Is Malcolm Floyd Now a Fantasy Football Draft Day Sleeper?

Eric StashinSenior Writer IJuly 8, 2010

CINCINNATI - NOVEMBER 12:  Malcolm Floyd #80 San Diego Chargers runs in a touchdown reception against Deltha O'Neal #24 of the Cincinnati Bengals on November 12, 2006 at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Chargers defeated the Bengals 49-41.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Malcolm Floyd got his chance to step into a starting role in 2009 after Chris Chambers was jettisoned from San Diego.  The opportunity was a long time coming, as he had never had more then 27 catches in his previous five seasons in the league.

Floyd delivered in a big way, appearing in all 16 games and starting nine.  He set career highs in catches (45) and yards (776).  While he was lacking in touchdowns (he scored just once), it appears unlikely that he could maintain such a low number.

When you think about it, it’s actually amazing that he scored once.  He had four touchdowns in 2008 when he had 18 fewer catches.  He also had 13 catches of at least 20 yards and five of at least 40 yards last season.  Yet, he only broke on of those into the end zone?  That’s almost unthinkable.

Floyd’s five catches of 40-plus yards actually tied him for ninth in the league.  His 17.2 yard per reception average placed him fourth among receivers with at least 30 catches.  That goes to show you that he is the team’s home run hitter and should have the potential to score significantly more touchdowns.

That doesn’t even take into account the fiasco surrounding Vincent Jackson, the team’s top receiver.  He’s already been suspended for three games and has threatened to hold out if he isn’t rewarded with a new contract.  It’s easy to imagine a season without Jackson, who caught 68 passes for 1,167 yards and 9 TD last season.

Jackson actually averaged the same 17.2 yards per reception as Floyd did last season, so is it unimaginable to see Floyd come reasonably close to that line if he is the team’s top receiver?  Say something in the 55 catches for 900 yards and 6 TD range?

He certainly has the quarterback to help him get there, as Philip Rivers has emerged as one of the elite in the league (I had Rivers ranked as the fifth best fantasy quarterback, which you can view by clicking here ).  With Antonio Gates, Ryan Mathews, and Darren Sproles also in the mix, there certainly are enough weapons to help distract defenses.

I’m not about to suggest that Floyd can replicate the production of Jackson, but given the recent news I think he’s got the potential to be a steal on draft day.  He’s currently being selected as the 42nd wide receiver off the board (according to Mock Draft Central), going in the late ninth or early 10th round.

Given the recent news and the potential he has, I’d love to have him at that point.  He’s going to be shooting up my draft board when I update the receiver rankings (click here  to view the current rankings), and he’s now a player that I’m targeting.  There’s simply too much potential there to ignore.

What are your thoughts on Floyd?  Do you think he’s a bargain where he is currently being drafted?  How good do you think he could be?

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