QB Jake Locker (Tennessee)
Locker still has upside and he’s not proven either way with just 11 starts under his belt, but I didn’t think he’d become a franchise quarterback coming out of Washington and the Titans have not seemed confident in him this off-season, saying that a “major goal” is preventing Locker from “feeling overwhelmed.” The Titans have added Ryan Fitzpatrick, a proven backup caliber talent, behind him this off-season, to replace Hasselbeck and he could see multiple starts, especially if Locker gets hurt again. Even if he does play all 16 games, he’s an inconsistent QB2 at best, though his rushing ability does give you added value.
Projection: 3500 passing yards 19 touchdowns 16 interceptions 400 rushing yards 2 rushing touchdowns (236 pts standard, 274 pts 6 pt td leagues)
RB Chris Johnson (Tennessee)
An improved offensive line has to be music to Chris Johnson’s ears because of how reliant on a good offensive line he is. He’s incredibly explosive through holes, but when there aren’t holes, he doesn’t do a lot to help himself, frequently dancing around in the backfield, and getting little after contact. It’s why he has such good games against bad run defenses and bad games against good run defenses. He’s as good as anyone in the NFL when the hole is there though so he could have a very good season. He could see fewer carries, but only slightly with Shonn Greene coming in. Unless he steals a bunch of touchdowns, he won’t hurt Johnson’s production too much. Johnson is also active in the passing game, catching 230 passes in 5 years and he’s missed just 1 game in his career.
Projection: 250 carries for 1200 rushing yards 7 total touchdowns 44 catches for 340 receiving yards (196 pts standard, 240 pts PPR)
RB Shonn Greene (Tennessee)
Greene will serve as primarily a backup and change of pace short yardage back. He is a marginal runner with minimal explosiveness, but he does fit his new role well, even if it was an overpay to give him 10 million over 3 years to serve in that role. He’ll get the goal line carries, but there won’t be a lot of those in Tennessee’s offense. He’ll need an injury to Chris Johnson to be fantasy relevant and should only be considered a handcuff. Johnson has missed just 1 game in his career.
Projection: 110 carries for 460 rushing yards 5 total touchdowns 13 catches for 80 receiving yards (84 pts standard, 97 pts PPR)
WR Kenny Britt (Tennessee)
8/27/13: I liked Kenny Britt as a sleeper because he was getting through the off-season without any off the field incidents or any injury problems. However, he’s going to miss the Titans’ final pre-season game with recurring knee problems and has reportedly had problems with swelling for a while. He might just never get healthy enough to make good on his talent. He’s still a nice sleeper, but he’s only a WR4 or WR5.
Before tearing his ACL early in the 2011 season, Britt caught 56 passes for 1146 yards and 12 touchdowns over his last 14 full games, despite inconsistent, at best, quarterback play. He struggled in 2012 with injury and off the field problems, catching just 45 passes for 589 yards and 4 touchdowns, but now he’s a year removed any off the field incidents and another year removed from that torn ACL. He’s had a great off-season and he’s still a former 1st round pick going into his age 25 season. There’s upside with him at his current ADP in the 8th or 9th round.
Projection: 55 catches for 880 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns (124 pts standard, 179 pts PPR)
WR Kendall Wright (Tennessee)
Wright caught 64 passes for 626 yards and 4 touchdowns as a 1st round rookie last year, which is above the average for a 1st round rookie. He should be better this year now that he’s not a rookie, but it might take until his 3rd year for him to truly breakout. He’ll battle with Kenny Britt and Nate Washington for playing time in an uncertain wide receiver trio and I think he’s the 2nd most talented player in that group. There’s upside with him, but he could end up being just a secondary receiver in a subpar passing offense.
Projection: 55 catches for 740 receiving yards 4 touchdowns (98 pts standard, 153 pts PPR)
WR Nate Washington (Tennessee)
8/27/13: With Kenny Britt remaining an injury risk, Nate Washington gets a stock up. He’s been Jake Locker’s preferred target this pre-season, as he was last season, but there’s not a lot of upside with him. He’s not the talent Britt can be when healthy and he’s unlikely to exceed last year’s 46/746/4 line by much in this receiving corps with the Titans’ quarterback situation.
Projection: 51 catches for 770 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns (107 pts standard, 158 pts PPR)