Even with fantasy leagues completed and drafts about six months away, it doesn't hurt to start planning for the 2010 fantasy football season. I have listed the ten players who I think should be the first ten players taken in 2010 PPR fantasy football drafts. Point-per-reception leagues award one point for every reception. Players who catch a lot of balls have more value in a PPR format than a standard scoring format. Here it goes!
Charles became the Chiefs' feature back in Week 10 after Larry Johnson was released from the team. He took advantage of the opportunity and didn't look back as he emerged as one of the top PPR running backs toward the end of the season. Despite starting in Week 10, Charles managed to gather 1,400 total yards and eight total touchdowns. He was targeted 55 times with 40 receptions. The sky's the limit for this former Longhorns' running back next season, as he will undoubtedly be the Chiefs No. 1 option.
Jackson's health has been an issue for the better part of his career, but that hasn't kept him from being one of the top running backs in the NFL every year. What makes Jackson especially dangerous is his involvement in the passing game every year. Jackson was targeted 76 times this season, third among running backs, and caught 51 of those passes. As long as Jackson keeps getting targets like he did this season, he will remain one of the better PPR options. He is one of the most versatile backs in the league and puts up consistent numbers each season.
This workhorse pounded his way to 1,700 total yards but only four touchdowns. The yardage was close to normal for Jackson this season but the touchdowns were disappointing to say the least. With an offseason of rest and rehabilitation Jackson is sure to bounce back and put up bigger numbers next season.
Mr. Consistent put up MVP-deserving yet again this season with over 4,500 passing yards and 33 touchdown passes. As long as Manning's bursa sacs are taken care of he'll put up similar numbers in 2010. Peyton did throw 18 interceptions in '09 but was still second in the league in touchdowns and yards and first in completions. Peyton Manning is worth a first-round pick in PPR or standard scoring leagues.
Gore is a perennial PPR beast. He put up 1,500 yards from scrimmage with 13 total touchdowns (a career best). His 75 targets were fourth among running backs. Gore is one of the safest bets in PPR drafts.
When Johnson is healthy he is a shoe-in for 100 receptions and 1,000 receiving yards. This season, Johnson was third in the league in catches, first in yards and first in targets for wide receivers. Not to mention his nine touchdowns. Johnson has become the best WR in the NFL as well as the top receiver for PPR drafts.
Brees was in the top five in the league in completions and yards and first in touchdowns with 34. His '09 campaign was a disappointment compared to the numbers he put up last season, but it was still one of the best seasons of any quarterback in the league. He remains the top quarterback option for any draft.
In past seasons, Peterson did all of his work on the ground, but with Brett Favre came an increased role in the passing game for Peterson. He doubled his receptions from last season while putting up 1,800 total yards and 18 touchdowns. If Favre remains in Minnesota next season, Peterson should remain a more prominent factor in the passing game.
Rice emerged as the best PPR running back in the league this season. He topped all running backs in targets (103), catches(78) and receiving yards (702). His touchdowns (8) weren't spectacular but he did amass over 2,000 total yards despite splitting carries with Willis McGahee and LeRon McClain. Rice had 23 more targets than the next highest running back, one of the reasons he is a PPR dream.
Jones-Drew is the most reliable PPR option in my book. Every year he gets at least 40 receptions and double digit touchdowns. His workload increased this year with the departure of Fred Taylor and he proved, with flying colors, that he could handle the pressure. Jones-Drew had the best season of his accomplished career as he totaled 1,700 yards and 16 total touchdowns. These numbers shouldn't change next year.
Johnson compiled a ridiculous 2,500 yards from scrimmage along with his 16 total touchdowns. One of the best fantasy season ever for a running back. Johnson's speed separates him from the rest of the pack and as long as he doesn't lose his legs he will be the No. 1 PPR running back for the foreseeable future.