Top 50 Players For 2013 Fantasy Football Season

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Fantasy Football: Ranking the Top 50 Players

Fantasy Football
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

The 2013 NFL season is right around the corner. That means if you have not done so already, it is time to start preparing for your fantasy football draft. This season is very interesting. With the young, explosive talent that burst on to the scene last season at the quarterback position, the position is becoming very deep in the fantasy world. Colin Kaepernick, Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson all exploded in to the league last season and are now very good fantasy options. Add these young guys to old reliable quarterbacks like Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees,Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, and you have a very deep position.

We all know that the NFL is more of a passing league than ever before. Quarterbacks are destroying passing records year after year. On the surface, this may make you think that you should take a quarterback early in your fantasy football draft. This is not true. Yes, guys like Rodgers and Brees will be throwing a ton this season, but so will other quarterbacks. Matthew Stafford threw 727 passes last season, which is the most pass attempts in the history of the NFL. I have seen Stafford available as late as the eighth round in some drafts. Would you rather have him in the eighth or Rodgers in the second? It is up to you, but I think that Stafford is a no-brainer at that value.

With the sheer amount of pass attempts that are being made in the NFL, the running back position is becoming scarce. Guys who carry the ball 20-30 times a game are becoming fewer and fewer each season. In my opinion, it is very important that you grab one of these obvious no.1 running backs early in your draft.

This list is based on standard non-PPR leagues with a roster of one QB, two RB, two WR, one TE, one FLEX, one Def and one kicker. My list strongly reflects my belief that the RB and WR positions are the most important positions in fantasy football. You simply have to start more players at RB and WR than you do at QB and TE. Quarterback will always be an important position in fantasy football, but right now I am putting it on the back burner because of the extreme depth of the position. You will see what I mean when you take a look at my list of the top 50 players for the 2013 fantasy football season.

Daniel is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @D_Schmelzer and add him to your network on Google.

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50. Eric Decker, WR, Denver Broncos

Decker
Chris Humphreys- USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos are one of the most interesting teams in fantasy football this season. Manning will surely have a ton of options to throw the ball to. Eric Decker is one of these guys. I think we may see a step down in production from Decker this season, but he is still a decent WR2 and very solid flex play.

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49. Wes Welker, WR, Denver Broncos

Welker
Timothy T. Ludwig- USA TODAY Sports

Wes Welker is going from one sure-fire hall of famer to another, when he joins the Broncos this season. After being arguably the top target of Brady's for many years, Welker will now be catching passes from Manning. Unfortunately, I think Welker's fantasy value takes a bit of a hit. He joins an already-stacked wide receiving core. I still think Welker has plenty of value because Manning will surely spread the ball around, but I think his days of 110-plus receptions a season are a thing of the past.

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48. Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Brown
Charles LeClaire- USA TODAY Sports

Somebody has to catch passes from Ben Roethlisberger this season. With Mike Wallace leaving via free agency and Heath Miller rehabbing from a gruesome knee injury, there are plenty of targets available in the Pittsburgh Steelers offense. Antonio Brown looks to be like the top receiving option for the Steelers, and I think has nice value as a WR2 or Flex.

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47. Pierre Garcon, WR, Washington Redskins

Garcon
Ron Schwane- USA TODAY Sports

Pierre Garcon had an impressive first season with the Washington Redskins. Even though he missed a big chunk of time due to injury, Garcon really clicked with RGIII. He was the obvious top receiving option for the Redskins when he was on the field. I realize that this is a big question mark, but if Garcon can stay healthy, I think he has great value at his current ADP (Average Draft Position).

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46. Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets

Ivory
John David Mercer- USA TODAY Sports

With very limited playing time last season, Chris Ivory had 217 yards on 40 carries and two touchdowns. While the overall numbers are not that impressive, it is a yards per carry average of 5.4. Ivory is a very and tough physical runner that should fit in well in his first season with the New York Jets. It appears that Ivory will get a chance to be the starting running back for the Jets. Ivory's current ADP on MyFantasyLeague.com is 90.6. This will surely rise a ton as the season approaches, but I think Ivory would be a steal if you can grab him in the fifth round. He is a solid Flex option with great upside.

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45. Danny Amendola, WR, New England Patriots

Amendola
Kyle Terada- USA TODAY Sports

With the departure of Welker, Aaron Hernandez being released and Rob Gronkowski having multiple issues with injuries, there are a ton of targets to be had for the New England Patriots. Danny Amendola will surely get a ton of those said targets. Amendola is a very fast and athletic wide receiver with great hands. He will fit in perfectly with the Patriots' offense. The question with Amendola is his health. He has struggled to stay healthy his entire career. If he can just find a way to stay on the field, I think we see great production from Amendola this season.

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44. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers

Rodgers
Jeff Hanisch- USA TODAY Sports

Do not get me wrong, I think Rodgers is one of the best players in the NFL. Last season, Rodgers threw for 4,295 yards with 39 touchdowns, eight interceptions and a completion percentage of 67.2. He is arguably one of the best quarterbacks that this league has to offer. As great as Rodgers is, there is very little chance I end up with him on any of my teams. On MyFantasyLeague.com, Rodgers has a current ADP of 21, which is the end of the second round in a 12-team league. With the crazy depth at the quarterback position, I will not be taking one that early.

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43. Darren Sproles, RB, New Orleans Saints

Sproles
John David Mercer- USA TODAY Sports

Darren Sproles has always been an underrated fantasy player. He is technically a running back, but he is basically just a receiver out of the back field. I expect big thing out of the New Orleans Saints offense this year with head coach Sean Payton returning, and I think Sproles will be a big part of that.

