More Fantasy FootballDraft Prep Guide | Magazine Sneak Preview | Rankings

Case Keenum was awesome in 2017 and the Broncos are betting he can do it again. Looking at his career before 2017, that looks like a risky proposition. Before his breakout season Keenum had thrown 777 passes in the NFL and had a 58.4 percent completion percentage, 6.7 Y/A, 3.1 percent touchdown rate and a 78.4 rating. 

Those are not the numbers of a quality starting quarterback. 

That's not to diminish what Keenum did in 2017; he was awesome. But now he moves to a new team with a new system, and there's really not a lot of reason to think he'll be a startable quarterback in Fantasy. 

And that's OK for his receivers. Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders caught passes from Trevor Siemian, Brock Osweiler and Paxton Lynch last season. If Keenum is just average, that will be an upgrade for them. Anything else is gravy.

What will be more interesting is the running game. The Broncos let C.J. Anderson walk and replaced him with Royce Freeman in the draft. Freeman will battle Devontae Booker for the starting role, but all indications are they'll both get touches. Freeman is a bigger back, so I'd expect he will score more touchdowns, but Booker should be more involved in the passing game. 

Let's take a look at the expectations for all of these players.

*Rankings expressed below are in terms of expected Fantasy points. This is a part of our actual Fantasy Football rankings but not a direct correlation to my rankings. Things like injury risk, upside, etc. factor into rankings but they're not being talked about here. This is simply an expectation as the team is currently constructed.

PLAYER

EXPECTED FP

POS. RANK

EXPECTED PPR FP

POS. RANK

Demaryius Thomas

154.5

#13

243

#11

Royce Freeman

150.3

#22

181.4

#25

Devontae Booker

142.9

#24

184.6

#23

Emmanuel Sanders

119.4

#42

190

#38

Case Keenum

293.5

#22

293.5

#22

Breaking down the touches

Bill Musgrave has been an offensive coordinator in the NFL for nine years and the Broncos are his fifth team. Looking at the performance of those offenses, it's easy to wonder how he's pulled it off. He's once led an offense that was top 10 in either points or total yards. 

Early in his career, Musgrave relied heavily on the run but he's run more pass-heavy offenses the last three years. Musgrove's pass attack has been very WR-centric, with more than 62 percent of the targets going to receivers. That should mesh well with the Broncos' offensive weaponry, but it limits the running backs' value, especially if they're splitting carries.

Broncos touches
Player RuSHARE RuATT ReSHARE TGT REC TD
Royce Freeman 45% 1848% 4331 8
Devontae Booker 45% 184 10% 57 42 6
Demaryius Thomas 0% 0 25% 143 89 67
Emmanuel Sanders 0% 0 22% 126 70 5
Courtland Sutton 0% 0 15% 86 47 4
Jake Butt 0% 0 12% 69 48 4

Of note: 

  • Courtland Sutton is the other interesting rookie in Denver. It may take an injury to Sanders or Thomas for him to be Fantasy relevant, but he should help Keenum right away.
  • Jake Butt missed all of last year recovering from an injury and still isn't at the top of the depth chart, but I expect he'll be there by August. Butt may not get enough targets, but he's one of my favorite Dynasty stashes at the position. 
  • The projected difference between Freeman and Booker doesn't do enough to highlight the difference in upside between the two. I can see Freeman taking on a workhorse role, rushing for 1,000 yards and scoring 10 touchdowns. I don't have enough imagination to see that for Booker.

The Leftovers

De'Angelo Henderson is by far the most interesting Bronco we haven't talked about. The addition of Freeman hurt his stock, but he could be a very complementary back to Freeman if Booker continues to disappoint. Henderson needs to show he's improved his ball security before he sees extensive action, but he's someone to watch.