Marcas Grant: If you're stuck between those two names, Charles is the way to go. He won't catch as many passes as Megatron, but he'll still get his share. Plus he'll see even more touches as a runner -- those yards still count, even in PPR! Now this might give you even more consternation, but I'll add another name to your mix -- LeSean McCoy. With the Eagles threatening to run even more plays this season than last, McCoy will be on the field plenty in 2014. Don't let the presence of Darren Sproles worry you. The two of them will line up on the field at the same time so there's little concern about McCoy coming off the field. And Sproles is more likely to take the targets left behind by DeSean Jackson than to steal anything away from Shady.
M.G.: Slow your roll, homie. Foster will certainly look a little more like the back that fantasy owners have fallen in love with in over the past four seasons, but a return to a spot in the top three doesn't look to be in the cards. He missed half of last season with a back injury and it seems to be flaring up again so far this preseason. Add to it that Foster is also being bothered by a hamstring injury and there are plenty of reasons to be concerned. It will be interesting to see him get on the field considering how awful the Texans looked in their preseason opener. Your comment that people are "sleeping on Foster" isn't exactly on point. We're aware of him. We're just taking a more measured view. If you decide to take the chance on Foster, you'd be well-served to grab Jonathan Grimes as a handcuff for added insurance.
M.G.:Negative, Ghostrider. There's no real net gain here. In fact, you're losing out. Both running backs in the deal are pegged to finish among the top five at their position. But while Calvin Johnson is a first round pick and likely to once again challenge to be the top receiver in fantasy football, there are lots of questions surrounding how much Andre Johnson is going to be affected with a new quarterback in Houston. Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don't make and this is one you're better off leaving alone.
M.G.: You should accept that trade before someone comes to their senses and realizes that they've just made a horrible mistake. In Charles, you're getting a top five (and potentially top three) fantasy back while Bryant could make a bid to be the top wideout in fantasy football this season. And while you're giving up the presumptive No. 1 overall selection in McCoy, Tavon Austin stumbled through a forgettable rookie season and is mired in a crowded Rams receiving corps that doesn't have a true leader. This has nothing but upside from where you sit.
M.G.: It's certainly possible, but there are reasons to be a little wary of Beast Mode this season. Over the past three campaigns, Lynch has averaged 300 carries, 1,350 yards and 12 touchdowns. Those are strong numbers, but history has generally shown that running backs have a hard time sustaining that level of work and production for longer than three years. That could have been one of the underlying reasons for Lynch's holdout, however brief it was. The Seahawks also realize that the time is fast approaching when there will be a new running back to carry the load. While this won't be the season that Robert Turbin or Christine Michael see a large number of carries, they could start to get some auditions at Lynch's expense. Beast Mode will still be one of the first five running backs taken, but beware that a decline is coming eventually.
M.G.: Speaking of the Rams ... the name that concerns me most in that group is Zac Stacy. Last season, he had 250 carries and caught another 26 passes as part of a breakout rookie campaign. But much of that work came as a result of circumstances. Injuries and poor performances by the three backs ahead of Stacy on the depth chart opened the door while an injury to Sam Bradford changed St. Louis' offensive plan. This year with Bradford hopefully healthy and a revamped group of wideouts, the Rams should throw the ball a little more often. It would be a big surprise to see Stacy have the same type of workload in 2014.
M.G.: The chances of me ever drafting Rob Gronkowski are pretty slim since I won't be thinking about the position until at least the fifth round. I certainly would be too worried about his health issues to spend a second or third round pick on him -- especially after reports that he's "50-50" to play in Week 1. Remember last season when Gronk was on the verge of returning ... for nine weeks? This seems eerily similar to that same situation. Even if he is back for the regular season opener, he's been held back throughout training camp and it's fair to wonder if the accumulation of injuries and surgeries are going to start to take their toll. It might be time to move Julius Thomas up to the No. 2 tight end spot on your board.
M.G.: You're better off saying no on this one. There are big expectations for Bishop Sankey, but he didn't look particularly great in his first preseason game and he's expected to compete with Shonn Greene all season long for touches. Meanwhile, Andre Ellington is going to be the unquestioned workhorse in Arizona with no real threats to steal any of his carries. Even with the chance to move up in the draft, it's not likely that you're going to find a running back that could collect 20-25 touches per game. Stay with what you've got.
M.G.: I haven't forgotten about Kenny Stills. I just don't put a lot of stock in wideouts whose primary job is to run windsprints. Stills ran a higher percentage of "go" routes than any other receiver last season. While it makes him a home run threat, it's also a fairly low percentage route. If you could guarantee me that Stills would catch a 50-yard touchdown every week, I'd be his biggest cheerleader. Meanwhile, Brandin Cooks projects to line up in the slot where he'll catch more short passes and allow his speed and agility to rack up the YAC. It's that kind of consistency that I'll take over the potential big play threat every time.
M.G.: The safe play is to go all offense -- Demaryius Thomas, Eddie Lacy, Montee Ball and Andre Ellington. There is a decline in the offing for Peyton Manning simply because the video game numbers he posted last season just aren't sustainable. As for your defensive players, it's a pretty nice collection but generally speaking such a small percentage of them are selected in drafts that even if you don't get the same guys you had last season, you should be able to find suitable replacements.
M.G.: Oh ... uh ... actually, I thought you were someone else. Um, yeah. Sorry about that. Wow, this is awkward.