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42. Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints

Brees
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

I actually love Brees this year. I think the return of Sean Payton will be huge for the Saints and Brees will be a big benefactor. I have Brees as my no. 1 QB heading into the season, but again with the crazy depth at the position, I doubt I end up with him on many teams.

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41. Reggie Wayne, WR, Indianapolis Colts

Wayne
Brian Spurlock- USA TODAY Sports

Reggie Wayne is as solid and consistent as they come. He is probably not going to give you many huge games, but you know that you will always gets solid production out of him. He had a good rapport with Andrew Luck last season, and I think the young QB will continue to look his way.

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40. Reggie Bush, RB, Detroit Lions

Bush
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

After a couple of seasons with the Miami Dolphins where Reggie Bush was pretty much a traditional running back, I think he returns to being a receiving type back this season with the Detroit Lions. The Lions throw a ton and Bush is one of the best receivers out of the backfield in the league. He is a bit risky because most people think that Mikel Leshoure will get the goal-line carries, but I think Bush puts up some good numbers this season. He is a low-end RB2 or high end Flex in standard leagues, and gets a nice upgrade if your league is PPR.

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39. Hakeem Nicks, WR, New York Giants

Nicks
Frank Victores- USA TODAY Sports

As always, the question with Hakeem Nicks is whether or not he can stay healthy. The guy has all of the talent in the world, he just cannot stay on the field. Nagging injury after nagging injury holds him back year after year. If he can somehow find a way to stay on the field, Nicks would be a great WR2 for your fantasy team.

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38. Victor Cruz, WR, New York Giants

Cruz
Andrew Mills/ THE STAR LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Victor Cruz was a tough player for me to rank. He has been very productive the past two seasons, but his fantasy value is so touchdown-dependent. He is a great player, but I wonder whether he will continue to score touchdowns at this rate. I have Cruz pegged a little lower than most, but I still think he would be a solid WR2 if you can get him at the right value.

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37. Marques Colston, WR, New Orleans Saints

Colston
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

Once again, I love the Saints this season. I think they will look to spread the ball around a lot, but Colston will surely be involved with the offense. Because of the fact that Brees loves to spread the ball around, Colston is a little inconsistent, but there are always a few games throughout the season where he goes off. Be patient with Colston -- he is a great player in a very explosive offense.

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36. Dwyane Bowe, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Bowe
Jason Bridge- USA TODAY Sports

I will probably end up with Dwyane Bowe on a ton of my fantasy teams this season. He has always been a freak athlete, but now with pass-happy Andy Reid as his coach and Alex Smith, who is the best quarterback that he has ever had throwing him the ball, I think Bowe could put up some huge numbers this season. He is definitely a guy that I am targeting.

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35. Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots

Gronkowski
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Rob Gronkowski was the hardest player for me to rank. The Patriots' receiving core is very thin and they need Gronkowski to get healthy. He may miss a week or two but if the Patriots can get 12-14 weeks out of him, I think Gronkowski is a great pick in the fourth round. I am no longer considering him in the second, but I think he will be an even bigger part of the Patriots offense this season, he just has to get healthy.

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34. Lamar Miller, RB, Miami Dolphins

Miller
Cary Edmondson- USA TODAY Sports

With running back being such an important position, every starting running back in the league is valuable. Lamar Miller appears to be the front-runner to be Bush's replacement in Miami. With his great combination of strength and speed, I think that Miller will really flourish as a starting RB. I will probably have Miller on a ton of my teams this year, as I think he is a great value in the fourth round.

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33. Jordy Nelson, WR, Green Bay Packers

Nelson
Benny Sieu- USA TODAY Sports

Jordy Nelson is another guy that just needs to stay healthy. If he can get on the field, I expect big things out of Nelson this season. He has a great QB throwing him the ball and he is a big-time talent. Two years ago, Nelson scored 15 touchdowns and last year in limited time, he scored seven times. This guy has a nose for the end-zone. Obviously, health is a concern, but I like Nelson this season.

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32. DeMarco Murray, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Murray
Geoff Burke- USA TODAY Sports

I feel like I have said this a ton so far, but once again, health is a big question mark. DeMarco Murray only played in 10 games last season, but he was very good in those 10 games. He had 663 yards on 161 rushes and four TDs. If Murray can stay on the field, he should have another solid season.

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31. Frank Gore, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Gore
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

Frank Gore is Mr. Consistency. You know what you are getting out of him. If you took a couple of risky players early on in your draft, Gore may be a good pick in your third or fourth round. He is a steady player that will never light up the fantasy scoreboard, but you can count on solid production from him week after week. Not to mention, he is very durable, which seems to be a rarity these days.

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30. Darren McFadden, RB, Oakland Raiders

McFadden
Christopher Hanewinckel- USA TODAY Sports

Darren McFadden scares the heck out of me. Yes, he has all of the talent in the world. Yes, the Oakland Raiders are going to a power running scheme that should help showcase his talents even more, but can this guy stay healthy? McFadden has never played more than 13 games during his five NFL seasons. He has proved nothing to me that makes me think he will play more than that this season. I never say that I refuse to draft a guy because there is always a point where his value is just too great. That being said, I highly doubt I end up with McFadden on many teams this season.

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29. Andre Johnson, WR, Houston Texans

Johnson
Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports

Andre Johnson is another player that I will not own much this season. He will surely go sooner than the late third or early fourth round, which is where I would feel comfortable selecting him. Johnson is a solid player, but WR is just a very deep position and I have other guys that I would rather take a chance on. You will probably get nice, steady production out of Johnson, but I would rather take a shot on some higher-upside players.

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28. Vincent Jackson, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jackson
Steve Mitchell- USA TODAY Sports

In his first season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Vincent Jackson was fantastic. He had 72 receptions for 1384 yards and eight touchdowns. I think Jackson is a solid WR2 with WR1 type of upside.

