Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

NFC North Risers/Fallers - 2018 Season Review


Throughout the course of any fantasy football season, it's inevitable that we're going to be surprised by the performances of certain players, both good and bad. Many highly-drafted players will fall short of expectations, while plenty of late-round fliers and waiver wire acquisitions will show up to save the day. It's important to take note of these developments throughout the year and to file them away for next season.

Players, teams and the league evolves each season. Staying ahead of why the change has happened and what that means for the future means you are more likely to be able to find that late-round gem or avoid that early-round bust.

For that reason, we will examine the biggest risers and fallers from each NFL division. Today, we look at the NFC North. When you're done, check out our breakdowns of the NFC West, NFC East, and AFC East.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive In-Season Lineup Tools, Lineup Optimizer and over 150 days of Premium DFS Research. Sign Up Now!

 

Chicago Bears

Riser - Tarik Cohen, RB

Cohen was one player who really was able to get a grasp of the offense that Matt Nagy wanted to run in Chicago. Cohen has always been the pass-catching running back, but this season he was able to really stamp that authority by notching 71 receptions.

Cohen's 71 catches were only bettered by five running backs (Saquon Barkley, Christian McCaffrey, Alvin Kamara, Ezekiel Elliott, and James White). The Bears used Jordan Howard as their primary runner, but given the effectiveness of Cohen on the field going into 2019, it wouldn't be a surprise if he was able to increase the 99 carries that he had in the 2018 season.

Cohen was drafted in the middle rounds last season but with an improved offensive showing, he could move into the 4th-5th rounds this draft season.

Faller - Trey Burton, TE

Burton flashed during his time for the Philadelphia Eagles when Zach Ertz wasn't able to take the field. When Nagy was given his chance at being the head coach in Chicago, the first big signing he made was at tight end with Trey Burton.

There was talk about Burton even helping quarterback Mitch Trubisky understand the offense. However, that hype and faith didn't really translate to the field. Burton finished the season with 54 receptions, 569 yards, and six touchdowns.

However, that doesn't show the way that Burton's season went. Burton was able to have some games that would have won owners their weekly matchup, but those were sparse with only six top-12 performances all season. Depending on the form and availability of other tight ends, Burton may see his ADP fall come draft season.

 

Minnesota Vikings

Riser - Adam Thielen & Stefon Diggs, WR

I chose both Thielen and Diggs as risers because they were able to show that they can co-exist in the offense together. Both receivers finished the season with similar stat lines, both able to get over 100 receptions, 1,000 yards and nine touchdowns apiece. 

Looking at their fantasy points by week, Thielen did have some struggles towards the end of the season. But it is clear to see that Thielen was more consistent of the two, owing to his more role as the slot receiver on the offense, allowing more receptions.

While Thielen may be drafted ahead of Diggs, ultimately the Vikings offense is effective and should have room for both receivers.

Faller - Dalvin Cook, RB

This fall is mainly due to the inability to stay on the field. Cook missed the majority of last season through injury but was able to show enough that fantasy owners trusted him to be an effective running back this season. Cook ended up playing 11 games, but one was a 20-yard rushing performance against the Rams and countless others were disappointing given expectations.

Cook is going to entice owners who will believe in his ability when he is on the field, but with a soft tissue injury this season to combine with an injury to his ligaments last season, there could be better options for fantasy owners looking to avoid risk in the early rounds.

 

Green Bay Packers

Riser - Aaron Jones, RB

Aaron Jones was the clearest choice as a riser for the Packers. The backfield looked like a mess at the start of the season with Jamaal Williams and Ty Montgomery (before the trade to the Ravens) as well as Jones starting the season with a suspension.

However, Jones came back from his suspension and ended up stealing the backfield away from his rivals. He finished the season with 728 yards and eight touchdowns on the ground, combined with 26 receptions, 206 yards and one touchdown through the air.

Ultimately Jones is (at this extremely early juncture) considered to be a talent worthy of being taken in drafts within the first three rounds. Given where he was drafted at the start of the last season that is a significant step forward in draft stock.

Fallers -  Aaron Rodgers, QB

Rodgers is an elite quarterback, but last season he didn't look quite right and that was evident in his fantasy performances. The real issue that affected Rodgers was that he just wasn't able to get the ball into the end zone. Rodgers was only able to finish with 25 passing touchdowns, which is far below the levels that he has historically been able to achieve.

Part of that could be that the offense seemed to be changing personnel week to week, as well as the lackluster play-calling compared to the high octane offenses in Kansas City and Los Angeles.

Rodgers is in a good position to bounce back next season, with the aforementioned Aaron Jones on the ground, and the elite Davante Adams as a primary receiver. Combine that with the expected improvement in offense and the undoubted talent that Rodgers has and this should be a one-season blip.

 

Detroit Lions

Riser - Kenny Golladay, WR

Golladay started the season as one of three serviceable receivers in Detroit along with downfield threat Marvin Jones and PPR monster Golden Tate. Tate finished his season on a different team, and Golladay seized the opportunity with both hands.

Golladay ended up being the leading receiver for Detroit, finishing the season with 70 receptions for 1,063 yards and five touchdowns.

Golladay is now the primary threat on an offense that has always needed to pass the ball. While the Lions struggled with consistent quarterback play this season, the number of opportunities for Golladay to be involved means that he should be considered as a fringe WR1/ WR2.

