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2013 Draft Prep: Dynasty rankings by position

Senior Fantasy Writer
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Fantasy owners who play in dynasty leagues truly want the experience of being a general manager. This is the closest you can get to actually run a franchise.

The idea behind playing in a dynasty league is you draft a team where you retain most or all of your players from year to year. Most owners in dynasty leagues are dedicated Fantasy players since you are committed to your league for the long haul.

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These leagues can be complicated. The scoring can be the same as seasonal leagues (standard, PPR, IDP, etc.) but you will have a limited draft after the league is up and running of just rookies and free agents. Some dynasty leagues involve salary caps, but how you set up your league is up to you.

Here we are going to provide rankings if you are starting a dynasty league for the first time. You can also use these rankings as a guide for making long-term keeper decisions. The key is to find young players on the rise who you can count on for many years.

But don't discount veterans, especially if you have the chance to win now. Guys like Peyton Manning, Steven Jackson, Andre Johnson and Tony Gonzalez might not have much left, but they should still be dominant in 2013.

Quarterback

Dynasty Rankings - Quarterbacks
1. Aaron Rodgers, Packers
2. Cam Newton, Panthers
3. Andrew Luck, Colts
4. Robert Griffin III, Redskins
5. Drew Brees, Saints
6. Matthew Stafford, Lions
7. Matt Ryan, Falcons
8. Colin Kaepernick, 49ers
9. Russell Wilson, Seahawks
10. Peyton Manning, Broncos
11. Tom Brady, Patriots
12. Tony Romo, Cowboys
13. Eli Manning, Giants
14. Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers
15. Joe Flacco, Ravens
16. Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins
17. Sam Bradford, Rams
18. Andy Dalton, Bengals
19. Jay Cutler, Bears
20. E.J. Manuel, Bills
21. Josh Freeman, Buccaneers
22. Philip Rivers, Chargers
23. Matt Schaub, Texans
24. Geno Smith, Jets

Rodgers will turn 30 this season, but he plans to play seven more years. You can expect at least five of them to be dominant, and he's the easy choice as the No. 1 quarterback. ... Newton gets the nod over Luck and Griffin for the No. 2 spot after averaging 370 Fantasy points in his first two years. ... Brees doesn't have a lot longer to play at 34, but he should still end his career playing at a dominant level, giving him a slight edge over Stafford, 25, and Ryan, 28. ... Kaepernick and Wilson should join Newton, Luck and Griffin as the future stars at this position, and they are easy choices to round out the Top 10 dynasty quarterbacks. ... Peyton Manning, 37, and Brady, 35, might play three more years at best, especially for Manning. Still, based on their current level of play, you should enjoy their production over that span. ... Romo, 33, and Eli Manning, 32 are going to be excellent value for several years, and they are great quarterbacks to pair with potential future standouts in Tannehill, Bradford, Dalton and Manuel. ... Manuel can make the biggest leap of anyone on this list if he starts as a rookie and plays at a high level right away.

Running back

Dynasty Rankings - Running Backs
1. Doug Martin, Buccaneers
2. Trent Richardson, Browns
3. Jamaal Charles, Chiefs
4. C.J. Spiller, Bills
5. LeSean McCoy, Eagles
6. Adrian Peterson, Vikings
7. Arian Foster, Texans
8. Ray Rice, Ravens
9. Alfred Morris, Redskins
10. Marshawn Lynch, Seahawks
11. David Wilson, Giants
12. Lamar Miller, Dolphins
13. Stevan Ridley, Patriots
14. Matt Forte, Bears
15. DeMarco Murray, Cowboys
16. Giovani Bernard, Bengals
17. Chris Johnson, Titans
18. Reggie Bush, Lions
19. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars
20. Le'Veon Bell, Steelers
21. Chris Ivory, Jets
22. Darren McFadden, Raiders
23. Montee Ball, Broncos
24. Steven Jackson, Falcons
25. Frank Gore, 49ers
26. Eddie Lacy, Packers
27. Ryan Mathews, Chargers
28. Darren Sproles, Saints
29. Ben Tate, Texans
30. Marcus Lattimore, 49ers
31. Jonathan Stewart, Panthers
32. Mark Ingram, Saints
33. Shane Vereen, Patriots
34. Zac Stacy, Rams
35. Johnathan Franklin, Packers
36. Rashard Mendenhall, Cardinals
37. Ahmad Bradshaw, Colts
38. Bryce Brown, Eagles
39. Bernard Pierce, Ravens
40. Isaiah Pead, Rams
41. Vick Ballard, Colts
42. Mikel Leshoure, Lions
43. Ronnie Hillman, Broncos
44. Andre Brown, Giants
45. Joseph Randle, Cowboys
46. Christine Michael, Seahawks
47. Daryl Richardson, Rams
48. Ryan Williams, Cardinals
49. Andre Ellington, Cardinals
50. Stepfan Taylor, Cardinals

