Bill Belichick Super Bowl
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Given Bill Belichick’s track record of plugging in veteran players, it is no surprise that Adrian Peterson and the New England Patriots have at least been linked in talks. Obviously Peterson would have to take a dramatic paycut, but as Karen Guregian mentioned in the article, he has already been heavily compensated. If a Super Bowl ring is high on Peterson’s wish list, the Pats are a nice landing spot.
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If the Patriots are going to take a gamble on Peterson, they need to be sure that it is going to work out for them.
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LeGarrette Blount ran for 1,161 yards on 3.9 yards per carry, but scored 18 touchdowns. His usage took a back seat in the Patriots’ Super Bowl run as both Dion Lewis and James White took turns as the star back. Blount finished with just 35 carries for 109 yard (3.1 ypc) with a touchdown in three playoff wins. Blount is a free agent, and could find himself too expensive for the Patriots’ tastes.
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Enter Peterson to the equation. While All Day didn’t live up to his name last year thanks to injuries limiting him to three games and ineffectiveness (1.9 yards per carry on 37 touches), let’s not forget that he ran for 1,485 yards and 11 touchdowns on a 4.5 ypc the year prior. Peterson has 2,418 career carries for 11,747 yards (4.9 ypc) and 97 rushing touchdowns. The blame doesn’t fall entirely on Peterson. The Vikings’ offensive line was downright offensive last year. Plus Norv Turner’s play calling left plenty to be desired.
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He will turn 32 this month, but he has had just 385 carries over the past three years because of injuries/suspension. Not to mention, there aren’t many players with his recovery ability or physique.
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Whether or not Peterson has anything left in the tank is not my concern regarding a fit with the Patriots. They would get a good sense of the shape he is in early on. Again, as long as the injuries have healed, expect Peterson to be in great shape. The major roadblock for Peterson joining the Patriots is his fumbling issues. He has fumbled 39 times during his career, losing 23. The Patriots simply do not put the ball on the ground. When they do, an immediate trip to Belichick’s doghouse ensues. The Patrtiots were middle-of-the-pack with nine fumbles last year. They tied for second with seven in 2015 and four in 2014.
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Keep an eye on this because of the fantasy football implications, but my money says Peterson will be landing elsewhere.

qb
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The Quarterback“ (CC BY 2.0) by afsilva2
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The days of drafting a quarterback in the first two rounds of your NFL fantasy draft are now more or less over but should you be considering a signal caller in the third, fourth or even fifth round?
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Well, it might prove prudent to load up on running backs and wide receivers in the early stages of the draft. With so much talent out of the backfield and at receiver, the key to winning another fantasy title might just be to refrain from taking Aaron Rodgers and co. in the opening few rounds.
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Eight of the top 10 points scorers in 2016 were quarterbacks but running backs were much more valuable. Nine backs scored 200 points or more; a solid total for the position. Only five quarterbacks notched 300 or more – with 25 racking up over 200 points.
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Even San Francisco 49ers star Colin Kaepernick, who sat out for more than half the campaign, managed to rack up over 200 points. Most quarterbacks who throw a mediocre tally of touchdown passes and yards will eclipse that total.
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Running backs like Le’Veon Bell and Ezekiel Elliott are worth so much more than say Andrew Luck or Matt Ryan. Whilst an elite quarterback gives you the chance to rack up a hefty total and advantage at the position, you won’t benefit in the long term. Simply put, a consistent running back who scores 10 or more points per game is vital to success in fantasy football.
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The same goes for wide receivers. Drafting Antonio Brown or Julio Jones in the opening round of your fantasy draft could give you the edge; particularly as both men will prosper in the hunt for Super Bowl glory.
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Jones’ Atlanta Falcons, priced at 14/1 in the NFL odds with bet365, averaged 30 points a game in the final six matches of the campaign and Jones will still prosper despite the departure of offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan to San Francisco.
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The National Football League is still a quarterback league but the number of pass-heavy offenses means that wide receivers are now more important than ever. By the same token, solid running backs are equally as vital to success; especially as more teams are throwing the football.
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Take the Indianapolis Colts for example; Andrew Luck is the heart and soul of that offensive unit. Knowing this immediately boosts the stock of Donte Moncrief and T.Y Hilton but Frank Gore may be one to stay away from. By the same token, the Dallas Cowboys will adopt a run heavy offense and Elliott will be key.
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It is always important to consider whether a back is a three down back or whether he has competition at the position. Quarterbacks can win a fantasy title but running backs and wide receivers WILL win your fantasy crown this year.
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The days of selecting a QB in the opening round are over and we are now in a new era. Take two running backs and two wide receivers in the first couple of rounds and you will be well on your way to winning another fantasy championship.

