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Way Too Early Fantasy Football Positional Top 10: Not A Single Phenomenal Player

fantasy football positional top 10
Photo Credit: Theen Moy

Below are my way too early positional Top 10 within the four major FFL skill positions.

Notice I said Top 10, not phenomenal 10. Why? Because none of these players are phenomenal. For something to be phenomenal, it needs to be unprecedented. So when he broke the 2,000-yard rushing barrier, O.J. Simpson was phenomenal (and he remains a phenom in more ways than one). Lawrence Taylor was phenomenal. A phenomenon needs to be paradigm shifting, highly extraordinary, or at least prodigal. But the term is being thrown around like confetti.

I absolutely cringed earlier this week when I heard one of the morning news shows refer to Shawn Mendes as a global pop phenomenon. Extremely successful? Sure. Talented? Fine. But Mendes is not even close to a “global pop phenomenon”. In the last 75 years, there have been maybe 10 global pop phenomenon in the music world. PSY was actually a global pop phenomenon and he’s not even that talented. Off the top of my head, the short list of musical pop phenomenon includes the Beatles, Elvis, KISS, Michael Jackson, Run-DMC, and Madonna. Maybe we include the Grateful Dead, Kurt Cobain, and Taylor Swift. I’ll even accept I might be forgetting a couple others. But Shawn Mendes is absolutely not a phenomenon.

So media folks, can we please stop over-using that word? Thank you.

While I continue my crusade, enjoy my too early positional Top 10.

Fantasy Football Positional Top 10

Running Backs

Player Quick Commentary
Le’Veon Bell Nearly 1,300 rushing yards AND 85 receptions last year. Don’t overthink it.
David Johnson But if you overthink it, you know DJ stays healthy and takes back the crown.
Todd Gurley I’ll be happy with any of the top 3 RBs.
Ezekiel Elliot Averaged nearly a TD a game last year
Leonard Fournette I think he stays healthy this year
Dalvin Cook Ditto.
Alvin Kamara His stock shot up a little too much. But he’ll produce.
Melvin Gordon He’ll hit 1500+ combined yards again
Christian McCaffrey A lock for 80+ receptions
Kareem Hunt Can you imagine if Andy Reid actually gave him 15 carries every game?

 

Additional Comments: I will gladly take Barkley in the second round right now. I suspect he’ll crack my Top 10 before the season starts. But I’m not putting him in my Top 10 until I see what he does this preseason. The gap between McCoy’s ceiling and floor might be bigger than any other player. For now, I’m keeping him out of my Top 10.

 

Quarterbacks

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Player Quick Commentary
DeShaun Watson If he stays healthy, look out
Aaron Rodgers No Nelson, but no worries
Russel Wilson 17 yards short of 3rd 4K-yard passing season in a row. Safest bet on the board
Carson Wentz Can’t wait to see what he does with 16 games this year.
Jimmy Garoppolo I’m a believer
Tom Brady I’m telling you Pats are gonna be a heavy rushing team this year
Cam Newton You think Cam was happy after the draft?
Drew Brees Discount him at your own expense
Kirk Cousins Thielen and Diggs as targets is a huge upgrade
Philip Rivers Rivers is a fringe top QB1. For like the 50th year in a row.

 

Additional Comments: If Andrew Luck plays at least 12 games this year, he’ll be in the Top 10. But I’m not currently buying what the Colts are selling

 

Wide Receivers

Player Quick Commentary
DeAndre Hopkins Look what he did without Watson
Antonio Brown I like Hopkins upside better, but Brown has much higher floor
Mike Evans I’m on record as saying he can score 12 TDs again
Doug Baldwin This will be Baldwin’s career year
Adam Thielen No way he isn’t a WR1 this year
Odell Beckham Jr. Worth the headache. Maybe.
Michael Thomas Man I wish I had him in my primary keeper league.
Tyreek Hill If Mahomes reaches 4K like I predict, Hill is part of the reason.
Larry Fitzgerald Enjoy the future HOF-er while you can.
Julio Jones He’ll win you a week or two. He’ll get hurt or disappear for a couple too.

 

Additional Comments: Davante Adams just missed the cut. I like Keenan Allen as a WR2, not a WR1. Don’t be surprised if Josh Gordon is the best WR this year, but his floor is too low to put in my Top 10.

 

Tight Ends

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Player Quick Commentary
Zach Ertz Surprise! Gronk will be good, but he won’t be the top TE this year
Travis Kelce Yup. Mahomes hits 4K passing yards for a reason.
Rob Gronkowski Brady is not throwing 30 TDs if Gronk is not a top three TE.
Evan Engram Had more catches and yards last year than Gronk did his rookie year
Greg Olsen Still a Tier 1 Tight End
Delanie Walker You know what you’re getting
Jordan Reed You have no idea what you’re getting. If he could just stay healthy!
George Kittle Told you I was a believer in Jimmy G. The upside is there.
Kyle Rudolph 6 TDs is a reasonable over/under, and I’ll take the over
Tyler Eifert The result if you crossbred Rudolph and Reed.

 

Additional Comments: The two Indy TEs cancel each other out. So do the Tampa Bay pair. I’ll admit, I am struggling what to do with Jimmy Graham. But if I can’t get a top 10 tight end at value, I’m probably going to wait on the position and just happily take Ricky Seals-Jones.

 

That’s my way too early Top 10 positional rankings, but they are likely to change. Change or not, going 40 for 40, that would truly be… (cough)…a phenomenon.

 

 

 

Mark Strausberg

Mark Strausberg

Mark Strausberg remembers making Jerry Rice his first round selection as well as taking a flyer on a young pitcher named Doug Drabek. His Fantasy analysis has spanned multiple sports including football, baseball, basketball, and even golf. A FSWA finalist, his fantasy analysis has been featured in various outlets including but not limited to SI.com, USA Today national magazines, Yahoo! and RotoExperts.
Mark Strausberg

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