Fantasy Football: A Guide to Drafting the New York Giants

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Fantasy Football: A Guide to Drafting the New York Giants
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Sorry, Eli Manning is not an elite fantasy football quarterback.

COMMENTARY | For many football fans, there are two teams to worry about every weekend during the season -- a favorite team and a fantasy team. However, if you're a fan of the New York Giants, you may want to combine your rooting interests on fantasy draft day. The G-Men are loaded with play-makers who can help your fantasy squad at every position (Yahoo! Sports ranked five Giants in the upper half of its Fantasy Football Top 200 for 2013). So keep these Giants in mind on draft day.

WR Victor Cruz -- Cruz didn't come close to matching his record-setting total of 1,536 yards from 2011, but last season he established career highs in receptions and touchdowns with 86 and 10, respectively. Those numbers justify making him a fourth-round pick and No. 1 WR in all fantasy formats. Currently, Cruz is ranked No. 24 overall on Brandon Funston's Big Board.

RB David Wilson -- Wilson's fantasy stock is on the rise, as he's projected to start at running back. However, he's probably going to share carries with Andre Brown, who led the team with eight rushing scores in 2012. Brown will vulture some touchdowns away, but Wilson averaged five yards per carry last season. I can see some owners jumping on his upside as early as the fourth round.

WR Hakeem Nicks -- Nicks is coming off a season ruined by injuries. He missed three games and posted career lows of 667 yards and three TDs. However, Nicks averaged 1,122 yards and nine touchdowns the previous two campaigns. A healthy Nicks is capable of returning to form and ranks in the top 20 at his position. I'd jump on him somewhere in the sixth or seventh round.

RB Andre Brown -- Like I said, Wilson and Brown will share carries, but that doesn't mean Brown can't shine. Remember, Brandon Jacobs rushed for 823 yards and nine touchdowns as Ahmad Bradshaw's backup in 2010. Brown is capable of putting up similar numbers. Plus, he's an injury (or Wilson fumble) away from starting. Look for him in the middle rounds (and stash him on your bench).

TE Brandon Myers -- I wouldn't go as far as calling Myers a sleeper pick, since he set career highs across the board last season, but imagine what he can do with Eli Manning throwing him the football. Martellus Bennett and Kevin Boss had career years with Manning tossing it to them. Heck, Manning even made Jake Ballard look good. Target Myers as your TE in the late rounds.

QB Eli Manning -- Statistically speaking, Manning is coming off his worst season since his rookie year, but he's only a couple of years removed from throwing for 4,933 yards and 29 touchdowns. Frankly, the Giants' clutch signal-caller is not an elite fantasy quarterback, partly because he throws too many interceptions, but taking Manning after the top QBs are gone is a decent strategy.

D/ST New York Giants -- In terms of fantasy football, the Giants' defense and special teams may be undervalued. In 2012, the G-Men gave up a single-season franchise record 6,134 yards, but they ranked No. 3 in takeaways with 35 and were No. 12 in points allowed at 21.5 per game. Furthermore, they have big-play potential on special teams with the dynamic Wilson returning kicks.

Adam Martini is a freelance sports writer with more than 15 years of experience covering amateur and professional sports for several print and online media outlets. He tracked the New York Giants for Yahoo! Contributor Network during the team's Super Bowl run in 2011-12. Adam can be found on Twitter @Pegcitysports.

Sources

NFL on Yahoo! Sports.

Pro-Football-Reference.com.

The Official Site of the New York Giants.

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