Editor?s note: To help you prepare for your fantasy football draft, NESN.com will profile each NFL team and analyze which players are worth picking and which players aren?t worth your time. Today, we look at the Chiefs.
The Kansas City Chiefs should be contenders on the football field again this season, and their players should help you contend in your fantasy football leagues.
In advance of the upcoming fantasy season, we took a closer look at the Chiefs players you should draft, avoid and peg as sleepers.
Jamaal Charles, Running Back: If you’re concerned about a 29-year-old running back coming off major knee surgery, we don’t blame you. Not everyone is Adrian Peterson. Charles is a stud when healthy, but risking a first-round pick only to have him falter (or reinjure himself) could ruin your entire season. It seems most fantasy owners agree — to an extent. Charles is being taken as the seventh running back off the board and 16th overall, which is still high but much lower than the top-five status he boasted last season. Before the injury, Charles averaged 17 fantasy points per game in standard scoring leagues with five touchdowns. He’s still good for a few catches per game, boosting his PPR value, too. If Charles drops to you at 16, consider yourself fortunate.
Travis Kelce, Tight End: Kelce’s production falls just short of the elite six tight ends you’ll want to try and get your hands on, and he’s not quite a reception machine for PPR users, either. But he still was the seventh-highest scoring tight end in standard scoring formats, so he’s still draftable, but he’s being taken a bit high as the fifth tight end in the seventh round. You can roll the dice and find better value, like Cleveland Browns tight end Gary Barnidge in the 10th.
Chiefs Defense/Special Teams: Kansas City actually was the second-highest scoring defense last season behind only the Denver Broncos. They’re going as the sixth defense and in the 12th round. Draft the unit with confidence there, but don’t be afraid to take it a little higher, either.
Jeremy Maclin, Wide Receiver: Finally the Chiefs have a competent wide receiver. Maclin ranked 17th in standard scoring leagues last season and caught eight touchdowns with over 1,000 yards receiving. He’s going as the 22nd WR in the early sixth round. That’s nice value.
Alex Smith, Quarterback: That Alex Smith was the 15th-highest scoring fantasy quarterback last season is really more of an insult to quarterbacks as a whole last season. There are better players available, even as backups.
Everyone else: If you really feel the need to take a handcuff for Charles, go with Charcandrick West, who is being drafted 169th overall in the 14th round. But that’s it.
Cairo Santos, Kicker: He scored the eighth-most fantasy points among kickers last season but is going undrafted behind 16 other kickers. That’s absurd! He’s way better than 41-year-old San Francisco 49ers kicker Phil Dawson, who actually is being drafted.
Thumbnail photo via Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports Images