Fantasy Football: You Heard it Here First Part 2 AFC

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AFC South

Colts: Joseph Addai finishes as a top 15 RB

Peyton Manning is going to be out for a while and something tells me Kerry Collins isn’t ready to run the Colts passing attack at full speed. Without their typical passing game, the Colts will be forced to lean on the run game and Addai has top 5 ability. The only downside on Addai has been his ability to stay healthy (ask anyone who drafted him last year). If Addai can stay healthy he is going to accumulate Arian Foster type numbers. Yea, you read that right.

Jaguars: Mercedes Lewis finishes as a top 8 TE

Despite the lack of respect Lewis is getting in drafts, I’m looking for him to put up some of the fantastic numbers we saw last year. Even with a lack of stability at the QB position, I don’t see Lewis suffering that much. Whether it’s McCown or Gabbert throwing the ball, underwhelming QB’s look for their safety blanket, tight ends. With Mike Thomas as their only receiving threat, look for Lewis to see plenty of redzone targets.

Texans: Owen Daniels finishes as a top 3 TE

Arian Foster is great, and Andre Johnson is one of the best receivers in the league every year. But hey, just like you and me, all the other teams in the league know this. There is no secret as to who the Texans’ weapons are, and that means there will be a hole in the defense somewhere. Don’t forget that just a few years ago, Daniels was on pace to have one of the greatest fantasy seasons ever, for a TE, before he got injured. Watch for Daniels to put up over 1,000 yards, and 7-8 touchdowns.

Titans: Chris Johnson is not a top 10 RB

Holdouts are fantasy kryptonite. Combine a player holding out with an offseason lockout and you’ve got the perfect recipe for a major injury. Johnson spent too much time this offseason not practicing and training with his teammates. We are already seeing more season ending injuries to major players in the preseason than ever before, and I won’t be surprised if Johnson joins that group by week 4. Now that CJ2K is back, he is being drafted in the top 5 again, let someone else draft him and take Ray Rice or McCoy. You won’t be sorry come midseason.

AFC West

Chargers: Philip Rivers finishes as a top 3 quarterback

Rivers has always had talent and last year he put up over 4,700 yards. With Vincent Jackson back in the mix, I expect Rivers to put up even bigger numbers and push for the 5,000 yard mark. Despite this massive upside, Rivers is being taken as the 6-7th QB. Outsmart your league mates and take Rivers as the 4th QB (after Rodgers, Vick, & Brees).

Chiefs: Jamaal Charles finishes as the number 1 fantasy RB

That’s right, I’m planting my flag with Jamaal Charles this year. He has Chris Johnson type ability, and plays in an offense that doesn’t force him to take as big a pounding. With a decent QB in Cassel, and a reliable veteran backup in Thomas Jones, Charles should be able to stay away from injuries this year. Charles finished as the number 2 fantasy RB last year and Todd Haley has said he wants to increase Charles role in the offense. You do the math.

Raiders: Michael Bush finishes the year as a top 20 RB

While run DMC emerged last year as a quality offensive weapon, I’m not totally sold. McFadden has been unable to stay healthy for most of his football career, and this preseason is further proof of that (broken orbital bone). Bush is a reliable to backup who I expect to have the starting job before week 8. In an offense with no proven receiving options, the lead back is going to put up big numbers. Draft Bush with a late round pick and stash him on your bench. You’ll thank me when bye weeks start rolling around.

Broncos: Willis McGahee finishes with 10+ touchdowns

John Fox has moved his thunder and lightening running game from Carolina to Denver, and he has some new toys to work with. Moreno will be used in the DeAngelo Williams role and get most of the carries. However, just like Lendale White a few years ago, McGahee will vulture those touchdowns when it comes time for the goal line work. Moreno is not a proven between the tackles runner and has a history of nagging injuries. Watch for McGahee to steal plenty of points for Moreno owners this year.