NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Press Conference
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Now that the NFL draft is behind us it is time for fantasy football nuts to start breaking down the rookies. Here’s the LestersLegends’ look at the 2015 NFL rookie quarterback class.
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1. Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jameis Winston threw for 3,907 yards and 25 touchdowns, which was a step back from the 4,057 yard and 40 touchdowns he produced as a freshman. He should hit the ground running with Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson in his arsenal.
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2. Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans
Marcus Mariota will have more of an adjustment to the NFL game. He threw for 2,677 yards and 32 touchdowns in 2012, 3,665 yards and 31 touchdowns in 2013 and 4,454 yards and 42 touchdowns last year while averaging 745.7 yards and 9.7 touchdowns on the ground. Kendall Wright, Harry Douglas and Delanie Walker give him some decent options.
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3. Bryce Petty, New York Jets
Bryce Petty averaged 4,027.5 yards and 30.5 touchdowns over the past two seasons. He ran for 14 touchdowns in 2013. Petty likely won’t get a look this season for the Jets.
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4. Sean Mannion, St. Louis Rams
Sean Mannion threw for 4.662 yards and 37 touchdowns in 2013, but dipped to 3,164 yards and 15 touchdowns last year. He also isn’t likely to get any run in 2015. Garrett Grayson and Brett Hundley are better dynasty options.
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Here are the Lester’s Legends quarterback rankings for Super Bowl XLIX.
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1. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Tom Brady averaged 268.6 yards and 2.2 touchdowns in the first 15 games of the regular season before the Patriots took it easy in the season finale. Brady has 49 touchdown passes in 28 career playoff games. He threw for 367 yards and three touchdowns against the Baltimore Ravens despite a non-existent running game. Brady only had to throw for 226 yards against the Indianapolis Colts’ run defense was deflated. He threw three touchdowns though. Brady threw for 395 yards and a pair of touchdowns in 2012 against the Seattle Seahawks as they were becoming a premier defense. Seattle ranked first in scoring defense, fourth in total defense, and sixth in passing defense.  That’s the game where “You mad bro” was coined. Yes, Brady is mad. I expect him to exact revenge.
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2. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Russell Wilson averaged 217.2 passing yards, 1.3 touchdown passes, 53.1 rushing yards and 0.4 rushing touchdowns. He threw for 268 yards and three touchdowns in the playoff win over the Carolina Panthers. He bottomed out a bit against the Green Bay Packers throwing four interceptions, but he rallied when he needed to. Wilson finished with 209 yards and the game-winning touchdown. He also added 25 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Wilson’s running ability and tendency to take care of the football (the NFC title game withstanding) can mitigate his sometimes underwhelming passing totals.
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SuperBowlXLIXLogo
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Marshawn Lynch running
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Here are the Lester’s Legends running back rankings for the AFC and NFC Conference Championship Games of the 2014-15 NFL Playoffs.
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1. Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks
Marshawn Lynch averaged 104.6 total yards and 1.1 touchdowns per game during the regular season. He had just 65 total yards in the playoff win over the Carolina Panthers, but has averaged 96.7 total yards and a touchdown in his past six playoff games. Lynch rolled on the Green Bay Packers for 124 total yards and a pair of touchdowns in Week 1. Look for Beast Mode to surface against the Pack because after all, he all ’bout that action boss.
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2. Eddie Lacy, Green Bay Packers
Eddie Lacy averaged 97.9 total yards and 0.8 touchdowns per game during the regular season. He had a tough start to the season with 45 total yards against the Seattle Seahawks. This week probably won’t be a lot easier, but Lacy is superior to the alternatives. He had 111 total yards during the playoff win against the Dallas Cowboys.
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3. Daniel Herron, Indianapolis Colts
Daniel Herron averaged 73.5 total yards in the final six games, but has really come alive in the NFL playoffs. He debuted with 141 total yards and a touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals. Herron followed that effort up with 95 total yards and a touchdown against the Denver Broncos. He’ll look to stay hot against the New England Patriots, thought he Pats ranked ninth in run defense with 104.3 yards per game allowed and were one of three teams to allow six or fewer rushing scores. Herron’s ability to produce in the passing game leaves him only a shade behind Lacy this week.
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4. Shane Vereen, New England Patriots
Shane Vereen averaged 52.4 total yards and 0.3 touchdowns per game during the regular season. He had just one carry for six yards in the win against the Baltimore Ravens, but he caught four passes for 39 yards. Vereen had 77 total yards in the first meeting with the Indianapolis Colts.
