2015 Fantasy Football Spring Top 100: Jamaal Charles sits at No. 1

Thursday May 7th, 2015

The NFL draft is over, teams have gone through their voluntary offseason workouts and training camps are just about two months away. That means it’s time for our first fantasy football rankings of the year. There will be changes between now and draft season, but it’s time for us to plant our initial flag this season.

Where do we rank Le'Veon Bell following his three-game suspension? Who is our No. 1 overall wide receiver? Which rookie running back do you need to be monitoring this summer? Below is the SI.com spring top 100 for the 2015 fantasy football season.

2016 NFL Mock Draft: Who's at No. 1? | 2015 NFL draft grades: Highs, lows

1
1Jamaal Charles
RB, Kansas City Chiefs

He’s reaching the upper limits of running back shelf life, but Charles is still the center of the universe that is the Kansas City offense.

2
2Eddie Lacy
RB, Green Bay Packers

Lacy owns the Green Bay backfield, and he stepped up as a receiver last year. Drafting him is a great way to invest in the league’s best offense.

3
3Adrian Peterson
RB, Minnesota Vikings

All things considered, Peterson could have a better year this season as a result of missing nearly all of last year. Still elite in most every way.

4
4Matt Forte
RB, Chicago Bears

Marc Trestman may no longer be running the show in Chicago, but Forte is the key player in reviving the Bears’ offense. Expect 300-plus touches.

5
5Marshawn Lynch
RB, Seattle Seahawks

If you’re all about the floor, Lynch is your man. He has at least 1,500 total yards and 12 touchdowns in each of the last three seasons.

6
6Dez Bryant
WR, Dallas Cowboys

When you combine talent, red-zone ability, big plays and team context, Bryant is the best fantasy receiver in the league.

7
7Le’Veon Bell
RB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Bell would be the runaway No. 1 overall player if not for a three-game suspension to start the season. His all-around skill set still makes him an easy first-round selection.

8
8Antonio Brown
WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Brown has 229 receptions for nearly 3,200 yards and 21 touchdowns over the last two seasons. That should say it all.

9
9Demaryius Thomas
WR, Denver Broncos

If not for Peyton Manning’s shaky health, Thomas would likely be the top receiver in the rankings. As it stands, he’s still a surefire first-round player.

10
10DeMarco Murray
RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Murray will be hard-pressed to match last year’s numbers without the great Dallas line in front of him, but he should get a full workload in Chip Kelly’s up-tempo offense.

11
11Jordy Nelson
WR, Green Bay Packers

Higher than you’ll see him in most places, but I want Aaron Rodgers’s No. 1 receiver on my team. Environment matters, and few receivers can match Nelson’s.

12
12Julio Jones
WR, Atlanta Falcons

Jones probably would have led the league in receiving yards if he didn’t suffer a hip injury at the end of last season. One of the league’s best players when he’s on the field.

13
13Odell Beckham Jr.
WR, New York Giants

Beckham was the No. 1 receiver in fantasy last year on a per-game basis. Even if he doesn’t reach the heights of his rookie year, he’ll be an elite WR1.

14
14Jeremy Hill
RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Hill took over as the starting running back in Cincinnati last year, and it’s his gig to lose after the way he ran the ball. Top-five potential.

15
15Rob Gronkowski
TE, New England Patriots

The Off-season Of Gronk will eventually come to an end, and when it does he’ll go right back to being the best tight end in the NFL.

16
16Calvin Johnson
WR, Detroit Lions

Injury woes and quarterback inconsistency have knocked Johnson down to his lowest ranking in years. That could make him a bargain come draft season.

17
17Arian Foster
RB, Houston Texans

You probably won’t get 16 games out of Foster, but he proved last year that he can still be one of the best running backs in the league on a per-game basis.

18
18Aaron Rodgers
QB, Green Bay Packers

No matter if you’re talking real life or fantasy, he is the best quarterback in the league, hands down.

19
19Alshon Jeffery
WR, Chicago Bears

Jeffery has averaged 87 catches for 1,267 yards and 8.5 touchdowns the last two seasons. With Brandon Marshall gone, he should see even more targets this year.

20
20A.J. Green
WR, Cincinnati Bengals

Don’t let one injury-riddled season scare you away from Green. He has proven himself to be a top-flight receiver, even with Andy Dalton at the helm.

21
21LeSean McCoy
RB, Buffalo Bills

McCoy trades the video-game feel of Chip Kelly’s offense for the heavy workload promised to him by Rex Ryan and Greg Roman. Consider it a wash.

22
22Alfred Morris
RB, Washington Redskins

Morris remains one of the most underappreciated players in the NFL. Three straight seasons with at least 1,000 yards and seven scores.