Faller - Matthew Stafford, QB

Stafford was previously the prime example of why to wait at quarterback on draft day. The Lions were a team that needed to put up a lot of points to win games and they struggled to move the ball on the ground- perfect streaming material.

This season though, that wasn't the case. Stafford struggled in the offense, especially once Tate left town. The Lions weren't overly competitive and couldn't put long drives together to give their defense any respite.

The Lions offense is going to get a new OC, so Stafford may bounce back with a different voice in his ear. But until that is seen, fantasy owners should look elsewhere for their late-round quarterback.

More Fantasy Football Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

We Must Overreact Immediately! Week 6 Outliers

In Week 6, several players exploded in fantasy lineups. There were a few receivers that were above the rest of the pack in Week 6, such as Stefon Diggs, Terry McLaurin, Chris Godwin and Tyreek Hill, but there shouldn't be any surprises there as those guys should have been in fantasy lineups. At the quarterback... Read More


Wide Receiver Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 7

We weren't really surprised by the top-scoring fantasy wide receivers from Week 6. Out of the top-20 receivers, only Jamison Crowder, Auden Tate and Jaron Brown were less than 50% owned. Jaron Brown (0% owned) was only targeted five times but he scored two touchdowns off of those five targets. Auden Tate (23% owned) hauled... Read More


The Cut List - Players on the Chopping Block (Week 7)

This is your weekly list of players to drop. I will do my best to limit this list to injured players and players you might consider holding. If you roster pure handcuffs or backups, obviously you can let them go at any time. The players on this list will, ideally, be guys that aren't clearly... Read More


Week 7 Kicker Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Week 6 is done, and we've seen some outstanding games thus far. We've also seen a lot of surprising teams through six weeks. The San Francisco 49ers, after picking in the top 10 for four straight years, are 5-0 with one of the most complete teams in football. As far as kickers go, we're seeing... Read More


Week 7 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Below are RotoBaller's Week 7 defense tiers and rankings, or which defenses to stream, start and target off the waiver wire for Week 7 of the NFL and fantasy football season. In case you missed it, this is our seventh year now writing this weekly column. Our weekly tiered defense rankings are a guide to making waiver... Read More


Week 7 Waiver Wire Pickups & Adds

All of a sudden, the Chargers look like one of the worst teams in football and the Jets look like a playoff contender. Maybe things won't shake out that way in the end but it goes to show how quickly things change in the "Not For Long" NFL. For that reason, we advise looking at... Read More


Running Back Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 7

Some of you have been rewarded for your meticulous roster planning by receiving excellent production from your running backs. Unfortunately, many of you have been equally prepared when making roster decisions, but have been undermined by injuries, inconsistent usage, or underwhelming performances. If that applies to you, then those unwanted outcomes have forced you to... Read More


Tight End Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers – Week 7

Another week, another four teams on bye in the NFL. Fantasy football players are going to have to make due this week without Carolina’s Greg Olsen, Tampa Bay’s O.J. Howard and Pittsburgh’s Vance McDonald, not to mention Seattle’s Will Dissly, who was injured this past Sunday. It could be a worse week for fantasy players... Read More


Quarterback Waiver Wire Pickups and Streamers - Week 7

It was another big week at the quarterback position, as five quarterbacks topped 30 points and 12 scored more than 20 heading into Sunday Night Football. Most of the big performers were players we expect, such as Matt Ryan and Deshaun Watson, but we also got some surprising starts from quarterbacks who are widely available.... Read More


Waiver Wire Express - Week 7 Lightning Round

The Jets are back! OK, maybe not back because they were never here but at least there's some actual hope and fantasy value to be had from a previously winless team. The tight end landscape has changed drastically again, as Hunter Henry returns right at 60% ownership, while breakout second-year Seahawk Will Dissly's season appears... Read More


Fantasy Football News and Injuries - Running Updates

Below is a quick-hit list of running notes on relevant injuries and player news, including pre-game reports and live in-game updates. Stay tuned for updates all throughout the week and on Sunday morning game day:   Week 6 Amari Cooper (quad) has been ruled out for the game. Will Dissly went down with a non-contact achilles... Read More


Week 6 Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

Below you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football weekly rankings, tiers, player news and stats for the 2019 NFL season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Weekly PPR Rankings Weekly Half-PPR Rankings Weekly Standard Rankings Dynasty League Rankings     Fantasy... Read More


NFL Matchup Ratings Tool - Weekly Player Projections

  If you see the red "Upgrade" button below, then you are not a Premium subscriber, or have not yet logged in. Learn more about our NFL Matchup Ratings and projections system. Editor's Note: Get any full-season NFL Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive In-Season Lineup Tools, Lineup Optimizer and over 150 days of... Read More


Week 6 Chat - Live Fantasy Football Game Day Q&A

It's Sunday Morning Week 6... Do You Know Who to Start? Each Sunday morning of the NFL season, RotoBaller's experts will be moderating the industry's leading live chat room and answering a bunch of your fantasy football questions, from around 10:30 AM to 1:00 PM ET. Come join in on the fun, and get your... Read More


Updated Week 6 PPR Rankings (Top 300)

Welcome to Week 6 RotoBallers. Below are our updated consensus Week 6 PPR rankings for fantasy football, including some running notes on relevant injuries, player news and rankings updates: Albert Wilson is making his return this week. Tyreek Hill will officially make his return today. Marquise Brown (ankle) will miss this week's game. Kenny Stills is... Read More