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27. David Wilson, RB, New York Giants

Wilson
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

If you can get him at the right price, David Wilson could be the type of player who can win your fantasy league. He is a prototypical make-or-break type of guy. His upside is huge as he showed late last season where he had some monster games late in the year. He will have to battle Andre Brown for the starting RB job, so he is a risky pick, but the upside is absolutely huge.

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26. Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers

Cobb
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

There are a ton of mouths for Aaron Rodgers to feed, but Randall Cobb may be first in line to get his food. Rodgers seems to love Cobb as a receiver and I expect big things out of him this season. I think a 100-reception season is not out of the question, and I think that will translate in to WR1-type fantasy numbers.

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25. Percy Harvin, WR, Seattle Seahawks

Harvin
Joe Nicholson- USA TODAY Sports

This offseason, Percy Harvin was traded to the Seattle Seahawks and should benefit from better QB play. On one side, I see a dynamic athlete that has always produced big-time numbers. On the other side, I see a guy who has struggled with injuries his entire career, but you may be surprised to hear that besides last season, Harvin has played in at least 14 games each year of his career. The injuries are a risk, but it may not be as bad as you think. Harvin is a typical boom or bust type of player. He is a guy that can make or break your fantasy team. Are you willing to take that risk? As long as I get the right value, I will be taking a chance on Harvin's talent.

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24. Roddy White, WR, Atlanta Falcons

White
Josh D. Weiss- USA TODAY Sports

Roddy White will probably be one of the most consistent wide receivers in fantasy football. He is one of those guys that just piles on catches and at the end of the game has solid numbers. I am a little worried that there may not be enough balls to go around with the Atlanta Falcons, but White has some solid value in the third or fourth round.

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23. Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Fitzgerald
Jeff Hanisch- USA TODAY Sports

Larry Fitzgerald has always been one of the most talented receivers in the NFL. But ever since Kurt Warner retired he has gotten terrible QB play. These guys simply have not been able to get him the ball. The Arizona Cardinals traded for Carson Palmer this season and this should help Fitzgerald's fantasy value tremendously. Fitzgerald is a nice WR1 with some serious upside, but definitely a little downside as well.

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22. Chris Johnson, RB, Tennessee Titans

Johnson
Jim Brown- USA TODAY Sports

I think Chris Johnson is a nice value as an late second or early third round pick. He still has some life in his legs and the Tennessee Titans really beefed up their offensive line this offseason. He wasn't as bad last season as it seemed, as he had 1243 yards on 276 carries and six TDs. Johnson is still a productive back that will get a ton of opportunity.

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21. Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos

Thomas
Ron Chenoy- USA TODAY Sports

While I do think Welker coming to Denver hurts Decker, I think it actually helps Demaryius Thomas. Defenses will have to account for the underneath routes that Welker runs, and that should help open up the deep ball for Thomas. I think Thomas is in for a big season and would be just fine with him being my WR1 this season.

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20. Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Jones
Daniel Shirey- USA TODAY Sports

Julio Jones is a tough player to own. He will surely have some huge games, but there will be plenty of times where he just busts as well. I like Jones this season and think he will put up some great numbers. But he is a frustrating player sometimes, and I think he goes a little earlier than I am willing to pull the trigger on.

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19. Stevan Ridley, RB, New England Patriots

Ridley
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

With the Patriots having so many issues with their receiving options, I think they may have to look to the running game for more production. Stevan Ridley would be a great beneficiary to that. I expect big things out of Ridley this season, and think he is a great RB2 with RB1 upside.

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18. Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

Jones-Drew
Jake Roth- USA TODAY Sports

Maurice Jones-Drew is another guy that is hard for me to rank. Coming off of a serious injury at 28-years old, you never know how he will perform. I do not think that I land Jones-Drew on many teams this season, but I am okay with spending a late second-round pick on him. He is still all that the Jacksonville Jaguars have, he will see plenty of opportunity.

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17. Brandon Marshall, WR, Chicago Bears

Marshall
Mike Carter- USA TODAY Sports

I am a little lower on Brandon Marshall than most this season. I think new Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman is going to try to spread the ball around much more than they did last season. Jay Cutler targeted Marshall an incredible 192 times last season. I think that number will severely decrease next year and Marshall's numbers will come down with it. I still think that he still puts up some solid numbers this season, but it is hard for me to spend an early second-round pick on a guy that relies so much on being targeted a crazy number of times.

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16. Matt Forte, RB, Chicago Bears

Forte
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

In a PPR format, I love Matt Forte this season. In standard leagues, I like him, but just do not see him becoming a RB1. I think a lot of Forte's value will come from catching passes out of the backfield. He may not put up elite TD numbers, but you can expect solid yardage from him week after week.

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15. Jimmy Graham, TE, New Orleans Saints

Graham
Kirby Lee/Image of Sport- USA TODAY Sports

As I have said before, I think we will see big things with the Saints this season. With the question marks surrounding Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham is far and away the top tight end if fantasy football. Graham gives you a nice advantage at the position. I think Payton and Brees will try to feature Graham in the offense and he will put up some huge numbers this season. Do not hesitate to take him in the second round.

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14. Steven Jackson, RB, Atlanta Falcons

Jackson
Dale Zanine- USA TODAY Sports

I love Steven Jackson this year. He has always put up solid numbers with the St. Louis Rams, but his supporting cast was always limited. Now he enters one of the best offenses in the league -- the same offense that made the terrible Michael Turner productive. Jackson is much more talented that Turner, who had double digit rushing TDs in all five seasons with the Falcons. If Turner can do that, just imagine what Jackson can do.