23
23Randall Cobb
WR, Green Bay Packers

You should sense a theme with the Packers by now—fantasy owners should invest in this offense. Cobb provides your last real opportunity to do so.

24
24Melvin Gordon
RB, San Diego Chargers

The runner-up in the 2014 Heisman race landed in a perfect spot in San Diego. The bet here is that he’s the runaway Offensive Rookie of the Year. Can be a dominant runner.

25
25C.J. Anderson
RB, Denver Broncos

Not totally sold on Anderson being the workhorse, or on the Broncos relying on him as much as they did at the end of last season.

26
26Andrew Luck
QB, Indianapolis Colts

Luck was the model of consistency and likely carried most of his owners to the fantasy championship last year. Has the weapons and running ability to be even better this year.

27
27Mike Evans
WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Odell Beckham Jr. got all the attention, but Evans was nearly as good in his rookie season. Jameis Winston will be an upgrade over Josh McCown and Mike Glennon.

28
28Lamar Miller
RB, Miami Dolphins

You probably won’t have to take him this early, but you’ll be happy to have him on your team. Does everything out of Miami’s backfield, and the team’s offense is improving.

29
29Mark Ingram
RB, New Orleans Saints

Ingram finally had the breakout season last year that had been foretold since the dawning of time. Role could increase with Saints potentially running more this year.

30
30Carlos Hyde
RB, San Francisco 49ers

With Frank Gore in Indianapolis, it’s Hyde’s show. He could be a breakout player, but expect his stock to rise over the summer.

31
31Todd Gurley
RB, St. Louis Rams

The 10th pick in the draft figures to be the Rams’ starter, but he’s still working his way back from a torn ACL.

32
32T.Y. Hilton
WR, Indianapolis Colts

Hilton is the top receiver for an elite quarterback in a pass-happy offense. Andre Johnson’s presence should help him this year.

33
33Jimmy Graham
TE, Seattle Seahawks

Graham’s fantasy stock takes a hit as a result of being traded to Seattle from New Orleans.

34
34Justin Forsett
RB, Baltimore Ravens

With new OC Marc Trestman and a lack of competition, Forsett could very well follow up on his breakout 2014 campaign.

35
35Emmanuel Sanders
WR, Denver Broncos

Sanders enjoyed a banner season in Year 1 with Peyton Manning. He should be a rock-solid WR2 again in 2015.

36
36Frank Gore
RB, Indianapolis Colts

The ageless Gore found himself an ideal fit in Indianapolis. Doubt him at your own peril.

37
37Kelvin Benjamin
WR, Carolina Panthers

Benjamin tailed off as the year progressed, but he still eclipsed 1,000 yards and found the end zone nine times. Should only continue to improve.

38
38Russell Wilson
QB, Seattle Seahawks

If Wilson became a top-three quarterback without a go-to pass-catcher, imagine what he can do with Jimmy Graham. Could make this ranking look foolish.

39
39DeSean Jackson
WR, Washington Redskins

Everything went wrong in Washington last year, but Jackson still racked up 1,169 yards and six touchdowns. Think of what he can do if even 50% of things go right.

40
40DeAndre Hopkins
WR, Houston Texans

Hopkins has the talent to outpace this ranking, especially as the top receiver in Houston, but quarterback issues could restrict his ceiling.

41
41Jonathan Stewart
RB, Carolina Panthers

For the first time in his career, Stewart has the Carolina backfield to himself. Now all he has to do is stay healthy.

42
42Latavius Murray
RB, Oakland Raiders

Murray had to breathe a sigh of relief when the Raiders didn’t draft a running back. He’ll be the team’s starter and should be an RB2.

43
43Andre Johnson
WR, Indianapolis Colts

Just like Frank Gore, the veteran Johnson picked the perfect team in free agency. He could experience a renaissance catching passes from Andrew Luck.

44
44Brandin Cooks
WR, New Orleans Saints

With Jimmy Graham and Kenny Stills out of town, Cooks is the unquestioned top pass-catcher for Drew Brees. That’s always a good look.

45
45Tom Brady
QB, New England Patriots

For now, we’ll keep Brady at this spot. If a suspension ends up coming, he’ll obviously slide down the rankings.

46
46Andre Ellington
RB, Arizona Cardinals

Ellington may not be capable of handling a workhorse role, but he was also dealing with injuries from training camp on last year. Getting some help in the backfield should keep him upright.

47
47Peyton Manning
QB, Denver Broncos

Don’t let the last month of the 2014 season obscure the fact that Manning was dominant for three months. He’s got one good year left.

48
48Martavis Bryant
WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Bryant burst on the scene at midseason, and ended up scoring eight touchdowns in 10 games. Pittsburgh’s offense is another one fantasy owners should target.

