There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding who should be drafted number one overall in fantasy football this season. There isn’t a clear cut number one like there has been in the past. Instead there are four or five guys that can all be construed as a possible number one. It really depends on personal preference.
Picking Adrian Peterson first is risky because he’s been away from football for a year. Even though reports from camp are saying that he is in great football shape, how can you really know that his body will hold up being a year and a half removed from competition?
Jamaal Charles thinks he’s the Lebron James of football, but are you as confident as he is? Charles has played exceptionally well the last three seasons, but he is a smaller running back, and he will be 29 before the season is over. So can you really rely on him to stay healthy all year?
Marshawn Lynch is a bonafide beast. But how much does he even want to play this season? Lynch confirmed earlier this offseason that the only reason he didn’t retire was because the Seahawks put $12 million in front of him for 2015. Also, his rush totals have decreased every one of the last three seasons. With Russell Wilson getting the big contract, and the Seahawks trading for the beastly Jimmy Graham, it is possible that the Seahawks might be going in a more pass friendly direction.
Eddie Lacy was fed steadily last season in the run and pass game. I expect Lacy to boast totals of about 1,100 rush yards, 400 receiving yards, and 12 total touchdowns this season, which are very similar totals to last season. He will definitely finish as a top five fantasy running back if he can stay healthy for the whole season, but I don’t see him finishing in the first position. Lacy offers probably the least risk out of any of the possible options for the number one pick, but he may also put out the lowest reward.
The final option for a player to choose number one overall is Le’Veon Bell. Bell obviously has some off the field issues that have resulted in missing the first two regular season games this year. Also, Bell is coming back from a late season knee injury that he may not be 100% healed from yet. So there is definitely some risk involved in picking Bell number one.
Ultimately any of those guys could be picked first overall, and there is no way to know what the right pick is before the season starts. But for me, I would have to say Le’Veon Bell is the number one guy. Any way you cut it Bell was without a doubt the most dynamic running back in the league last year, and should easily be able to replicate his last season form. He can run the ball, he can catch the ball, and he plays in one of the most potent offenses in the NFL. So defenses can’t specifically focus on defending him, because they risk being burned by Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant, and the nimble giant, Ben Roethlisberger. Even with missing the first two regular season games I expect Bell to put up 1,100 yards rushing, 700 yards receiving, and 11-13 touchdowns.
The biggest thing to take away is that all of the aforementioned guys are worthy #1 picks and the good news is you probably can’t go wrong. Bell appears to have the best combination of talent/role/upside/safety, however, which is why he takes the cake for me when it comes to the top spot in 2015 fantasy drafts.
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*Photo credit – Jeremy Vandroff via Flickr