Fantasy Focus-Marshawn Lynch holdout, Ray Rice suspension

Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: What to Watch for, Volume III

There’s no fantasy football offseason on! Be sure to check out for in-depth analysis on all the news that will affect your fantasy team in 2014!

Each week during the season NFL Network and Fantasy Football Editor Michael Fabiano joins’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hi-lights from our most recent conversation (July 25th) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

How does the Marshawn Lynch holdout affect his fantasy value?

“Now that Lynch is holding out, there are some major question marks because if you look at the history of running backs who held out, it’s not been good: Chris Johnson a few years ago, Larry Johnson, Stephen Jackson. A lot of times, the season they hold out, they either get hurt or their numbers drop. It’s a scary trend to look at, especially when you consider Marshawn Lynch has had a very heavy workload over the last three years. If this is a short holdout, Lynch’s value is not going to be affected very much. If this thing drags on, and I think this thing has the look of being a holdout that could drag on, you’re going to have to drop Marshawn Lynch on your running back rankings. Christine Michael all the sudden is going to be this big sleeper. He would have been a big breakout guy in 2015 because Lynch’s contract is up and you’d think that he was going to take over. Now with the Lynch situation, he’s even more firmly on the radar in a fantasy perspective.”

What other fantasy value do you see on the Seattle Seahawks?

“(Russell Wilson) sort of is what he is. He is a low-end QB1 that’s probably going to be drafted after the eighth to tenth round and he is one of those fantasy targets for owners who wait on quarterbacks like me. I don’t think his value is going to change a whole lot. Hopefully Percy Harvin can stay healthy. That would be a big help for Wilson’s value. None of the wide receivers outside of Harvin are really valuable outside of the later rounds. Really, if you look at it, the most valuable players outside of Russell Wilson and Percy Harvin might be the Seahawks defense with the situation with Marshawn Lynch. It’s a situation you definitely have to pay attention to as a fantasy owner.”

Where is Ray Rice’s fantasy value?

“I thought he was going to be suspended for more than two games. That, from a fantasy perspective, is a positive. Although, it’s hard to talk about fantasy football when you’re talking about this situation he’s coming out of. Bernard Pierce’s is certainly on the rise, but not as much as it could have been if the suspension were longer. Let’s hope that being in an offense with Gary Kubiak, who’s had a lot of success with running backs during his career, will help kick-start Ray Rice because last year, he was downright dreadful. I wouldn’t be drafting him as something more than an RB3, which means he’s a flex starter.”

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