Monday, August 22, 2011

Syracuse Orange Fantasy Football Draft

By Ben Glidden

Last weekend, I participated in a fantasy draft for the upcoming NFL season. While choosing from the likes of Aaron Rodgers and Hakeem Nicks, I got thinking. Who would be the number one pick in a Syracuse Orange Fantasy Football Draft?

Photo by Jason Rostkowski
There are many options for a number one overall selection. First, you would have to figure out what position you'd like to draft first.

At quarterback, of course, is Ryan Nassib. Last season, Nassib completed 202 passes for a total of 2,334 yards. His completion percentage was right around 50 percent. He threw 19 touchdown passes but he also tossed eight interceptions. He didn't lose much of his receiving core, with the exception of Marcus Sales, so it looks like he'll have some solid targets downfield. If he displays the confidence we saw from him in the Pinstripe Bowl, he'll have a great season.

Antwon Bailey will get the start this season in the backfield. This pick would come with all kinds of question marks. Bailey didn't start last season but he got a considerable amount of carries behind Delone Carter. He rushed for 554 yards on just 114 attempts. He averaged around five yards a carry and scored a pair of touchdowns. But how will Bailey do when he is getting the bulk of the carries? Can he step up as a starter? The good thing about Bailey is that he catches the ball very well. He had more receptions last year than many of the wide receivers. He caught 35 passes for just over 300 yards. But running back is an injury prone position. If your number one overall draft pick goes down early in the season with an injury, you'll be in trouble.

At the wide receiver position, there are a couple different options. I definitely wouldn't draft Sales, lets get that out of the way. My number one option at this position would be Van Chew. He had 41 receptions for 661 yards last season. He found the end zone just five times but averaged about 15 yards per reception. Another option could be Alec Lemon. He dropped a few crucial passes last season so hopefully he improves this year. He caught 32 passes for about 400 yards and four touchdowns last year.

Nick Provo would be the obvious choice if you were going for a tight end. He stepped up big for the Orange in 2010 and will be a big target for Nassib in 2011. Look for him to improve on his 365 yards receiving from last season.

You don't usually draft a kicker first round of a fantasy draft, but if you did, Ross Krautman would be the obvious selection. As a freshman last season, he kicked six field goals that were over 40 yards. Coming back for his Sophomore year, he will look to improve on those numbers. If you want a kicker first round, go Krautman.

After considering all of this information, I'm ready to make my selection.

With the first pick of the 2011 Syracuse Orange Fantasy Football Draft, I select Ryan Nassib. We know he can perform, so rather than taking a risk, I'm going with the obvious pick. Nassib's productivity this season will definitely get me first place in this fake fantasy football league.

Who would you first pick be? Tell us by commenting or tweeting us @OSliceSports

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