Poor judgment and attitude has taken Terrell Owens' NFL career in a different direction. He is leaving the nice confines of Dallas and is heading to Buffalo, where the impact of weather will undoubtedly effect Owens value in the latter half of the fantasy football season.
Owens signed a one-year, $6.5 million contract a few days after being released by Dallas. This contract confides a few things. Owens is aging and losing a step, thus, not even a Super Bowl contender is looking to sign him. It is also evident that Owens himself is grabbing at a contract, as his options were completely limited.
Owens enters a division known for defense. You can guarantee that the Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, and New York Jets will try to make Owens' welcoming a tough one. In fact, his new divisions' defense should be the least of his concerns.
Owens will be catching the pigskin from Trent Edwards, arguably the worst quarterback that he has played with during his stellar career. His own personal physical attributes are starting to come into play as the tread on his wheels is starting to wear thin.
The 35-year old is a much easier wide receiver to throw off his route. A dip in Owens' overall production should be felt, as his streak of 1,000+ receiving yards and 10+ touchdowns very well could end.
The 2009 impact in the fantasy football world due to this signing will be minimal at best. As we already discussed, the harsher playing conditions, increased age, as well as a step-back in offensive talent around him will most likely result in a season inferior to what fantasy owners have come to enjoy out of Owens.
Plus, he was mediocre at times in 2008. So wise fantasy owners have already started to drop him down the ranks at the wide receiver position. He is not the only one that will be impacted though. Lee Evans, Trent Edwards, and Marshawn Lynch should also be affected a tad.
Evans finally gets to play with a truly talented, albeit aging, receiver. This should help take away from the coverage that Evans has had to endure from opposing defenses. Don't expect a huge spike in numbers by any means, but a small increase in bigger plays could result.
Edwards gains a huge red-zone target, which should easily help improve on his career best 11 passing touchdowns from 2008.
Lynch will be able to enjoy facing defenses that won't be able to stack the box, as they will now have to contend with a pair of talented receivers.
As far as fantasy value goes Owens should slip down to the WR2 range. Evans remains more of a WR3 and Lynch (if he avoids suspension from NFL) could take a small step forward, resulting in him becoming a lower-end RB1 in deeper leagues.
When it comes to Edwards though, don't expect anything more than middle-tier QB2 numbers, as he will still suffer from consistency issues.
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