Youth prevails at the top of this list as Martin, 24, Richardson, 21, and McCoy, 24, have plenty of years left to dominate. Richardson would be No. 1 if he didn't already have three nagging injuries (knee, ribs and shin) before training camp even started in his second season. Martin was the No. 3 running back in standard leagues last season and should be very productive for the foreseeable future. ... Charles, 26, and Spiller, 25, get a slight nod over McCoy because they are relatively fresh entering their prime. While McCoy has 835 career carries in four seasons, Charles has just 784 in five years and Spiller has only 388 through three. All three should be awesome though going forward. ... Peterson, 28, is the oldest running back listed until Bush, who is the same age. Still, you'll take what Peterson will give you until he retires based on his amazing career to date. ... Foster is going to get passed over based on his heavy workload (1,010 regular-season carries in four years) and that he'll be 27 when the season starts, but like Peterson he's been so good he should still give you several more years of quality production. ... Put Rice in the same category as Foster, although many owners will be scared of Pierce and his potential increased workload. Let's see it happen first before we panic on Rice. ... The Seahawks might be planning to move on from Lynch in the near future with the drafting of Michael this season, but Lynch should still be dominant as long as he's starting for Seattle. We give Michael the edge long-term over Robert Turbin. ... You have to love the upside of the sophomore running backs in Morris, Wilson and Miller. Don't be surprised if Miller is the best of the bunch. ... I'm skeptical of Jones-Drew, 28, coming off the foot injury last year, which is why he's so low. He's not someone I'm excited about drafting in any format. ... Bernard leads all the rookie rushers, and he's in the Top 20 here because we expect him to shine starting next season. He could even overtake BenJarvus Green-Ellis this year as the featured rusher in Cincinnati, and we don't even have Green-Ellis ranked in the Top 50 because his value is short-term at best. ... Bell also gets the nod over Ball because Bell is in the better situation as the starter for the Steelers. He also has less wear-and-tear coming into the NFL than Ball does from their college careers. ... We're gambling on Ivory being a featured rusher for several years with the Jets. Even though the Jets are trending downward, the addition of Ivory this season was a great move. ... Two running backs with tremendous upside for 2014 are Tate and Lattimore. Tate is a free agent and could be a featured back once he leaves Houston, and Lattimore can be the starter for the 49ers when his knee is healthy. ... The starter for the Rams among Stacy, Pead and Richardson and the eventual starter for the Cardinals in 2014 once Mendenhall is gone (he only signed a one-year deal) among Williams, Taylor and Ellington could become valuable Fantasy options.

