It’s exhibition time in the world of real football, but it may be the most important time of year for fantasy football owners.
Team names and mock drafts reign supreme as summer cools to let fall enter. A misstep at either spot could lead to months of losses and embarrassment no waiver-wire add, trade or handcuff could fix.
So get ahead of the game as soon as possible. In this day and age, an overwhelming amount of information presents itself on a daily basis, so there’s no excuse to hit the blank team-name space or mock draft unprepared.
Below, let’s take a look at some solid team names and dial in on one of the most difficult draft positions of all: wide receiver.
Top Team Names
Magic Mike Evans
Some of the best team names around incorporate a solid amount of pop culture, and no, nobody could knock this name if the wins pile up.
Magic is an apt way to describe Tampa Bay Buccaneers wideout Mike Evans, too. As a rookie last season, he posted the 11th-most points at the position with 68 grabs for 1,051 yards and 12 scores.
This year, Evans gets a potential upgrade under center with rookie Jameis Winston, so this name might hit home in a big way.
Le’Veon on a Prayer
Call this the perfect name for Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell.
Owners brave enough to draft Bell have to hope his two-game suspension to start the season doesn’t hurt his form. They also have to hope 534 carries and 171 targets combined over the past two seasons don’t wear him down.
It’s a gamble. Maybe a prayer. No matter how the draft goes for an owner, this name will treat them right.
May the Forsett Be With You
This name fits as quality advice for any owner wanting to land a high-upside option in the second round of fantasy drafts.
It concerns Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett, who is a pretty easy back to overlook. Last year was his breakout season with his 1,266 yards and eight scores on the ground as an every-down back who catches passes well out of the backfield (263 yards last season).
Drafting Forsett and rolling with this name works. It can adapt to any scenario, though, just like the versatile back from which it draws inspiration.
- Discount Belichick
- You Sankeyd my Battleship
- It’s Always Runny in Philadelphia
- The Walking Dez
- Forgetting Brandon Marshall
- You Kaepernick the Future
- Manziel in Distress
Brandin Cooks, NO
In other words, owners willing to roll the dice a tad earlier might have quite the steal on their hands.
Granted, Cooks only caught 53 of his 70 targets for 550 yards and three scores as a rookie. He also dabbled in the running game with seven totes for 73 yards and a score, but appeared in just 10 games.
Now for the good news—Cooks has been healthy all offseason and just went off against New England with four catches for 117 yards and a score. As Pro Football Talk captured, he even grabbed the attention of Patriots coach Bill Belichick:
It’s just the preseason, sure, but what Cooks’ average draft position (ADP) doesn’t seem to take into account is the offseason departures of Kenny Stills and Jimmy Graham. Those two combined for 209 targets last year.
Cooks is explosive and about to see a major uptick in usage as the No. 1 option, meaning he’s going to outplay his ADP with ease, health permitting.
Jordan Matthews, PHI
Sometimes all a wideout needs is more opportunities and better play under center.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews gets both of those this season. Gone is former runningmate Jeremy Maclin, as is quarterback Nick Foles.
As ESPN.com‘s fantasy analysis notes, Matthews exploded last year and was the No. 11 fantasy receiver from Week 9 and beyond as his role increased out of the slot. Keep in mind Maclin is gone, who saw a team-high 143 targets.
Replacing Foles under center is Sam Bradford, who has a better arm and accuracy than any player the Eagles rostered at the position last year. Matthews seems a lock to act as the No. 1 wideout and won’t have a limited rookie beginning to his season, so outplaying an ADP of 3.10 as the 15th receiver taken in drafts shouldn’t be much of an issue.
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