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Big Board: Rookie receivers on the rise

Brandon Funston
Roto Arcade

The Big Board takes into consideration past returns, current performance and expected future gains in determining who should be included among the top 50 fantasy football players. Essentially, the Big Board is a cheat sheet designed for an owner who is planning to participate in a draft today. Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football default scoring settings are used as the baseline for the Big Board, which is updated on a regular basis during the season.

[Join's $2.5m Week 11 fantasy league: $25 to enter; top 21,840 teams paid]

Big Board 50: Football
1. DeMarco Murray (DAL) RB 0 Has 101 runs of 5+ yards (no other RB in the NFL has more than 60) - 7th-easiest ROS sched for a fantasy RB
2. Matt Forte (CHI) RB 0 Sits 3rd in the league (behind Murray and L. Bell) in YFS - if you extract just his fantasy receiving points, he'd sit just outside the top 30 fantasy wideouts
3. Arian Foster (HOU) RB 0 Perfectly timed hammy tweak in W9 as he's reportedly fine coming out of the W10 bye
4. Jamaal Charles (KAN) RB 0 Since W4, only the 3 RBs above him on this board have bested in per game fantasy production (avg. of 103.6 YFS, 8 total TDs in 5-game span)
5. Marshawn Lynch (SEA) RB +3 Making up for 3-game slide in Weeks 6-8 w/ seriously Beastly numbers in past 2: combined 306 YFS, 6 TDs - faces a KC defense in W11 that allows NFL-high 5.2 YPC to RBs
6. Calvin Johnson (DET) WR +3 Happy return from ankle injury in W10 (7/113/1 vs. solid MIA pass D) - a fairly soft ROS schedule should help produce many similar lines going forward
7. Antonio Brown (PIT) WR -1 Mr. Consistency, the No. 1 fantasy WR thru W10, is coming off his worst performance of '14 in W10, which really wasn't so bad (8/74/0)
8. Demaryius Thomas (DEN) WR -1 Since W4 bye, has averaged 19.4 FAN PPG in 6 contests (No. 1 among WRs) - has topped 100 rec. yards in each of those past 6 games
9. Le'Veon Bell (PIT) RB -4 Rushing numbers suddenly have been tough to come by (avg. just 3.28 YPC in past 3 games) - a ROS sched that ranks among top 5 easiest for fantasy RBs should help turn things around
10. Dez Bryant (DAL) WR +1 Manhandled JAC secondary (6/158/2) w/ Romo back at QB in W10 - has a TD in 7 of past 9 games - ROS schedule ranks 4th-easiest among fantasy WRs
11. Rob Gronkowski (NWE) TE +1 Averaging 16.3 FAN PPG over his past 5 games (516 yards, 5 TDs) - at this point, only a health relapse can stop him
12. Andrew Luck (IND) QB +1 No. 1 fantasy QB has tallied 300+ pass yards in 8 of 9 games, and has accounted for at least 2 TDs (pass and/or rush) in every contest
13. Peyton Manning (DEN) QB +1 The new all-time NFL leader in pass TDs has finished among the top 8 fantasy QBs in every week that he has played this season save one (W3 at SEA)
14. Julio Jones (ATL) WR +1 Strong 8/119 line in W10, but TD-less streak at 6 games - good buy-low candidate as ROS schedule very soft and lack of TDs is an anomaly that won't likely last
15. LeSean McCoy (PHI) RB -5 Still waiting for Shady to put it all together: Season-low 17 YFS in W10, but scored a TD for 1st time since W2
16. Aaron Rodgers (GNB) QB +2 Since W4, only Luck and Peyton better among fantasy QBs, and only by the very slimmest of margins - has ridiculous 20-to-2 TD:INT ratio in that span
17. Jimmy Graham (NOR) TE +3 Denied a TD hat trick in W10 vs. SF as called for pass interference on potential game-winning Hail Mary from QB Brees - has 4 TDs in past 3 games, which is just Jimmy being Jimmy
18. A.J. Green (CIN) WR -2 Avg of 3 catches, 33.5 yards in past 2, but good times about to start rolling again (Next 3 opponents - NO, HOU, TB - all rank among top 5 most generous vs. WRs in fantasy)
19. Jordy Nelson (GNB) WR 0 Long distance operator has 3 TDs of 65+ yards (NFL-high) - only concern is target load has dipped from avg. of 11.3 in 1st 6 games to 5.3 in past 3 games
20. Randall Cobb (GNB) WR +1 Size (5-foot-10) makes him unlikely TD dynamo, yet he leads all WRs w/ 10 TDs, and is 2nd among WRs in goal-line targets (converting 5 of those 6 targets)
21. Eddie Lacy (GNB) RB +4 Suddenly he's a force to be reckoned w/ in the pass game (combined 191 rec. yards, TD catch in past 2) - ROS schedule is Downy soft
22. Tom Brady (NWE) QB 0 W/ Gronk at full strength, NE offense finally hitting on all cylinders - Brady is No. 1 QB in FAN PPG since Week 5 (320.2 pass YPG, 18 to 1 TD:INT ratio)
23. Andre Ellington (ARI) RB -6 Despite diminutive size, has top 5 workload among RBs and has scored 4 TDs at the goal line - w/ QB Palmer out, little doubt his workload will remain sizeable
24. TY Hilton (IND) WR 0 Avg. 125 rec. YPG in past 5 (w/ 3 TDs) - as go-to receiver on most pass-heavy offense, he's as bankable as they come at WR
