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Player Spotlight: Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis Rams (1 Viewer)

Jason Wood

Zoo York
2013 Player Spotlight Series

One of Footballguys best assets is our message board community. The Shark Pool is, in our view, the best place on the internet to discuss, debate and analyze all things fantasy football. In what's become an annual tradition, the Player Spotlight series is a key part of the preseason efforts. As many of you know, we consider the Player Spotlight threads the permanent record for analyzing the fantasy prospects of the player in question. This year, we plan to publish more than 140 offensive spotlights covering the vast majority of expected skill position starters.

As always we will post a list of players to be discussed each week. Those threads will remain open for the entire preseason, and should be a central point to discuss expectations for the player in question. Importantly, analysis done in the first week of posting will be part of the permanent record in two ways. 1) At the end of the week, we will tally the projections into a consensus. 2) We will select a number of pull quotes from forum contributors who make a compelling statement or observation. Both the projections and pull quotes will be part of a published article on the main website.

Thread Topic: Sam Bradford, QB, St. Louis Rams

Player Page Link: Sam Bradford Player Page

Each article will include:

  • Detailed viewpoint from a Footballguys staff member
  • Highlighted member commentary from the message board threads
  • FBG Projections
  • Consensus Member Projections

The Rules

In order for this thread to provide maximum value, we ask that you follow a few simple guidelines:

  • Focus commentary on the player (or players) in question, and your expectations for said player (or players)
  • Back up your expectations in whatever manner you deem appropriate; avoid posts that simply say "I hate him" or "He's the best"
  • Avoid redundancies or things like "good posting" ... this should be about incremental analysis or debate

While not a requirement, we strongly encourage you to provide your own projections for the player (players):

Projections should include:

  • For QBs: Attempts, Completions, Passing Yards, Passing TDs, Ints, Rush Attempts, Rush Yards, Rush TDs
  • For RBs: Rushes, Rushing Yards, Rush TDs, Receptions, Receiving Yards, Receiving TDs
  • For WRs & TEs: Receptions, Receiving Yards, Receiving TDs

Now let's get on with the conversation! We look forward to your contributions and let me offer a personal thanks in anticipation of the great debate and analysis.

 

Gawain

Footballguy
In 2010, I dreamed of Bradford leading my dynasty team to years of success. Now, it just sags like a heavy load. I'm a firm believer that if a QB can't crack the top-10 in his first three seasons, it's safe to write him off. The offseason acquisitions by the Rams are unlikely to pay dividends year one, with the exception of Jared Cook. He hasn't completed at higher than 60% and that was in his rookie year. His highest YPA was a pedestrian 6.7, he plays for a coach who likes to play ball-control football and gets a quarter of his games against SF and Sea.

330 completions, 550 attempts, 3575 yards (6.5 YPA), 20 TD, 12 INT

40 rushes, 140 yards, 1 TD

 

RBM

Footballguy
Signs point to him being unleashed with all the weapons they added and not much sign of a running attack, yet I still have a hard time seeing that happen.

 

mphtrilogy

Footballguy
Well, this is it. Make or break time. He still has Shotty, but despite that I see 3800 yards, 27 tds.

Borderline QB1, but would still ranke him outside of Top15 to start the season.

High Risk (Schotty, Injury) / High Reward (Austin & Co).

 

Mr Miyagi

Footballguy
Great Talent, and now has some tools to work with, but I just can't see him being what we or some of us thought he would be.

 

TheDirtyWord

Footballguy
Bradford’s career has been a curious one to say the least after a rookie year that saw praised significantly despite not averaging 6 YPA, his 2nd year was almost a carbon copy of Matthew Stafford’s injury plagued 2nd year. While Bradford did not breakout in Year 3 like Stafford did, he righted the ship to a certain extent under the steadying hand of Jeff Fisher. With 3700+ yards and a respectable 6.7 YPA despite not having anyone to throw to (other than Danny Amendola for a few games), Bradford took himself off the bust train. But he didn’t board the fast track either. And as such, it almost feels like as Bradford enters into his 4th season, most peoples perception of him simply doesn’t recall the incredibly prolific QB he was in college. When you factor in that he missed most of his final season at Oklahoma, you have to go back to 2008 to visit a time when Bradford put defenses on their heels.

When you look at the Rams, you see a lot of potential in their skills positions, but precious little track record. Think about their WR’s.

Chris Givens; 2nd year
Brian Quick; 2nd year
Tavon Austin; rookie
Stedman Bailey; rookie
Daryl Richardson; 2nd year
Isaiah Pead; 2nd year
Zac Stacy; rookie
Lance Kendricks; 3rd year

Jared Cook is likely the senior statesman amongst this bunch and his career has been defined by the question of ‘what if’.

The fact is, it’s difficult to evaluate Bradford because aside from Steven Jackson, the Rams have had perhaps the worst collection of skill position talent in the NFL during that time. And with Jackson gone, the burden now falls entirely on Bradford to make the Rams his team. Can the combination of Richardson/Pead/Stacy give the Rams a viable rushing attack? Is Tavon Austin the second coming of Percy Harvin. Can Brian Quick translate his physical talent to the NFL and start to have an impact? Is Jared Cook finally poised to become a true #1 TE by which you can build your passing game around?

The interesting thing about this years crop of QB’s is that because the perception is that it goes 12 deep, QB’s at least at this point are going far later in drafts. Here is no draft urgency at all. Bradford is going QB21 at the moment on FFC. But in terms of emerging upside, if you look at the QB’s going 13-20, you have:

Eli – can re-establish himself as a QB1 if Nicks is healthy
Vick – not buying. A bridge QB at this juncture
Dalton – seems to have a talent ceiling despite presence of Green
Big Ben – woefully short of offensive playmakers
Flacco – Until he brings his post-season performance to regular season, firmly a QB2
Cutler – Other than Marshall, no weapons and LT still might get Cutler killed
Rivers - O-Line an issue as well plus a dearth of weapons
Schaub – Have transitioned into ground and pound

When you look at the totality of these QB’s situations, I think Bradford ranks quite well in terms of upside potential. It’s a bet for sure, but none of the other QB’s with the exception of Eli IMO possesses the type of tangible upside Bradford does. It’s not that I think Bradford is a better QB than a lot of the names on that list, it’s just that I think his situation is starting to ripen for 2013. His O-Line was bolstered by the signing of Jake Long. Now consider that St. Louis led the league in sacks (52) and finished 12th in total defense…well from my POV, the Rams can be a real competitive outfit in 2013 and I wouldn’t be surprised to see them win 9 games in 2013 with an eye toward becoming a significant player in 2014. But what needs to happen this year is the true emergence of Bradford and while I don’t think he’ll be prolific, he’ll come through with his best season to date and will show himself ready to become the leader of this team. I'm obviously trending optimistic, but I like how this team is being built.

Prediction: 368 Completions, 607 Pass Attempts, 4196 Passing Yards, 24 TD’s, 11 INT’s

 

amicsta

Footballguy
Really like Bradford as a value this year in drafts. While his weapons are definitely unproven, they are athletic and he has a lot of them. Combine that with the addition of Jake Long to bolster the offensive line, and I think it'll be a career year for Bradford. I expect them to utilize Cook and Austin up the seams and over the middle of the field while Givens makes some big plays outside.

Projection: 569 attempts, 353 completions (62%), 7.5 YPA, 4268 yards, 28 TD, 12 INT

 

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