Wide receiver

Dynasty Rankings - Wide Receivers
1. Calvin Johnson, Lions
2. A.J. Green, Bengals
3. Dez Bryant, Cowboys
4. Julio Jones, Falcons
5. Demaryius Thomas, Broncos
6. Brandon Marshall, Bears
7. Percy Harvin, Seahawks
8. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals
9. Randall Cobb, Packers
10. Victor Cruz, Giants
11. Roddy White, Falcons
12. Hakeem Nicks, Giants
13. Jordy Nelson, Packers
14. Andre Johnson, Texans
15. Vincent Jackson, Buccaneers
16. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs
17. Eric Decker, Broncos
18. Torrey Smith, Ravens
19. Michael Crabtree, 49ers
20. Tavon Austin, Rams
21. Marques Colston, Saints
22. Kenny Britt, Titans
23. Antonio Brown, Steelers
24. Wes Welker, Broncos
25. Danny Amendola, Patriots
26. Cecil Shorts, Jaguars
27. T.Y. Hilton, Colts
28. Pierre Garcon, Redskins
29. Mike Wallace, Dolphins
30. Jeremy Maclin, Eagles
31. Josh Gordon, Browns
32. Justin Blackmon, Jaguars
33. Reggie Wayne, Colts
34. Steve Smith, Panthers
35. DeAndre Hopkins, Texans
36. Cordarrelle Patterson, Vikings
37. Mike Williams, Buccaneers
38. Michael Floyd, Cardinals
39. Kendall Wright, Titans
40. Steve Johnson, Bills
41. James Jones, Packers
42. Lance Moore, Saints
43. Keenan Allen, Chargers
44. Danario Alexander, Chargers
45. DeSean Jackson, Eagles
46. Aaron Dobson, Patriots
47. Markus Wheaton, Steelers
48. Vincent Brown, Chargers
49. Denarius Moore, Raiders
50. Rueben Randle, Giants

Take away Calvin Johnson, Marshall and Fitzgerald and the rest of the Top 10 receivers are all 26 and younger, including Green, Jones and Bryant all 24 and Cobb just 22. These receivers are going to dominate the NFL for many years, and this position is in tremendous shape with depth for a long time. ... Nicks could creep back into the Top 10 if he's healthy and remains with the Giants. Both are strong possibilities this season, especially if Nicks signs an extension. ... Bowe should have some of his best years moving forward thanks to Andy Reid joining the Chiefs. We're also expecting a big boost for Torrey Smith, who is entering his third season and first without Anquan Boldin. ... We hope Decker remains in Denver because as long as Peyton Manning is still playing he should continue to shine. Decker led the Broncos and was second in the NFL among receivers with 13 touchdowns last year. ... Crabtree would be a potential Top 10 receiver if he didn't tear his Achilles this offseason. Look for him to come back strong next year, and he should be considered a solid No. 2 option. ... There's a lot to like about Tavon Austin. He may not live up to the hype, but he could be the next Harvin. I'd gamble on him for this season and long-term. ... Britt remains a risky Fantasy option based on his injury history and pension for off-field problems, but he's been out of the news this offseason, which we hope is a sign of things to come. ... Wallace and Maclin have a ton of potential, especially since both are 26 and under. But I want to see Wallace perform at a high level going to Miami, and Maclin is a potential free agent in need of a quarterback upgrade. I would only draft them as No. 3 receivers. ... Gordon scares me since he's one misstep away from being suspended for a year. You can't dispute his talent, but he's been in trouble a little too much for only entering his second season. ... There are a lot of young receivers with upside in Hopkins, Patterson, Floyd, Wright, Allen, Dobson, Wheaton, Brown and Randle. You might prefer to skip over some of the veterans on this list and target the younger options, and hopefully you hit on the next future star. ... Of those guys listed, Patterson has the highest ceiling, but he has the most work to do since he's a raw talent. Floyd might make the biggest leap this season with the addition of Bruce Arians, and we love the upside for Hopkins going to Houston. Since Andre Johnson will be 32 this year, Hopkins could eventually take over as the No. 1 receiver for the Texans.