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13. A.J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

Green
Jason Bridge- USA TODAY Sports

What can you really say about A.J. Green? You know that the guy is going to give you solid WR1 production week after week. I wish he had a better QB than Andy Dalton throwing him the ball, but Green is so talented that it really does not matter. Do not hesitate to take him in the seconds round or late first round in deeper leagues.

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12. Dez Bryant, WR, Dallas Cowboys

Bryant
Tim Heitman- USA TODAY Sports

I am absolutely huge on Dez Bryant this season. He really came on at the end of last season, and I think that production just continues on to this year. Bryant is a crazy talented player who has a pretty good QB throwing him the ball. I think that the Dallas Cowboys will feature Bryant a ton, and he will put up some serious fantasy numbers this season.

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11. Alfred Morris, RB, Washington Redskins

Morris
Geoff Burke- USA TODAY Sports

As long as Mike Shanahan does not go crazy and try another RB, I think Alfred Morris will be very good once again this season. Morris had 1613 yards on 335 carries and 13 touchdowns during his rookie season last year. I think the Redskins will look to feature him even more because of the injury risk that RGIII possesses. You never know with Shanahan running backs, but I do like Morris this season.

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10. Ray Rice, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Rice
Mark J. Rebilas- USA TODAY Sports

With the emergence of Bernard Pierce and other running backs really coming on to the scene last year, I had to drop Ray Rice in my rankings. I think you will get solid production out of Rice this season, but there is no way that I am taking him in the top-five like I have seen some rankings put him. Pierce is not going away and that is not good for Rice's fantasy value.

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9. Arian Foster, RB, Houston Texans

Foster
Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports

This might be the most controversial ranking on my list. I think it is safe to say that I will not be owning Arian Foster in any leagues this season. Maybe it is a bit of a gut feeling, but I do not feel comfortable with him this year. In the past three seasons, Foster has an astounding 1,061 carries. The guy is being overworked and is due to break down this season. As a matter of fact, he already has a calf strain injury. Also, Foster's fantasy value is extremely touchdown dependent. Touchdowns are a little random sometimes, even if he does stay healthy, who is to say that he will continue scoring touchdowns at this rate? His yards per carry have dipped every season in his career thus far, and I see no reason why this trend would not continue. I think that Foster is going to come crashing down to earth this season. I would be very surprised if Foster puts up top-five RB numbers this season. He could still be solid, but that means he must stay healthy and with his over usage, I am not banking on that.

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8. Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle Seahawks

Lynch
Daniel Shirey- USA TODAY Sports

Marshawn Lynch is another player that I probably will not be owning much this season. He has been great the past couple of years and I feel alright drafting him at the end of the first round, but I would rather get a younger guy with high upside.

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7. Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit Lions

Johnson
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

Calvin Johnson is by far the best wide receiver in the game. This guy is an absolute freak. Because of the depth at RB and extreme depth at WR, I would rather grab a running back in the first round, but if you get Johnson, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. He was great last season, and the touchdowns were not even there. I think his touchdowns come back this year and Johnson once again has a great season.

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6. LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

McCoy
Evan Habeeb- USA TODAY Sports

It will definitely be very interesting to see how new Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly uses LeSean McCoy in his offense. McCoy's speed and agility appears to be a perfect match with Kelly. My only concern with McCoy is that Kelly likes to keep his players fresh with a lot of rest. He may be a little inconsistent this year, but I love the upside of McCoy.

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5. Jamaal Charles, RB, Kansas City Chiefs

Charles
Chris Humphreys- USA TODAY Sports

With McCoy and Brian Westbrook. New Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has had star fantasy running backs for years. I do not think that Charles will be an exception. I think Charles' game does change a little bit as he will become more of a pass catcher than in years past, but I think the production will still be there. Charles definitely has top-five upside and I think he will flourish with Reid calling the plays.

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4. Trent Richardson, RB, Cleveland Browns

Richardson
Ron Schwane- USA TODAY Sports

Trent Richardson will simply get a ton of action in the Cleveland Browns' offense. He is arguably the best player on the offense, and they would be crazy not to showcase his talents. I understand the injury concerns on Richardson, but I think his injuries have been a little flukey. He never really had injury problems in college, and I think that the Browns are just being extra cautious with him right now. When the season starts, Richardson will be ready to go and will surely be the focus of that offense.

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3. Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Martin
Ron Chenoy- USA TODAY Sports

Doug Martin was great as a rookie and I do not see anything changing this season. He is a tough and physical runner that also has big play potential as we saw many times last season. Martin will be the focus of the offense and will have a ton of opportunity. I do not see a sophomore slump coming for Martin -- he is simply too talented.

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2. C.J. Spiller, RB, Buffalo Bills

Spiller
Steve Mitchell- USA TODAY Sports

I will probably end up with C.J. Spiller in a ton of leagues this season. I realize that he is a risky pick, but the upside is absolutely massive. He finally got a chance to showcase his talent at the end of last season and he did not disappoint. New Buffalo Bills head coach Doug Marrone loves to run the ball. This will only create more opportunity for Spiller. Talent plus opportunity equals massive fantasy success. Sign me up.

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1. Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Peterson
Brace Hemmelgarn- USA TODAY Sports

I am a little concerned with his heavy workload, but Adrian Peterson is simply a freak of nature. He will once again be a dominant fantasy force. He is coming off of a season where he almost set the record for most rushing yards in a year. There is no denying Peterson's elite talent, plus he is the focus of his offense. Once again, talent plus opportunity equals fantasy success.