49
49Ben Roethlisberger
QB, Pittsburgh Steelers

Speaking of the Steelers, Roethlisberger had arguably the best season of his career last year. He can follow up on that with Antonio Brown, Le’Veon Bell and Martavis Bryant at his disposal.

50
50Jordan Matthews
WR, Philadelphia Eagles

The No. 1 receiver in Philadelphia during the Chip Kelly era has been a fantasy WR1 each of the last two years. That’s Matthews’s role in 2015.

51
51Drew Brees
QB, New Orleans Saints

Brees is no longer a top-tier fantasy quarterback, but he still put up a top-five season in 2014. Down, but not out.

52
52Travis Kelce
TE, Kansas City Chiefs

All signs point to the Chiefs finally unleashing Kelce this year. If everything breaks right, he has the upside to be the No. 1 fantasy tight end.

53
53Sammy Watkins
WR, Buffalo Bills

Watkins would likely be higher if not for the shaky quarterback situation in Buffalo. It’s hard to trust the Matt Cassel-EJ Manuel duo.

54
54Julian Edelman
WR, New England Patriots

Edelman is a PPR machine and a favorite target of Tom Brady’s. Both of those factors bode well for him in 2015.

55
55Golden Tate
WR, Detroit Lions

When Calvin Johnson was injured, Tate filled in admirably as the No. 1 receiver in Detroit. Should be an easy WR2 this year.

56
56Greg Olsen
TE, Carolina Panthers

Olsen set career-highs in receptions (84) and yards (1,008) last year. He should be just as popular with Cam Newton in 2015.

57
57Brandon Marshall
WR, New York Jets

Marshall is with his fourth team and enters a questionable quarterback situation with the Jets. Don’t expect top-level production this year.

58
58Matt Ryan
QB, Atlanta Falcons

No one is ever excited to take Ryan, but he has averaged 4,526.25 yards and 28.75 touchdowns per season over the last four years.

59
59Joique Bell
RB, Detroit Lions

The Lions drafted Ameer Abdullah, but Bell is still the primary runner in Detroit. Expect another season of RB2 production.

60
60Giovani Bernard
RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Bernard ceded the starting gig to Jeremy Hill, but he’ll still have a sizable role in the Cincinnati offense and a top-20 RB ceiling.

61
61Tony Romo
QB, Dallas Cowboys

The quarterback so many people love to hate remains quietly effective for fantasy owners. Don’t let the secret out.

62
62Keenan Allen
WR, San Diego Chargers

Allen crashed down to earth in his sophomore season, catching 77 passes for just 783 yards and four touchdowns. Year 3 should fall somewhere between that and his rookie year.

63
63C.J. Spiller
RB, New Orleans Saints

Spiller seems forever a disappointment, but the Saints will try to cast him in the Darren Sproles role. Could be a steal.

64
64Eli Manning
QB, New York Giants

Don’t laugh. With Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz, Rashad Jennings and Shane Vereen, Manning won’t be hurting for weapons.

65
65LeGarrette Blount
RB, New England Patriots

Every so often (Corey Dillon in 2004, Stevan Ridley in 2012), Bill Belichick relies on one running back. Blount could be that guy this year.

66
66Ryan Tannehill
QB, Miami Dolphins

The Tannehill breakout began last season. With Jordan Cameron, Kenny Stills and Jay Ajayi added to his stable, it will accelerate this year.

67
67Cam Newton
QB, Carolina Panthers

Newton experienced a bit of a down year, but he was still a fantasy stalwart thanks to 539 yards and five scores on the ground.

68
68Michael Floyd
WR, Arizona Cardinals

Just wipe last year from your memory. No doubt that’s what Floyd did. His talent is undeniable, and Carson Palmer is back.

69
69Rashad Jennings
RB, New York Giants

Jennings isn’t an exciting pick, but he’ll give you steady weekly production. A great target for those going cheap at running back.

70
70Jeremy Maclin
WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Maclin may not be in Philadelphia anymore, but he’s not going to fall off the map playing with Alex Smith. Don’t be surprised if he’s a WR2.

71
71Tevin Coleman
RB, Atlanta Falcons

The rookie out of Indiana has a great opportunity in a wide-open Atlanta backfield. Make sure he’s on your radar.

72
72Vincent Jackson
WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jackson isn’t a WR1 anymore, but he can still be plenty productive as a second or third fantasy option at the position.

73
73Amari Cooper
WR, Oakland Raiders

Cooper was the first receiver off the board in the draft. There’s no doubt about his talent and upside. If he connects with Derek Carr, look out.

74
74T.J. Yeldon
RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

Yeldon will have every chance to start for the Jaguars, but don’t assume he’s going to beat out Denard Robinson. The latter was impressive last season.

