2014 Fantasy Football Season in Review: The NFC North
The Bears were highly disappointing this season. The only good thing from them was Matt Forte, who we all expected to be good. Other than that there was nothing to get excited about. The wide receivers, Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, did not live up to our expectation. Injuries were a key part in this. Jay Cutler regressed this season as well. The defense was worse than we expected.
There really was just no value here. There were no sleepers or anything surprising. This is one team fantasy owners drool over because of the amount of talent at the skill positions. However, if they cannot stay healthy and cannot perform well as a team that destroys a lot of the value these guys have.
Unlike the Bears, the Detroit Lions had a lot going for them this season. Calvin Johnson missed some time with an injury, but he always recovered quickly and performed well when he was on the field. In Johnson’s absence, Golden Tate emerged as a must have fantasy wide receiver. At one point, he was one of the top three wide outs in the receiving yards statistical category. Matthew Stafford also performed well. Everyone was worried about him coming into the season because of his poor ending to 2013, but he panned out fine.
The running backs are always hard to judge with this team. They have so many options and anyone of them can do well or be a complete bust on any given week. By the end of the season, owners were turning away from Reggie Bush who is normally the favorite of the backfield.
Finally, there was the defense. Who would have ever expected the Lions would have the best defense in the NFL? Anyone who says they called it is a liar.
Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers were an even bigger fantasy football gold mine than we ever expected. Aaron Rodger was a stud, but we all knew that would be the case. We did not think that Jordy Nelson would be the best wide out in the NFL through the first few weeks of the season, but he was. He quickly put up two 200 plus receiving yard games, allowing his fantasy owners to jump out to a quick start.
Eddie Lacy had a disappointing start to the season. Eventually, he did turn it on. Once he did it seemed like there was just no stopping him. He will once again be heavily targeted in drafts.
There was one major sleeper on this team. The defense definitely outperformed expectations and eventually turned out to be a decent starter week in and week out for fantasy owners. They may even be able to receive some interest in drafts leading into the 2015 season.
The expectations for Vikings’ players were not high coming into the season. Once the news broke that Adrian Peterson was going to be suspended for the season, nobody even seemed to pay attention to them. There was a bit of interest in the draft over a possible sleeper candidate in Cordarrelle Patterson, but he never emerged as a go-to player.
There really is nothing to get excited over going into next season. Who knows if Peterson will be back with the team? Without him, Minnesota is a fantasy football wasteland.