25. Drew Brees (NOR) QB +1 In what has to be considered a "down" season, still has 290+ pass yards in 8 of 9 games and at least 2 TDs (pass and/or run) in 8 straight
26. Mark Ingram (NOR) RB +4 Has quickly gone from fantasy punch line to fantasy macho man (top 5 RB in FAN PPG among those w/ at least 6 games played) - has 7th-easiest remaining schedule among fantasy RBs
27. Emmanuel Sanders (DEN) WR +5 On fire w/ 10+ FAN PTS in 7 of past 8 games, 5 100-yard games in that span, and 6 TDs in the past 4
28. Jeremy Maclin (PHI) WR -5 Just 3/38/0 line in QB Sanchez's 1st start in W10 - still gotta love him in this offense, but concerns about the instant rapport between Sanchez and WR Matthews are valid
29. Ahmad Bradshaw (IND) RB -2 No. 9 fantasy RB (FAN PPG; min 5 games) no worse than 7.9 FAN PTS in each of his 8 games despite avg. less than 10 carries per game
30. Brandon Marshall (CHI) WR -1 Back on track in W10 w/ 8/112/1 line @ GB, but tweaked his ankle - the combination of injury and tough ROS schedule is definitely cause for some concern
31. DeSean Jackson (WAS) WR +2 No. 9 WR in FAN PPG since W3 (min. 4 games) and he's logged a 100-yard game w/ 3 different QBs in that 7-game span (5 100-yard games, 4 TDs)
32. Julius Thomas (DEN) TE +2 Scored 2 TDs in W10, the 4th time he's had at least 2 TDs in a game this season
33. Giovani Bernard (CIN) RB -2 Hip injury expected to force another DNP in W11 - has one of the easier schedules for a RB down the stretch, so have to hope he can come back at full strength ASAP
34. Alfred Morris (WAS) RB +2 Certainly seems to gel w/ RG3 as The Butler ran for 19/92/2 line in RG3's return in W9 - has fairly soft landing after W10 bye, facing TB (10th-most FAN PPG allowed to RBs)
35. Justin Forsett (BAL) RB +6 Showing no signs of slowing down as topped century mark in rush yards w/ 2 TDs in W10 - heads into bye as top 6 fantasy RB, and has soft ROS sched when he returns
36. Denard Robinson (JAC) RB  -- No. 5 fantasy RB since W7, avg. 104.8 YFS and scoring 4 TDs in 4-game span - ROS sched after bye is top 10-easiest at RB, and fact you can play him at WR in Yahoo game is big bonus
37. Josh Gordon (CLE) WR  -- Time to factor in the top fantasy WR of '13, who has been working out at CLE facilities and is set for a W12 return
38. Rashad Jennings (NYG) RB +8 Return from MCL sprain expected in W11 - worth a reminder that he was top 10 fantasy RB from Weeks 1-5 before injury, and Andre Williams hasn't exactly Wally Pipp'd him
39. Kelvin Benjamin (CAR) WR +1 Picked up 2 garbage time TDs in W10, but we don't make excuses for garbage time production in fantasy, we embrace it - ROS schedule is the easiest among WRs
40. Philip Rivers (SDG) QB -3 Goose egg vs. MIA in W9 ended streak of at least 2 TD passes in 7 straight games - Owners may want to note that he has a daunting fantasy playoff schedule (NE, DEN, SF)
41. Alshon Jeffery (CHI) WR -6 Has been steady/solid most of the season, but lacking in explosive efforts (avg. 3 FAN PPG less than last year)
42. Sammy Watkins (BUF) WR -4 Premature celebration in W8 cost him a long TD, and groin tweak almost led to DNP vs. KC in W10 (finished w/ lackluster 4/27/0 line) - likely to remain 1 of fantasy's biggest rollercoaster rides
43. Odell Beckham Jr. (NYG) WR  -- Seeing is believing: Fluidity, athleticism and superb route running has led to 10+ FAN PTS in 4 of 1st 5 games in NFL - 100-yard game in W10 prompted accolades from SEA CB R. Sherman
44. DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) WR -1 Recent 3-game surge (106 YPG) pushed him into the top 12 WRs in FAN PTS for the season - move to big-arm QB Mallett in HOU intriguing given Hopkins' downfield talents
45. Matthew Stafford (DET) QB -1 280 pass yards, 2 TDs coming off bye in W10 w/ MegaTron back in the fold - expect that line to be his norm going forward as he'll face the 3rd-easiest ROS schedule among fantasy QBs
46. Russell Wilson (SEA) QB +2 Ranks No. 15 in NFL in rush yards (500), also has 4 rush TDs, the obvious reason he ranks top 5 @ QB in FAN PPG (ranks No. 25 in passing yards)
47. Golden Tate (DET) WR -2 Big Board spot became more tenuous w/ Megatron's return, but certainly it was a non-issue in W10 as Tate finished w/ robust 11/109/0 line
48. Lamar Miller (MIA) RB -20 Suddenly his prospects are looking bleak as he's dealing w/ a sore shoulder and his ROS schedule is among the most brutal at the RB position
49. Martavis Bryant (PIT) WR  -- Among WRs that have played 4+ games, leads w/ 16.8 FAN PPG - would you rather have Bryant or Benjamin? It's a close enough call that had to put Bryant on the Board
50. Antonio Gates (SDG) TE -1 Has 6 TDs in past 5 games and tied for NFL lead w/ 9 for the season - 13 RZ targets is 2nd to only M. Bennett at the TE position

