Between Deflategate and anything Cowboys related, there were in fact off-season moves, and lots of them. Jimmy Graham was traded to the Seahawks, and Jeremy Maclin chose to go to a team that hasn't thrown a touchdown to a wide receiver in 19 games. Yes, he had a choice. There have been a few other moves that are not mentioned below, Torrey Smith to the 49ers. Smith's numbers and fantasy stature should be much of the same as previous seasons. The running back situation in Dallas is one to keep an eye on as well, Darren McFadden did go there, but Joseph Randle is the back who should emerge.
LeSean McCoy - RB - Buffalo Bills - Projections: 1,500 Total YDS, 8 TDS
This was one of the first trades to shake the football world this off-season. Buffalo traded Kiko Alonso for LeSean McCoy, while essentially Philly got DeMarco Murray as well. McCoy will be 27 years old, once the season starts, and that is the age right before we start seeing drop-offs in production from running backs. I still believe McCoy has a few good years left, and he is with Rex Ryan, who loves to run the football. The Jets ranked in the top 10 in rushing attempts per game five out of the six years under Ryan. What dropped off for McCoy in 2014 was his receptions and receiving yards, mainly due to Darren Sproles. He went from being 50+ reception back, to just 28 receptions. While I don't see it climbing back up to 50, 35-40 receptions seems in his wheelhouse this season, alongside 300 rushing attempts. The Bills have a sub-par rushing strength of schedule, but my biggest concern is the offensive line. They ranked 32nd in run blocking in 2014, to their defense they are on the younger side. It should still be a very productive year for LeSean McCoy. He gives the Bills screen game option, as well has being able to shoulder the load 25 times in a game. In the opening parts of the season he will be a GPP play, but could eventually work his way into cash games depending on usage and production. He will be a valuable asset for daily fantasy this year, and the Bills now have what C.J. Spiller was supposed to be.
Jordan Cameron - TE - Miami Dolphins - Projections: 60 REC, 750 YDS, 6 TDS
A lot will hinge on Jordan Cameron staying healthy, which he was not in 2014, missing six games. In 2013, we saw what Cameron was capable of, 80 REC, 917 YDS, 7 TDS. He averaged 17.7 yards per catch that season, and can showcase his 4.5 (40-time) speed in the open field. Cameron has the ability to line up as a tight end, as well as outside, giving adversity to the Dolphins' passing game. Charles Clay was one of Ryan Tannehill's favorite targets, racking up 186 targets over the last two seasons. Cameron will see an increase in targets coming from Cleveland, and now has a quarterback, who has developed very nicely, throwing to him. At 6'5 he will be a much needed red zone target, and those seven touchdowns in 2013 all came within 30 yards of the goal line. He mismatches The projections could be modest come the end of the year, he has a ton of upside with Miami, and should work his way into being a top five fantasy tight end. Jimmy Graham and Rob Gronkowski will be your daily tight end favorites, but Cameron could put his name with those two in everyone's weekly recommendations.
Andre Johnson - WR - Indianapolis Colts - Projections: 75 REC, 850 YDS, 8 TDS
The Colts averaged 28.6 points per game, and 305.6 passing yards per game in 2014. That is nearly 100 more than Houston averaged per game, so solely based on offense, Andre Johnson gets a boost in this move. He had 85 receptions, for 936 yards, but only three touchdowns. Outside of the tight ends, Andrew Luck lacked a true red zone target, which Johnson will give. Indy wide receivers had just five red zone touchdowns. Even though the Colts had one of the top offenses in the league, they had clear needs, and one was a true possession wide receiver. Reggie Wayne seemed to run out of gas, and Luck needs that security blanket veteran wide receiver. The one downside to Johnson in daily fantasy is that there are so many targets. Indy now has Frank Gore, which should take make the passing attack more successful, but also take away some attempts. This will be a team to target watch over the first few weeks to see how they spread it out. Johnson being a red zone threat gives him an edge. He will be a safe guy to pair up with Luck for much of the season.
Jeremy Maclin - WR - Kansas City Chiefs - Projections: 80 REC, 950 YDS, 5 TDS
Jeremy Maclin is reuniting with Andy Reid, and he is definitely not joining the Chiefs because of their recent wide reciever success. My guess is he is the one who ends the touchdown drought for this wide reciever core. Maclin had 85 receptions in Chip Kelly's system last year, and I don't see that taking a hit in Kansas City. What I do see taking a hit is his yards and touchdowns, which could turn him into a GPP play more than a cash game play, which he was last season. Alex Smith, or Captain Checkdown, is not one to air it out, and anytime a reciever joins a new team his role is up in the air. If there is anything that is certain, it is that Reid will use him in the screen game, which is why I believe the receptions will be the only stat consistent with last seasons. Maclin is a playmaker, which leaves room for upside. He had 7 plays go for 40+ yards, and 21 go for 20+. His upside will likely be decided on Smith's style as a quarterback.
