Should You Buy Low on Marques Colston?

Oct 18, 2013


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New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver Marques Colston averaged 1,056.3 yards and 8.3 touchdowns in his first seven years in the league. Not bad for the 252nd pick of the 2006 NFL draft. Fantasy football owners have been counting on him since he exploded on the scene during his rookie season with 1,038 yards and eight touchdowns. This year he’s on pace for 864 yards and three touchdowns. Will he continue to struggle or is now a good time to buy low?
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Though Colston’s numbers have dipped, he’s still easily the primary wide receiver option for Drew Brees. Unfortunately, he’s been turning  to Jimmy Graham, Darren Sproles and Pierre Thomas. All three have more receptions than Colston’s 24. Graham and Sproles have been targeted more frequently. Graham is clearly the primary option. As long as his ankle heals, Graham’s odds of remaining Brees’ favorite target are as good as the NFL odds at Topbet.eu.
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Eventually that should work in Colston’s favor as he won’t have to deal with shutdown cornerbacks as frequently. Look for teams to take the New England Patriots’ lead and use their best corners on Graham. Colston didn’t make the Patriots pay for it in Week 6, but don’t be surprised if he takes advantage going forward.
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The past two games have been brutal for Colston as he managed just three catches for 26 yards. He did average 74.5 yards during the first four games though. While that’s not an elite number, it does put him on pace for 1,192 yards if he maintained that average. Even with those duds, it would only take an average of 67.6 yards per game over the final 10 games of the year for Colston to hit the 1000-yard mark again. That is not an unreasonable mark.
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The biggest concern is the lack of touchdowns. He has not scored inside the red zone. He’s 6’4″ and 225 pounds. He should be able to use his large frame to win some goal line battles. Colston only dipped below seven touchdowns in 2008 when he was limited to 11 games. Can he score six touchdowns in the final 10 games? Anything is possible when Drew Brees is throwing you the football, but that seems unlikely. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get to five or six scores though.
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If Colston can averaged 67.6 yards and 0.4 touchdowns over the final 10 games to finish with 1,000 yards and five touchdowns he will have averaged a little over nine fantasy points per game in non-points-per-reception leagues. That is certainly adequate for a WR3.
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Obviously everything comes down to the asking price and the risk. Six games is a sufficient sample size. There is a risk that he will maintain his mediocre pace. Taking his whole body of work into account, though, leads you to believe that he can get back on track. If you can acquire him for a reasonable asking price, the potential reward would outweigh the potential risk.
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