KFFL.com's Fantasy Football Analysis Draft (FAD) brings you behind the scenes on all 16 rounds of an actual fantasy football league draft. Each of our experts participating give you their analysis on why they took the player they did. This is not a mock fantasy football draft; this league will be played out during the course of the 2011 fantasy football season ... each participant is drafting to win!
1) Houston Texans, defensive team/special teams
Team: Ryan R. Bonini | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Digging the switch to the 3-4 defense and liking the matchups versus the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars for four games this season. Wade Phillips will make his mark as the new defensive coordinator, and I anticipate this "D" to be a disruptive turnover machine in '11.
Texans will rise
2) Neil Rackers, place kicker, Houston Texans
Team: Tim Heaney | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: We're required to take a boot. I chose one with a potent offense leading the charge, a sometimes-domed home, a Week 11 bye and plenty of experience. Hoping for 30 field goals and about 40 touchdown punctuations.
3) Garrett Hartley, place kicker, New Orleans Saints
Team: Dan Dobish | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: (Note: This pick was made before it was announced Hartley will miss six to 10 weeks.) I needed a kicker, and Hartley will be booting for a high-octane offense. Unfortunately, he is dealing with a hip injury, so a replacement might be needed. If he is healthy for all 16 games, he easily will surpass 110 points and be a top-flight fantasy option.
4) Dan Carpenter, place kicker, Miami Dolphins
Team: Eric McClung | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Picking a leg in fantasy football isn't an exact science. Last year, Carpenter tied for the most field goals attempted. That's good enough for me. Although he did have some accuracy issues, all those misses were from 40 yards or further out. Since the league scoring does not penalize missed field goals there's no concern with that. Also, Carpenter attempted the most kicks from 40-49 yards deep and tied for the most made. He also tied for the most 50-plus-yard kicks and nailed one from 60, the longest of the season. However, with late-season games at Buffalo and at New England, chances are snow will keep Carpenter off my roster down the stretch. No biggie. It's a kicker.
5) New Orleans Saints, defensive team/special teams
Team: Jared Byrd | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Only three teams allowed fewer yards than the Saints last season and just six teams allowed fewer points. On the flip side, New Orleans had the fewest interceptions in the league and was near the middle of the pack in sacks. My fantasy team will alternate between the Patriots' defense (my 12th-round selection) and the Saints' defense from week to week, depending on which matchup is more favorable. I'm hoping for approximately 40 sacks and 15-20 interceptions.
6) Rob Bironas, place kicker, Tennessee Titans
Team: Cory J. Bonini | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Bironas should have plenty of attempts with Chris Johnson back and Matt Hasselbeck in town. I'm hoping for at least 35 extra points and close to 40 field goal attempts.
7) Matt Bryant, place kicker, Atlanta Falcons
Team: Nicholas Minnix | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: The Falcons have a big-time, potent offense. They're pretty consistent. They play in a dome. Bryant is an 82.8 percent kicker, lifetime, and nailed 90.3 percent of his field goal attempts last year on his way to 128 points. He should be somewhere in the neighborhood of 120 to 130 again.
8) Eddie Royal, wide receiver, Denver Broncos
Team: Brian Polking | Team Roster | League Scoring
One last stab at PPR points
Reason and statistical expectations: Royal had an incredible 91 receptions as a rookie, but he has managed just 96 catches the last two seasons combined. I am hoping he can split the difference this season and become a useful option of the bench. Royal is a smaller, faster option at receiver, not too unlike Carolina receiver Steve Smith. Former Panther coach John Fox is now calling the shots in Denver, and I am hoping he makes Royal a bigger part of the offense this year.
9) Josh Brown, place kicker, St. Louis Rams
Team: Keith Hernandez | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Well, this pick was mostly made out of necessity for a kicker on my squad ... unfortunately. Brown attempted the most kicks of his career (39) last year in the improved Rams' offense with Sam Bradford. In 2008 and 2009 combined, Brown booted 12 balls through the uprights at a distance over 50 yards. Kicking indoors is a major plus, and St. Louis' offense should be more potent in Bradford's second year and with Josh McDaniels as the offensive coordinator.
10) Donovan McNabb, quarterback, Minnesota Vikings
Team: Jack Douglas | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: I selected quarterback Tom Brady in the second round. He has usually been very durable and I expect he will be available to be my starter all season long except for the bye week. I gambled here on his durability. In 2010, McNabb ran afoul of the coaching staff in Washington. In a disappointing year, he threw for only 14 passing touchdowns and had 15 interceptions. Even then, he did throw for 3,377 passing yards, which was 259.8 yards a game. In 2008 and 2009 he averaged 22.5 passing touchdowns and yardage of 244.8 per game in 2008 and 253.8 per game in 2009. I expect a return to that type of performance here, which makes him a respectable back up.
11) Billy A. Cundiff, place kicker, Baltimore Ravens
Team: Tim Piotrowski | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: Cundiff finished in the top 10 in scoring among kickers last season and should get several opportunities to put up points this season. The Ravens have a very good running game but they brought in three new wide receivers, so there could be times especially early on in the season when the team fails to score touchdowns and settles for field goals, which would allow Cundiff to put up some numbers. I would like around 120 total points from him this season.
12) Toby Gerhart, running back, Minnesota Vikings
Team: Ryan Dodson | Team Roster | League Scoring
Reason and statistical expectations: He's an insurance policy with some tools that can be useful on third down or in goal-line situations when Adrian Peterson needs a rest. He's a big, bruising runner that has some tools and makes an attractive handcuff. Let's just hope Mr. Irrelevant remains irrelevant. Backup yardage and a handful of scores is all that's expected.
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