Fantasy drafts are steadily approaching. If you are anything like some Vikings fans I know, you are planning on taking as many boys in purple as possible while still maintaining a competitive edge. We at Full Press Coverage are here to help.
Here are the Top-10 Vikings to focus on come Fantasy Football season.
10. Laquon Treadwell
You may notice a couple instances of non-committal with regards to Vikings receivers and this list. From one standpoint, neither Wright nor Treadwell are expected to see a lot time in Sunday lineups. However, in leagues with high team counts or custom lineup settings, third and fourth receivers become vital members of the roster.
Wright will almost certainly end up with more receptions than Treadwell. Unless the third-year receiver takes a massive step from a disappointing career start, he will be number four with Wright as the primary slot target. That being said, Wright’s lack of height means he will not be the red zone threat Treadwell will be. As such, Treadwell may end up with significantly more touchdowns in 2018. To account for this, though we will give Wright the slight edge over Treadwell, these two are virtually even in our projections.
Projecting Murray is tricky, since it is yet to be seen how cautious the Vikings are going to be with Dalvin Cook. Murray is the bigger of the two, so one would figure he will take on much of the short-yardage duties to ease Cook’s load following his ACL injury. That would, presumably, indicate more touchdowns.
But even without that, Murray rewarded the Vikings’ confidence in him as the 2017 season progressed, gradually improving after an almost non-existent start. He averaged over 74 yards per game in the second half on 4.3 yards per carry. Those numbers also included seven touchdowns over that stretch. If Murray can bring that performance into 2018, he could become a flex in larger leagues.
Carlson and Kai Forbath are currently engaged in competition for the kicker job, but whoever comes out on top figures to be one of the higher scorers at their position. The Vikings stout defense will give the offense the ball back in good field position quite a bit, leading to more field goal opportunities, as well as extra points. Carlson should win the battle, given the team traded up in the fifth to acquire him.
6. Defense/Special Teams
Though D/ST is one of the last slots off the board, the Vikings have one of the more coveted units in the pool. They figure to do exceptionally well with regard to points and yards allowed. The sticking point, however, could be their lackluster turnover numbers and fading sack totals last season.
5. Kyle Rudolph
Though Rudolph is one of the elite touchdown tight ends in football (tied for second in 2017), what may hurt his standing in position rankings is the Vikings’ glut of options between the 20s. His size and reliable hands will surely make him a constant red zone threat and worth a TE1 spot. But since other tight ends like Travis Kelce and Zach Ertz are generally their team’s primary option, Rudolph may slip a little in PPR leagues. Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs will simply take too many targets from him. Unless, of course, the offense shifts strongly passing-centric with Kirk Cousins under center. Speaking of which…
4. Kirk Cousins
Even with questions about Cousins’ ability to sustain high levels of play, he has consistently produced from a fantasy standpoint. And now, he has an elite defense to get him the ball and one of the bets crops of pass catchers in football to help him out. Assuming all goes right Cousins should be a starter in most leagues and a top-10 fantasy quarterback this season.
3. Stefon Diggs
2. Adam Thielen
Diggs and Thielen are virtually neck-and-neck. Thielen has both better history of health and a stronger 2017 season on his side, whereas Diggs has proven to be the better red zone target. Truth be told, both could end up being WR1s by year’s end. We are giving the slightest edge to Thielen, as his touchdown total should improve from last year’s four.
1. Dalvin Cook
This will obviously depend greatly on his health and how careful the Vikings are with him. There is a possibility that many of Cook’s red zone touches go to Murray, both to take advantage of Murray’s power and to help Cook’s longevity.
That being said, Cook possesses many of the same attributes of top fantasy backs such as Le’Veon Bell and Todd Gurley. He is a dual-threat back who can make big plays in space, catch out of the backfield and run with power between the tackles. If he holds up, Cook should be an RB1 once the fantasy season gets going.
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