Peterson still has more keeper value than Vick in 2011

I need to retain either Michael Vick or Adrian Peterson in a 12-team league. Vick was basically the reason I won the championship, so I don't know that I can drop him. Still, Peterson has been solid his whole career. Help! - P. Stanton, Canada

Michael Fabiano: Honestly, I would keep Peterson ahead of Vick. I realize that the Eagles quarterback was a fantasy superstar, but can he duplicate such an immense level of production for a second consecutive season? I doubt it. Whether it's been Tom Brady or Chris Johnson in recent years, history has proven that players tend to fall well short of expectations after enormous statistical campaigns. Also keep in mind that there are going to be a ton of solid fantasy quarterbacks available in 2011 re-drafts. The same can't be said of true featured backs with a track record of success like Peterson. Vick is a solid keeper, but A.D. (who is also in a contract year) is still a more valuable keeper.

What does the addition of new offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels mean for the value of Sam Bradford in 2011? I have him in a dynasty league. Thanks! - S. Levine, Seattle, Wash.

M.F.: McDaniels' presence is going to mean great things for Bradford in the future. One of the most talented young quarterbacks in the league, Bradford threw for 3,512 yards and scored 19 total touchdowns as a rookie. What's more, he did it without his top two wide receivers, Mark Clayton and Donnie Avery, for most of the campaign. McDaniels was the offensive coordinator in New England when Brady broke the record for touchdown passes, and his play calling made Kyle Orton a top-notch fantasy quarterback for most of the 2010 season while in Denver. I'm not saying that Bradford will emerge into a No. 1 fantasy quarterback -- there are far too many good signal-callers for that to happen -- but he can become a much more reliable No. 2 option and matchup-based starter. In dynasty leagues, Bradford's value is clearly rising.

Peyton Hillis was lights out for most of last season, but is he a better keeper than either Frank Gore or LeSean McCoy? I can retain two of those three running backs for 2011. - F. Linke, Syracuse, N.Y.

M.F.: There is going to be a lot of change in Cleveland next season. In fact, the team already has a new coach in Pat Shurmur, who spent the last two years as the offensive coordinator in St. Louis. Also keep in mind that Montario Hardesty, who missed his rookie year with a torn ACL, will be back in the mix. In fact, he's already expected to be ready to roll at the start of training camp. That could mean fewer carries for Hillis, who was clearly burned out during the final weeks of the 2010 campaign. What that said, I think Gore and McCoy are both better keepers than Hillis at this point.

What do you think of Brandon Lloyd's long-term fantasy value? Was he a one-season wonder, or can he continue to put up huge numbers? I need to decide on retaining two wideouts from Lloyd, Larry Fitzgerald, Hakeem Nicks and Sidney Rice. - M. Woodsen, Canada

M.F.: In what was the year of the waiver wire, Lloyd was one of the most fruitful free-agent additions in fantasy football. Left undrafted in most leagues, he went on to finish as the highest-scoring player at his position on However, I don't think he has much of a chance to duplicate that level of success again. Sure, the fact that new coach John Fox has retained Mike McCoy as the team's offensive coordinator is a positive. But Fox's teams have typically leaned on the run, so there won't be the same number of three-receiver sets as were utilized under McDaniels. Also remember that Demaryius Thomas should see a bigger role in the offense in his second NFL season, so Lloyd's targets could decrease slightly in 2011. As a result, I'd keep Nicks and Fitzgerald ahead of Lloyd.

Like you, I'm a huge fan of the Dallas Cowboys with nothing to root for this postseason! A few of my friends and I have had conversations about who will be the top fantasy wideout in Big D next season between Miles Austin and Dez Bryant. What's your opinion? - L. Freeman, Austin, Texas

M.F.: Believe it or not, there was a report this week that suggested the Cowboys would entertain to trade offers for Bryant. Of course, team Vice President Stephen Jones quickly refuted the report in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, saying it was "totally wrong." Coach Jason Garrett loves Bryant's potential and is certain to give him a much bigger role in the pass attack next season. Based on upside alone, Bryant will be more coveted than Austin in 2011 fantasy drafts.

