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5 MINUTE GUIDE

Aug. 17, 2015
Aug. 17, 2015

Table of Contents
Aug. 17, 2015

RIO 2016
  • One year from the start of the 2016 Olympics, host Rio de Janeiro is pleased with its progress, but even as its scenic splendor and irrepressible spirit command attention, the city still has obstacles to overcome

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5 MINUTE GUIDE

Lost in fantasy land? Let SI's expert lead the way as draft day nears

This is an article from the Aug. 17, 2015 issue

O, BROTHER

You can judge most offensive players by the quality of the offense they're in. Invest heavily in these four teams

PACKERS

Four players on this, the NFL's best offense, will be gone within your draft's first 30 picks: Aaron Rodgers, Eddie Lacy, Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb. You want one.

BRONCOS

Peyton Manning and Demaryius Thomas are set for big seasons again, Emmanuel Sanders is an elite secondary target, and C.J. Anderson legitimizes the run game.

STEELERS

Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown could each be the top player at his position; Big Ben and Martavis Bryant will be strong fantasy starters. Bet on Todd Haley's attack.

COLTS

Andrew Luck, T.Y. Hilton and Dwayne Allen have each made significant strides every year. In '15 they're joined by fantasy stalwarts Frank Gore and Andre Johnson.

REVIVAL OF THE FITTEST

Four down-year players who will return to previous glories

KEENAN ALLEN

WR, CHARGERS

His lack of sophomore-year production came as a surprise after he was among the leaders in end zone targets as a rookie. With TE Antonio Gates out through Week 4, Allen will climb back atop San Diego's goal line hierarchy.

MICHAEL FLOYD

WR, CARDINALS

With his size and big-play ability, he was supposed to emerge as a top 15 WR last year. Hampered in part by QB Carson Palmer's injury, Floyd ranked 41st in yards, 85th in catches—but everything that made him a breakout pick last season still holds. His training camp injury (fingers) won't cost him much time.

PIERRE GARÇON

WR, REDSKINS

A casualty of the QB tumult in D.C. last season, Garçon saw his catches, targets and yards all nearly halved. He's unlikely to return to the 113-catch, 184-target, 1,346-yard highs he hit in '13, but he'll be relevant again.

MATTHEW STAFFORD

QB, LIONS

A top five QB at the start of '14, he fell out of the QB1 class due to Detroit's growing reliance on D and Calvin Johnson's ankle injury. With a healthy Johnson split opposite Golden Tate, plus rookie RB Ameer Abdullah, expect a return to the top tier.

CATCHING HELL

Fact: Not all RB1s are the same. Before nabbing any of these rushing studs, consider their PPR potential

Matt Forte

Bears

Forte was hauling in passes—102 of them in '14—long before now departed coach Marc Trestman came to Chicago.

Le'Veon Bell

Steelers

All that Bell's two-game suspension means is that he will likely catch—at a minimum—70 passes instead of 80.

C.J. Spiller

Saints

New Orleans RBs have cumulatively led the NFL in catches in seven of the past nine years. Spiller will help keep that going.

Shane Vereen

Giants

A victim of the rotating backfield in New England, he still has 99 catches in his last 24 games—a 66-per-season pace.

Alfred Morris

Redskins

Morris set a career high in catches last year—with 17. He's underrated, but he's not much of a receiving threat.

Mark Ingram

Saints

Division of labor: Spiller's role as a receiver in New Orleans means that Ingram will be more of a grinder.

Melvin Gordon

Chargers

Same story: Gordon will be San Diego's workhorse, but Danny Woodhead's presence will curb his PPR value.

LeGarrette Blount

Patriots

Even if Blount owns the Patriots' backfield, Travaris Cadet will play a vital role as a third-down back.

OLDIES? YES. GOODIES? HMM ...

SI plays buy/sell with eight fading fantasy stars

BUY

Andre Johnson

WR, Colts

Johnson, 34, has never played with a QB whose skill set remotely approaches Andrew Luck's.

Frank Gore

RB, Colts

The 32-year-old could roll out of bed and rush for 1,100 yards. Indy's offense extends his life.

Peyton Manning

QB, Broncos

The price may be high for a 39-year-old, but Peyton has another huge season ahead.

Jason Witten

TE, Cowboys

Even at 33 he'll play a larger role now that DeMarco Murray is gone. His low price is enticing.

SELL

Drew Brees

QB, Saints

Opportunity cost rules in fantasy, and you're going to have to pay up for Brees, even at 36.

Carson Palmer

QB, Cardinals

Come Week 1, he'll be 10 months removed from his second ACL surgery. Time to move on from the 35-year-old.

Brandon Marshall

WR, Jets

At 31, he's now on his fourth team despite supreme talent. Geno Smith won't save his stock.

Reggie Bush

RB, 49ers

He could form a dynamic backfield with Carlos Hyde, but at age 30, Bush won't get the bulk of those touches.

THE JUSTIN CASE

Solving the mystery: Who'll be this season's Justin Forsett, the running back who comes out of nowhere to rush for 1,200 yards?

CHARLES SIMS

BUCCANEERS

He could have been the starter for the balance of '14 if not for a right-ankle injury, which cost him eight games. Doug Martin sits atop the depth chart, but Sims may already have 1A status. Keep a close watch.

DAVID JOHNSON

CARDINALS

The rookie out of Northern Iowa already has Bruce Arians saying he'll "find a niche quickly," while RBs coach Stump Mitchell compared Johnson with Matt Forte. Remember, presumed starter Andre Ellington missed four games last year.

DUKE JOHNSON

BROWNS

Though he began training camp No. 3 on the depth chart, the third-round pick from Miami will have a chance to prove he's more than just a change-of-pace back. After all, it's not as if he has to steal carries from Jim Brown and Eric Metcalf.

TRAVARIS CADET

PATRIOTS

Every fantasy owner is familiar with Bill Belichick's RB carousel. Cadet made an impression in '14 by catching 38 passes in New Orleans; he could find himself this year's beneficiary of Belichick's vagaries.

PHOTOPATRICK SMITH/GETTY IMAGES (ALLEN)PHOTODAVID E. KLUTHO FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (FORTE)PHOTOARCHIE CARPENTER/UPI/LANDOV (BELL)PHOTODERICK E. HINGLE/USA TODAY SPORTS (SPILLER)PHOTOANTHONY NESMITH/CSM (VEREEN)PHOTOKYLE TERADA/USA TODAY SPORTS (MORRIS)PHOTOTODD KIRKLAND/ICON SPORTSWIRE (INGRAM)PHOTOJEFF HAYNES FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (GORDON)PHOTOJAKE ROTH/USA TODAY SPORTS (BLOUNT)PHOTODAVID BANKS/GETTY IMAGES (SIMS)FOUR PHOTOS