#1: New Orleans Saints
Notable Additions: Charles Brown, OT, Jimmy Graham, TE
Notable Losses: Mike Bell, RB
The reigning Super Bowl Champions have the best offense in the NFL. This high powered offense lead the league in average points per game, 31.6, and total yards per game, 403.8. They have the best balance attack in the NFL. Last year, they were fourth in the league in passing, 272.2 passing yards per game, and sixth in the league in rushing yards per game. Even though they’re balanced, this offense runs off Drew Brees. Defenses fear the passing game so much they aren’t able to put an eighth man in the box to stop the run. When the passing game is on, the run game is more effective and then the Saints hit big with play action plays. The great thing is that the team didn’t lose any big offensive pieces. That means players like Drew Brees and Marques Colston should be considered drafted in the first two rounds. Also, running backs, Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas should be considered as second starter or flex positions.
#2: Indianapolis Colts
Notable Additions: None
Notable Losses: None
The Colts have the most efficient offense in the NFL. They were second in the league in passing yards per game, 282.2. The Colts were dead last in the league with 80.9 rushing yards per game. Somehow they managed to score 26 points per game last year with a poor running game. Expect the running game to get better next year and for Peyton Manning to have another MVP type season. As a fantasy owner, you want to make sure you get your hands on either Reggie Wayne or Dallas Clark. Every week it seems like they both get either over 100 yards or a touchdown. If they are both gone, look for Pierre Garcon or Austin Collie to be good options as second starter at wider receiver or flex positions. As for Manning, he will be drafted late first or early second round. If you can snatch him, you have a starting quarterback every week. You can see all these players having great years because Tom Moore, Offensive Coordinator, is returning for another season.
#3: San Diego Chargers
Notable Additions: Ryan Mathews, RB
Notable Losses: LaDainian Tomlinson, RB
Philip Rivers is going to have a huge year. This year can be the time that Rivers takes the Chargers over the hump and into the Super Bowl. They replaced an aging running back, LaDainian Tomlinson, with a rookie, Ryan Mathews. I believe Tomlinson has some gas left in the tank. However, getting younger at that position will pay off. After 30 years old, running backs start to decline. Chargers were second to last in the league in rushing yards per game, 88.9. Drafting Mathews gives the Chargers young legs that can carry the load more during a brutal NFL season. Chargers scored 28.4 points per game, fourth in the NFL. They had the fifth best passing attack last year, 271.1 yards per game. Philip Rivers will be an every week starter that you can get in the late second or early third round. We have to give some credit to Antonio Gates and Vincent Jackson for the great passing game. They make a lot of plays for Rivers. The Chargers are in a weak division, AFC West, and these players stock should rise because they play Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders twice a year.
#4: Green Bay Packers
Notable Additions: Bryan Bulaga, OT
Notable Losses: None
Aaron Rodgers was sacked 50 times last year. Despite that, they scored 28.8 points per game. That was third best in the league. The Packers were seventh in the league in passing yards per game, 261.2. The Packers’ passing attack is only going to get better. They drafted an offensive tackle, Bryan Bulaga from Iowa, with the 23rd overall pick in the first round. Reducing the number of hits and sacks Rodgers takes next season will catapult the Packers’ offense to the next level. Once you see the team protect Rodgers more, you will see the Packers’ running game get better. Rodgers’ go to man, Greg Jennings, will fit great at one of your starting wide receiver spots on your fantasy team. Jennings will be drafted somewhere around the fourth round. Rodgers will most likely be drafted early in fourth round. That is great news for drafters that like to take their running backs or wide receivers early. Good news is that the Packers play the Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears twice a year.
#5: Minnesota Vikings
Notable Additions: Toby Gerhart, RB
Notable Losses: Chester Taylor, RB
This ranking for the Vikings depends solely on one player, Brett Favre. Arguably, he had his best season ever with the Vikings and he was the one the put that franchise over the top. With Farve, they are one of the best offenses in the league. They scored 29.4 points per game last year. Only the Saints did better. They were fifth in the league for total yards per game, 379.6, and eighth in the league in passing yards per game, 259.8. This offense will be much better if Adrian Peterson can reduce the amount of fumbles he gets. However, this team has a balance attack with him on the field and can take an average three yard gain to the house. Peterson is one of the best running backs in the game and will be drafted first or second overall. Sidney Rice had a breakout year last season and can carry that in to the next season. I would draft him as a second starter for your wide receiver core. As for Farve, I would draft him near the sixth or seventh round. He would be a great option once you have drafted both your running backs and wide receivers and an elite tight end.
