Fantasy Football Projections: Michael Vick Should Be Number 1

by on March 7th, 2015
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COMMENTARY | Michael Vick should be the first player off the board in fantasy this year. That’s right, I said it! After 13 years as a fantasy fanatic, I’ve learned something: Doing what you’re “supposed to do” doesn’t lead to fantasy championships. Here are five reasons why this former inmate should be the number one pick.

Double Threat

This one is obvious. Vick can both throw and run the football. In 2010, Vick threw for over 3,000 yards and ran for nearly 700 yards, according to Yahoo! Sports. He achieved that success in only 12 games. It’s possible Vick could reach 3,500 yards passing and 1,000 yards rushing this season. Never in the history of the NFL has there been a guy who can throw and run like Vick. There are fantasy running backs ranked in the top 10 of fantasy who barely cracked 1,000 yards rushing; see LeSean McCoy. So, a player who could do the same and also pass shouldn’t go number one. What you smoking?

The “Carry You” Factor

I’ve always found one phenomenon of fantasy football interesting: I call it the “Carry You” factor. At the end of the year, you may look at two players who have identical stats, but you know you’d rather have one over the other. Let’s take Rashard Mendenhall and Chris Johnson as an example. Both players finished with very similar point totals last year, according to fftoday.com. But would you ever take Mendenhall over Johnson? Never! Part of the reason is because Johnson can carry your team on his back if needed. You know there will be games where he will explode and give you a W.

Vick possesses the “Carry You” factor on steroids. Depending on your scoring format, Vick averaged a disgusting 25-30 points per game last year. PER GAME! His Nov. 15 six-touchdown performance nearly brought tears to my eyes, as I overcame a 40 point deficit to win my game. Vick will “Carry You” to victories by himself. There are not many players who can say the same.

The Eagles are Better

No one can doubt the Eagles had a great offseason. The additions to their secondary will impact the offense, as they should cause more turnovers and give Vick more opportunities. Yet the biggest addition may not be a player at all. The Eagles have brought in longtime offensive line coach Howard Mudd to improve a lackluster line. According to the Philadelphia News, during Mudd’s 11 years with the Colts, no team allowed fewer sacks. A better performance by the offensive line this season would be scary for defenses. Vick would have more time in the pocket to pass and more running lanes to accumulate those sweet rushing points.

Injury Risk Mania

The biggest knock against Vick is his running style, which makes him prone to injury. It’s true that even I cringed at times last season; it seemed there would be an imprint of a number seven as Vick peeled himself off the turf. But Vick has another year of Andy Reid telling him to be more careful. The aforementioned line situation should also help Vick stay off the turf. Playing scared doesn’t win trophies. You have to take the chance on a guy like Vick. If you’re afraid of his injury risk, pick up an Eli Manning in the later rounds to protect yourself. Barring a catastrophe, Vick will be on the field a majority of the season, and that is good enough for me.

The Numbers Don’t Lie

Finally, the point differential between losing out on a running back in the first round and losing out on Vick is not the same. According to fftoday.com, the difference between Adrian Peterson (#2) and Matt Forte (#11) was 28 points in 2010. Fantasyfootballcalculator.com currently has Peterson being drafted first and Forte being drafted 22nd on average after 1,518 mock drafts.

Meanwhile, the difference between Vick and even the seventh quarterback off the board using 2010 stats is Josh Freeman. I mean, really? The players involved are not the issue; it’s the math. You may be able to catch fire and pick a top five running back in the later rounds, a la Arian Foster. If you lose out on Vick, there is no substitute.

Walk up to the board and choose Vick first. Your buddies will laugh because they have Matthew Berry’s latest projections in their pocket. Then, when Vick drops 40 on those same buddies, sit back, grab a brew, and smile.


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