Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: 2020 Pre-Season, Volume XI

Arizona Sports News online

Every summer leading into and throughout the NFL season, Sports Illustrated and SI.com Senior Fantasy Analyst Michael Fabiano joins Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hi-lights from our most recent conversation (August 11th) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

After having some time to process it, how do you feel about Tom Brady in Tampa Bay with the season approaching? “That’s the big one because I never thought I’d see Tom Brady in anything but a Patriots’ uniform. I feel a lot of people also agree with that sentiment. But going into Bruce Arians’ offense is pretty exciting because if Brady would have stayed in New England, considering what they have or maybe they don’t have in terms of pass catchers, maybe Brady’s not drafted in a 10-team league. Maybe he is a QB2 in 12-team league. Now, he is certainly on the radar as a QB1 in a 12, 14-team league. Even in a 10-team league I can easily see him being a Top 10 quarterback in that offense. Arians has had a lot of success with quarterbacks during his tenure in the National Football League – whether it’s been Peyton Manning or Ben Roethlisberger or Carson Palmer – especially veteran quarterbacks. Time will tell if Brady can meet expectations at 43 years-old.”

How about Brady’s old go-to Julian Edelman, now possibly working with Cam Newton? “I think Edelman as a wide receiver 3 is totally fine. Earlier, when we all thought it was Jarrett Stidham, he was going off the board as a wide receiver 4…even with Jarrett Stidham, you’re not telling me Julian Edelman can’t have 65 catches for 800 or 900 yards and five touchdowns. I’ll take that as a wide receiver 4! Why not? Now, you have Cam there. There’s the great unknown with Cam because we haven’t seen him play well in a long time…but Edelman has a little bit higher ceiling with Cam under center.”

How will Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs team up together in Buffalo this year? “I think they team up and put together some really good numbers. Josh Allen’s accuracy is a question mark but he has a cannon. He can throw it deep and Stefon Diggs can go get it so it’s a good fit, especially for Diggs. With the Vikings at the beginning of last year they really didn’t use him. It seemed like there were some issues there so it was good to get him out of there. I like Diggs. I don’t know if his value increased a ton, I still see him as a borderline wide receiver 2/wide receiver 3. You could probably get him as a 3 if you’re focusing on running backs and wide receivers in the first five or six rounds but typically he’ll end up being a wide receiver 2. He’ll have his ups, he’ll have his downs. That’s typically what he’s been but he’s going to have some big games in Buffalo and that offense is going to be fun to watch.”

Do see Calvin Ridley continuing to produce big numbers in Atlanta? “I feel like this is going to be his best fantasy season. I can see him getting over 1,000 yards, right around eight touchdowns. He’s had 17 in his first two years. That’s pretty good. Explosive offense. They’re going to throw the football with Matt Ryan under center. A little tidbit. Look at the numbers. Matt Ryan’s best seasons have come in even numbered years. It’s weird. It’s a trend. Albeit, it’s a weird one. But it’s 2020 – an even numbered year. Let’s see if he can duplicate that. Calvin, to me, is a mid-wide receiver 2 or a high wide receiver 2.”

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