By Mike Lucas
Featured Columnist

Fantasy football is an American past time. Well, not really, but it’s getting so popular that almost every fan across the country participates in some sort of league regarding the hobby.

Just like the NFL Draft, fantasy football has its fair share of draft sleepers and draft busts. Players can be projected to have big seasons, but end up getting hurt or having a down year.

With that being said, here are fantasy football’s most overrated NFL players at each position.

Quarterback: Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

2012 Stats: 3,118 passing yards, 26 touchdowns and 10 interceptions
2013 ESPN Fantasy Ranking: No. 10 ranked QB

After an amazing rookie campaign, Wilson is being projected to put up big numbers in 2013.

While it wouldn’t be shocking if Wilson did put up big numbers, it also wouldn’t be shocking to see his stats actually decrease a bit in his sophomore year, as the Seahawks are a run-first team and his No. 1 receiver, Percy Harvin, is out with a hip injury.

The Seahawks were a run-first team last season as well and didn’t have Harvin, but they had the element of surprise on their side. No team went into the 2012 season thinking Wilson could beat them with his arm, and consistently put eight men in the box to stop running back Marshawn Lynch.

This year, the element of surprise is gone, which means fewer teams will commit an extra man to the running game, and instead drop him into coverage. Wilson is a great QB, but he isn’t necessarily a great fantasy football QB, in my opinion.

Running Back: Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens

2012 Stats: 1,143 rushing yards and nine touchdowns
2013 ESPN Fantasy Ranking: No. 4 ranked RB

Ray Rice is going to put up good numbers in 2012, but not great ones.

The emergence of Bernard Pierce in the Ravens backfield is the main reason Rice’s stats will decrease, as Pierce will probably get between 100-150 carries this season, meaning less touches for Rice.

If you’re going to draft someone in the first round, you want to make sure he’ll be getting most, if not all the carries throughout the game. Rice won’t be doing that this year.

Wide Receiver: Danny Amendola, New England Patriots

2012 Stats: 63 receptions, 666 yards and three touchdowns
2013 ESPN Fantasy Ranking: No. 17 ranked WR

If Amendola can stay healthy, he’ll put up some big numbers with Tom Brady as his QB. That’s a pretty big IF, though. Amendola has missed 22 games over his four-year career, and has already had some minor injuries in camp which forced him to miss the team’s third preseason game.

At 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds, Amendola is fragile, and has shown nothing over his career that should convince you that he’ll stay healthy all year. As a third or fourth receiver on a fantasy team, Amendola is worth the risk.

But as a starting receiver, his injury history is a huge red flag.

Tight End: Owen Daniels, Houston Texans

2012 Stats: 62 receptions, 716 yards and six 6 touchdowns
2013 ESPN Fantasy Ranking: No. 7 ranked TE

Last season, Daniels finished second on the Texans in receptions and led the team in touchdowns. Houston didn’t have a legitimate No. 2 receiver to line up across from Andre Johnson, so Daniels got a ton of targets.

However, the Texans drafted DeAndre Hopkins out of Clemson in the first round of this year’s draft, and other young receivers DeVier Posey and Keyshawn Martin have looked impressive so far in the preseason. With these guys now on the team, Daniels should see his targets decrease.

Don’t fall in love with Daniels just because he put up good numbers last season.


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