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 Cardinals.
The Arizona Cardinals have improved each and every year under head coach Bruce Arians, leading to high expectations both on the field and in fantasy football for 2016.
Let’s take a look at some of Cardinals players you should draft, potential sleepers and the ones you should avoid for this season.
Carson Palmer, Quarterback: Palmer usually is a solid pick for fantasy football, but he’s an especially good pick this year coming off arguably the best season of his career in 2015. Palmer threw for 4,671 yards with 35 touchdown passes and a career-best 104.6 passer rating, all while leading Arizona to the NFC Championship Game. Yes, he’s 36 years old, but he still projects as one of the best QBs in the league and is a solid pick in the middle rounds.
David Johnson, Running Back: David, not Chris (more on him in a minute), likely will be the Johnson earning the most carries in the backfield. He only had 581 rushing yards in the 2015 regular season, but he did have 13 total touchdowns, including four through the air and one on a kick return. With expectations as high as they are, Johnson likely is a late first-round pick.
Larry Fitzgerald, Wide Receiver: Fitzgerald appeared to be on the decline after a down production year in 2014, but he disposed of any doubts with 1,215 receiving yards and nine touchdowns last season. He is back for more in 2016, and he’s a solid No. 2 receiver or FLEX option (i.e. a middle-of-the-draft pick).
Michael Floyd, Wide Receiver: The same pretty much goes for Floyd, although he is significantly younger than Fitzgerald and had slightly less impressive numbers in 2015. Floyd is another strong No. 2 receiver or FLEX pick, and he should be available in the middle rounds along with his teammate.
Chris Johnson, Running Back: The Cardinals brought him back, but he will be behind David Johnson on the depth chart. And, as another word of caution, Chris Johnson only played in 11 games last season due to injuries. He might be worth a very late pick, but if someone else wants to reach for him, let them.
John Brown, Wide Receiver: One of the problems for fantasy owners when it comes to the Cardinals is the amount of offensive weapons they have. But that didn’t stop Brown from putting up big stats in his sophomore campaign. He probably will be picked after Fitzgerald and Floyd in most drafts, but that only means the person who gets him will be getting a steal for their wide receiving corps.
Thumbnail photo via Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports Images