Getting back on board with Ryan Mathews ... sort of

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I saw that you like the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos for the Super Bowl. If that's the case, why would you not start Peyton Manning over Russell Wilson? - @TheMilesMiller (via Twitter)

Michael Fabiano: Good question, and the answer is simple. I have more faith in the Seahawks getting to the Super Bowl than the Broncos, so I went with Wilson over Manning. Also keep in mind that as spectacular as his numbers were during the regular season, we all know that Manning hasn't had as much success in the postseason during his illustrious career. Remember 2013, when the Broncos had home-field advantage and still went down to Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens? So while I do like Denver, I see Seattle as the favorite to reach New Jersey.

What do you think of Ryan Mathews? Were his last five games a sign of things to come? - @peter_spinale (via Twitter)

M.F.: We have seen this before from Mathews, as he ranked an impressive eighth in fantasy points among running backs in 2011. He went on to become a complete bust the following season. So while he was among the best fantasy players at his position over the final weeks of 2013, I'm not ranking Mathews that highly heading into the 2014 campaign. Instead, I'll list him as a No. 2 fantasy back who I would still be more comfortable with as a high-end flex starter. It's not like Mathews has burned me in the past or anything!

How do you feel about Julio Jones and Percy Harvin for next season? - @Lucas_Farinha (via Twitter)

M.F.: I have the utmost confidence in Jones, who was on pace for over 1,600 yards before being lost for the season due to an injured foot. If he falls past the second round, Jones should be seen as a nice draft value. He's a No. 1 fantasy wideout. As for Harvin, he'll be the definition of risk-reward in 2014 drafts. His talent is unmistakable, but the Florida product is also not the most durable wide receiver in the league. In fact, Harvin has missed a combined 22 games over the last two seasons. That makes him more of a No. 2 wideout who I would feel safer with as a high-end No. 3 option.

Where will the top 2013 fantasy rookies like Le'Veon Bell, Giovani Bernard, Andre Ellington, Eddie Lacy and Zac Stacy be drafted next season? - @BradSall (via Twitter)

M.F.: Lacy and Bell are virtual locks to be drafted in the first round of most leagues, at least the ones where running backs are still valued as the most important fantasy position. Stacy will be off the board in the second or third round as a No. 2 fantasy runner, while Bernard will be selected in either the third or fourth round. The Bengals back could experience a rise in value if he sees more of a featured role in the offense next season, but that's no lock with BenJarvus Green-Ellis under contract for one more year. As for Ellington, his status is tied to the status of Rashard Mendenhall. If the Cardinals decide to retain his services, Ellington would be more of a middle-round flex option. Should the team make Ellington their top runner, he'll be a serious sleeper candidate.

Who will be the No. 1 overall pick in standard 2014 drafts? - @jtbbears (via Twitter)

M.F.: The simple answer is Jamaal Charles, who torched the competition and led countless fantasy leaguers to a championship. But how realistic is it for him to be the top-producing runner in back-to-back seasons? Well, the last player at the position to accomplish that feat was LaDainian Tomlinson ... in 2006-2007. With that said, I wouldn't be shocked to see LeSean McCoy selected ahead of Charles in a lot of drafts. Regardless, you can be certain that one of those two superstars will be the first player drafted in 2014.

How highly would you draft Josh Gordon next season? - @MarcFonti (via Twitter)

M.F.: Gordon was the best wide receiver in fantasy football this season, even ahead of superstar Calvin Johnson. I would still prefer Megatron between the two wideouts heading into next season, but I can't see a scenario that doesn't see Gordon come off the board in Round 2. He's maybe the most electric young playmaker in the entire league, and he proved in 2013 that he can produce big numbers regardless of who is under center. Remember, Gordon caught passes from Jason Campbell, Brian Hoyer and Brandon Weedon. That's not exactly the who's who of NFL signal-callers.

Where would you draft Doug Martin and Vincent Jackson in 2014? - @wsirwin33 (via Twitter)

M.F.: Martin won't warrant a first-round selection as he did this past season, but he will come off the board no later than Round 3 in 2014. In fact, the "Muscle Hamster" will likely be picked in the second round in countless re-drafts. That assumes, of course, that he has no setbacks in his return from an injured shoulder. Jackson, who finished 14th in fantasy points among wideouts in what has to be considered at least a slightly disappointing season, is locked in as a No. 2 fantasy receiver. He'll come off the board somewhere in the neighborhood of the fifth or sixth stanza.

Which wide receiver would you retain: Keenan Allen or Randall Cobb? - @stew_jordan (via Twitter)

M.F.: Allen is coming off a solid rookie season, posting 1,046 yards, eight touchdowns and close to 150 fantasy points. Still, I'm siding with Cobb between these two young and talented receivers. While he did miss a lot of the 2013 campaign with a broken leg, he's already back from the ailment and made an instant impact in last week's huge win over the Chicago Bears. Cobb is also a more versatile player than Allen, and he has an advantage at quarterback with Aaron Rodgers throwing him the football. Sure, Philip Rivers is a nice signal-caller, but Rodgers ranks higher than him at the position.

Is Nick Foles worth keeping ahead of Drew Brees? I would lose a second-round pick for Brees and a 16th rounder for Foles. - @dfranc11 (via Twitter)

Good fantasy Luck in 2014?

Andrew Luck established himself as a top five fantasy QB in 2013. Michael Fabiano determines if Luck stays there in 2014. More ...

M.F.: Foles has a boatload of upside in the stat sheets, but releasing Brees back into the pool of available players is a tough call. He's finished no worse than second in fantasy points among quarterbacks in five of the last six years, making him the most consistent player at his position. As much as I like Foles and as much of a steal he would be for a 16th-round selection, I still prefer keeping the proven asset in Brees.

I can retain two players from Andrew Luck, Giovani Bernard, Ray Rice and Julio Jones. Who should I keep? - @rymarshy (via Twitter)

M.F.: Rice would have been the obvious choice at this time last season, but things have changed after a disappointing 2013 campaign. If you're in a league that values quarterbacks, then Luck and Jones are your two best keepers. If it's a PPR league and you can easily acquire a solid signal-caller in the re-draft, however, then keeping Bernard and Jones makes more sense.

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on NFL.com and NFL Network and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Have a burning question on anything fantasy related? Tweet it to @Michael_Fabiano or send a question via Facebook!

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