Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2014 Fantasy Outlooks: Green Bay Packers

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

While the Bears, Lions and Vikings have turned over their coaching staffs over the last two offseasons, the Packers continue to rack up accolades. Green Bay has won three straight NFC North titles and has made five straight playoff appearances. There's no debating the Packers' success in the division -- they're the cream of the crop.

Fantasy owners shouldn't be surprised -- this team has Aaron Rodgers, after all. Rodgers, who has 29 games with at least 20 Fantasy points in his last three seasons (39 games), is typically the centerpiece of the Packers offense. But he missed seven matchups last year and the Packers still managed to put up some numbers thanks to running back Eddie Lacy. It was his play in November and most of December that helped put the Packers in good shape for the playoffs.

So is it a certainty that Rodgers will help drive the Packers to the playoffs again? Nothing's certain in the NFL, but Green Bay is one of five teams with below-even odds to win their division (according to the Las Vegas Hilton). But given the Packers offense getting healthy again and the defense adding a bunch of talent including first-round pick safety Ha Ha Clinton Dix and pass rushing veteran Julius Peppers, it's probably a safe bet the Packers will keep doing what they're doing.

Think elite ... Jordy Nelson

What if the 85 grabs for 1,314 yards and eight touchdowns Nelson had last year was on the low side? In breaking down Nelson's season, he averaged 96.9 yards per game with eight touchdowns scored in effectively nine games with Rodgers versus 63.0 per game and one score in eight games without Rodgers (the Packers' playoff game is included).

Moreover, Nelson has 21 games with 10-plus points in the last three years with Rodgers as his quarterback (35 games), a 60 pct. success rate. Nelson also has caught 68 percent of the targets Rodgers has thrown at him over this span, a great conversion rate. Tack on other factors such as the Packers' slightly thinned receiving corps, a potentially easy schedule and Nelson aiming to impress in a contract year and you've got the makings of a player who should finish the season well inside the Top 10 among Fantasy receivers. Run, don't walk, to draft Nelson as a No. 1 receiver as soon as early Round 3.

Late-round flier ... Jarrett Boykin

Boykin really proved himself last season, snaring 49 passes (on 82 targets) for 681 yards and three scores over eight starts. He'll enter training camp as the third receiver behind Nelson and Randall Cobb and probably take over the spot left behind by James Jones' departure.

We already figure Nelson will get his targets and Cobb won't get ignored either, so that does put Boykin in a tough spot. His lack of experience with Rodgers also could mean limited targets, potentially to the point of 6.8 per game like he had in the 12 games where he actually was targeted. But he'll also draw the lightest coverage of any Packers receiver and flashed some nice playmaking skills with 10 grabs for 20-plus yards over 12 games. Boykin's a bench guy deserving of a late pick.

Long-term sleeper ... Davante Adams

2013 Touches Leaders
825 total touches
Eddie Lacy 319 (284 car., 35 rec.) 38.7%
James Starks 99 (89 car., 10 rec.) 12.0%
Jordy Nelson 85 rec. 10.3%
James Jones 59 rec. 7.2%
Jarrett Boykin 49 rec. 5.9%
Randall Cobb 35 (31 rec., 4 car.) 4.2%
All others 179 21.7%

The draft was loaded with great receivers. Had Adams ended up on a roster with a team that could use him right away, he'd be mentioned as a sleeper for this season. But the Packers picked him with plans for the future, not the present, so he's not expected to be a choice in your typical seasonal league.

But if we're looking long term, Adams should be on your shopping list. He snared over 230 passes for over 3,000 yards in his last two seasons at Fresno State, displaying good size (6-foot-1, 212 pounds) and speed. Normally you'd assume a receiver like this would have a chance at making it in the NFL, but when Adams eventually cracks the lineup he'll do so catching passes from Aaron Rodgers. There hasn't been a regular starting receiver in the Packers offense since Rodgers took over who consistently struggled, save for those who got hurt or got old.

