QB Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay)
In his last 45 games, including the playoffs, Rodgers has thrown for 114 touchdowns, 20 interceptions, and 12738 yards. Over 16 games, that’s 41 touchdowns, 7 interceptions, and 4529 yards. He’s also rushed for 1395 yards and 18 touchdowns in 5 years. There’s some concern with his offensive line, but he was sacked 51 times last season and still produced. He’s the #1 fantasy quarterback.
Projection: 4500 passing yards 40 passing touchdowns 9 interceptions 250 rushing yards 3 rushing touchdowns (365 pts standard, 445 pts 6 pt td leagues)
RB Eddie Lacy (Green Bay)
8/27/13: DuJuan Harris is out for the season with a knee injury. He was Lacy’s only real competition for carries. Fellow rookie Johnathan Franklins has appeared overmatched thus far, while neither Alex Green nor James Starks is very good. Lacy is still a rookie and he’s still on a pass heavy offense, but he has plenty of talent and he’ll have plenty of room to run and goal line opportunities on Green Bay’s talented offense. He’s a RB2 that could be drafted in the 2nd round if you want to double up on backs.
Eddie Lacy appears to be the favorite to be the lead back by a good margin. It’s tough to count on rookies, but Lacy has serious scoring potential in Green Bay’s offense and should surpass 200 carries if he stays healthy.
Projection: 240 carries for 1030 rushing yards 10 total touchdowns 31 catches for 250 receiving yards (188 pts standard, 219 pts PPR)
WR Randall Cobb (Green Bay)
Randall Cobb is going in his 3rd year in the league, a frequent breakout year for receivers and there’s definitely to possibility of a breakout for him. Cobb was 11th in the NFL among eligible wide receivers averaging 2.26 yards per route run, so he was an incredibly efficient target. However, he needs to cut down on the drops (of the 22 incompletions Rodgers threw to him, 11 were drops) and he needs to show more on the outside for the Packers to give him more snaps. I like his chances with Jennings gone, Nelson hurt, and Jones possibly losing playing time to the superior Cobb. Cobb might be a healthier Percy Harvin with a better quarterback. You can always count on him to get you another extra 100 yards on the ground too.
Projection: 93 catches for 1130 receiving yards 11 total touchdowns 10 carries for 100 yards (189 pts standard, 282 pts PPR)
WR Jordy Nelson (Green Bay)
8/25/13: Jordy Nelson returned to practice after knee surgery today, 2 weeks before the Packers’ first game of the season. It’s obviously a very good sign for his week 1 status and makes me a little bit more confident in a bounce back year.
Jordy Nelson caught 68 passes for 1263 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2011 and was off to an equally good season in 2012. Nelson caught 40 passes for 532 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns in the first 7 games of last season. That’s 91 catches for 1216 yards and 11 touchdowns over 16 games. However, a hamstring problem cost him 4 games and limited him in others. There was definitely bounce back potential, but he recently needed knee surgery and, however minor it was, it’s never what you want to hear. His status for week 1 is now doubtful. I still expect a bounce back year somewhat, but it hurts his stock.
Projection: 80 catches for 1120 receiving yards 10 touchdowns (172 pts standard, 252 pts PPR)
WR James Jones (Green Bay)
8/25/13: With Randall Cobb taking over a bigger role and Jordy Nelson coming back from injury, James Jones could see up to 100 fewer passing snaps than he did last season, so he’s unlikely to reach the 64 catches for 784 yards he had last season and even if he were to catch 64 passes again, it’s unlikely he’d convert 14 touchdowns. Something like 2010 (50/679/5) or 2011 (38/635/7) is much more likely. Leave him alone.
Jones is pretty much an average starting wide receiver that Rodgers makes look better. He averaged just 1.29 yards per route run, 66th out of 81 eligible wide receivers, last season and he could be losing some playing time to Randall Cobb, a much more efficient target last year. Jones saved his fantasy value by scoring on 14 of his 64 catches, but that kind of rate is impossible for anyone to keep up. Let someone else overpay for him.
Projection: 53 catches for 670 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns (103 pts standard, 156 pts PPR)
TE Jermichael Finley (Green Bay)
Jermichael Finley closed last season very well, catching 26 catches for 279 yards in the final 5 games of the season, but we’ve seen in the past he’s capable of being dominant for a short stretch of time. What we haven’t seen is him maintain that level of play over a full season as his 2011 season, in which he caught 55 passes for 767 yards and 8 touchdowns, remains his best season in 5 years in the league. I don’t expect anything different from him as in 2013.
Projection: 57 catches for 690 receiving yards 6 touchdowns (105 pts standard, 162 pts PPR)