2013 Draft Prep: Breakouts, 2.0
Who is our Jamey Eisenberg confident in having a career season in 2013? He shares a list of 10 players of varying costs that you should have circled in advance of Draft Day.
It's time to take our second look at breakouts for 2013.
You can see who I listed in this space back in July before the start of training camp, and the players I still stand behind include Andrew Luck, Lamar Miller, David Wilson, Shane Vereen, Randall Cobb, Danny Amendola and Jared Cook.
This updated version is to give you 10 more players to consider on Draft Day. All of these guys have the potential to be amazing in 2013.
C.J. Spiller, RB, Bills: Adrian Peterson should be the first player drafted in all leagues.
What he did in 2012, and what he should do again this season, warrants
him being selected No. 1 overall. But if there's one player I had to
pick who could challenge Peterson for the No. 1 running back spot it
would be Spiller. He's that good. Spiller is going to be used "until he
throws up," according to offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. Last
year, when Spiller replaced Fred Jackson,
he had just 207 carries and 43 catches with only nine starts, and he was
No. 7 in Fantasy points in a standard league. If he gets just 300 total
touches -- all six running backs in front of him in Fantasy points
(Peterson, Doug Martin, Arian Foster, Marshawn Lynch, Alfred Morris and Ray Rice) all had
more than 300 touches -- he could dominate. So for fun, give him 255
carries and 45 catches at his same averages. That would give him 2,012
total yards (1,530 rushing, 482 receiving), and his touchdowns could
increase from eight to 10. I think he'll get more work than that, and I
like him at No. 2 overall. This is going to be a big year for Spiller.
I'd take him ahead of: Jamaal Charles, Doug Martin, Marshawn Lynch
DeMarco Murray, RB, Cowboys: Murray was a bust last season
when he was drafted in the first round and failed to produce because of
a foot injury. When healthy, Murray was solid with double digits in
Fantasy points in a standard league in five of the 10 games he played in
and never having fewer than seven points. I'm counting on Murray playing
at least 13 games this year, and he should finally live up to his
potential. I'd gamble on Murray in the second round in standard leagues
and early in the third round in PPR formats. It's always risky to gamble
on injury-prone players, especially someone like Murray who has missed
nine games in two seasons, but when talented guys do stay on the field
they reward you in a big way. I'm counting on this being the year for
Murray to do that.
I'd take him ahead of: Maurice Jones-Drew, Lamar Miller, David Wilson
Mark Ingram, RB, Saints: Ingram comes into this season with
likely his best chance to succeed, and he's not battling any nagging
injuries. The Saints, with Sean Payton back calling plays, promise to
give a little more emphasis to the run game, which would take pressure
off their defense. Chris Ivory is gone,
and Pierre Thomas (leg) has missed time
during practice. Ingram showed some signs of life at the end of last
season with double digits in Fantasy points in two of his final three
games, and he closed the year with a touchdown in four of his final
seven outings. We're not talking about a weekly starter with Ingram, but
he could turn into a flex option. And the best part about him is you can
draft him as your fourth running back in Round 9, which is great value
given his upside.
I'd take him ahead of: DeAngelo Williams, Bernard Pierce, Bryce Brown
Montee Ball, RB, Broncos: The battle for the starting
running back job in Denver is likely going to play out over the next
couple of weeks, but it's hard to see Ball not being heavily involved.
While Ronnie Hillman and even Knowshon Moreno should factor into the mix, Ball has the chance to lead
the Broncos in rushing touchdowns with plenty of yards. He's struggled
in the preseason and has played behind Hillman, but it's hard to gauge
the performance for any of the running backs in Denver given their
opponents through two games (San Francisco and Seattle). The good thing
is the Broncos have a soft schedule, which should help Ball succeed, and
he could be a vital cog late in games killing the clock. Based on his
potential to score double digits in touchdowns, Ball could easily become
a Top 20 Fantasy running back this year. But since he'll share time,
especially early in the year with at least Hillman, he enters the season
as a flex option (he also has to improve his pass protection). He's
still someone I would buy into with a pick in Round 5 in standard
leagues as a flex option based on his upside in an explosive offense.
I'd take him ahead of: Chris Ivory, Ahmad Bradshaw, Ryan Mathews
Pierre Garcon, WR, Redskins: When Garcon was healthy in
2012 he was among the best receivers in the NFL. He had four games with
double digits in Fantasy points in the eight games he was close to 100
percent. But Garcon missed six outings and was limited in two others
with a toe problem, which he now says is manageable. There's always the
risk of a setback, but Garcon has the ability to be a Top 10 Fantasy
option with the Redskins. He's shown flashes of greatness before during
his tenure with the Colts, but he's never reached 1,000 receiving yards
or had more than six touchdowns. I'm expecting him to eclipse both those
marks and have a career season, and he's a Top 15 Fantasy receiver
coming into the year. He's a great No. 2 receiver to target beginning in
Round 4 or 5 in the majority of leagues.
