Top Fantasy Football Impact Rookies

Andrew GardaFeatured ColumnistAugust 5, 2013

The rookies named in this video are your best bet for fantasy points this year, but they aren't the only possibilities.

We're all watching quarterback battles between veterans and rookies in New York with the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets.

Things were already looking favorable for EJ Manuel when Kevin Kolb slipped on a wet rubber mat and hurt his knee. He's considered day-to-day, but Manuel didn't need much of an opening to win this battle considering how poorly Kolb has played.

Starting Manuel is a bit risky, as he is still pretty raw, but he has some nice matchups you can use during bye weeks, such as Week 9 against the Kansas City Chiefs and Week 11 against the New York Jets.

Speaking of the Jets, Geno Smith and Mark Sanchez are trading good days in Cortland, N.Y., and neither seems to have an edge as of yet.

Still, if you're talking about a five-year veteran struggling to hold off a raw rookie, maybe the battle is already over.

If Smith comes out on top, you've got him for bye-week matchups, like Week 4 against the Tennessee Titans, the Buffalo Bills in Week 11 and the Oakland Raiders in Week 14.

Neither Smith nor Manuel is a safe starter on a weekly basis, but both can be used in a pinch. If you have to make a choice, lean toward Manuel, who has a much better supporting cast.

As long as we're talking Bills, here's a guy who almost made the video but just couldn't get crammed in.

Robert Woods is another in a long line of quarterback-saving receivers out of USC. Don't sleep on the big-play, sure-handed receiver who only has T.J. Graham in front of him on the depth chart right now.

Graham, a 2012 third-round pick with tremendous straight-line speed and little else, is a solid player, but he lacks Woods' hands, sharp route-running and overall complete game.

Put Woods across from Stevie "Styles" Johnson, and he'll have plenty of targets and a lot of production.


Andrew Garda is a member of the Pro Football Writers Association. He is also a member of the fantasy football staff at and the NFL writer at You can follow him at @andrew_garda on Twitter.