The NFC South, unlike the last division I wrote about, is loaded with talent and players you will be relying on for your Fantasy Football team.
We have elite quarterbacks, Drew Brees, Cam Newton, Matt Ryan. Also elite receivers Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Kelvin Benjamin, Vincent Jackson, Brandin Cooks and Roddy White. OK maybe not all of those receivers are “elite”, but they are all good Fantasy players.
The running backs are probably the weak spot in this division. After Mark Ingram, the rest of the guys here had less than impressive 2014 seasons. We may see this change this season though, more on this later.
Even though there is a lot of talent in this league for fantasy purposes, these teams have struggled overall. This has to do with their defenses the last few seasons. Except for the Carolina Panthers, all of these teams finished 25th or below in yards allowed per game in 2014. In fact, the Saints and Falcons were ranked last and next to last in that category. This actually is a big reason why the offensive players are so good for Fantasy Football. They are constantly having to go all out and try to score to keep up with the other team.
This has led to a muddled division when it comes to the standings too. The Saints kind of ruled this division for a while, but now that their defense is so bad, the Panthers have stepped in won it the last couple of seasons, although last year they won it with a 7-8 record. That is not exactly what I would call a good team. Perhaps the Saints make a comeback themselves with some comeback players on their roster and take the division crown once again.
NFC South Comeback Players
Similarly like the AFC South there is another rookie that of course can not be a comeback player but I will be paying close attention to. The Buccaneers drafted No. 1 overall and selected Jameis Winston. I’m not quite sure what to expect from him and think he will struggle plenty with his decision making, which will lead to a lot of interceptions. He does have two fantastic receivers to throw to in Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson, so the potential is there. I’m just not buying yet.
Jonathan Stewart, RB, Carolina Panthers
DeAngelo Williams is gone which leaves JStew the unquestioned feature back in this offense. Great news for him since the Carolina Panthers ran the ball a lot. 8th most in the NFL last season and that was with DWill and JStew both missing time.
We saw Stewart have a strong end of the season, averaging 117 yards and scoring twice during Weeks 14 through 16. The only time in his career he got over 200 carries, which should be easy for him to do this season if he stays healthy, he rushed for 1100 yards and 10 touchdowns. That would be a great comeback from really the last three seasons that have been a major disappointment for him.
It is hard to expect something that good. But it is just a reminder of how good he can be. Draft him and don’t think twice about it.
C.J. Spiller, RB, New Orleans Saints
I don’t think anybody questions the skills that C.J. Spiller has. He is an electric player and he can have success as proven by the 1700 total yards and eight total touchdowns he had in 2012. Then Buffalo became a putrid offense and they started using Spiller differently which severely affected his performance.
Now he moves to one of the best offenses over the last decade in the New Orleans Saints. I’m loving this move for Spiller and will be targeting him in just about every league. Right now his ADP is 65 overall according to Fantasy Pros, but I actually expect that to rise as we get closer to the Fantasy Football season.
I don’t think Spiller will lead the Saints in rushing attempts or yards or touchdowns, that should go to Mark Ingram. However, his value will come from catching passes out of the backfield in space and making plays. This is much like we saw Darren Sproles do for the Saints for years. So especially those of you in PPR league need to be targeting Spiller.
Marques Colston, WR, New Orleans Saints
Yes another Saint. Colston is getting in that age range where his production is declining, but last year we saw by far the worst season of his career when he played more than 14 games. He only caught 59 passes for 902 yards and five touchdowns. 2013 was not a whole lot better, except that he caught 75 passes.
A lot of his slide had to do with Jimmy Graham plain dominating for the Saints the last two seasons. Well as we all know Graham is off to Seattle this season and even though we all expect Brandin Cooks to lead this team in receiving, this still opens the door for Colston to be a comeback player. He should absolutely see an increase in targets this season and an increase in touchdowns now that the redzone dominant Jimmy Graham is not there.
Check back with us throughout the offseason as we go through every division and break out who we think looks ready to be comeback players for 2015 Fantasy Football.
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