- Michael Rothstein, ESPN Staff Writer
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You know football season is starting to creep up a little bit more when this comes out – the first Top 200 fantasy rankings for the 2014 NFL season.
While Adrian Peterson unsurprisingly leads said rankings, a number of Detroit players litter the Top 200. Here are where some of those players stand – and a quick thought on where their 2014 season might end up.
Calvin Johnson (No. 7 player, No. 1 wide receiver): Johnson could see a dip in catches in 2014 with the additions of Golden Tate and Eric Ebron to the offense, but having those two players to help spread out the field could mean more yards and yards after catch for Johnson.
Reggie Bush (No. 29 player, No. 15 running back): Bush is in an interesting situation. Highly unlikely he sees over 200 carries again this season and probably doesn’t hit 1,000 yards rushing, but could see more receptions. Be wary, though, as Bush rarely plays 16 games a season, has Joique Bell as a more-than-competent handcuff and offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi’s history of using multiple backs.
Matthew Stafford (No. 39 player, No. 4 quarterback): It’s a new offense for Stafford, but despite the interceptions and inconsistency in his on-field play at some points, he is a legitimate fantasy player. He’ll still put up a ton of yards and probably a lot of touchdowns, too. He might have one of the better groups of offensive weapons in the league.
Joique Bell (No. 60 player, No. 27 running back): See what I said about Bush above? Very similar for Bell. He probably won’t see the amount of receptions Bush will out of the backfield, but he is built more like a back who could pick up short yardage, which means he could be more of a touchdown threat inside the 10-yard line. Both should put up starter-like fantasy numbers.
Golden Tate (No. 79 player, No. 34 wide receiver): This is an interesting play. Tate should end up putting up decent numbers, but they might not be consistent due to all the offensive pieces in the Lions offense. He’s going to be a good player for Detroit on the field in terms of production and wins and losses, but possibly not for fantasy value.
Eric Ebron (No. 18 tight end): He’s listed higher than Brandon Pettigrew on here, which means he should have more of a fantasy impact. It’ll be interesting to watch who has a bigger or better season, numbers-wise, Tate or Ebron.