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Richardson, Griffin headline potential fantasy rookie stars


The first round of the 2012 NFL Draft offered up a few potential impact fantasy players, including one in particular that could immediately make some serious noise at his position. Here are all of the offensive skill position players drafted in Round 1, and which names you need to remember (or forget) when it comes time to draft your fantasy football team.

Andrew Luck, QB, Colts (No. 1): Luck has a ton of long-term potential and will be the first overall pick in countless dynasty leagues -- he clearly has all the tools to become a future fantasy star. However, I don't see him as more than a No. 2 fantasy quarterback and matchup-based starter in most seasonal formats for 2012. Look for him to come off the board somewhere in the middle to late rounds.

Robert Griffin III, QB, Redskins (No. 2): If you expect RG3 to be the next Cam Newton, you're going to be disappointed. But his combination of skills as a passer and more importantly, a runner, makes him someone to target in the middle rounds as a potential high-end No. 2 fantasy option. He's also a dynasty-league gem.

Trent Richardson, RB, Browns (No. 3): Richardson is the best player in the Browns' offense, and he'll be one of the few true featured backs in the NFL. In fact, I can see him getting 300 carries in coach Pat Shurmur's offense. With so many questions surrounding the running back position heading into this season, I see Richardson as a potential top-10 option and worth a second- or third-rounder.

Justin Blackmon, WR, Jaguars (No. 5): The Jags don't have much to write home about at wide receiver aside from maybe Laurent Robinson (big maybe), so Blackmon should see more than his share of targets as a rookie. The downfall, of course, is that a good number of those targets will come from Blaine Gabbert. Still, Blackmon is well worth a look in the middle to late rounds.

Ryan Tannehill, QB, Dolphins (No. 8): The Dolphins landed their quarterback of the future, but Tannehill isn't going to have much value in seasonal fantasy formats with Matt Moore and David Garrard in the mix. In fact, the Texas A&M product will have much more appeal in dynasty leagues than he will in traditional leagues. He'll be waiver-wire fodder in most of those cases.

Michael Floyd, WR, Cardinals (No. 13): Floyd has some major upside, and playing opposite Larry Fitzgerald will be an advantage in his rookie campaign. However, I wonder how consistent he'll be in an offense with a superstar wideout, Early Doucet and Andre Roberts. Kevin Kolb is also a question mark at quarterback. Overall, Floyd has middle- to late-round seasonal draft appeal.

Kendall Wright, WR, Titans (No. 20) Wright is a potentially explosive wideout for the Titans, but will he see enough targets in an offense that already has Kenny Britt, Nate Washington, Damian Williams and Jared Cook? I don't think so. In seasonal formats, the Baylor product is worth no more than a late-round flier.

Brandon Weeden, QB, Browns (No. 22): Weeden, 28, will have a chance to compete with Colt McCoy for the top spot on the Browns depth chart in training camp, assuming McCoy isn't traded by then. Even if he wins the starting role, however, it's hard to project Weeden as more than waiver-wire fodder in most fantasy leagues. He'll have more dynasty value.

A.J. Jenkins, WR, 49ers (No. 30): The Niners already have Michael Crabtree, Randy Moss, Mario Manningham and Vernon Davis in their pass attack, so there isn't going to be much in the way of targets for Jenkins. He would have to make some serious noise in camp to be worth more than a late-round flier in seasonal formats. I see him as no more than a deep-league flier in a best-case scenario.

Doug Martin, RB, Buccaneers (No. 31): Fantasy owners looking for a first-round sleeper should look no further than Martin. A big-play runner with three-down potential at the NFL level, I expect Martin to emerge past LeGarrette Blount and into the starting role for new coach Greg Schiano. He is a player to watch in fantasy and could develop into a borderline No. 2 or 3 fantasy option in 2012.

David Wilson, RB, Giants (No. 32): Ahmad Bradshaw remains the Giants' top runner, but Wilson will no doubt put at least a small dent into Bradshaw's backfield touches. Considering Bradshaw's foot and ankle issues in recent seasons, Wilson could make some fantasy noise as a rookie. The former Hokie has middle- to late-round appeal and will be a top-notch handcuff for owners who land Bradshaw.

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Have a burning question on anything fantasy related? Tweet it to @Michael_Fabiano or send a question via Facebook!


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