75
75Martellus Bennett
TE, Chicago Bears

Bennett has had a couple nice seasons with the Bears, and remains one of the most productive tight ends in the league. Could get more looks with Brandon Marshall gone.

76
76Darren McFadden
RB, Dallas Cowboys

If any back in Dallas gets the lion’s share of the carries, he could end up being a fantasy monster. McFadden, of all people, looks like the odds-on favorite to be the starter.

77
77Roddy White
WR, Atlanta Falcons

White’s days are numbered, but he can still be a WR2 over the course of an entire season. At worst, he’s great for depth.

78
78Mike Wallace
WR, Minnesota Vikings

Wallace played/sulked his way out of Miami, and is now one of Teddy Bridgewater’s top receivers. That’s not a bad position to fall into.

79
79Jordan Cameron
TE, Miami Dolphins

If Cameron can stay healthy this year, he’ll be a top-five tight end. You heard it here first. Position drops off after him.

80
80Torrey Smith
WR, San Francisco 49ers

Smith got the job done with touchdowns rather than yards last year. No matter how he did it, he again contributed a top-25 season at the position.

81
81Matthew Stafford
QB, Detroit Lions

The shine is off Stafford a bit, as inconsistency and an improving quarterback class have bumped him to the back end of the QB1 group.

82
82Zach Ertz
TE, Philadelphia Eagles

Ertz could very well take a major step forward in the Philadelphia offense. Of course, we’ve been said that each of the last two years, and it hasn’t come to fruition.

83
83Steve Smith
WR, Baltimore Ravens

After a hot start last year, Smith really tailed off in the back half of the season. Consider his 2014 numbers his ceiling for 2015.

84
84Shane Vereen
RB, New York Giants

Vereen was a bust last season, but the receiving skills that made him a hot commodity last year are still present. Should have a nice role with the Giants.

85
85Antonio Gates
TE, San Diego Chargers

Gates just won’t give in to Father Time. The latter eventually catches up with everyone, but Gates will be a TE1 until the day he announces his retirement.

86
86Isaiah Crowell
RB, Cleveland Browns

Don’t assume Crowell is going to run away with this job. Terrance West and rookie Duke Johnson will be involved, as well.

87
87Chris Ivory
RB, New York Jets

Stevan Ridley and Zac Stacy will push Ivory, but chances are he’s the starter for the Jets. Still, don’t hope for more than low-end RB2 numbers.

88
88Charles Johnson
WR, Minnesota Vikings

Johnson opened eyes in Minnesota at the end of last year and enters this season with major sleeper potential.

89
89Allen Robinson
WR, Jacksonville Jaguars

Robinson was enjoying a nice rookie season before a foot injury ended his year in November. He’s the No. 1 receiver in an improving offense.

90
90Kevin White
WR, Chicago Bears

The Bears used the seventh pick to team White with Alshon Jeffery. Gives Jay Cutler another big target in the red zone.

91
91Brandon LaFell
WR, New England Patriots

LaFell presents fantasy owners with a cheap way of investing in the New England offense. That’s never a bad thing.

92
92Jarvis Landry
WR, Miami Dolphins

Landry didn’t get much attention with all the big-time rookie receivers last year hogging the spotlight, but he was quietly productive. Give him a boost in PPR leagues.

93
93Ameer Abdullah
RB, Detroit Lions

Abdullah will likely inhabit the role manned by Reggie Bush in Detroit the last few seasons. Has a top-25 running back ceiling.

94
94Victor Cruz
WR, New York Giants

Cruz should be ready for the year after a gruesome knee injury ended his 2014. Circle his name. He could be a steal.

95
95Larry Fitzgerald
WR, Arizona Cardinals

Fitzgerald has suffered through some tough seasons with the Cardinals, but he can still give fantasy owners WR2 production.

96
96Eric Decker
WR, New York Jets

Decker learned last year how tough life can be without Peyton Manning. Those same issues may be present in 2015.

97
97Owen Daniels
TE, Denver Broncos

Daniels will be playing with a coach who loves his skills and a quarterback who is one of the all-time greats. He has top-five tight end potential.

98
98Kenny Stills
WR, Miami Dolphins

It always seemed Stills was underutilized in New Orleans. Don’t expect that to be the case in Miami.

99
99Bishop Sankey
RB, Tennessee Titans

Don’t write Sankey off based on his lackluster rookie season. The Tennessee offense was a complete mess, and Shonn Greene was in the mix, for some reason. He’s a true sleeper.

100
100David Cobb
RB, Tennessee Titans

Our bet is one of these two Tennessee running backs ends up putting up RB2 numbers at an RB4 price. Cobb, the rookie from Minnesota, will push Sankey for the starting job.

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