2013 Fantasy Preview: Cincinnati Bengals’ A.J. Green
In his first two years, Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green has been to two pro bowls, and has already been named an all pro last year. Green, who is already considered an elite receiver, will only get better in his third season.
Bengals QB Andy Dalton does not have anyone else to throw the ball to except Green and maybe Jermaine Gresham. Although Green will likely be doubled or even triple teamed without a good number-two receiver, Dalton will target Green a lot.
Green is a dynamic receiver, who can run vertically and stretch the field well. Last year, Green led the NFL with the most 40-plus yard receptions with seven. Also, he will win the jump balls that Dalton throws. With his vertical jump, Green can win the one-on-one battle against a defensive back. Against zone coverage, he will run in the middle of the field and find open holes in the defense. He can carry the Bengals’ offense by himself as long as Dalton throws decent passes.
If WR Mohamed Sanu has a breakout season this year, Green should have a monstrous fantasy season (think Calvin Johnson numbers). Dalton will have three options to throw to as Green will be his go to receiver. Bengals coach Marvin Lewis should not fear to have Dalton throw more passes because a short reception from Green can be like a running play. Expect the Bengals to throw more than 550 pass attempts this year.
Green should be drafted in the late-first to the early-second round in a 10-team fantasy league. Although Johnson is the best receiver in the NFL, Green should be the second receiver drafted because he is a young receiver whose potential is beyond the sky. Fantasy projection for Green: 180 targets, 110 receptions, 1600 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Alan Lim is a Dallas Cowboys writer for rantsports.com. Follow him on twitter @alanlim_.