Brady Spike
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Now that the dust is settling on another season, let’s take a look at the QB landscape.
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The Elite
Tom Brady – Missed four games because of Roger’s vendetta. 3,554 yards, 29 TDs, 2 INTs which extrapolate to 4,739 yards, 39 TDs and 3 INTs. Set the Super Bowl record for passing yards as he got the last laugh. No signs of slowing and has a great group of weapons that fit his style. If Gronk can stay healthy, he’s even more dangerous.
Drew Brees – 5,208 yards, 37 TDs, 15 INTs. A remarkable fifth 5,000 yard season. He’s 38, but no signs of slowing. Good young receiving options.
Aaron Rodgers – 4,428 yards and an NFL-high 40 TDs to just 7 picks.
Matt Ryan – Matty Ice may have a Super Bowl hangover after that debacle, but he has the best receiver in the game, along with numerous weapons. MVP season with 4,944 yards, 38 TD and 7 INTs.
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The Next Wave
Andrew Luck – 4,240 yards, 31 TDs, 13 INTs. Great to see the TD-INT ratio come back. Adding 341 yards and 2 TDs on the ground has him knocking on that elite status.
Philip Rivers – 4,386 yards, 33 TDs. A little heavy on the INTs (21). Key injuries set him back, but still solid year nonetheless. Consistently delivers. Also consistently undervalued.
Ben Roethlisberger – 3,819 yards, 29 TDs, 13 INTs in 14 games. He’s a force but tends to deal with injuries. You’ll want a capable backup.
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Strong Options
Derek Carr – It’s a shame he got injured as he was in the MVP discussion with 3,937 yards and 28 TDs to just 6 INTs.
Kirk Cousins – Third in league with 4,917 yards, but a little light on TDs (25) to be considered in the upper echelon.
Cam Newton – 3,509 yards, 19 TDs, 14 INTs with 359 yards and five rushing TDs. Should produce more next year both with his arm and his feet.
Matthew Stafford – Same boat as Cousins with 4,327 yards and 24 TDs. Only 10 INTs though.
Russell Wilson – 4,219 yards, 21 TDs, 11 INTs with 259 yards and a rushing score. Injury limited his mobility. He should be back to his dual threat tendencies next year.
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Up and Coming
Marcus Mariota – 3,426 yards, 26 TDs, 9 INTs with 349 yards and 2 TDs rushing. Took a huge next step before being injured.
Zak Prescot – 3,667 yards, 23 TDs and 4 INTs with 282 yards and 6 TDs. Impressive rookie year. Future looks bright.
Jameis Winston – 4,090 yards, 28 TDs, 18 INTs. A little heavy on the INTs, but he did progress in year two.
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Veterans
Andy Dalton – 4,206 yards, 18 TDs, 8 INTs
Joe Flacco – 4,317 yards, 20 TDs, 15 INTs
Eli Manning – 4,027 yards, 26 TDs, 16 INTs
Carson Palmer – 4,233 yards, 26 TDs, 14 INTs
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Also check out:

 sb51
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It was a tale of two halves. In the end, my pick of the Patriots came true giving me a 9-2 mark in the postseason.
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Regular Season Record: 151-103-2 (.594)
Playoff Record:  9-2 (.818)
Overall Record:  160-105-2 (.603)

Logan Ryan
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Super Bowl LI features two of the highest scoring offenses. Defense may not be a premium in this one. That said, the Patriots do have the better statistical defense. Plus, they have the better defensive minds installing their game plan.
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1. New England Patriots
2. Atlanta Falcons
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Matt Bryant
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My guess is the Patriots’ defense will allow Atlanta to move into field position, but force Bryant into multiple field goal attempts. Meanwhile Gostkowski will be kicking PATs.
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1. Matt Bryant, Atlanta Falcons
2. Stephen Gostkowski, New England Patriots
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Martellus Bennett
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Perhaps the biggest advantage in the Super Bowl is the tight end comparison.
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1. Martellus Bennett, New England Patriots
2. Austin Hooper, Atlanta Falcons
3. Levine Toilolo, Atlanta Falcons
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Julio Jones white jersey
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Bill Belichick will do his best to take away Julio Jones in Super Bowl LI. I still like Julio’s chances to be productive, even if it’s late.
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1. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
2. Julian Edelman, New England Patriots
3. Chris Hogan, New England Patriots
4. Mohamed Sanu, Atlanta Falcons
5. Taylor Gabriel, Atlanta Falcons
6. Danny Amendola, New England Patriots
7. Michael Floyd, New England Patriots
8. Malcolm Mitchell, New England Patriots
9. Aldrick Robinson, Atlanta Falcons
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Blount TD
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Super Bowl LI features two teams with multiple viable fantasy football options. It’s possible that any of the top two backs on each team could be the top fantasy back this week. I’ll roll with the past using Blount force against the Falcons. The Pats have the top scoring defense, which puts Freeman in the second spot for me.
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1. LeGarrette Blount, New England Patriots
2. Devonta Freeman, Atlanta Falcons
3. Dion Lewis, New England Patriots
4. Tevin Coleman, Atlanta Falcons
5. James White, New England Patriots
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Tom Brady tunnel Matt Ryan
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Super Bowl LI features two of the top quarterbacks in the league. Matt Ryan averaged 309 yards and 2.4 touchdowns per game (4,944 yards, 38 TDs, 7 INTs). He  has somehow risen his game this postseason averaging 365 yards and 3.5 touchdowns in two wins. He even added a rushing touchdown. Entering the Super Bowl, Ryan is playing at the higher level of the two. Brady averaged 296.2 yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game (3,554 yards, 29 TDs, 2 INTs). He’s averaging 335.5 yards and 2.5 touchdowns in his two wins.
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Where Brady has Ryan beat is experience. This is the seventh time playing on the biggest stage in professional sports. He has averaged 267.5 yards and 2.2 touchdowns in his six appearances. In his past five he’s averaging 292 yards and 2.4 TDs. The other area where Brady has the advantage is the defense he’s facing. Those two factors give Brady a slight edge.
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1. Tom Brady, New England Patriots
2. Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
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