Are you entering a fantasy football league? Tired of losing due to bad picks? Do you need to know who the top fantasy football players to pick are?
Look no further. We’ve got you covered. We’ve done extensive research and read what experts say in order to bring you a list of the best players that can help you win your fantasy league.
Top Fantasy Football Players: Offense
When it comes to fantasy football, it always starts with the offense. Most top picks will go for running backs, but wide receivers and quarterbacks are also up there.
Read below for our predictions of top performers in 2021.
1. Christian McCaffrey, RB, Panthers
McCaffrey tops the list of CBS and ESPN fantasy football top players. He played only a few games last year, but he still produced high enough fantasy numbers to match his 2018 and 2019 seasons.
Many people expect him to get 400 touches this season.
2. Derrick Henry, RB, Titans
Henry has led the league in carries, rushing yards, and rushing TDs in the past two seasons. He was amongst the five top fantasy football players in 2019 and 2020.
He’s in his prime, and there are no signs of him slowing down.
3. Dalvin Cook, RB, Vikings
Dalvin Cook is one of the top fantasy football players in 2021, according to almost every expert. He had a strong 2020 and is expected to carry that success into 2021.
The only question is whether Cook can play all 17 games. If so, he might edge McCaffrey for the top spot.
4. Patrick Mahomes, QB, Chiefs
Quarterbacks usually get picked a bit down the road. Most people can agree that Mahomes, one of the best QBs in the NFL, is the safest option for fantasy owners.
He’s expected to have another big year and should come on top of fantasy football top players by position regarding QBs.
5. Saquon Barkley, RB, Giants
Barkley missed most of 2020 due to injury. Before that, he had two great seasons in 2018 and 2019. This year, he’s considered one of the top flex players in fantasy football and is forecasted to be one of the top backs pushing for 25 touches every game.
6. Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Cowboys
Elliott had a somewhat mediocre season in 2020 for his standards, mainly due to the injury of Dak Prescott.
Still, Elliott remains one of the top overall fantasy football players for 2021, and with Prescott healthy, the world’s most valuable team, the Cowboys, seem to have a promising future.
7. Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs
Travis Kelce has been dominant in the TE position. He’s finished in the top four in the last five seasons and had a record 2020. This year, he remains one of the top players for fantasy football outside running backs, and he is forecasted to have another outstanding season.
8. Alvin Kamara, RB, Saints
Kamara enters this year as the top-scoring fantasy running back of 2020 and has been in the top five over the last few years. Most experts put him in the top fantasy football players in PPR leagues.
While the retirement of Drew Brees, holder of many records, may call the Saints’ numbers into question, Kamara is forecasted to do well this year.
9. Josh Allen, QB, Bills
Allen was one of last year’s top fantasy football players as the No.2 QB. The addition of Stefon Diggs helped the QB have a standout year. The team lost John Brown this offseason but added Emmanuel Sanders, so he is projected to have another great season.
10. Davante Adams, WR, Packers
In a field of running backs, WR Adams stands out. He was the top-scoring WR last year and is one of the top players to draft in fantasy football this year. Adams has missed 16 games since 2016, but he consistently reaches big numbers when he’s active.
11. Kyler Murray
If you missed Josh Allen or Patrick Mahomes, go for Kyler Murray. He’s one of the top fantasy football players in the QB position. He ranked in the top 10 passing and top 3 rushing attempts.
In 2020, he improved his TDs drastically from 24 to 37, and in 2021, he is expected to continue improving.
12. Jonathan Taylor, RB, Colts
Second-year Taylor is undoubtedly to be the primary back in Indianapolis. He got off to a slow start in his rookie season but was in the top-15 in the final six games. The return of Marlon Mack might limit Taylor a bit, but he’s projected to have a good year.
13. Tyreek Hill, WR, Chiefs
Hill finished as last year’s No.2 fantasy WR and is one of the top–ranked fantasy football players. He’s known as a big-play player with some booms and busts, but he’s been consistent. Last year he finished in the top 10 in 40% of games and recorded high efficiency and TDs.
14. Harrison Butker, K, Chiefs
We decided to throw in a kicker, as every team needs one. Butker is one of the top NFL fantasy football players by position. While 2020 wasn’t his best, and he finished 11th, he was in the top seven in the previous three seasons, including first place in 2019.
And with Mahomes-led offense, there will be plenty of chances for Butker to get back on track.
Top Fantasy Football Defensive Players
If you’re part of the growing trend of people choosing IDP leagues, we’ve got you covered too. We’ve listed the best defensive players we think you should pick to win your league.
1. Darius Leonard, LB, Colts
Most experts put Darius Leonard on the list of fantasy football top defensive players. After a dominant season last year, he signed a new contract, which will keep him with the Colts for a while.
He is in his prime and is projected to have another big year as a strong Colts defense.
2. Devin White, LB, Buccaneers
White enjoyed his second season in the NFL, and he finished as the No.1 IDP player last season. His nine sacks were particularly impressive. He’s young and energetic, and he is using the advantage of having veterans around him.
When it comes to defense, Devin White is one of the NFL fantasy football top players. And having the GOAT Tom Brady, a holder of many records, driving the offense, the team can reach far again and collect some serious fantasy points.
3. Roquan Smith, LB, Bears
Smith is a spectacular player and one of the top individual defensive players in fantasy football.
In 2020, the Bears linebacker was 1st in impact plays, 2nd in solo tackles, 6th in combined tackles, and 2nd in tackles for a loss. If 2021 is anywhere near that, expect Smith to be high up the fantasy rankings.
