2010 Fantasy Team Predictions: Minnesota Vikings
NFL Soup’s last stop in the NFC North is with the 2009 Division winners. The Minnesota Vikings finished 2009 with a 12-4 record, and ended one game short of a Super Bowl bid.
They’ve had an interesting off-season back and forth wondering if Brett Favre was going to start for them at quarterback in 2010 or not. A few weeks ago, we got our answer, and the Vikings look to make another Super Bowl run with the future Hall of Famer at the helm. But Favre isn’t the only player on that team, as the media makes it seem. They do have quite a bit of fantasy value on the team.
1. Brett Favre Won’t Slow Down Much
After the entire debacle, many still wondered if Favre’s ankle was going to bother him. A lot of the talk is also that there’s just no way that he can repeat his 2009 numbers, which happened to be his best statistical season ever. While that’s most likely true, it doesn’t mean he still can’t have a nice season overall. What is going to hurt Favre is losing Sidney Rice for at least half of the season, and we still don’t know what’s going to amount from the Percy Harvin migraine issues.
But it’s still Brett Favre. Favre seems to make things happen out of nothing. He is an established veteran with one of the top running backs in the league, and an offensive line that should keep him upright. What helped Favre the most is he limited turnovers, giving he and the offense more opportunities to punch the ball in the end zone. If he can do that again this season, he will be a legit QB1 if you can’t get a guy like Manning, Brees, or Rodgers. If you see good value in other running backs or maybe a wide receiver or two, then go ahead and wait another couple rounds for Favre.
2. Sleeper Alert: Bernard Berrian
If anything positive came about from the Sidney Rice injury, it’s that Bernard Berrian is going to see the ball a lot more. I really like Berrian in 2010 with Favre. He still had 4 touchdowns in 2009 despite not being on the field as much, and caught 55 balls. What’s even more exciting is that he’s a down field threat. In 2008, Berrian caught 48 passes and nearly eclipsed 1,000 yards. He had 7 touchdowns that season, and averaged over 20 yards per catch. Now the 20+ yards per catch is probably not going to happen, but there’s no reason that Berrian can’t grab 70 passes and average over 16 yards per catch.
Berrian is going to bit higher in some drafts just because many owners know he’s the #1 receiver. But there are also a lot of people who are more cautious drafters and don’t want to take the risky pick too high. This will bode well for you as it’ll create an opportunity to grab a legit WR2 or Flex WR around the 7th or 8th round.
3. Adrian Peterson Is a Fantasy Workhorse
I feel like the above statement is obvious. There’s hardly anything bad that you can say about Peterson. He’s a touchdown machine, and he always gets at least 1,300 yards on the ground. What made Peterson even better in 2009 was his ability to catch the ball. He caught 43 passes and increased his value in PPR leagues even more.
If there was something bad to say, it’s the fact that he puts the ball on the ground way too much. He has 20 fumbles in 3 seasons, which is just unacceptable. However, a fumble here and there isn’t going to keep you from taking him #2 overall. Draft with confidence as he’s shown that his ability is real and that his healthy concerns coming out of Oklahoma are in the past.
4. A Healthy Harvin Is a Valuable Harvin
The man they call Percy has been a question mark over the span of training camp. His migraine issues have seemed to worsen, and there’s the whole passing out in practice thing. But as of the last couple weeks, it looks like the migraines are going to be fixable, and shouldn’t be something that keeps Harvin sidelined.
Harvin is a very solid option at wide receiver and it was easy to see that the Vikings loved him last season. He got a few carries on the ground, he caught the ball well, and he was an extremely effective kick returner. He’s a good option in keeper leagues, especially leagues that give points for kick return yardage and touchdowns. I’m drafting him as a Flex WR, but he will develop into a WR1 eventually.
5. Visanthe Shiancoe Is Brett’s Friend
Shiancoe has become a very intriguing tight end in the NFL over the last few seasons. He caught 7 touchdowns in 2008 and 11 in 2009. The issue with Shiancoe is that he doesn’t get the yardage that you want to see, so he can be hit or miss. If he doesn’t score a touchdown for you one week, he may not get many points.
The great thing about Shiancoe is that he is increasing his receptions each season and Brett Favre is his quarterback. He’s Brett’s new Mark Chmura, and he will be found many times both in the end zone and in the other 100 yards of the field. If you can’t get one of the top PPR tight ends, go ahead and take Shiancoe a few rounds later as he will still get his scores as long as his quarterback is Favre. He gets open in the middle of the field and is tough. That’s all you can ask for at the tight end position.