General Manager Carston Clark leads Hurricane Ditka into their 5th season in the league. After back to back seasons missing the playoffs, he really needs a bounce back year to keep spirits high in the locker room. It should be said with absolute certainty that Hurricane Ditka will win the championship in 2016. Why? Because GM Clark believes in his team and is also the one who writes these previews.
The San Diego Chargers had a season filled with Injuries last season. Both receivers Keenan Allen and Malcom Floyd were lost for the season, and the offensive line was a rotating door of guys coming in and out of the lineup. This had a major effect on Philip Rivers and the offense as a whole. Despite all of this, Rivers was able to put together an average of 22.4 Fantasy points per game, and pair that with the fact that Rivers has been a top 10 fantasy quarterback in 7 of the last 10 years, and it is safe to consider him in the middle of the QB1 range. Hurricane Ditka also sports Andy Dalton in their starting lineup. Dalton was in the middle of a career year in 2015, before getting injured in week 14. He was averaging 20.98 points per game, which had him ranked just behind Russell Wilson for 3rd in the NFL. I expect some regression with the losses of Marvin Jones, Mohamed Sanu, and Tyler Eifert’s Injury, but it is reasonable to expect Carston to have two serviceable quarterbacks.
David Johnson had a breakout finish to his rookie season. In the final 5 games in which he started for the Arizona Cardinals, Johnson averaged 22.96 points per game. GIven that it was a small sample size, it is no guarantee that he can continue with that production, but with his pass catching ability and his power running style, he is worth every penny. HD’s other star running back is headed a different direction. Jamaal Charles has been a superstar in the league for quite some time. In years he has been healthy, Charles has been a top 10 running back every year but one since he entered the league and was the top running back in 2014. But after having an ACL tear for the second time last season, Hurricane Ditka should be concerned about what he can bring to the table in 2016. That may put the pressure on Latavius Murray who was third in rush attempts in 2015. With Jack Del Rio saying that he would like Murray to have even more touches, it is safe to say that if healthy, his #10 2015 running back ranking may be just the floor for Murray.
WR’s : B-
After taking running backs with his first two picks, Carston Clark got quite lucky with Demaryius Thomas falling to him in the third round. Since 2012, Thomas has never had less than 1,300 Yards and 140 Targets, and there is no way quarterback play can be that much worse than it was in 2015 with Peyton Manning and Brock Osweiler. Donte Moncrief should be viewed as receiver 1a for the Indianapolis Colts behind TY Hilton. Moncrief and Andrew Luck were creating quite the connection before luck went down to Injury last season. Add in the production of new Lions receiver Marvin Jones, who outperformed Golden Tate in the preseason, and a trio of 1st or 2nd year receivers in Devin Funchess, Sterling Shepard, and Tajae Sharpe and Clark should be able to find a group that can give him better than average production.
Zach Miller is a guy, that’s about it. He did have games of 28,19,13, and 11 points last season, and with Martellus Bennett out of town, he will be the #1 guy, but still. Not a lot should be expected of the Bears TE.