Fantasy Bounce-Back Player: Eli Manning

By Mike Block
Eli Manning
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Eli Manning had a poor season for an “Elite” QB. He failed to reach 4,000 yards passing for the first time since 2008 and had his lowest completion percentage since 2007. But look for Eli to have a bounce back year for the New York Giants  and fantasy owners alike.

The Giants had one of the toughest schedules in football last season, but now posses one of the easiest (24th in strength of schedule).

This year’s Giants should produce even more explosive plays from a young and gifted roster. The one-two punch of David Wilson and Andre Brown looks extremely promising and seems like almost an upgrade of the Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs days which helped the Giants win two Super Bowls. If the dynamic combination of Wilson’s speed and Brown’s bruising running style produces big numbers, you bet that Eli will benefit from it.

Eli is also gifted with one of the best wide receiver duos in the league of Victor Cruz and Hakeem Nicks. A tandem that in 2011 became the first duo of receivers in Giants’ history to each have 1,000 receiving yards in a season. The same success didn’t translate into last season as Nicks had the worst season of his career, mostly because he played with an injured knee, an injury he suffered back in week 2 of the season.

The important thing about this year is that Cruz and Nicks will both be playing for new contracts next season. Players that are in contract seasons always seem to have some extra fuel and produce career years. Eli already has a great chemistry with the two receivers, added with an extra incentive of Nicks and Cruz to land a big contract, look for the trio to have a great comeback season.

While Eli is never really thought of as a great starting fantasy QB, this year he could be worth taking a risk on if you want to wait till the later rounds to draft a QB. Eli has all the tools to produce a solid season.

Fantasy Prediction: 4,100 yards, 30 TDs, 15 INTs.


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