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Fantasy Football: Ranking the Top 50 Players

Fantasy Football
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

The 2013 NFL season is right around the corner. That means if you have not done so already, it is time to start preparing for your fantasy football draft. This season is very interesting. With the young, explosive talent that burst on to the scene last season at the quarterback position, the position is becoming very deep in the fantasy world. Colin Kaepernick, Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson all exploded in to the league last season and are now very good fantasy options. Add these young guys to old reliable quarterbacks like Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees,Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, and you have a very deep position.

We all know that the NFL is more of a passing league than ever before. Quarterbacks are destroying passing records year after year. On the surface, this may make you think that you should take a quarterback early in your fantasy football draft. This is not true. Yes, guys like Rodgers and Brees will be throwing a ton this season, but so will other quarterbacks. Matthew Stafford threw 727 passes last season, which is the most pass attempts in the history of the NFL. I have seen Stafford available as late as the eighth round in some drafts. Would you rather have him in the eighth or Rodgers in the second? It is up to you, but I think that Stafford is a no-brainer at that value.

With the sheer amount of pass attempts that are being made in the NFL, the running back position is becoming scarce. Guys who carry the ball 20-30 times a game are becoming fewer and fewer each season. In my opinion, it is very important that you grab one of these obvious no.1 running backs early in your draft.

This list is based on standard non-PPR leagues with a roster of one QB, two RB, two WR, one TE, one FLEX, one Def and one kicker. My list strongly reflects my belief that the RB and WR positions are the most important positions in fantasy football. You simply have to start more players at RB and WR than you do at QB and TE. Quarterback will always be an important position in fantasy football, but right now I am putting it on the back burner because of the extreme depth of the position. You will see what I mean when you take a look at my list of the top 50 players for the 2013 fantasy football season.

Daniel is a writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @D_Schmelzer and add him to your network on Google.

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50. Eric Decker, WR, Denver Broncos

Decker
Chris Humphreys- USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos are one of the most interesting teams in fantasy football this season. Manning will surely have a ton of options to throw the ball to. Eric Decker is one of these guys. I think we may see a step down in production from Decker this season, but he is still a decent WR2 and very solid flex play.

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49. Wes Welker, WR, Denver Broncos

Welker
Timothy T. Ludwig- USA TODAY Sports

Wes Welker is going from one sure-fire hall of famer to another, when he joins the Broncos this season. After being arguably the top target of Brady's for many years, Welker will now be catching passes from Manning. Unfortunately, I think Welker's fantasy value takes a bit of a hit. He joins an already-stacked wide receiving core. I still think Welker has plenty of value because Manning will surely spread the ball around, but I think his days of 110-plus receptions a season are a thing of the past.

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48. Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Brown
Charles LeClaire- USA TODAY Sports

Somebody has to catch passes from Ben Roethlisberger this season. With Mike Wallace leaving via free agency and Heath Miller rehabbing from a gruesome knee injury, there are plenty of targets available in the Pittsburgh Steelers offense. Antonio Brown looks to be like the top receiving option for the Steelers, and I think has nice value as a WR2 or Flex.

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47. Pierre Garcon, WR, Washington Redskins

Garcon
Ron Schwane- USA TODAY Sports

Pierre Garcon had an impressive first season with the Washington Redskins. Even though he missed a big chunk of time due to injury, Garcon really clicked with RGIII. He was the obvious top receiving option for the Redskins when he was on the field. I realize that this is a big question mark, but if Garcon can stay healthy, I think he has great value at his current ADP (Average Draft Position).

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46. Chris Ivory, RB, New York Jets

Ivory
John David Mercer- USA TODAY Sports

With very limited playing time last season, Chris Ivory had 217 yards on 40 carries and two touchdowns. While the overall numbers are not that impressive, it is a yards per carry average of 5.4. Ivory is a very and tough physical runner that should fit in well in his first season with the New York Jets. It appears that Ivory will get a chance to be the starting running back for the Jets. Ivory's current ADP on MyFantasyLeague.com is 90.6. This will surely rise a ton as the season approaches, but I think Ivory would be a steal if you can grab him in the fifth round. He is a solid Flex option with great upside.

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45. Danny Amendola, WR, New England Patriots

Amendola
Kyle Terada- USA TODAY Sports

With the departure of Welker, Aaron Hernandez being released and Rob Gronkowski having multiple issues with injuries, there are a ton of targets to be had for the New England Patriots. Danny Amendola will surely get a ton of those said targets. Amendola is a very fast and athletic wide receiver with great hands. He will fit in perfectly with the Patriots' offense. The question with Amendola is his health. He has struggled to stay healthy his entire career. If he can just find a way to stay on the field, I think we see great production from Amendola this season.

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44. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers

Rodgers
Jeff Hanisch- USA TODAY Sports

Do not get me wrong, I think Rodgers is one of the best players in the NFL. Last season, Rodgers threw for 4,295 yards with 39 touchdowns, eight interceptions and a completion percentage of 67.2. He is arguably one of the best quarterbacks that this league has to offer. As great as Rodgers is, there is very little chance I end up with him on any of my teams. On MyFantasyLeague.com, Rodgers has a current ADP of 21, which is the end of the second round in a 12-team league. With the crazy depth at the quarterback position, I will not be taking one that early.

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43. Darren Sproles, RB, New Orleans Saints

Sproles
John David Mercer- USA TODAY Sports

Darren Sproles has always been an underrated fantasy player. He is technically a running back, but he is basically just a receiver out of the back field. I expect big thing out of the New Orleans Saints offense this year with head coach Sean Payton returning, and I think Sproles will be a big part of that.

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42. Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints

Brees
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

I actually love Brees this year. I think the return of Sean Payton will be huge for the Saints and Brees will be a big benefactor. I have Brees as my no. 1 QB heading into the season, but again with the crazy depth at the position, I doubt I end up with him on many teams.

