With a handful of the bigger names in this year’s free agency class heading to a new team, the real question comes to mind.
No, not how will they impact their new ball club, but how will they impact fantasy football, of course. So, after only a few days of the frenzy that is free agency, let’s take a look at what impacts some of these familiar faces in new places can have on fantasy rosters in 2013.
Wes Welker, Denver Broncos: No, you read that correctly. On Wednesday the Broncos and Welker came to terms on a 2-year, $12 million deal. Somewhere, I’m fairly certain that Peyton Manning is sleeping with the biggest grin on his face. With the addition of Welker, I think I’ll move Manning inside my top three in quarterback rankings. I mean, Welker, Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker? My goodness. Of course, one of those wideouts has to take a hit, and I believe it’ll be Decker. The athletic Thomas is the clear number one in Denver, but I think Decker’s targets will decrease a bit. Manning is so good at those intermediate passes, routes that fall in Welker’s area of expertise.
Danny Amendola, New England Patriots: So, after losing Welker, the Patriots had to respond, right? Why not go out and get a poor man’s Welker in Amendola. If he stays healthy, something that hasn’t been too easy for him, he could be in store for a career year. During his time with New England, Welker only had one season where he didn’t catch at least 100 balls. Amendola, a similar play style, should benefit strongly from having Tom Brady throwing him the football. With his ability to get open and the tremendous upgrade at quarterback, one could seriously argue Amendola over Welker in 2013.
Reggie Bush, Detroit Lions: The Lions offense will certainly be fun to watch next season. Detroit agreed to a four-year deal with the dynamic running back on Wednesday, adding to the weapons at quarterback Matthew Stafford’s disposal. It seems like Bush may get more of the carries, while Mikel Leshoure will likely be the goal line back. Leshoure’s value certainly takes a hit, but Bush could thrive in this offense. Take a look at when Jahvid Best was healthy and starting for Detroit. A similar play style of Bush, Best caught 58 balls out of the backfield in 16 games in 2010. In 2011, he only played six games but still managed 27 catches. You think Scott Linehan will look to use Bush in the passing game this season? I’d like to think so.
Mike Wallace, Miami Dolphins: Perhaps the biggest singing of free agency, the Dolphins and Wallace agreed to a five-year, $65 million deal just hours after the free agency period began. This was after the team already brought back Brain Hartline. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill should see improved production, but not enough for me to draft him. He has the arm strength to utilize Wallace’s speed, but Hartline could benefit the most from the acquisition. He had a bit of a breakout season last year and with Wallace on the other side, he won’t be seeing opposing team’s top corners.
Adam Pfeifer is a featured fantasy columnist for Rant Sports.
You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.