• Inside the Locker Room
With Kent Babb of the Kansas City Star
What are the expectations for Tony Moeaki this season? Is he more than a bye-week replacement in 2011?
Moeaki showed flashes last year of becoming one of the NFL’s best young tight ends, and only injury might prevent him from becoming an elite receiver. His pass-catching ability is dazzling, and that makes him at least a mid-range tight end and perhaps more like a sleeper to join the best in the league. Moeaki has a history of injuries, and he’s not as tall as many of the league’s best players at his position. But he emerged last year as one of Matt Cassel’s favorite targets, and that faith is likely to grow.
Should Eric Berry be the No. 1 defensive back selected in IDP leagues?
It’s still early to compare Berry to Ed Reed or Troy Polamalu, but the second-year strong safety proved last year that he’s a rising star. He reached the Pro Bowl in his rookie season, but that was more because of his play in the run game than in breaking up or intercepting passes. Berry might still be a second-tier safety because of his inexperience, but his four interceptions in 2010 proved that he could be a breakout star in his second season.
Was Cassel’s 2010 season a fluke?
It will be difficult for Cassel to play at the same level as his Pro Bowl season in 2010, but the Chiefs added some weapons in this year’s draft. First-round receiver Jon Baldwin and second-round center Rodney Hudson were added in part to improve Cassel’s comfort, but it’ll be up to Cassel to prove whether he can consistently play at a high level. People in Kansas City remain skeptical that Cassel is an elite passer, so for now, draft with caution.
• Fantasy Playoff Run — Weeks 14-16: @NYJ, GB, OAK
This is not the schedule you want to see when you’re debating between Jamaal Charles and other top backs. The Jets and Packers were Nos. 2 and 3 against fantasy RBs last season and in the top five the last two years. Division rival Oakland surrendered just 140 yards on the ground, 60 through the air and one score to Charles in the two meetings combined last season. All three opponents were top six vs. the pass as well.
• Athlon Best Bets
Sleeper: Steve Breaston, WR
Deep-Sleeper: Tony Moeaki, TE
Overvalued: Matt Cassel, QB
Top Rookie: Jon Baldwin, WR
Bounce-Back: Dexter McCluster, WR
Top IDP: Eric Berry, DB
• Try to Avoid
Matt Cassel, QB
Cassel tossed 27 passing scores last year but is a longshot to repeat that total. Coordinator Charlie Weis is gone, and doubts remain about Cassel's ability to be an elite quarterback.
WAIT UNTIL: 16th RD
• Draft Class Fantasy Impact
Baldwin could finally be the answer to Kansas City’s inability to find a consistent receiver to pair with Dwayne Bowe. Baldwin has all of the tools to become a solid fantasy option in the next five seasons, but he lost valuable practice time due to the lockout. Keep Baldwin on the radar as a WR4 or WR5 in fall drafts. Ricky Stanzi has potential to be a future starter, but look for the Iowa product to serve as the No. 3 quarterback in 2011.
More Fantasy Football Cheat Sheets and Rankings:
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Top 280
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Top 240 w/ IDPs
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Quarterbacks
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Running Backs
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Wide Receivers
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Tight Ends
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Kickers
2011 Fantasy Football Rankings: Defense/Special Teams