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41. Reggie Wayne, WR, Indianapolis Colts

Wayne
Brian Spurlock- USA TODAY Sports

Reggie Wayne is as solid and consistent as they come. He is probably not going to give you many huge games, but you know that you will always gets solid production out of him. He had a good rapport with Andrew Luck last season, and I think the young QB will continue to look his way.

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40. Reggie Bush, RB, Detroit Lions

Bush
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

After a couple of seasons with the Miami Dolphins where Reggie Bush was pretty much a traditional running back, I think he returns to being a receiving type back this season with the Detroit Lions. The Lions throw a ton and Bush is one of the best receivers out of the backfield in the league. He is a bit risky because most people think that Mikel Leshoure will get the goal-line carries, but I think Bush puts up some good numbers this season. He is a low-end RB2 or high end Flex in standard leagues, and gets a nice upgrade if your league is PPR.

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39. Hakeem Nicks, WR, New York Giants

Nicks
Frank Victores- USA TODAY Sports

As always, the question with Hakeem Nicks is whether or not he can stay healthy. The guy has all of the talent in the world, he just cannot stay on the field. Nagging injury after nagging injury holds him back year after year. If he can somehow find a way to stay on the field, Nicks would be a great WR2 for your fantasy team.

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38. Victor Cruz, WR, New York Giants

Cruz
Andrew Mills/ THE STAR LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Victor Cruz was a tough player for me to rank. He has been very productive the past two seasons, but his fantasy value is so touchdown-dependent. He is a great player, but I wonder whether he will continue to score touchdowns at this rate. I have Cruz pegged a little lower than most, but I still think he would be a solid WR2 if you can get him at the right value.

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37. Marques Colston, WR, New Orleans Saints

Colston
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

Once again, I love the Saints this season. I think they will look to spread the ball around a lot, but Colston will surely be involved with the offense. Because of the fact that Brees loves to spread the ball around, Colston is a little inconsistent, but there are always a few games throughout the season where he goes off. Be patient with Colston -- he is a great player in a very explosive offense.

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36. Dwyane Bowe, WR, Kansas City Chiefs

Bowe
Jason Bridge- USA TODAY Sports

I will probably end up with Dwyane Bowe on a ton of my fantasy teams this season. He has always been a freak athlete, but now with pass-happy Andy Reid as his coach and Alex Smith, who is the best quarterback that he has ever had throwing him the ball, I think Bowe could put up some huge numbers this season. He is definitely a guy that I am targeting.

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35. Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots

Gronkowski
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Rob Gronkowski was the hardest player for me to rank. The Patriots' receiving core is very thin and they need Gronkowski to get healthy. He may miss a week or two but if the Patriots can get 12-14 weeks out of him, I think Gronkowski is a great pick in the fourth round. I am no longer considering him in the second, but I think he will be an even bigger part of the Patriots offense this season, he just has to get healthy.

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34. Lamar Miller, RB, Miami Dolphins

Miller
Cary Edmondson- USA TODAY Sports

With running back being such an important position, every starting running back in the league is valuable. Lamar Miller appears to be the front-runner to be Bush's replacement in Miami. With his great combination of strength and speed, I think that Miller will really flourish as a starting RB. I will probably have Miller on a ton of my teams this year, as I think he is a great value in the fourth round.

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33. Jordy Nelson, WR, Green Bay Packers

Nelson
Benny Sieu- USA TODAY Sports

Jordy Nelson is another guy that just needs to stay healthy. If he can get on the field, I expect big things out of Nelson this season. He has a great QB throwing him the ball and he is a big-time talent. Two years ago, Nelson scored 15 touchdowns and last year in limited time, he scored seven times. This guy has a nose for the end-zone. Obviously, health is a concern, but I like Nelson this season.

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32. DeMarco Murray, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Murray
Geoff Burke- USA TODAY Sports

I feel like I have said this a ton so far, but once again, health is a big question mark. DeMarco Murray only played in 10 games last season, but he was very good in those 10 games. He had 663 yards on 161 rushes and four TDs. If Murray can stay on the field, he should have another solid season.

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31. Frank Gore, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Gore
Matthew Emmons- USA TODAY Sports

Frank Gore is Mr. Consistency. You know what you are getting out of him. If you took a couple of risky players early on in your draft, Gore may be a good pick in your third or fourth round. He is a steady player that will never light up the fantasy scoreboard, but you can count on solid production from him week after week. Not to mention, he is very durable, which seems to be a rarity these days.

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30. Darren McFadden, RB, Oakland Raiders

McFadden
Christopher Hanewinckel- USA TODAY Sports

Darren McFadden scares the heck out of me. Yes, he has all of the talent in the world. Yes, the Oakland Raiders are going to a power running scheme that should help showcase his talents even more, but can this guy stay healthy? McFadden has never played more than 13 games during his five NFL seasons. He has proved nothing to me that makes me think he will play more than that this season. I never say that I refuse to draft a guy because there is always a point where his value is just too great. That being said, I highly doubt I end up with McFadden on many teams this season.

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29. Andre Johnson, WR, Houston Texans

Johnson
Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports

Andre Johnson is another player that I will not own much this season. He will surely go sooner than the late third or early fourth round, which is where I would feel comfortable selecting him. Johnson is a solid player, but WR is just a very deep position and I have other guys that I would rather take a chance on. You will probably get nice, steady production out of Johnson, but I would rather take a shot on some higher-upside players.

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28. Vincent Jackson, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jackson
Steve Mitchell- USA TODAY Sports

In his first season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Vincent Jackson was fantastic. He had 72 receptions for 1384 yards and eight touchdowns. I think Jackson is a solid WR2 with WR1 type of upside.