Michael, I'm in a 10-team keeper league and need to retain either Philip Rivers or Tim Tebow. Rivers is great, but Tebow was actually much better over the last three weeks of last season. Would it be nuts to retain Tebow? - F. Fisher, Philadelphia, Pa.

M.F.: Tebow did show off some major statistical potential in three starts for the Broncos, but there's still no chance I would retain him ahead of someone like Rivers. Despite the fact that he was without his top two options, Vincent Jackson and Antonio Gates, for extended periods of time, Rivers still finished fifth in fantasy points among quarterbacks and sixth overall. In fact, he threw for a career-best 4,710 yards and recorded his second season with 30 or more touchdown passes. Tebow will no doubt be a popular sleeper in 2011, but Rivers has much more appeal.

What are your thoughts on Josh Freeman? Do you think he'll be a top-10 fantasy quarterback in 2011? Also, when will you post your player rankings for next season? Thanks! - L. Samuels, England

M.F.: Freeman, a 2010 preseason super sleeper on, is quickly graduating to breakout candidate status in 2011. He showed off a ton of potential in his first full year as the Buccaneers' No. 1 quarterback, finishing with 25 touchdowns and scoring the seventh-most fantasy points at his position. In fact, Freeman scored just 10.76 fewer points than Drew Brees on That's an impressive stat. If you want to target running backs and wide receivers in the earlier rounds next season, Freeman will be a perfect middle-round option as a fantasy starter.

Michael, what are your thoughts on Darren McFadden? He finally played like a fantasy superstar last season, but I'm still not sure I should retain him ahead of Jamaal Charles. I also have Chris Johnson. Thanks! - F. Lieber, Beacon Falls, Conn.

M.F.: McFadden was a great draft value in fantasy leagues, and the fact that Hue Jackson has been promoted to head coach is a positive move for his future value. Still, I wouldn't retain him ahead of Charles. Despite losing some touches to Thomas Jones, he still finished third in fantasy points at his position on I might have a different opinion if McFadden weren't so prone to injuries, but overall Charles is the better keeper option.

I went with Tom Brady in the NFL Fantasy Playoff Challenge game (bad call!), and now I need to pick one of the four remaining quarterbacks - Jay Cutler, Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger or Mark Sanchez. Who would you start? - P. Thompson, Ohio

M.F.: You certainly weren't alone in going with Brady -- he was no doubt the starting quarterback for a large percentage of owners. Now that both he and the Patriots have been knocked out of the postseason race, I would start Rodgers in the Conference round. He's playing at a very high level this postseason, scoring a combined seven touchdowns in wins over the Eagles and Falcons. If Rodgers and the Packers can eliminate the Bears this weekend, you would receive double points from him during the Super Bowl.

I remember in the preseason you said Chad Ochocinco was going to be a bust in 2010. As a Bengals fan, I didn't agree -- of course, I was wrong! Anyway, do you see Ochocinco ever reclaiming his elite status again or will Jerome Simpson be the better Bengals wideout moving forward? - P. Thompson, Ohio

M.F.: I didn't need a crystal ball to label Ochocinco a bust, that's for sure. His numbers in 2009 weren't great, and his level of consistent production had fallen hard as well. What's more, he was destined to lose a ton of targets to Terrell Owens. The Bengals did exercise their option on Ochocinco for 2011, so barring a trade he'll be back with the team. However, he's done as an elite fantasy player. It's clear that he can no longer beat double teams on a regular basis, and I see him as little more than a reserve in most leagues. It's too soon to promote Simpson as the better option on draft day, but it's certainly not out of the realm of possibility after his impressive finish to the season.

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Have a burning question for Michael on anything fantasy football related? Leave it in our comments section or send it to!

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