I had my first and only fantasy football draft of the year on Tuesday night. It is a money league, and this was the first year I did not have a partner in this league, which meant I had to prepare a bit more diligently than I have in the past. My resources to prepare me for my draft were as follow: the rankings of our SB Nation Fantasy Football writers, news updates from our Fantasy Newsdesk, and Twitter on a daily basis to keep me up to date on position battles, rookies, and the like.
After my five weeks of research and staying on top of all the fantasy news each day, I came up with players I was targeting and players I was avoiding in my draft. Today I bring you the list of players I avoided in my draft, along with my reasoning.
Michael Vick, PHI
Some sites have him ranked in the 7-10 range, and I have no idea why. The last time he played 16 games in a season was 2006, and he has missed at least three games in each of his last three seasons since his two year "sabbatical." He has never thrown for 4,000 yards, and has thrown or scored 30 touchdowns in a season just once in his career, and that was two years ago. With the passing game becoming more dominant in the NFL, Vick should not be drafted as a No. 1 quarterback in any 10 or 12 team fantasy leagues.
Chris Johnson, TEN
One good thing you can say about Chris Johnson is that he is durable. He has missed just one game in his five-year NFL career. But, I think CJ2K is living off of his brilliant 2009 season during which he rushed for over 2,000 yards, caught 50 balls for another 500 yards and scored 16 touchdowns. But his rushing attempts, rushing yards, yards per carry, and touchdowns have dropped in each of the last two seasons. Last season, he held out, reported to camp late, and struggled all season long. He rushed for more than 100 yards just four times last season, but also had games of 13, 18, 21, 23 and 24 yards rushing. He is not a picture of consistency, that's for sure. To top it off, after one of the games that he struggled, he threw his offensive line under the bus. Not a guy who I want to draft in the first round of drafts, which is where he went in my draft on Tuesday night.
Matt Forte, CHI
Forte is coming off a knee injury that forced him to miss five games last season. Couple that with the fact that the Bears added wide receivers Brandon Marshall and rookie Alshon Jeffery in the offseason to help their passing game, and signed running back Michael Bush to back up Forte, and there are lots of signs telling me that the Bears don't want to rely on Forte as much as they have in the past. He has value in PPR leagues, but he is going to lose goal-line carries to Bush this season. I don't understand how some can rank him among the top 10 running backs for 2012.
Greg Jennings, GB
Jennings was the fourth wide receiver taken in my draft on Tuesday night, ahead of standout such as Larry Fitzgerald, Roddy White and Andre Johnson. Jennings is recovering from a concussion, and apparently it has gone well for him, but I am staying away from him in 2012. The Packers have a deep corps of wide receivers that includes Jordy Nelson, who I think has unseated him as the Packers' No.1 receiver, Donald Driver, Randall Cobb and James Jones who has had a solid preseason. Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers likes to spread the ball around and I think the combination of all that I have discussed above will result in a down year for Jennings.
Percy Harvin, MIN
Our own Mike Gallagher ranked Harvin as his No. 7 WR in PPR leagues, and I am just not a fan. Last season was the best season of his career, where he caught 87 balls, but did not eclipse 1,000 yard receiving. He scored just six touchdowns last season, and has an inexperienced quarterback, Christian Ponder, throwing to him. If Adrian Peterson should miss any time in his return for his knee injury, the Vikings will be forced to pass more, and teams will know that. I just can't see Harvin being a No. 1 receiver in any league this season. I prefer to take my chances on Dwayne Bowe and Antonio Brown before drafting Harvin.
So there you have it. Five players that many rank as a No. 1 player at their respective positions that I would avoid on draft day.
For more fantasy news, rankings and analysis, check out SB Nation Fantasy!