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27. David Wilson, RB, New York Giants

Wilson
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

If you can get him at the right price, David Wilson could be the type of player who can win your fantasy league. He is a prototypical make-or-break type of guy. His upside is huge as he showed late last season where he had some monster games late in the year. He will have to battle Andre Brown for the starting RB job, so he is a risky pick, but the upside is absolutely huge.

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26. Randall Cobb, WR, Green Bay Packers

Cobb
Andrew Weber- USA TODAY Sports

There are a ton of mouths for Aaron Rodgers to feed, but Randall Cobb may be first in line to get his food. Rodgers seems to love Cobb as a receiver and I expect big things out of him this season. I think a 100-reception season is not out of the question, and I think that will translate in to WR1-type fantasy numbers.

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25. Percy Harvin, WR, Seattle Seahawks

Harvin
Joe Nicholson- USA TODAY Sports

This offseason, Percy Harvin was traded to the Seattle Seahawks and should benefit from better QB play. On one side, I see a dynamic athlete that has always produced big-time numbers. On the other side, I see a guy who has struggled with injuries his entire career, but you may be surprised to hear that besides last season, Harvin has played in at least 14 games each year of his career. The injuries are a risk, but it may not be as bad as you think. Harvin is a typical boom or bust type of player. He is a guy that can make or break your fantasy team. Are you willing to take that risk? As long as I get the right value, I will be taking a chance on Harvin's talent.

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24. Roddy White, WR, Atlanta Falcons

White
Josh D. Weiss- USA TODAY Sports

Roddy White will probably be one of the most consistent wide receivers in fantasy football. He is one of those guys that just piles on catches and at the end of the game has solid numbers. I am a little worried that there may not be enough balls to go around with the Atlanta Falcons, but White has some solid value in the third or fourth round.

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23. Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Fitzgerald
Jeff Hanisch- USA TODAY Sports

Larry Fitzgerald has always been one of the most talented receivers in the NFL. But ever since Kurt Warner retired he has gotten terrible QB play. These guys simply have not been able to get him the ball. The Arizona Cardinals traded for Carson Palmer this season and this should help Fitzgerald's fantasy value tremendously. Fitzgerald is a nice WR1 with some serious upside, but definitely a little downside as well.

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22. Chris Johnson, RB, Tennessee Titans

Johnson
Jim Brown- USA TODAY Sports

I think Chris Johnson is a nice value as an late second or early third round pick. He still has some life in his legs and the Tennessee Titans really beefed up their offensive line this offseason. He wasn't as bad last season as it seemed, as he had 1243 yards on 276 carries and six TDs. Johnson is still a productive back that will get a ton of opportunity.

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21. Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos

Thomas
Ron Chenoy- USA TODAY Sports

While I do think Welker coming to Denver hurts Decker, I think it actually helps Demaryius Thomas. Defenses will have to account for the underneath routes that Welker runs, and that should help open up the deep ball for Thomas. I think Thomas is in for a big season and would be just fine with him being my WR1 this season.

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20. Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons

Jones
Daniel Shirey- USA TODAY Sports

Julio Jones is a tough player to own. He will surely have some huge games, but there will be plenty of times where he just busts as well. I like Jones this season and think he will put up some great numbers. But he is a frustrating player sometimes, and I think he goes a little earlier than I am willing to pull the trigger on.

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19. Stevan Ridley, RB, New England Patriots

Ridley
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

With the Patriots having so many issues with their receiving options, I think they may have to look to the running game for more production. Stevan Ridley would be a great beneficiary to that. I expect big things out of Ridley this season, and think he is a great RB2 with RB1 upside.

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18. Maurice Jones-Drew, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

Jones-Drew
Jake Roth- USA TODAY Sports

Maurice Jones-Drew is another guy that is hard for me to rank. Coming off of a serious injury at 28-years old, you never know how he will perform. I do not think that I land Jones-Drew on many teams this season, but I am okay with spending a late second-round pick on him. He is still all that the Jacksonville Jaguars have, he will see plenty of opportunity.

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17. Brandon Marshall, WR, Chicago Bears

Marshall
Mike Carter- USA TODAY Sports

I am a little lower on Brandon Marshall than most this season. I think new Chicago Bears head coach Marc Trestman is going to try to spread the ball around much more than they did last season. Jay Cutler targeted Marshall an incredible 192 times last season. I think that number will severely decrease next year and Marshall's numbers will come down with it. I still think that he still puts up some solid numbers this season, but it is hard for me to spend an early second-round pick on a guy that relies so much on being targeted a crazy number of times.

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16. Matt Forte, RB, Chicago Bears

Forte
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

In a PPR format, I love Matt Forte this season. In standard leagues, I like him, but just do not see him becoming a RB1. I think a lot of Forte's value will come from catching passes out of the backfield. He may not put up elite TD numbers, but you can expect solid yardage from him week after week.

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15. Jimmy Graham, TE, New Orleans Saints

Graham
Kirby Lee/Image of Sport- USA TODAY Sports

As I have said before, I think we will see big things with the Saints this season. With the question marks surrounding Gronkowski, Jimmy Graham is far and away the top tight end if fantasy football. Graham gives you a nice advantage at the position. I think Payton and Brees will try to feature Graham in the offense and he will put up some huge numbers this season. Do not hesitate to take him in the second round.

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14. Steven Jackson, RB, Atlanta Falcons

Jackson
Dale Zanine- USA TODAY Sports

I love Steven Jackson this year. He has always put up solid numbers with the St. Louis Rams, but his supporting cast was always limited. Now he enters one of the best offenses in the league -- the same offense that made the terrible Michael Turner productive. Jackson is much more talented that Turner, who had double digit rushing TDs in all five seasons with the Falcons. If Turner can do that, just imagine what Jackson can do.

