is healthy, he is tearing it up for your fantasy team.

7. Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit Lions

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    Calvin Johnson broke the single-season receiving record with 1,964 yards in 2012. He also snagged 122 balls on 205 targets, adding plenty of bonus points in point-per-reception leagues. He only caught five touchdowns, though.

    He broke an NFL record with 11 100-yard receiving games and had an incredible streak of eight straight games with at least 100 yards receiving.

    No one in the NFL aside from Brandon Marshall racks up more targets than Megatron. 

8. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers

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    It was somewhat surprising that a rare amount of people even spoke of Aaron Rodgers' success in 2012. If 4,295 passing yards, 39 passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns is not enough, what is?

    In my opinion, Rodgers is the best quarterback in the NFL. That is my opinion. Do with it what you want. 

    Not to mention, he only threw eight interceptions. I have him ranked eighth on my list but, if his receivers stay healthy, Rodgers is easily worthy of a top-three pick.

9. Jamaal Charles, RB, Kansas City Chiefs

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    People may overlook the fact that Charles ran for 1,509 yards in 2012 because the Chiefs finished 2-14. 

    If it weren't for rushing performances of three, four and 10 yards against the Bills and Raiders twice, he could've hit the 2,000 yard mark.

    I was very impressed with his performance considering he missed pretty much the entire 2011 season after tearing his ACL.

    He doesn't score many touchdowns, though, because the Chiefs rarely find the end zone. In fact, Charles has scored as many rushing touchdowns in his career (17) as Arian Foster had total touchdowns in 2012.

    If the Chiefs get the right personnel both on the sidelines coaching them and a stronger supporting cast, Charles can bolster his value and begin to score some touchdowns.

    He rushed for over 200 yards twice in 2012 and has the speed and strength to continue his success in 2013.

10. Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots

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    Yeah, you read that right. If Gronk is healthy, he is putting up 20 points per week. You can't pass up on him if he's available at the 10th pick in your draft.

    Before missing five games due to injury, Gronk caught 51 balls for 748 yards and 10 touchdowns through 10 games.

    He is the best tight end I have ever seen and nearly impossible to cover.