Tight end

Dynasty Rankings - Tight Ends
1. Jimmy Graham, Saints
2. Rob Gronkowski, Patriots
3. Kyle Rudolph, Vikings
4. Jason Witten, Cowboys
5. Vernon Davis, 49ers
6. Dennis Pitta, Ravens
7. Greg Olsen, Panthers
8. Tyler Eifert, Bengals
9. Tony Gonzalez, Falcons
10. Jared Cook, Rams
11. Jermichael Finley, Packers
12. Martellus Bennett, Bears
13. Dwayne Allen, Colts
14. Coby Fleener, Colts
15. Zach Ertz, Eagles
16. Travis Kelce, Chiefs
17. Brandon Pettigrew, Lions
18. Owen Daniels, Texans
19. Antonio Gates, Chargers
20. Jordan Cameron, Browns
21. Jermaine Gresham, Bengals
22. Heath Miller, Steelers
23. Fred Davis, Redskins
24. Rob Housler, Cardinals

Graham gets the edge over Gronkowski given the latter's injury status coming into this season, but don't overlook Gronkowski long-term. He's only 24 and has been the best Fantasy tight end over the past three seasons. As long as he can stay healthy he should be better than Graham, but that uncertainty puts Graham on top. ... We're buying Rudolph as the next great tight end. He was a Top 10 tight end last year and is just 23 years old, which makes him younger than all the Top 12 guys listed here except Eifert. Imagine how good Rudolph could be with an upgrade at quarterback. ... Witten, 31, Davis, 29, and Gonzalez, 37, are old by NFL standards, especially Gonzalez, but they are still playing at a high level. We're expecting big things from Davis this season, and Gonzalez should go out with a bang in his final year (potentially) in 2013. ... Pitta, Olsen, Cook, Finley and Bennett have the chance to be solid contributors for at least the next five years and should be consistent starting options. Finley's value for 2014 and beyond will be determined where he plays as an impending free agent. ... There are a lot of young tight ends to like for this season and beyond in Eifert, Allen, Fleener, Ertz and Kelce. All have the ability to be Top 10 Fantasy options if they live up to their potential. We also like Cameron with the coaching change in Cleveland this year, but he has to prove himself first after struggling early in his career. ... Gates, 33, and Miller, 30, can still be serviceable starting options, especially this season, but injuries have limited them coming into this year. ... Gresham could move up the rankings if he leaves the Bengals as expected when he's a free agent. It's clear Eifert is the future starter in Cincinnati.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyFB . You can also follow Jamey at @JameyEisenberg .

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Player News
Austin Collie signs with CFL's BC Lions
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(5:35 pm ET) Free-agent receiver Austin Collie has signed with the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League, the team announced Thursday.

"I’m excited to be joining the Lions and very much look forward to playing in the CFL," said Collie. "The wide-open play of the Canadian game and the passion of fans across the league is going to be a lot of fun to experience."

Collie played four seasons with the Colts and one with the Patriots. In his last NFL action, he caught four passes for 57 yards in the 2014 AFC Championship Game.


Eagles RB LeSean McCoy: 'I don't want to take less money'
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(4:39 pm ET) Eagles running back LeSean McCoy reiterated Thursday that while he'd be willing to restructure his contract if asked, he would not accept a pay cut, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

"I know how hard it is to keep a team together and I want to be part of this team. But I don't want to take less money," McCoy said. "I want to figure a way to make it happen [where] we're all together."

McCoy, who is due to count $11.95 million against the cap in 2015, turned in his fourth 1,000-yard season in the last five years in 2014, finishing with 1,319 rushing yards on 312 carries and 155 receiving yards on a career-low 28 receptions. All five of his touchdowns came on the ground.


Bills' Rex Ryan won't commit to EJ Manuel as starting QB
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(4:01 pm ET) When asked about who his starting quarterback would be in 2015, Bills coach Rex Ryan said the team would look at every available option, reports The Buffalo News.

"We're going to exhaust every resource we can," Ryan said. "We'll look at free agents. We'll look at the draft. We'll look at anything."

The Bills have former first-round pick EJ Manuel on their roster, but Ryan said he would not commit to Manuel as his starting quarterback at this time.

"To say that he's definitely going to be the guy, it's way too early to say that," Ryan said.


