Philadelphia Eagles Fantasy Football Report Card
Six weeks are in the books, and while we may not know what we have in reality with the Eagles, in fantasy football, the picture is crystal clear. So, we at FFSpin.com have decided to take the CBA mandated respite known as the BYE week to issue grades on the Eagles fantasy football performers and speculate on their performance for the rest of the season.
Each week, we at FFSpin.com and FantasyFootballCrystalBall.com create a couple Eagles-centric fantasy football articles for PhillySportsDaily.com, the leader in all things Philadelphia sports coverage online.
Michael Vick off to a so-so Start.
Average Draft Position (ADP) 1.05. Current Position Ranking: 6
Grade C+: Vick has yet to throw for more than two touchdowns in a single game in 2011, and he has a goose egg when it comes to rushing touchdowns. He has not lived up to his draft position, but has scored enough fantasy points that you can’t call him a flop. He’s still one of the better fantasy football quarterbacks, but expectations that his combination of rushing and passing statistics would rack up enough fantasy points to make him a better option than Aaron Rodgers were way off.
The rest of the season should be better. Matchups against the Cowboys, Patriots, Dolphins and Cardinals in the coming weeks should have Vick owners excited. The offensive line needs to improve, as does Vick’s accuracy and decision making. He’s a better quarterback in fantasy than he is in reality, but he’s not among the best.
Call us crazy, but we think Tebow will be a top 10 QB producer.
LeSean McCoy Goes to the Head of the Class
ADP 1.08, Current Position Rank: 2
Grade A+: McCoy is second only to Fred Jackson in fantasy points, and he’s officially joined the elite at the RB position. Few running backs give you what McCoy does: a guarantee of good points every week. McCoy is never out of the team’s game plan because of his pass blocking and pass catching ability. He can’t be written off when the team is facing a large deficit like you can with Michael Turner, LaGarrette Blount, Cedric Benson or Shonn Greene. He’s not injury prone like Darren McFadden, Jahvid Best, and Frank Gore. And, McCoy doesn’t have to share time like Ryan Mathews, Darren Sproles and Ahmad Bradshaw. In short, LeSean McCoy is money in the bank.
You can’t look at the rushing strength of schedule to project the rest of season for McCoy the way you can with other backs. The Eagles have an imbalanced offense, and as I mentioned, McCoy is dual threat. It’s safe to say that as long as McCoy can remain healthy, he is a top five fantasy running back.
Comparable Fantasy Options: Matt Forte, Fred Jackson, Ryan Matthews
Jeremy Maclin Remains Underrated
ADP 6.02, Current Position Rank: 11
Grade A: Since most fantasy leagues are 10 or 12 teams nowadays, we consider the top 12 receivers to WR No. 1’s. Maclin represents great value since he was the 25th WR off the board. On average, he was selected as a third WR for teams or a WR No. 2 at best.
Wise fantasy GMs realized he was a top 15 fantasy receiver last year and took advantage of the fact that Desean Jackson is overrated as a fantasy WR and the mystery that swirled around Jeremy Maclin and his health in the preseason to get a draft day steal. Maclin has more catches (37) than any receiver not named Wes Welker.
Maclin is a picture of consistency. He’ll rarely throw in a clunker, and he’ll occasionally post eye-popping numbers like he did in Week 2 (13/171/2). He’s actually a WR No. 2 because he won’t win you games on his own the way Greg Jennings, Calvin Johnson, Wes Welker and Andre Johnson. Conversely, he’s not hit or miss the way Desean Jackson, Vincent Jackson, Roddy White and other “home-run hitters” tend to be boom or bust.
Expect him to finish in the top 15 at wide receiver and try to take advantage of the fact that he still has a lower perceived than actual value. See if you can land him on your team and enjoy owning one of the most consistent fantasy options in the NFL.
Comparable Fantasy Options: Stevie Johnson, Brandon Marshall, Miles Austin.
Desean Jackson, the Second Best Receiver on the Eagles
ADP 3.03, Current Position Rank: 14
Grade B: Good, not great. That’s the right way to describe Desean Jackson. He’s not going to catch enough passes to make him a reliable PPR guy like Maclin, where even if he doesn’t score, he’s going to get you 10 points. Jackson is the perfect player to have if you have a top flight WR ahead of him who you know will produce consistently because Jackson makes up for his lack of consistency by posting massive numbers often enough to make him a very good WR No. 2.
The problem is, he has very high perceived value, and people drafted him as their top receiver. Therein lies the problem. It’s one of perception.
Jackson is what he is: a guy that will win you a couple games a year almost on his own but who aggravate you with too many single digit performances. He’s a risk/reward guy. From here on out, you can expect a top 20 fantasy WR. Take advantage of his next big game to see what you can get on the market.
Comparable Fantasy Options: Roddy White, Pierre Garcon, Jordy Nelson.
ADP 12.06, Current Position Rank: 33
Grade F: It’s not really his fault. Celek is reliable when he’s in the game plan as a receiver, but with the poor play of the Eagles offensive line, he’s primarily a blocker, not a receiver. He has seen more targets of late and we expect better numbers moving forward, but not good enough to make him a starter at any point. Celek is a bye week replacement at best.
ADP NA, Current Position Rank: 57
Grade C+: Avant is a BYE week replacement or short term injury replacement in a PPR league. You can’t count on him for consistent points and shouldn’t consider starting him regularly. He’s a nice safety blanket who you can stick in if need be, and know that you probably aren’t going to get completely shut out from that slot.