4. Jamal Adams, S, Seahawks
When he got traded to Seattle, there were concerns if Adams could replicate previous seasons. He did that and more, including 9.5 sacks.
When it comes to defensive top playoff fantasy football players, look no further. Even if Jamal Adams cannot record the same numbers he achieved in 2020, he is still projected to stand out in 2021.
5. Myles Garrett, DE, Browns
Garrett played a big role in the Browns’ first playoff appearance in 18 years. Even though he missed two games due to COVID-19 and claimed that he didn’t feel 100% after, he still recorded 18 impact plays.
The team is expected to have another good season, and so is Garrett.
6. Budda Baker, S, Cardinals
Baker is one of the top defensive players for fantasy football. For the past two seasons, the safety has put LB1-worthy numbers and is projected to surpass 90 solo tackles and 30 assists in 2021. He’s a player you should not sleep on.
7. Joey Bosa, DE, Chargers
In 2020, Bosa signed a new $120 million contract, making him the highest-paid defensive player. He didn’t justify the sum that year, but he is projected to have a much better 2021.
8. Blake Martinez, LB, Giants
Martinez is one of the top projected fantasy football players in defense. You can call him consistent, as he has finished in the top 10 LBs for four seasons straight — and in the top 5 in three of the last five seasons.
On top of that, Martinez has achieved 150+ total tackles.
Fantasy Football Top Players: The Sleepers
While everyone wants to pick the top performers, some players might not be selected first — but will outperform their draft position. Read below for the players we think will bring valuable points to your fantasy team.
1, Ryan Tannehill
With a new offensive coordinator, Todd Downing, some changes could be seen in the Titans’ offense.
Derrick Henry is one of the top–rated fantasy football players and will undoubtedly be heavily involved, but having Julio Jones and A.J. Brown means that Tannehill has two very talented wide receivers to pick.
2. Tyrell Williams
Lyons receiver Williams will be heavily involved this season. The team lost Marvin Jones Jr. and Kenny Golladay, leaving Tyrell Williams as the most experienced receiver on the team.
3. James Conner
Cardinals’ running back James Conner might not be on many people’s top fantasy football players list, but he’s worth consideration. He’s coming off two disappointing seasons with the Steelers, but the change of scenery is expected to be a significant factor.
He’s expected to outperform five other running backs picked before him, including Leonard Fournette and Javonte Williams.
4. Laviska Shenault Jr.
Jaguars’ QB Trevor Lawrence is one of the top rookie fantasy football players and odds leader to win rookie of the year. That means big offensive numbers from him.
DJ Chark Jr. is expected to have hand surgery, which will give more playing time for Laviska Shenault. The second-year receiver looks stronger and leaner in pre-season and is ready to make a big jump.
5. Tua Tagovailoa
The Miami Dolphins drafted Jaylen Waddle, who has experience playing with Tagovailoa. The team also added a deep play threat, Will Fuller. Tagovailoa might not be in CBS or ESPN top–rated fantasy football players, but we think he might outperform earlier picks.
6. Javian Hawkins
A rookie running back, Hawkins’ ADP is 229, which puts him in the free-agent pool. But with no faith in Mike Davis as a long-term back, Hawkins might find himself seeing a lot more action than anticipated.
8. Blake Jarwin
Cowboys’ tight end Jarwin is coming off an ACL tear, causing him to miss all but one game last season. He might not be one of the top fantasy football players picks, but many models predict he’ll outperform his ADP.
With Dak Prescott back, the Cowboys’ offense will be lethal, and Jarwin will most likely be able to find open spaces.
Football is the most-watched sport in the US, and it’s no surprise. The excitement around football season is unmatched. What makes it even better is winning your fantasy league.
After reading our top fantasy football players list, we know you will have the information you need to be that winner.
Who is the number 1 fantasy player?
The lists of ESPN and CBS for top fantasy football players put Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey as the No.1 fantasy player this year.
Who are the top players for fantasy football?
Running backs rule fantasy football. Many experts’ top 10 lists are only running backs. On everyone’s list are Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook, Saquon Barkley, Derrick Henry, Alvin Kamara, and a sole TE, Travis Kelce.
What player has the most fantasy points ever?
LaDainian Tomlinson scored 481.1 points in 2006, the most ever. He averaged more than 30 points in each game. His 348 carries were good for 1,815 rushing yards and 28 TDs. He also caught 56 passes for 508 yards and three TDs.
Who scored the most fantasy points in 2020?
2020 saw many QBs in the top, but No.1 went to Josh Allen of the Bills. He managed 4,544 passing yards, good for 37 TDs, 421 rushing yards, and 8 TDs.
Who are the top injured players in fantasy football?
For week one, the best injured players that are questionable are Saquon Barkley, Stefon Diggs, DeAndre Hopkins, A.J. Brown, and Justin Jefferson.
Who are the best sleepers in fantasy football?
We project that QBs like Ryan Tannehill and Tua Tagovailoa are sleepers to pick. Also, consider Tyrell Williams, James Conner. For a more extensive list, read our section above on sleepers.
What order should I pick in fantasy football?
Your first pick needs to be an elite running back. If you’re lucky, you can get McCaffrey or Cook. The second pick should be an additional running back.
For your third pick, choose an elite WR, TE, or if you can, get your hands on the top three QB. Pick four can be a QB if you didn’t select one earlier. Further, with pick five, pick a second WR.
Who is the best QB in fantasy football?
Most experts agree that the top-tier QBs in fantasy are Bills’ Josh Allen, Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes, Cardinals’ Kyler Murray, and Packers’ Aaron Rodgers.
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- Sports Illustrated
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