Much like fantasy sleepers, the rookie class can have a strong impact on your fantasy season and this class is no exception.
Andrew Luck – There is a lot of hype behind RG3 coming into the season, so much so that Andrew Luck was being overshadowed, until he opened the preseason with a TD on his first pass and finished 10-18 for 188 yards and 2 TDs. He showed great touch, pocket presence, and great command of the team. Make no mistake about it, Luck will be a solid QB in the NFL and in fantasy this season. He has all the tools to be a solid QB2 in fantasy this season and a solid group around him on offense. Don’t aim too high just yet, as he did face a rebuilding Rams defense, but keep him in mind when looking for depth.
Robert Griffin III – As I mentioned earlier, RG3 is probably the more hyped rookie QB coming into the season. That’s not to say he is overrated, because Griffin has the tools to be solid in fantasy. He has already shown rapport with Pierre Garcon in his first preseason game, as well as showing great poise in the pocket, something he will need at the NFL level. He is best drafted as your QB2, since he is still yet unproven in the regular season, but has the upside to be a starter on fantasy teams with his ability to run the ball. Just remember that while Griffin is young, so is a good deal of his supporting cast on offense and some bumps in the road should be expected as with any rookie.
Trent Richardson – The former Crimson Tide star will not be coming into the league under the radar in most fantasy leagues, and is already a borderline top 10 RB. However, he has had arthroscopic knee surgery and will likely miss the preseason meaning his inauguration into the league may be a slow one over the first few weeks. That’s no reason to ignore a player of Richardson’s caliber though. He is a prototypical size at 5’11, 224lbs, and runs around a 4.4, every reason he was taken by the Browns at the number 3 overall pick also make him a solid pick in fantasy.
David Wilson – Wilson had a great showing in his preseason opener for the Giants, running for 43 yards on 7 carries. He is set to start the season behind incumbent Ahmed Bradshaw, but with Bradshaw’s injury history and increased workload to start the season, it is very possible that Wilson could start at some point this season. The Giants have always had a knack for running the football, and Wilson is a better talent than Bradshaw. Keep an eye on Wilson.
Doug Martin – He will be battling LeGarrette Blount throughout the preseason, but is likely to get the starting job in Tampa. How the carries will be divvied up will be interesting once the season begins, but Martin is a clearly superior all around back compared to Blount and could have a chance to be the primary back which would make him money in fantasy leagues. The injury to Blount may speed up the process of Martin to a feature back position as well depending on the severity of the damage to Blount’s knee.
Justin Blackmon – After holding out until just before the start of preseason, Blackmon will have a lot to work on and may start slow as the season begins. However, Blackmon is first class talent coming out of Oklahoma State, and showed immediate rapport with Blaine Gabbert. He has great run-after-the-catch ability which should be a big plus in PPR leagues, and the WR1 position should be his to lose throughout the preseason.
Alshon Jeffery – Had the Bears not acquired Brandon Marshall there would be much more hype behind Alshon Jeffery. He is another prototypical player at 6 foot 3, 216 lbs, and a 4.38 40 time, there is reason to have hope for Jay Cutler and the Chicago passing game this season. He is expected by many to be a solid red-zone threat, but could provide a much higher ceiling.
Coby Fleener – He will have to compete with fellow rookie Dwayne Allen coming into the season, but Fleener was a solid offensive threat in college with his current QB Andrew Luck, where he grabbed 17 TDs in his final 2 seasons. It will be important to keep an eye on Fleener as the preseason goes to see if he edges out Allen, and if he does he could be a strong TE2 to draft.
About the Author
Written by David Willow
My name is David Willow. Your NFL and Fantasy Jedi. I have lived in Dallas, TX most of my life. I have been following both football and basketball since I was a child. I love being able to research and analyze different players and teams. I've been a fantasy sports enthusiast for around 8 years with some titles to back that. I have a Bachelors degree in History with a minor in English. Other hobbies include me being part of an acting workshop for five years, playing guitar, and working out. Hit me up with any comments, questions or opinions.