It's just a matter of time before Adams makes an impact. He's worth taking after the halfway point in dynasty/keeper league drafts and worth a Top 20 pick in rookie-only drafts as well.

Schedule analysis

The Packers start the year with three road games in their first four, but they're paid back after their Week 9 bye when they host four potent offenses at home over five weeks. That should mean big numbers for their offense, even if one of those opponents is the Patriots. Green Bay is also one of two teams to play in tough circumstances -- at Seattle and at New Orleans (San Francisco also must play in both spots).

Eddie Lacy particularly has a brutal start to the season with games at Seattle, vs. the Jets and at the Lions. All three finished among the Top 7 in run defense last year and should be stiff again this year.

The other issue that won't deter Fantasy owners but will make Aaron Rodgers nervous is the glut of pass rushers he'll go up against through the first nine matchups. Rodgers already gets sacked a bunch as it is, but defenses will come for him early and often and test that offensive line. Normally we wouldn't care since Rodgers produced big numbers in the past despite getting sacked (once every eight pass attempts over the last three years), but he missed time with an injury on a sack in 2013. Taking too many hits typically leads to bad things.

Training camp battles

Who's backing up Lacy? Odds are James Starks, who was re-signed this offseason, will be the back to get in a lot of work in the event Lacy misses time. But the Packers missed DuJuan Harris for all of 2013 after he tore his ACL and was a guy the coaching staff liked a lot. There are already reports that Harris looks good at practice, suggesting he'll push Starks for the No. 2 role. Whoever wins the job is a very important player to handcuff with Lacy.

Who the heck is the tight end?! The tight end that Fantasy owners have long associated with the Packers -- Jermichael Finley -- is still without a team following neck fusion surgery. Maybe he's back with the Packers, maybe not. But if he's not, Green Bay's tight end is someone from Andrew Quarless, Brandon Bostick, Richard Rodgers, Ryan Taylor and maybe even Colt Lyerla will get a pretty good opportunity. The name to watch, for now, is Rodgers, the rookie out of Cal.

Bold prediction

Frankly, there isn't anything bold to say about the Packers that wouldn't come off as obnoxious. Expectations for all the key offensive players are sky-high as it is. But Fantasy owners are wondering about Randall Cobb and whether or not he'll return to form. The feeling here is that he will -- and in a big way.

A broken leg kept Cobb off the field for 10 games last season, though he came back with a big touchdown to put the Packers in the playoffs in Week 17. When he did play he averaged 85.2 total yards per game and scored four touchdowns. That average compares very favorably to what he did in his breakout 2012 season when he averaged 72.4 total yards per game and scored in eight of 15 games.

There is no reason to believe Cobb will be limited or held back in camp this summer because of an injury that has long healed. And there is no reason to believe his role will be altered. The Packers should merely hit reset on their 2013 plans for him and aim for him to stay healthy. Cobb will finish as a Top 10 Fantasy receiver, which means that between him and Nelson the Packers will have two elite receivers.

Injury report

Andrew Quarless (undisclosed), probable for start of training camp. ... Clay Matthews (thumb), probable for start of training camp. ... Casey Hayward (hamstring), probable for start of training camp. ... Nick Perry (foot), probable for start of training camp. ... Chris Harper (hamstring), questionable for start of training camp. ... Jumal Rolle (undisclosed), probable for start of training camp.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Report: Marshawn Lynch agrees on deal to return to Seahawks
by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(4:44 pm ET) Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch has reached agreement on a new contract and is returning to the team, according to a report from ESPN's Adam Schefter, citing an unnamed source. 

Lynch was scheduled to make $5 million in 2015, with a salary-cap hit of $8.5 million. The team was trying to extend his contract, while Lynch was considering retiring from the NFL. 

According to a source, Lynch has decided to play and is on a plane back to Seattle to sign the new deal. 

