By Meng Song @ms0ng on April 7, 2014
Philadelphia Eagles QB Nick Foles finished the 2013 season as the 11th-ranked fantasy QB despite starting only 10 games. Fantasy players are salivating at the prospect of what he can do in 2014 with a full season and another year with Chip Kelly's offense. Foles certainly has the skills and talent around him to excel this coming season, but here are five big issues to consider before you pull the trigger on him in August.
The Philadelphia Eagles released DeSean Jackson on Mar. 28, and he has since signed with the Washington Redskins. It's great news for Robert Griffin III, but it's a big blow to Foles and his fantasy value. Jackson was the most targeted Eagles receiver in 2013 with over 1,300 receiving yards and an average of 16.2 yards per catch. Foles will be far less productive in 2014 without his star receiver.
Philadelphia is gambling that Jeremy Maclin can replace DeSean Jackson, but those are big shoes to fill. Maclin certainly has the athleticism and raw talent to be an explosive receiver for the Eagles, but is he ready? He tore his ACL during training camp last July, and Maclin may not be 100 percent for much of the 2014 season. Not everyone has a freakishly fast and complete recovery like Adrian Peterson. Just look at RGIII last year.
Foles had a phenomenal 27-2 TD to interception ratio last year, but it's unrepeatable for two reasons. First, we shouldn't expect him to have another game with seven touchdowns like he did against the Oakland Raiders last November. Second, Foles was lucky that a few of his long TDs weren't intercepted. A great example is his 55-yard TD against the Packers where the ball literally bounced off two Packers defenders and into DeSean Jackson's hands.
Nick Foles threw 27 TDs last year, but they were against some horrible secondaries like the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings. We won't know the 2014 NFL schedule for a few weeks, but Foles will play against some better defenses. Even in his own division, the New York Giants have already signed Walter Thurmond and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie among others to strengthen their secondary.
Despite a lot of these question marks, I do think that Foles will be a very good fantasy QB next year. The problem is that many are projecting him to be a top-five fantasy QB. A lot of people are forgetting about guys like Joe Flacco and Matt Ryan, both of whom had down years due to receiver injuries or other issues. Foles will produce, but he will be hyped up and overpriced. I'd rather draft a similarly productive fantasy QB at a bargain price.
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