2015 Fantasy Football Team Preview: St. Louis Rams
The Rams are annually one of the worst teams for fantasy purposes, and it's hard to imagine that changing much this season. Trading Sam Bradford for Nick Foles should provide more stability, but this is a team that wants to pound the ball under Jeff Fisher. When the most trustworthy fantasy option Is a rookie coming off a ACL surgery, that's saying something.
Bye Week: 6
Rookie Impacts: Todd Gurley (RB)
Gurley is one of the most exciting running back prospects in years, but it's hard to tell when he'll be ready to go and if the Rams will take a conservative approach with his carries once he is. Talent and opportunity is the name of the game, but Gurley will be running behind an atrocious offensive line and could see a lot of defenders in the box. Expectations should probably be tempered, at least for this season.
Quarterback: Nick Foles
Foles hasn't been able to recapture his 2013 magic, and he isn't in a great position to do so in St. Louis. With a below-average line and receiving corps, Foles is a low-end QB2 option with less upside than most of the quarterbacks ranked around him. If the Rams were more dedicated to airing it out, perhaps Foles could turn in a good campaign, but that just doesn't seem like the direction the team is heading in. St. Louis is good enough defensively to take a conservative approach offensively, and that's likely what they'll do.
Running back: Tre Mason
Mason makes for an intriguing fantasy pick, as it's essentially a gamble that Gurley's knee won't be fully recovered to start the season. Mason should provide some early season value either way, as he averaged 4.3 YPC last year and showed the ability to handle a top back's workload. By the time the fantasy playoffs roll around he may no longer have an impact, but he's a good pair with Gurley or someone like Le'Veon Bell in the middle rounds of your draft.
Wide receiver: Brian Quick
Despite the state of the Rams, Quick has some sleeper appeal. He may be a forgotten man in drafts as he comes off shoulder surgery, but Quick was on pace for borderline WR2 type numbers before he got hurt last year. If you're going to gamble, going with a red zone threat like Quick (6-foot-4, 220) makes sense.
Wide receiver: Kenny Britt
Britt has burned many a fantasy bridges over the years, mainly because of injuries. It's important to note that in seven seasons, Britt has never caught over 50 passes. His name is bigger than his game, basically, and although he has some chance at improving with Foles at quarterback instead of the platoon the Rams employed last year, you'd be better off targeting a third receiver in a more explosive offense.
Wide receiver: Stedman Bailey/Tavon Austin
Both players can be safely ignored in standard leagues, but Austin is at least worth monitoring if he wins the slot job outright. The Rams made more of an effort last year to get Austin the ball in space (36 carries last year), which could eventually put him on the radar.
Tight end: Jared Cook
You can aim higher at the tight-end position, as Cook regularly hovers around 50 catches with low TD totals. The Rams will likely ask him to block more often than not, and Lance Kendricks could steal time and routes from him this season. This is a situation to avoid.
Placekicker: Greg Zuerlein
There are much better offenses to target, despite the fact that "Greg the Leg" can kick from distance and is aided by a dome. He's just an average option until St. Louis shows us something.
Team defense (D/ST): Despite their struggles offensively, the Rams D is a fine choice on draft day. They put pressure on the QB (40 sacks last year) and finished 5th last year among all defenses. Like always, though, you should play the matchups, and Week 1 against Seattle could get ugly.