These Bears are worth the risk in your fantasy football draft

My fantasy football team – the Fighting Fishlips – sucked last year. I missed the playoffs for the first time in 5 years.

But I’ll be back with a vengeance this year. And unlike previous seasons, there will actually be a handful of Bears that could be wildcards in helping me and you conquer our leagues this year.

Here are the guys all Bears/fantasy fans will rack their brains over deciding whether to pull the trigger on. I even included my expert 2010 statistical projections. And the rounds listed are assuming you’re picking in a 10 or 12 team league.

Jay Cutler – 4,000 yards, 31 TDs, 17 INTs

After Brees, Brady, Peyton, Rodgers, Shaub and Rivers, you could make a case for Cutler as the next best QB in 2010 (yes, ahead of Romo, Flacco and Eli). With Martz calling the shots, don’t be afraid to take him as early as the late 3rd round.

Matt Forte – 1,100 yards, 8 rushing TDs, 550 receiving yards, 2 TDs

A lot’s been made of the fact that Chester Taylor will negatively impact Forte’s production. But if training camp reports of Forte’s rediscovered burst and strength are true, he’ll get the majority of the snaps and thrive in Martz’s offense. But just to be safe, don’t touch him till the mid-3rd to 4th round.

Johnny Knox – 1,000 yards, 8 TDs

I don’t think it’s a stretch to say Knox could double his rookie numbers (45 catches, 527 yards, 5 TDs) in 2010. That would likely make him Cutler’s favorite target. You’ll get some gruff from the other folks in your draft, but if he’s available, snatch him up in the 6th round.

Devin Hester –900 yards, 6 TDs

If there’s ever a coach who knows how to take advantage of Hester’s talents, it’s Martz. Assuming he can grasp the offense in a timely manner, Hester will be moved all over the field, setting up potential defensive mismatches. With other capable receivers sharing the field with him (Knox, DA, Olsen), I don’t think Hester will become the #1 WR Lovie envisions. But he’ll be worthy of a 6th or 7th-round pick in your fantasy draft.

Devin Aromoshadu – 850 yards, 5 TDs

I have a feeling DA will be the steady, reliable guy Cutler will look to in tough spots – like 3rd and long. Knox and Hester will make more dynamic big plays, but DA will be valuable to the Bears…and a solid backup or third WR option on your fantasy squad. Consider him in the 7th to 9th-round range.

Greg Olsen – 700 yards, 5 TDs

No tight end has ever flourished in Martz’s offense…even 49ers All-Pro beast, Vernon Davis. But you get the sneaky suspicion Martz will try and find a way to get Cutler’s BFF on the field and pose some mismatches against smaller corners. He’ll be a big red-zone target, especially inside the 10. If he’s not among the top 10 scoring TEs in the league, he’s on the cusp. If your league requires a TE slot, he’ll probably fall to you in the 7th or 8th round.

Bears D (I’m not ambitious enough to predict their stats)

A lot of previews don’t include the Bears in the top 10 defenses this year. Maybe I’m drinking too much Julius Peppers colored koolaid, but I’d be comfortable making the Bears one of the top 7 defenses as far as fantasy stats go. Lovie’s D always ranks among the top in takeaways. Peppers will get his sacks and open up the rest of the D-line for more opportunities. And you can never sleep on Hester/Knox in the punt return game.

Robbie Gould – 27 field goals, 125 total points

Solid. Steady. Clutch. Consistently one of the best kickers in the league, Gould has never kicked on as prolific an offense as he will this year. Remember, Martz doesn’t like to settle for field goals, but it won’t be him calling the shots. It’ll be Lovie.

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One Response to “These Bears are worth the risk in your fantasy football draft”

  1. […] These Bears are worth the risk in your fantasy football draft … A lot's been made of the fact that Chester Taylor will negatively impact Forte's production. But if training camp reports of Forte's rediscovered burst and strength are true, he'll get the majority of the snaps and thrive in Martz's . […]

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