Sam Bradford - QB - Philadelphia Eagles - Projections: 3,800 YDS, 27 TDS, 12 INT
It has been a chaos in Philadelphia this off-season, but any it seems any quarterback you throw under Chip Kelly thrives. Nick Foles and Mark Sanchez being pime examples. The Eagles averaged almost 30 points a game in 2014, ranking 6th in passing yards per game. Sam Bradford has tools that he didn't have in St. Louis, but health is the big question. Before he went down last year, he had 1,700 yards, and 14 touchdowns in 7 games. He was on pace for 30+ touchdowns, and only had four interceptions in that span. In a full year before that he had 3,700 yards, 21 TDS, and 13 INT. If he stays healthy, sky is the limit for Bradford. This system will benefit him, while the strength of schedule is in his favor as well, 6th easiest schedule for fantasy quarterbacks. He should easily post a similar stat in the yardage department, while adding a few touchdowns. He will be quite the fantasy asset this season, alongside everyone else around him. Jordan Matthews, DeMarco Murray, Nelson Agholor, and a duo of solid tight ends are at his disposal. I will be big on targeting Bradford in a mixture of cash games and GPP's this season.
Jimmy Graham - TE - Seattle Seahawks - Projections: 70 REC, 850 YDS, 9 TDS
This was one of the biggest surprises of the off-season, the Saints shipped Jimmy Graham off to Seattle. If it wasn't for Gronkowski, Graham would be the best tight end in fantasy. He is changing from a pass happy culture in New Orleans, to a more balanced-run style in Seattle, but his stats should be on par with his career average. The targets will drop, which will limit his upside to a point, but he will be a consistent play week in and week out. He is a force in the red zone at 6'7, and that is where nine of his ten touchdowns came this past season. This is an excellent addition for Russell Wilson, he has not had a top tier target to throw to since being drafted by Seattle. What will dictate Graham's use for daily fantasy is his price tag. He will likely still carry a high price,due to his name, which will have me paying up for the upside of Gronkowski, or down for similar numbers of Greg Olsen and Cameron.
DeMarco Murray - RB - Philadelphia Eagles - Projections: 1,500 Total YDS, 12 TDS
DeMarco Murray will set up the revenge game narrative twice this season, since he went to a divisional rival during free agency. The Dallas offensive line is highly praised, and Dallas is comfortable with anyone running behind those five guys. Murray is not going to see 392 rushing attempts, or hit 1,800 yards this season. He is also not likely going to catch 50+ balls for 400 receiving yards. Sparkles will cut into those receiving numbers, and also may take Murray off the field more often than he's used to. The Eagles offense is built to score a ton of touchdowns, and Murray will still put up double digits in that category, especially thriving in the red zone. He will still be a great cash game option this season, and his versatility will be used wisely by Kelly. He just will not be used as heavily as last season, with Ryan Matthews and Sproles alongside him.
Brandon Marshall - WR - New York Jets - Projections: 70 REC, 800 YDS, 7 TDS
Chicago basically gave Brandon Marshall away to the Jets this off-season. He is coming off a slightly shortened season, with 721 yards, and 8 touchdowns. New York has not given daily fantasy players much to work with, other than choosing opposing defenses against them. This season he will go from a WR1 to a WR2, with such an inconsistency at the quarterback position, Even with an extra three games, not much should change from his 2014 stats. The Jets have a quarterback race going on, but most have said it is Ryan Fitzpatrick's to lose. I will bump up Marshall's value if that's the case, having Eric Decker on the other side helps as well. Marshall is still a dynamic wide receiver, whether it is in the red zone or not. Last year was the first time in his career that he didn't hit 1,000 yards. He would of needed a 100 yards in each of the three games he missed to keep that streak going. The Jets have not had a monster target for any of their quarterbacks to throw to. At 6'4 he will give whoever is at QB a big target to throw to, and will help everyone around him. He will be a GPP guy for most, if not all of the season.
Frank Gore - RB - Indianapolis Colts - Projections: 1,100 Total YDS, 6 TDS
Frank Gore is Mr. Consistent, and he defies the logic of running backs declining after 27. It has been a long time since the Colts have had a solid reliable back, and Gore is going to increase the efficiency of everyone around him. The Colts will move the ball as they please, which will give plenty of opportunities in the red zone to finish off drives. He has averaged 4.5 yards per carry over his career, and he should touch the ball 15-20 times a game. Gore is a great pass protector, and a solid pass catcher, which will lead to him being on the field three downs more often than not. His Impact in daily fantasy should grow from last season, he was a cheap option in cash games, and I will gladly take 75 yards and a touchdown from a cheap RB.