My dynasty team had a terrible year that ended well, although it’s kind of ironic that the push probably hurt my team long-term. I finished 5-8, my worst record since the first year of the league. I won a three-team tiebreaker for the final playoff spot, one my first-round game and lost in the semifinals. I have the 9th pick in the 2014 rookie draft. Had I lost the tiebreaker, I’d have pick #3.
Let’s start with the glamor position in the NFL and a much less important position when you’re talking fantasy, unless you are talking to FSWA award winner and former interview victim Salvatore Stefanile. I am set at the position with Cam Newton, former 18th overall rookie pick who only sees the bench when on a bye week. Newton had another stellar year, 5th overall in scoring, until you look at the fine print. He had seven sub-20-point efforts, including all three weeks of our playoffs. The consistency is lacking, and it brings up an interesting fantasy point. If your team has a good defense, there’s not as much need to score points. If the Panthers can win 13-10 into the future, Cam’s ceiling drops.
My primary backup when the season started was Matt Schaub. You can say that ended poorly, but Schaub outscored Cam in weeks 1-2 and scored 22.7 on Cam’s bye week. When Schaub went into the pick-six pit of despair, he was useless. He could be a guy that a team picks up to be the “wily veteran” who could beat out one of the stud rookies coming in. I may throw him out into the free agency waters (we keep 40 guys). I traded Mike Vick for Schaub and a 3rd-round rookie pick two offseasons ago. The pick became Mark Barron, who probably will take the torch from Charles Tillman and be my longest tenured guy in five years.
Jake Locker was my starter on Cam’s Week 4 bye. He scored 25.66 points, and that was the Jets game when he was injured early in the second half, essentially ending his season. The downside to Locker is injury-proneness. The upside is his combined 80+ points in weeks 3, 4, and 7. I traded Marques Colston for Locker before the 2012 season. I believe I bought “high” on him. You could get Locker for nothing, probably a throw-in or a 3rd-round pick. His upside isn’t bad.
My final QB on the roster last year was Kellen Clemens. I needed the proverbial “QB with a pulse” when Schaub and Locker went down.
With the 9th pick, a QB would be intriguing. Johnny Football’s probably going to be the top rookie taken just for the run/pass possibilities.