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13. A.J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

Green
Jason Bridge- USA TODAY Sports

What can you really say about A.J. Green? You know that the guy is going to give you solid WR1 production week after week. I wish he had a better QB than Andy Dalton throwing him the ball, but Green is so talented that it really does not matter. Do not hesitate to take him in the seconds round or late first round in deeper leagues.

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12. Dez Bryant, WR, Dallas Cowboys

Bryant
Tim Heitman- USA TODAY Sports

I am absolutely huge on Dez Bryant this season. He really came on at the end of last season, and I think that production just continues on to this year. Bryant is a crazy talented player who has a pretty good QB throwing him the ball. I think that the Dallas Cowboys will feature Bryant a ton, and he will put up some serious fantasy numbers this season.

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11. Alfred Morris, RB, Washington Redskins

Morris
Geoff Burke- USA TODAY Sports

As long as Mike Shanahan does not go crazy and try another RB, I think Alfred Morris will be very good once again this season. Morris had 1613 yards on 335 carries and 13 touchdowns during his rookie season last year. I think the Redskins will look to feature him even more because of the injury risk that RGIII possesses. You never know with Shanahan running backs, but I do like Morris this season.

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10. Ray Rice, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Rice
Mark J. Rebilas- USA TODAY Sports

With the emergence of Bernard Pierce and other running backs really coming on to the scene last year, I had to drop Ray Rice in my rankings. I think you will get solid production out of Rice this season, but there is no way that I am taking him in the top-five like I have seen some rankings put him. Pierce is not going away and that is not good for Rice's fantasy value.

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9. Arian Foster, RB, Houston Texans

Foster
Brett Davis- USA TODAY Sports

This might be the most controversial ranking on my list. I think it is safe to say that I will not be owning Arian Foster in any leagues this season. Maybe it is a bit of a gut feeling, but I do not feel comfortable with him this year. In the past three seasons, Foster has an astounding 1,061 carries. The guy is being overworked and is due to break down this season. As a matter of fact, he already has a calf strain injury. Also, Foster's fantasy value is extremely touchdown dependent. Touchdowns are a little random sometimes, even if he does stay healthy, who is to say that he will continue scoring touchdowns at this rate? His yards per carry have dipped every season in his career thus far, and I see no reason why this trend would not continue. I think that Foster is going to come crashing down to earth this season. I would be very surprised if Foster puts up top-five RB numbers this season. He could still be solid, but that means he must stay healthy and with his over usage, I am not banking on that.

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8. Marshawn Lynch, RB, Seattle Seahawks

Lynch
Daniel Shirey- USA TODAY Sports

Marshawn Lynch is another player that I probably will not be owning much this season. He has been great the past couple of years and I feel alright drafting him at the end of the first round, but I would rather get a younger guy with high upside.

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7. Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit Lions

Johnson
Tim Fuller- USA TODAY Sports

Calvin Johnson is by far the best wide receiver in the game. This guy is an absolute freak. Because of the depth at RB and extreme depth at WR, I would rather grab a running back in the first round, but if you get Johnson, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. He was great last season, and the touchdowns were not even there. I think his touchdowns come back this year and Johnson once again has a great season.

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6. LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

McCoy
Evan Habeeb- USA TODAY Sports

It will definitely be very interesting to see how new Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly uses LeSean McCoy in his offense. McCoy's speed and agility appears to be a perfect match with Kelly. My only concern with McCoy is that Kelly likes to keep his players fresh with a lot of rest. He may be a little inconsistent this year, but I love the upside of McCoy.

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5. Jamaal Charles, RB, Kansas City Chiefs

Charles
Chris Humphreys- USA TODAY Sports

With McCoy and Brian Westbrook. New Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has had star fantasy running backs for years. I do not think that Charles will be an exception. I think Charles' game does change a little bit as he will become more of a pass catcher than in years past, but I think the production will still be there. Charles definitely has top-five upside and I think he will flourish with Reid calling the plays.

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4. Trent Richardson, RB, Cleveland Browns

Richardson
Ron Schwane- USA TODAY Sports

Trent Richardson will simply get a ton of action in the Cleveland Browns' offense. He is arguably the best player on the offense, and they would be crazy not to showcase his talents. I understand the injury concerns on Richardson, but I think his injuries have been a little flukey. He never really had injury problems in college, and I think that the Browns are just being extra cautious with him right now. When the season starts, Richardson will be ready to go and will surely be the focus of that offense.

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3. Doug Martin, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Martin
Ron Chenoy- USA TODAY Sports

Doug Martin was great as a rookie and I do not see anything changing this season. He is a tough and physical runner that also has big play potential as we saw many times last season. Martin will be the focus of the offense and will have a ton of opportunity. I do not see a sophomore slump coming for Martin -- he is simply too talented.

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2. C.J. Spiller, RB, Buffalo Bills

Spiller
Steve Mitchell- USA TODAY Sports

I will probably end up with C.J. Spiller in a ton of leagues this season. I realize that he is a risky pick, but the upside is absolutely massive. He finally got a chance to showcase his talent at the end of last season and he did not disappoint. New Buffalo Bills head coach Doug Marrone loves to run the ball. This will only create more opportunity for Spiller. Talent plus opportunity equals massive fantasy success. Sign me up.

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1. Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Peterson
Brace Hemmelgarn- USA TODAY Sports

I am a little concerned with his heavy workload, but Adrian Peterson is simply a freak of nature. He will once again be a dominant fantasy force. He is coming off of a season where he almost set the record for most rushing yards in a year. There is no denying Peterson's elite talent, plus he is the focus of his offense. Once again, talent plus opportunity equals fantasy success.


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