Hey football fans! Welcome to Part 2 of our comprehensive recap of the 2017 NFL offseason – NFC edition. (Here are the AFC teams.) It can be hard to keep up with players changing teams, signing new contracts and in some cases getting replaced by younger or better players. No worries, Dad Kingdom is here to get you up to speed! We’re going to keep the analysis pretty brief. This is meant for folks who have checked out from football for the past 4 months and need all the fantasy-relevant facts heading into the preseason. Enjoy!
Not much changed in Arizona during the NFL offseason. Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald are just playing a game of retirement chicken. David Johnson will continue to be the Cardinals main source of offense in 2017. They added an intriguing small-school WR in Chad Williams. But, otherwise the roster is pretty much the same on offense.
Despite the worst collapse in Super Bowl history, the Falcons are not just going to roll over and die. Most of their focus in the NFL offseason has been on maintaining their roster and signing their talent long-term. A few important pieces were added, but nothing particularly relevant to fantasy football. If the Falcons can stay healthy, look out.
The Panthers are trying their best to kickstart the offense. Not so much through free agency, but their draft strategy was clearly offense-leaning. Christian McCaffrey is a do-everything WR & RB they grabbed in the 1st round. I just hope their play-calling can be creative enough to capture the versatility of both he and Cam. Then, 2nd round WR Curtis Samuel should have an opportunity to contribute as well.
I’m not really sure what the Bears are doing. Jay Cutler has struggled the last few years, and it was clear they needed to move on. But, I doubt Mike Glennon nor rookie Mitch Trubisky will be the answer. might be primed for a new opportunity in Chicago. Adding WR Kendall Wright will hardly make up for losing Alshon Jeffery. Cam Meredith is probably the receiver to own here. Also, RB Jordan Howard will look to continue his momentum from 2016.
As if Dak Prescott didn’t seal it, the Tony Romo era is officially over in Dallas. He’s decided to transition from football to broadcasting. It was fun, Tony. Not much has changed for the Dallas offense during the NFL offseason. In 2017, it will still be the Dak, Dez and ‘Zeek show. Get your popcorn ready.
Not a lot to report as far as Detroit’s NFL offseason. Stafford isn’t going anywhere. The WR tandem of Golden Tate and Marvin Jones remains intact. They added rookie Kenny Golladay, but he’ll be the third option at best.
Personally, I don’t think Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick are going to cut it in the backfield. But, as I mentioned in the previous article, a lot of quality running backs – including TD-darling LaGarrette Blount, DeAngelo Williams and the great Jamaal Charles – remain unsigned.
GREEN BAY PACKERS
OK, now we’re talking… Eddie Lacy heads to Seattle where they’ve got a backfield logjam. Meanwhile, the Packers are rolling with Ty Montgomery as their RB (Christine Michael is gone too). But, they drafted three RBs in the 2017 draft (none during the top three rounds). So, we’ll see if any of them pan out. The safe bet is on Jamaal Williams from BYU.
TE Martellus Bennett – perhaps the most coveted free agent tight end – has moved on from New England to join the Packers. (Former-Packer TE Jared Cook has gone to Oakland.) The TE position is so bad in fantasy right now, so Bennett could easily have Top 10 value.
LOS ANGELES RAMS
Here comes Jared Goff! We’ll see what he can do, but the poor guy doesn’t have good receivers. Tavon Austin. Robert Woods? Pharoh Cooper might actually be a good sleeper pick. WR draft picks Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds should have plenty of opportunities to contribute.
Of course, Todd Gurley is going to struggle to find room again this season. (The Todd Gurley theme song.)
Who’s Adrian Peterson? Just kidding. But really, I don’t think the Vikings will be missing him much in 2017. Newcomer Latavius Murray and rookie Dalvin Cook should have no trouble filling in. (Cook was a steal at 41 overall.)
It’s time for Laquan Treadwell to get his sh** together. Prove to the Vikings that you were worth a 1st round pick, and stop making them rely on Adam Thielen to score points. Hopefully, Teddy Bridgewater will be back soon, but there’s no telling when or what condition he’ll be in.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
Ironically, Adrian Peterson‘s new destination comes up next in alphabetical order! A great landing spot for him. (Sorry, Mark Ingram.) In related news, Tim Hightower has left New Orleans, leaving Ingram and Peterson to battle for touches. But, not so fast. Rookie Alvin Kamara provides an interesting scat-back option in the offense.
Star WR Brandin Cooks left in free agency. But, the Saints didn’t really attempt to replace him. Good news for Michael Thomas owners; He’s gonna eat. Bad news for Brees and the team as a whole.
NEW YORK GIANTS
The Giants have been relatively busy this NFL offseason. First, they got veteran WR Brandon Marshall signed. Then, they let RB Rashad Jennings walk, leaving only Perkins and Vereen. Paul Perkins is the favorite right now, although he has zero career touchdowns. Not exactly confidence-inspiring. But, they added stud TE Evan Engram and RB Wayne Gallman in the draft. Engram could be a Top 10 fantasy TE and this team is going to throw… a lot. I might be targeting Eli Manning in drafts.
The Eagles’ receiving corps might be the best in the league. They added Alshon Jeffery during free agency to join Torrey Smith and Jordan Matthews. Impressive. Carson Wentz has a huge opportunity here, but also a lot of pressure, given their weakness at running back! (Ryan Mathews, anyone?) Wendell Smallwood is likely to be the most productive back. Yikes.
*Edit 5/18/17: LaGarrette Blount has signed a 1-year deal with the Eagles. I feel like he’s firmly in the fantasy RB2 discussion now.
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS
Kyle Juszczyk – one of the better full backs in the league – left Baltimore for San Francisco, which could be a small boost for Carlos Hyde‘s stock. Also, Hyde got a half dozen new backups! Jeez.
Just to add icing on the bad QB cake that they’re baking, the 49ers brought in former-Bears Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley. Yuck. Pierre Garcon was a nice free agent addition, but their opposite WR is Marquise Goodwin? Defenses will be stacking the box big time.
As I mentioned before, Eddie Lacy has arrived in Seattle where they’ve got a backfield logjam. Lacy will compete with Rawls and Prosise for touches. Who knows how that will shake out. WR Doug Baldwin and TE Jimmy Graham are still the primary pass catchers in Seattle. The Seahawks didn’t add any significant offensive weapons in the 2017 draft.
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
The Bucs confuse me. They had a great thing going with TE Cameron Brate, then they had to go and draft the monster target TE O.J. Howard. Meanwhile, they had an OBVIOUS need at running back, yet passed on local product Dalvin Cook. Whatever. I guess Doug Martin will be the go-to RB?
Going to the air, the Bucs signed free agent WR DeSean Jackson to line up with Mike Evans – one of the best young receivers in the NFL. (Rookie Chris Godwin could get some time as well.) This should be an interesting duo for Jameis Winston to play with.
Finally, the silly Redskins. Kirk Cousins was definitely the highest-profile free agent quarterback during the NFL offseason. But, the Redskins have slapped the franchise tag on him for the second year in a row. Bold strategy.
They also let both DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon sign with other teams. They’re left with Jamison Crowder and Terrelle Pryor as their top receivers, although I’m holding out hope that Josh Doctson will be great. Their backfield is kind of a mess too, and that could pave the way for rookie Samaje Perine to find the spotlight. Until then, Rob Kelley is the guy.
Well, that’s it. Dad Kingdom’s NFL offseason recap is complete. I hope it was informative and time-saving! Only a few months left until football returns. Hang in there!