Bills RB Fred Jackson excited to play for new coach Rex Ryan
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3:23 pm ET) Bills veteran running back Fred Jackson said he hasn't had the opportunity to meet with new coach Rex Ryan, but that didn't stop him from expressing his excitement about the new coaching regime in Buffalo.

"I can't wait to play for him. I've heard nothing but good things," Jackson said Wednesday of Ryan during an interview on ESPN New York 98.7 FM. "I'm looking forward to that [first] conversation when I sit down and talk to him."

The Bills finished 9-7 in 2014, which was their best record since 2004. While Jackson believes Ryan is going to "be that catalyst that comes in and pushes us over that hump," he didn't have many bad things to say about coach Doug Marrone, who opted out of his contract New Year's Eve.

"I thought he was a tremendous coach," Jackson said. "He showed up, he worked hard, he pushed players to give their best effort. He got us to a 9-7 record -- we hadn't won nine games in 10 years. There's definitely some things about him that made him a great coach. It's just the way he exited. I don't think anybody expected that. 

"Players, the way we found out is we got a generic text from him, saying that he was moving on and he had chosen to opt out of his contract." 


Justin Tuck: Raider Nation would appluad signing Ndamukong Suh
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:42 pm ET) If defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh doesn't sign a long-term deal with the Lions, then he will become a free agent March 10 and there will be plenty of teams interested in the Pro Bowl lineman. 

Raiders defensive end Justin Tuck indicated if Suh wanted to sign with Oakland, then he would be welcomed in Raider Nation.

"(He's) Raider-ish," Tuck said, per the Detroit Free Press. "And that's one of the reasons why I know Raider Nation would applaud that move, beyond the fact that he's an awesome football player. He kind of fits the mold of ... the toughness and the ferocious player that built the Oakland Raiders."

It is speculated Suh will receive a contract worth at least $100 million. Tuck believes the three-time All-Pro deserves such a lucrative deal.

"The thing about him, you know what you're getting every day. Some of the tactics, you could probably do without, but he's a hell of a football player," Tuck said. "I would love to have the opportunity to line up beside of him and let him take all the double teams that I normally take."


Nick Foles: 'I plan on being in Philly' in 2015
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:48 pm ET) There has been a lot of talk about quarterback Nick Foles' future with the Eagles, especially since Philadelphia coach Chip Kelly's former pupil at Oregon -- Marcus Mariota -- will be part of this year's draft class.

On Thursday, Foles addressed the rumors and stated he is expecting to be back on the Eagles' roster in 2015.

"Yeah you hear about it," Foles said in between doing paid appearances at Super Bowl XLIX, per NJ.com. "You are going to hear about it every single year. That's just part of it. The main word is 'rumor.' You can't put too much into it....I plan on being in Philly.

"I only listen to (head coach) Chip Kelly. That's what is most important. He is the one that will make the decision. Right now all I am going to do is work because I plan on being back in Philadelphia and playing with my team. That's all I ever thought. So that is what I plan on doing and I'm not looking at it any other way."

Foles added he hasn't talked with Kelly since the end of the season.

"We haven't talked a lot. He has a lot going on," Foles said. "This time of year you really just get away from everything. He is busy looking at the draft, doing all that. I saw he is more of the decision maker. Haven't really talked to him too much, but I'm sure I'll hear from him soon."


Dwyer pleads guilty, gets probation in domestic violence case
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:38 pm ET) Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer pleaded guilty Thursday in Maricopa County (Ariz.) Superior Court to a single count of disorderly conduct pertaining to his domestic violence case, according to The Arizona Republic.

Dwyer was sentenced to 18 months of probation and community service following the plea, according to a court spokesman.

The 25-year-old Dwyer was arrested Sept. 17 for a July 21 incident in which he allegedly head-butted his wife in the face and broke her nose after she refused his sexual advances and bit his lip, according to reports taken at the time.

Dwyer's wife told police she reported the incident in September because she feared for their child's safety after seeing reports of Vikings running back Adrian Peterson's arrest on child-abuse charges.