Note: "vs. ECR" compares my rank to the Expert Consensus Rank (ECR) as compiled by FantasyPros.

DROPPED OUT: Ben Roethlisberger, Pit, QB; Cam Newton, Car, QB; Matt Ryan, Atl, QB; Ronnie Hillman, Den, RB (foot);

(QBs) Ben Roethlisberger, Pit; Tony Romo, Dal; Matt Ryan, Atl; Jay Cutler, Chi; Colin Kaepernick, SF
(RBs) Adrian Peterson, Min (Commish list); Frank Gore, SF; Shane Vereen, NE; Trent Richardson, Ind; Ryan Mathews, SD (knee); Jeremy Hill, Cin; Chris Ivory, NYJ
(WRs) Mike Evans, TB; Steve Smith, Bal; Mike Wallace, Mia; Brandon Lafell, NE; Roddy White, Atl; Andre Johnson, Hou;
Anquan Boldin, SF; Larry Fitzgerald, Ari; Mohamed Sanu, Cin; Julian Edelman, NE; Percy Harvin, NYJ

(TEs) Martellus Bennett, Chi; Greg Olsen, Car; Dwayne Allen, Ind; Larry Donnell, NYG

Note: To see where the fantasy expert community ranks players on the Big Board for the rest of the season, check out the Rest-Of-Season Rankings at FantasyPros.

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