#6: Houston Texans
Notable Additions: Ben Tate, RB
Notable Losses: Chester Pitts, OG
Houston Texans are the most underrated offense in the NFL. You can argue that they are the third or fourth best offense in the league. In a way, I’m even underrating them a little. They were fourth in the league in points scored per game, 24.2. They had 290.9 passing yards per game last year, which was best in the NFL. It’s not hard to believe when they have Matt Schaub, Andre Johnson and Owen Daniels on offense. Steve Slaton has been benched multiple times due to the fact of his fumbling issues. He had seven fumbles and lost five of them. Texans did draft running back Ben Tate out of Auburn to fix the problem. Texans are optimistic that Tate could give them a boost at running back. Texans only rushed for 92.2 yards per game last season. That was only better then the Colts and Chargers. Andre Johnson will be one of the first wide receivers taken in your fantasy draft. However, don’t shy away from drafting Kevin Walter. Schaub will be the fifth or sixth quarterback taken and could be a great steal in the middle rounds.
#7: Dallas Cowboys
Notable Additions: Dez Bryant, WR
Notable Losses: Flozell Adams, OT,
Cowboys are one of the best running teams in the NFL. They were seventh in the league in rushing with 131.4 yards per game and second in the league in total yards, 399.4. With the emergence of Miles Austin and the drafting of Dez Bryant gives the Cowboys a great one-two punch at wide receiver. They were sixth in passing in 2009, 267.9 passing yards per game, and you can see them break into the top three next year. One player I would stay away from drafting would be Roy Williams. It is unknown if he is going to start the season as the number two wide out. Also, if he doesn’t start, it’s unknown how much playing time he is going to be given. Jason Witten is still one of the best tight ends in the league and should be drafted fairly high. There is depth with tight ends this year so don’t be upset if you don’t get the top three. Even though Cowboys are one of the best rushing teams in the NFL, be wary about drafting there running backs. It’s still a mystery on how they’re going to split carriers between Felix Jones, Marion Barber and Tashard Choice. Overall, they’re still one of the best offenses in the NFL.
#8: New England Patriots
Notable Additions: Alge Crumpler, TE, Torry Holt, WR,
Notable Losses: Ben Watson, TE
In 2007, the Patriots were arguably the best offensive team ever. They probably won’t have a season like that next year but, they still have the core pieces in place to have a great offensive season. Tom Brady has another off-season to heal is ACL injury he suffered in 2008. Randy Moss is playing for a new contract and Wes Walker is healing from his knee injury he suffered last season. The Patriots scored 26.7 points per game last season. That was sixth in the NFL. They were third in the league in passing, 277.2 yards per game. I would rate Tom Brady as the fourth best quarterback to draft and will go fairly early in the draft. Patriots are in a tough division, AFC East, and have to play the Jets and Dolphins twice a year. Overall, Patriots have the potential to be the best offensive team next year. We just have to see how it all plays out.
#9: Washington Redskins
Notable Additions: Donovan McNabb, QB, Larry Johnson, RB, Willie Parker, RB, Trent Williams, OT
Notable Losses: Jason Campbell, QB, Antwaan Randle El, WR
Mike Shanahan is the new coach for the Washington Redskins and you can expect him to do two things great. One, he is great quarterback coach but, doesn’t need to showcase that skill because they traded for six time pro bowl quarterback, Donovan McNabb. Secondly, he is known for his exceptional zone blocking scheme. They were 27th in the league last year in rushing, 94.4 yards per game. You can expect that number to rise dramatically next year. They were 16th in passing, 218.1 yards per game. Again, you can see this number within the top 10 next year with the additions of McNabb. Redskins’ wide receivers are average at best. However, for most of McNabb’s career, he hasn’t had a great wide receiver core and was still able to make Eagles offense go. Clinton Portis is reunited with his old coach, Shanahan, when he used to play in Denver. I can see a breakout season for Portis. He is returning to a familiar offense that he trusts and was successful in. He will be a solid number two running back for any fantasy team. I would keep a close eye on the Redskins wide outs. Someone besides Chris Cooley is going to have to catch some footballs. When that guy arises, I would snatch him of the waiver wire.
#10 Baltimore Ravens
Notable Additions: Anquan Boldin, WR, Donte Stallworth, WR
Notable Losses: None
The Baltimore Ravens rushed for 137.5 yards per game last year. That is fifth best in the NFL. With the running game still intact and another year under Joe Flacco’s belt should improve the 213.7 passing yards from last year. The Ravens traded for Anquan Boldin from the Arizona Cardinals. Boldin is a physical wide out that doesn’t shy away from contact. That is exactly how the Ravens like to play football. Boldin gives Flacco a number one wide out that they desperately needed. I can see Flacco having his first true breakout season. Ray Rice and Willis McGahee provide the Ravens with one of the best combinations at running back in the NFL. Rice will be drafted much higher than McGahee but, I wouldn’t sleep on McGahee. Draft him as a flex position starter or start him against a favorable match up like Cleveland. Depending on Flacco’s progression next season will ultimately decide how good this offense will be.
Originally Published at www.fantasyfootballsportal.com