The Cardinals placed Dwyer on the reserve/non-football injury list after his September arrest. He did not play again during the 2014 season.


Tom Brady on Peyton Manning: 'I certainly hope he comes back'
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:21 pm ET) While the football world anxiously awaits official word from Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning about his playing status for the 2015 season, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady -- and longtime Manning rival -- said Thursday he hopes the five-time NFL MVP will continue his career.

"What a great player he's been for this league," Brady said Thursday, per NFL.com. "He's a great competitor, and I've been fortunate to play against him a bunch of times. I certainly hope he comes back, 'cause the league will miss him if he doesn't. But those decisions are up to him. I'm sure it's up to whether he's mentally and physically -- that's what he wants to do. But I certainly hope he's back."

Archie Manning, Peyton's father, told NFL Network on Thursday that his son hasn't made a decision yet.

"Well, Peyton evaluates things; he's pretty good at that," he said. "I can't tell him what to do, and he hasn't told me what he's going to do. But I do know that he's really giving a lot of things a lot of thought. He's thinking about where he is physically, he wants to see how he can do this some more, trying to get over an injury."

Archie added starting over with new Broncos coach Gary Kubiak will not be an issue for Peyton, if he decides to return next season.

"Yeah, but he loves Gary. He likes Gary," Archie Manning said. "He liked John Fox. He liked Adam Gase. All those things, I think, are considered with. But my deal is he's always made good decisions; he's pretty thorough. He's going to evaluate a lot of things, and I think he'll make a good decision."


RG3: 'I could've sat out the rest of last year' after hurting ankle
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:04 pm ET) During a radio interview Wednesday night, Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III indicated the dislocated ankle he suffered in Week 2 against the Jaguars hindered him the rest of the season. He missed six games due to the injury.

“I had never suffered an ankle injury of that severity before, so I didn’t really know what to expect,” Griffin said, per The Washington Times. “It just became more and more tough the more games that we lost, because you know how hard your guys work, and you want to get out there and help them win games.

“I could’ve sat out the rest of last year, with how bad the ankle was, but I felt like I could play, and I wanted to get out there and play with my guys and help them win games. And that didn’t happen when I got back out there. Then coach made a decision [to bench me]. That was an unfortunate decision, and something we all had to go with because that was coach’s choice.”

Griffin will be entering the final guaranteed year of his contract in 2015. The Redskins have until May 3 to decide if they want to exercise the fifth-year option on his contract for 2016. 

Griffin added his focus this offseason will simply be on getting healthy.

“Last year, I wasn’t healthy, and it sucked,” Griffin told ESPN 980. “There’s no other way to say it other than that. When you dislocate your ankle in the second week of the season, when you and your team had big things in mind. So I guess it’s just getting healthy, getting a mental break, getting a chance to spend time with family, and then formulate my plan going forward from this year so we can go out there and win games.”


DeMarco on free agency: 'At end of day it's about winning a Super Bowl'
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11:21 am ET) Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray was on The Dan Patrick Show on Thursday talking about his thought process heading into free agency. Murray obviously said all the right things about wanting to return to Dallas, and hoping the team can sign him and Dez Bryant, who will also be a free agent, to long-term contracts.

However, Murray was also very forthcoming about the notion of playing for another NFL team.

“Yeah. I understand the business aspect of it,” he said, per The Dallas Morning News. “There’s no hard feelings if we can’t reach a deal together. But hopefully we can and we’ll see what happens.”

Murray, who rushed for a career-best 1,845 yards in 2014, will likely sign the most-lucrative contract of his career this offseason. But he added money won't be the only factor in who he signs with.

“I don’t think about [the one big contract], I’m thinking about winning a Super Bowl,” Murray said. “What’s best for me to win a Super Bowl and win one now. At the end of the day, the money is irrelevant to some degree. But you definitely want to get what you’re worth and things like that.

“At the end of the day it’s about winning a Super Bowl.”


 
 
 
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