Fantasy Tour Around the NFL, Part V: The Philadelphia Eagles

We jumped back on the I-95 and headed out of streets of Baltimore, toward Philadelphia, where it’s always sunny.

Phillie

2010 Team Stats

Rushing Att./Yards/TDs: 428/2,324/18

Passing Att./Yards/TDs/INTs: 561/4,215/28/13

Defense / Sp. Teams Sacks/Turnovers/TDs: 39/34/3

Quarterbacks

Michael Vick: Here’s four quick reasons not to pick Vick in the first round:

  1. Vick

    Michael Vick is the highest risk/reward candidate in the 2011 Fantasy Draft.

    While his 2010 passing numbers were his best so far in his career, what made him a fantasy superstar was the way he could run like a running back. He turns 31 in June. Most guys stop playing well as a running back around then.

  2. While it may seem it at the time, there is no such thing as indefensible in the NFL. Sure, Vick looked as close to it as anyone comes in 2010, but he wasn’t the original starter in Philadelphia; opponents had spent the offseason getting ready for Kolb (yes, people, they do prepare for their opponents in the offseason). With a full (albeit lockout-limited) preseason to prepare for Vick, and an entire year of Eagles game film to study, it’ll be hard for Vick to look indefensible again.
  3. In his first full starting season (2002 with the Falcons), Vick missed a game with a sprained shoulder. In 2003, he missed 11 games with a fractured fibula. In ’04, he missed another game due to his shoulder (it was actually a Week 16 game – fantasy football championship week). In 2005 he missed a game due to a knee injury, and he missed 4 games last season due to a rib injury. That makes 2006 his only complete season, and means he’s missed 18 games in 6 seasons as a starter. He plays like a running back, he gets injured like a running back.
  4. He only has to beat Peyton Hillis to be on the cover of Madden 12. Need I say more?

Now, all  that being said, Vick remains as a high-risk, high-reward fantasy player. If you don’t like your chances this season anyway (maybe you’re in a league where you’re way out of your depth, and/or you just plain suck at this stuff), then what the heck, take the risk. But if you’d back yourself to be able to make sensible decisions to try and battle out the wins on the road to a championship, don’t take the risk, and get a solid-as-a-rock player instead, like Adrian Peterson, Chris Johnson, or Rashard Mendenhall.

Kolb

What will become of Kevin Kolb in 2011?

Kevin Kolb: The folks on NFL Network seem to think that Kolb’s trade value will never again be as high as it is now, so there’s serious speculation that he won’t be with the Eagles in 2011. Wherever he lands, don’t get too excited – the Eagles’ is a high-powered offense, with a great set of receivers and one of the best checkdown backs in the league. Kolb’s not likely to be going to a team that has that kind of talent to support him.

Mike Kafka: If the Eagles trade Kolb, this is the man you have to draft late in your fantasy league. That’s either because you’re a Vick owner (and trust me, he’s one quarterback you have to handcuff), or you want to make the Vick owner squirm in case he gets injured. Of course, if the Eagles pick a quarterback in the first few rounds of the draft (and they have five picks in the first four rounds), then that’ll muddle everything up, now won’t it.

Running Backs

LeSean McCoy: After being drafted late in the second round of the 2009 NFL Draft, McCoy set the franchise rookie rushing record by gaining 606 yards along the ground from 155 carries. His 2010 season was even better, and was his first as a feature back. He led the team in carries (207), rushing yards (1,080) and receptions (78), and was third in receiving yards (592). In a league where more and more teams rely on a running-back-by-committee approach, McCoy seems to be one of the few feature backs heading into the future.

Harrison

Jerome Harrison holds the third highest single-game rushing yardage total, gaining 286 yards at Kansas City in 2009.

Jerome Harrison: After being traded from the Browns in Week 6 last year, Harrison stole a few carries from McCoy once in a while, but was never much of a factor in fantasy land. Aside from a three game stretch to end 2009 where he turned 106 carries into 561 yards and 5 touchdowns, Harrison’s career has never been too spectacular. Add to that the fact that he probably won’t even be playing for Andy Reid in 2011 (he’s a free agent who wants to start somewhere), and it’s all looking good in McCoy-town.

Eldra Buckley: I would be very surprised if Buckley became the full-time backup in Philadelphia, even if Harrison departed. Buckley went undrafted in 2007, got signed to the Chargers’ practice squad and then signed off waivers by the Eagles in 2009. He has 36 career carries for 111 yards and a touchdown. Look for the Eagles to add to their backfield in either free agency or the draft.

Wide Receivers

DeSean Jackson: He and Pittsburgh’s Mike Wallace are considered the two premier burners in the NFL. Jackson can gain yards quickly before and after the catch, and is the kind of player co-ordinators specifically scheme against. After three seasons in the NFL, his average yards per catch is 18.2, and he has 24 combined receiving, rushing and punt returning touchdowns to his name. He is perhaps one of the most explosive and exciting to watch players in the league, and will be a top 10-15 receiver in fantasy leagues again in 2011, just as he was in 2010.

Maclin Jackson Avant

Maclin, Jackson and Avant form one of the best wideout corps in the league.

Jeremy Maclin: Maclin may not have been as exciting to watch as Jackson last season, but the second-year pro was the better fantasy receiver, scoring two more touchdowns while gaining just 90 less yards. Entering his third year, the former first round pick still has room to grow from his 70 catch, 950 yard 2010 season.

Jason Avant: The ‘senior’ of the receiving corps, Avant turned 28 yesterday. Since being picked in the fourth round of the 2006 draft, the six foot, 212 pound wideout has been a consistent contributor, and had his best year in 2010, catching 51 balls for 573 yards – although with only one touchdown.

Tight Ends

Brent Celek: After a highly productive year in 2009 (76 receptions for 971 yards and 8 touchdowns), Celek was rather disappointing in 2010, posting just 42 receptions for 511 yards and 4 scores. He missed four games due to injury. I’d say the reason for Celek’s drop in production is twofold: first, Vick is less likely to pass in goal line situations than McNabb was, instead trusting his feet in the red zone. Second, McCoy’s boosted receptions have reduced Celek’s ‘checkdown’ receptions. Neither of these things look like they’ll change in 2011, so don’t expect much more from Celek than his 2010 totals.

Defense / Special Teams

The Eagles Defense’s 34 turnovers was good for fifth-best in the league, and that stat was boosted by a league-third 23 interceptions. Their 39 sacks was tied for tenth best in the league, and they returned a pick for six, a fumble for six, and – let’s not forget – that punt return. All in all, the Eagles were ESPN’s 15th scoring defense in fantasy football last year.


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3 Responses to “Fantasy Tour Around the NFL, Part V: The Philadelphia Eagles”

  1. […] HERE to read the rest Enjoyed this post? Subscribe to Eagles Gab via RSS Feed or E-mail and receive […]

  2. […] already shown that I’m unsure of Mike Vick‘s stability as the number one quarterback off the board, and I’m […]

  3. […] already shown that I’m unsure of Mike Vick‘s stability as the number one quarterback off the board, and I’m continuing that […]

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