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5. LeGarrette Blount, New England Patriots
LeGarrette Blount averaged 59.8 total yards and 0.6 touchdowns after returning to the New England Patriots. He had three carries for one yard against the Ravens. You never know how Bill Belichick will use his backs. Blount seems the most likely to score a short touchdown.
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Other Options
6. Robert Turbin, Seattle Seahawks
7. James Starks, Green Bay Packers
8. Brandon Bolden, New England Patriots
9. John Kuhn, Green Bay Packers
10. Zurlon Tipton, Indianapolis Colts
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Here are the Lester’s Legends quarterback rankings for the AFC and NFC Conference Championship Games of the 2014-15 NFL Playoffs.
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1. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck averaged 297.6 yards per game during the regular season while leading the league with 40 touchdown passes. In two playoff wins Luck is averaging 320.5 yards and 1.5 touchdowns.  He threw for 303 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the first meeting with the New England Patriots. He knocked off one legend and his predecessor (Peyton Manning). Luck looks to take out another legend in Tom Brady.
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2. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Tom Brady averaged 268.6 yards and 2.2 touchdowns in the first 15 games of the regular season before the Patriots took it easy in the season finale. Brady has 46 touchdown passes in 27 career playoff games. He threw for 367 yards and three touchdowns against the Baltimore Ravens despite a non-existent running game. Brady threw for 257 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The Colts allowed 27 passing touchdowns during the regular season.
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3. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Russell Wilson averaged 217.2 passing yards, 1.3 touchdown passes, 53.1 rushing yards and 0.4 rushing touchdowns. He threw for 268 yards and three touchdowns in the playoff win over the Carolina Panthers. He threw for 191 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the first meeting with the Green Bay Packers. Wilson has six touchdowns and zero interceptions in his past three playoff games. His running ability and tendency to take care of the football can mitigate his sometimes underwhelming passing totals.
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4. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers averaged 273.8 yards and 2.4 touchdown passes during the regular season. He threw for 316 yards and three touchdowns in the playoff win over the Dallas Cowboys. The Seattle Seahawks have held Rodgers to 412 yards and a touchdown in the past two meetings. He’s ranked fourth out of respect to Seattle’s impressive defense, but the margin between one and four is very slim between these quarterbacks.
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Here are the Lester’s Legends quarterback rankings for the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs.
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1. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck averaged 297.6 yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game during the regular season. His 40 touchdown passes led the league. Luck added 17.1 rushing yards per game. He threw for 376 yards and a touchdown in the win over the Cincinnati Bengals. Luck threw for 370 yards and a pair of touchdowns while adding another on the ground in the first meeting with the Denver Broncos.
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2. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers averaged 273.8 yards and 2.4 touchdown passes. He ran for 269 yards and a pair of touchdowns, but Rodgers’ mobility will likely be limited with a calf injury. Rodgers should still be able to pick apart the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys allowed 251.9 passing yards per game.
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3. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Tom Brady averaged 268.6 yards and 2.2 touchdowns in the first 15 games of the regular season before the New England Patriots took it easy in the season finale. Brady has 43 touchdown passes in 26 career playoff games, but he has a tough matchup with the Baltimore Ravens. Baltimore did allow 248.7 passing yards per game.
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4. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys
Tony Romo averaged 247 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game and closed the season with 12 touchdowns and one interception in his final four games. He stayed hot by throwing for 293 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the win over the Detroit Lions. He’ll try to keep rolling against the Green Bay Packers. The Pack allowed 1.6 passing touchdowns per game on the year.
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5. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos
Peyton Manning averaged 295.4 yards and 2.4 touchdown passes. He threw for 269 yards and three touchdowns in the first meeting with the Indianapolis Colts. Peyton closed the year averaging 233.8 yards and a touchdown in the final five games of the year.
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6. Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens
Joe Flacco averaged 249.1 yards and 1.7 touchdowns per game during the regular season. He has 20 touchdowns to two interceptions in his past four postseasons. Flacco averaged 273 yards and 2.5 touchdowns in the past two playoff meetings with the New England Patriots.
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7. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks
Russell Wilson averaged 217.2 passing yards, 1.3 touchdown passes, 53.1 rushing yards and 0.4 rushing yards. He has a tough draw against the red hot Carolina Panthers defense that held the Arizona Cardinals to 78 total yards.
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8. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
Cam Newton averaged 223.4 passing yards, 1.3 passing touchdowns, 38.5 rushing yards and 0.4 rushing touchdowns per game during the regular season. He threw for 198 yards and a pair of touchdowns while adding 35 yards in the running game in the playoff win over the Arizona Cardinals. Newton faces the Seattle Seahawks. Seattle allowed just 185.6 passing yards per game.