I'd take him ahead of: Eric Decker, Reggie Wayne, Wes Welker
Antonio Brown, WR, Steelers: Brown ascends to the No. 1
receiver spot in Pittsburgh with Mike Wallace
gone, and the Steelers will need him to play at a high level, especially
with Heath Miller (ACL) banged up. Last
year, Wallace and Miller combined for 36 red-zone targets and came away
with 16 touchdowns. Brown closed 2012 with four touchdowns in his final
four games, and he had a career-high five scores. He has the the chance
to see that number rise, especially with the expected increase from his
106 targets last year. He should get back to 1,000-plus receiving yards
like he had in 2011, and he has the chance for 75-plus catches. Brown
has the potential to be a Top 20 Fantasy receiver, but he's falling to
Round 6 as the No. 25 receiver off the board based on Average
Draft Position. I'd gamble on Brown in Round 5 based on his
I'd take him ahead of: Cecil Shorts, Jordy Nelson, Mike Wallace
Torrey Smith, WR, Ravens: Smith has posted nearly identical
stats for two seasons in row of about 50 catches, 850 yards and seven
touchdowns, but this is the year for him to improve. It's his third year
in the NFL, which is when receivers tend to break out, and he's a prime
candidate with the Ravens missing Anquan Boldin
and Dennis Pitta. Smith is aware of
this based on a conversation we had this offseason. "I'm improving every
day," Smith said. "It's all about consistency. I was saying the same
thing last year. Being consistent in my technique. Being consistent with
everything. I grew in that way. Now it's about being consistent on
offense." Smith should be drafted as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver, but he
could easily become a Top 20 option by the end of the year. It wouldn't
be a surprise to see him get well over 1,000 receiving yards with double
digits in touchdowns given his potential and the need of playmakers in
the passing game for the Ravens.
I'd take him ahead of: Jordy Nelson, Mike Wallace, Steve Johnson
T.Y. Hilton, WR, Colts: It's hard to find a receiver having
a better preseason than Hilton. Through two games he has five catches
for 97 yards and two touchdowns, but the troubling thing is the Colts
continue to use him as the third receiver behind Reggie Wayne and Darrius Heyward-Bey.
There's no way Hilton should be behind Heyward-Bey, and you can argue he
has more upside than Wayne. He's being drafted as the No. 29 receiver,
but Hilton could easily be a weekly starter in the majority of leagues.
He was a surprise rookie with 50 catches for 861 yards and seven
touchdowns, but he can easily eclipse 1,000 yards while maintaining a
healthy amount of scores. He's a receiver to be excited about this year,
and hopefully the Colts keep him on the field as much as possible. With
an increase in targets -- he only had 91 as a rookie -- he could be a
I'd take him ahead of: Tavon Austin, Mike Wallace, DeSean Jackson
DeSean Jackson, WR, Eagles: Once upon a time Jackson was on
the verge of being the next big thing for Fantasy owners. He had
consecutive seasons of 1,000 receiving yards and six touchdowns, but
then came the ill-fated 2011 campaign. Jackson had his money on his
mind, and it impacted his play. He hasn't been the same since, but
Jackson's value is pointing up again. The addition of new coach Chip
Kelly and the subtraction of receiver Jeremy Maclin (ACL) make Jackson a high-upside No. 3 Fantasy option. Michael Vick has to throw to someone, and Jackson should lead the
Eagles in targets. He has to stay healthy after being out the final five
games last year, and he has to hope Vick can stay upright as well. But
if Jackson and Vick master this Kelly offense and play the majority of
the season, we could see Jackson finally live up to his immense
potential this year.
I'd take him ahead of: Kenny Britt, Steve Johnson, Mike Wallace
Golden Tate, WR, Seahawks: Tate went into the offseason as
the No. 3 receiver for the Seahawks behind Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice, but
come Week 1 he should be No. 1 on the depth chart. Harvin (hip) is out
for majority of the year, and Rice (knee) should miss the entire
preseason. It will fall on Tate to lead this passing game, and he's
ready to dominate in a potential contract year. He had a third-year
breakout type performance in 2012 with 45 catches for 688 yards and
seven touchdowns -- which were all career highs -- but he should post
better stats in 2013. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported
that Tate has
the chance to make a leap into the upper echelon of receivers this year,
and the opportunity is there to make that happen. He's a great No. 3
Fantasy receiver to target in Round 9, which is where he's going based
I'd take him ahead of: Anquan Boldin, Miles Austin, Greg Jennings
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