TOP 10 NFL DRAFT WEEKEND DYNASTY RISERS
A sad list this season with no Randy Moss impact types being dealt, and not much in the way of a dominant offensive influx overall.
1. Jason Campbell, QB, WAS - He's been a divisive dynasty entity over the past couple of years, with his supporters hailing him as the next great young QB and his detractors pointing out his lack of consistency and limited ceiling. Having to learn yet another system under another offensive coordinator may necessitate a period of adjustment, but adding three talented early round picks like Devin Thomas, Malcolm Kelly, and Fred Davis helps stabilize his long-term value.
2. JaMarcus Russell, QB, OAK - The offensive cupboard looked awfully bare when Russell was chosen first overall last spring, but the Raiders have since upgraded the O-Line, brought in a talented young tight end in Zach Miller, two wild card wide receivers in Javon Walker and Drew Carter, and now an explosive running back in Darren McFadden. Russell still has a steep learning curve, but at least he has some firepower at his disposal.
3. Anthony Fasano, TE, MIA - A high round tight end hand-picked by Bill Parcells and then stuck behind Jason Witten for two years, Fasano is a what they call in Rotisserie baseball a "post-hype sleeper." New Dolphins offensive coordinator Dan Henning emphasizes the tight end, and Fasano fits the combo pass catcher/run blocker that can flourish in his offense.
4. Thomas Jones, RB, NYJ - The Jets newly upgraded offensive line was ready to support a bounce-back season, but the McFadden question loomed over Jones owners' heads until the #4 pick in the draft. He will still be replaced by Leon Washington in the passing game -- and he still has just a one or two year window at best -- but Jones should see a natural uptick in touchdowns this season.
5. Lee Evans, WR, BUF - Which has been more problematic for Evans: the failure of his quarterbacks to get him the ball consistently, or the failure of the Bills to address the anemic options lining up at wide receiver and tight end to take some of the defensive attention away? Trent Edwards may not have the googly eyes for Evans the way Losman did, but the addition of Hardy should be a significant boon for Evans' production going forward.
6. Marvin Harrison, WR, IND - Amidst the conflicting reports about Harrison's nebulous knee injuries, the Colts gave a sizable hint about their star receiver's health when they neglected the position in the draft. If Indy is wholly unconcerned with Harrison's health, doesn't that make him a candidate for a comeback season in 2008? This is a player worth gambling on for the right price.
7. Rudi Johnson, RB, CIN / Edgerrin James, RB, ARI - Both running backs were in danger of being cut when the off-season began, and both teams were allegedly looking hard at addressing the position early in the draft. As it stands now both vets resume their role as starting running backs, but beware of the committee approach rearing its ugly head once the games begin.
8. Ahman Green / Chris Brown, RB, HOU - Houston Chronicle beat writer John McClain never wavered in his insistence that the Texans would overlook the stud running backs in this draft, but that didn't stop the mockers from pegging Houston as a landing spot for Stewart, Mendenhall, or one of the second tier backs. Instead, the Texans selected a third down, change of pace back in Slaton and fully intend to go forward with Ahman Green as the starter and Chris Brown as the fall-back option.
9. Trent Edwards, QB, BUF - Edwards stood to gain some value simply by sealing his role as the starter and enjoying new offensive coordinator Turk Schonert's vow to open the offense and allow more leeway at the line of scrimmage. Still, if ever there was an offense lacking in firepower, it was the Bills. Adding a playmaker like Hardy allows the offense to open up and gives Edwards a legit redzone threat.
10. Jay Cutler, QB, DEN - The pickins are getting slim for draft weekend risers, so I'll throw in a player who was going be desperate enough to have to rely on the Keary Colbert Rebirth as recently as a month ago. Since that time, the Broncos have added Samie Parker, Darrell Jackson, and now second round sleeper Eddie Royal. Jackson and Brandon Stokley join Brandon Marshall and Tony Scheffler for the 2008 mix while Royal helps to insure the future against another D-Jax flop or Stokley injury.