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Here are the Lester’s Legends fantasy football quarterback rankings for the Wild Card Round.
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1. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck 297.6 yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game. His 40 touchdown passes led the league. Luck added 17.1 rushing yards per game. He faces the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals averaged 243 passing yards per game.
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2. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers
Ben Roethlisberger averaged 309.5 yards and a pair of touchdowns as he narrowly missed reaching 5,000 passing yards. Big Ben victimized the Baltimore Ravens for 340 yards and six touchdowns in Week 9, but threw for 217 yards without a score in Week 2. You can expect him to split the difference with around 280 yards and a couple of scores. In eight home starts Big Ben threw 23 touchdowns with just four interceptions while averaging 347.3 passing yards.
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3. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers
Cam Newton averaged 223.4 passing yards, 1.3 passing touchdowns, 38.5 rushing yards and 0.4 rushing touchdowns per game. Newton closed out the year averaging 65.7 rushing yards and a rushing score in the final three games while throwing five touchdown passes. Cam’s ability to run positions him higher than some of the more seasoned pocket passers.
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4. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys
Tony Romo averaged 247 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game. He has a tough draw against the Detroit Lions, but Romo closed the season with 12 touchdowns and one interception in his final four games.
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5. Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens
Joe Flacco averaged 249.1 yards and 1.7 touchdowns per game. In his past three postseasons Flacco has 18 touchdowns and just two interceptions. Flacco averaged 234.5 yards and a pair of touchdowns in two games against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
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6. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions
Matthew Stafford had a down year by his standards averaging 266.1 yards and 1.4 touchdowns per game. He faces the Dallas Cowboys on the road. Stafford averaged 250.1 yards and 1.1 scores in eight road starts.
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7. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals
Andy Dalton took a major step back this year averaging just 212.4 yards and 1.2 touchdowns per game. Dalton has one touchdown and six interceptions in three postseason starts.
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8. Ryan Lindley, Arizona Cardinals
Ryan Lindley averaged 266 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions in two starts to close out the season. He is easily the weakest option in the playoffs. Lindley faces the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers allowed 227.8 passing yards per game.
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Drew Brees spiral
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With another exciting week of football under our belts, here are the Lester’s Legends 2014 Week 17 fantasy football quarterback rankings.
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1. Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints
Drew Brees is averaging 311.4 yards and 2.1 touchdowns per game. Brees threw for 371 yards and a pair of touchdown in the first meeting with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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2. Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts
Andrew Luck is averaging 306.7 yards and 2.5 touchdowns per game with an additional 17.9 rushing yards per game. Luck had 393 yards and four touchdowns in the first meeting with the Tennessee Titans.
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3. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers is averaging 277 yards and 2.4 touchdowns per game with an additional 17 rushing yards per game. Rodgers is facing the Detroit Lions at home. He has 23 touchdowns without an interception in seven home starts while averaging 301.1 passing yards per game.
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4. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions
Matthew Stafford is averaging 269.3 yards and 1.3 touchdowns per game. Look for Stafford to air it on as the Lions and Packers battle for their division.
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5. Peyton Manning, Denver Broncos
Peyton Manning is averaging 296.3 yards and 2.6 touchdowns per game. He had 340 yards and five touchdowns in the last meeting with the Oakland Raiders. In the past four games Peyton is averaging 224 yards per game with five touchdowns to six interceptions.
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6. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan is averaging 295.6 yards and 1.9 touchdowns per game. He is averaging 342 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game.
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7. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys
Tony Romo is averaging 243.3 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game. He has 10 touchdowns in the past three games without an interception. Romo should close the season strong against the Washington Redskins.
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8. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Tom Brady is averaging 268.6 yards and 2.2 touchdowns per game. He threw for 361 yards and four touchdowns in the first meeting with the Buffalo Bills.
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9. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers
Ben Roethlisberger is averaging 309 yards and a pair of touchdowns per game. He had 350 yards and three touchdowns in the first meeting with the Cincinnati Bengals.
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10. Eli Manning, New York Giants
Eli Manning is averaging 265.4 yards and 1.9 touchdowns per game. He has six touchdown passes in the past two games. Look for a strong finish against the Philadelphia Eagles
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The Next Batch
11. Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons
12. Mark Sanchez, Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants
13. Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs
14. Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins vs. New York Jets
15. Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks vs. St. Louis Rams
16. Alex Smith, Kansas City Chiefs vs. San Diego Chargers
17. Jay Cutler, Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings
18. Teddy Bridgewater, Minnesota Vikings vs. Chicago Bears
18. Andy Dalton, Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers
20. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins vs. Dallas Cowboys
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