CBSSports.com's Jason La Canfora reported that the Seahawks and Lynch had agreed on a new deal nearly two weeks ago. 


49ers tender Michael Wilhoite, Tony Jerod-Eddie
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3:49 pm ET) The 49ers have tendered exclusive-rights free agents Michael Wilhoite and Tony Jerod-Eddie, according to Comcast SportsNet Bay Area on Friday.

Tarvaris Jackson: I think I could help Bridgewater as his backup
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3:47 pm ET) With Matt Cassel now in Buffalo and Christian Ponder set to become a free agent Tuesday, former Seahawks backup quarterback Tarvaris Jackson said he would love to be Teddy Bridgewater's backup in Minnesota.

"I think I could really help [Bridgewater]," Jackson told Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. "I think I could help put things in perspective for him with football and outside of football … I feel I can help him just making the game a little easier and kind of learning from my mistakes and stuff."

Jackson started his career with the Vikings in 2006. He has passed for 7,226 yards and 39 touchdowns in his nine-year career.


Tyvon Branch to meet with Chiefs after Redskins meeting
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3:40 pm ET) Free agent safety Tyvon Branch is scheduled to visit the Chiefs in the near future, per CBSSports.com NFL Insider Jason La Canfora. Branch has visited the Colts and is scheduled to meet with the Redskins before he meets with Kansas City's representatives.

The 28-year-old Branch has played seven seasons in the NFL, totaling 476 tackles, 20 passes defensed and four interceptions in his career.


Jaguars sign DE Ryan Davis
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3:34 pm ET) The Jaguars have re-signed exclusive rights free agent defensive end Ryan Davis to a new deal on Friday, per the Florida Times Union.

Davis, 26, signed with the Jaguars in 2012 as an undrafted free agent. He posted 6 1/2 sacks in 16 games last season for Jacksonville.

>> Want more NFL offseason? >> Mock drafts | Free agency tracker


Lions tender DL George Johnson, WR Jeremy Ross
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3:29 pm ET) The Lions gave restricted free agent defensive lineman George Johnson an original round tender, worth $1.54 million, for the 2015 season. The team also announced the exclusive rights tender for wide receiver Jeremy Ross on Friday, per the team's official website.

>> Want more NFL offseason? >> Mock drafts | Free agency tracker


Report: Brooks Reed not expected to return to Houston
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(2:35 pm ET) Brooks Reed is expected to explore the free agent market and remains unlikely to return to the Texans, reports the Houston Chronicle on Friday.

Reed spent his first four seasons with the Texans, registering 169 tackles, 14 1/2 sacks, one forced fumble and one interception. Lats season he posted 41 tackles and three sacks.

>> Want more NFL offseason? >> Mock drafts | Free agency tracker


Report: Chiefs give LB Josh Mauga a three-year, $8M deal
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(2:28 pm ET) Josh Mauga, who was eligible for unrestricted free agency, has agreed to re-sign a three-year deal with the Chiefs worth approximately $8 million, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

The 27-year-old Mauga registered a career-best 103 tackles last season for Kansas City, after spending his first three years in the league with the Jets.


Report: Dolphins won't be able to keep Odrick if they sign Suh
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(2:17 pm ET) The Dolphins might not be able to bring back defensive tackle Jared Odrick if they sign Ndamukong Suh, reports Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.

The Dolphins have expressed interest in keeping Odrick, but if he tests the free agent market, he'll likely command a deal in the range of $7 million, which may be difficult for Miami to match if they land coveted defensive tackle Suh.

Odrick started all 16 games in 2014 and totaled 29 tackles up front.


Chiefs cut ties with DT Vance Walker
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(2:02 pm ET) The Chiefs have released defensive tackle Vance Walker on Friday, per the team's official website. Walker signed a three-year, $13 million deal with the team last year. He registered 19 tackles (14 solo) and two sacks in 2014. 

>> Want more NFL offseason? >> Mock drafts | Free agency tracker


 
 
 
Rankings