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RotoWire150 - the Irreverent Version: Gambling on Upside

Chris Liss

Chris Liss

Chris Liss is RotoWire's Managing Editor and Host of RotoWIre Fantasy Sports Today on Sirius XM radio.

Here are my latest rankings for a standard league (1-QB, 2-RB, 3-WR, 1-TE, 1-K, 1-D; 3/6 TDs, 20/10 yardage) as of August 16. Keep in mind these are not the same as the site's because they ignore ADP, conventional wisdom, consensus and safety. This is how I'd want to draft if I don't care what anyone else on the planet thinks (Which is usually the best policy in practice).

Note also that these rankings are a one-time snapshot, and not continually updated like the rest of the ones on the site.

For a more basic and constantly updated set of rankings, check out our customized scoring systems: custom straight draft rankings, Dollar values for auctions and/or draft software.

Rank Player Pos Team Comment
1 Adrian Peterson RB MIN Quietly caught 43 passes and scored 18 TDs; needs to hold onto the rock
2 Maurice Jones-Drew RB JAC 312 carries, 53 receptions, 16 TD shows he's up to carrying full load
3 Chris Johnson RB TEN Explosive big-play machine set all-time mark with 2,509 yards from scrimmage
4 Michael Turner RB ATL NFL's prototype power runner, plus long speed, but doesn't catch passes
5 Ray Rice RB BAL 78 receptions, 2041 yards from scrimmage; not much goal-line work, though
6 Randy Moss WR NE Aging all-time great still among the elite
7 Andre Johnson WR HOU Size/speed monster heavily targeted in top-notch passing attack; underused near goal line
8 Ryan Mathews RB SD Rookie steps into ideal situation - top-notch offense, RB-friendly coach
9 Rashard Mendenhall RB PIT Power back with speed and good hands should have bigger role
10 Calvin Johnson WR DET Injuries and triple teams derailed season; sky's still the limit for freak among freaks
11 Larry Fitzgerald WR ARZ Talented enough to thrive even without Kurt Warner
12 Steven Jackson RB STL Power runner with burst and good hands, but injury history and poor offense
13 Brandon Marshall WR MIA Huge wideout will be heavily targeted in Miami - recovering from hip surgery, though
14 Frank Gore RB SF All-purpose workhorse in improving offense; needs to stay healthy
15 Miles Austin WR DAL NFL's best fantasy receiver over final 12 weeks
16 DeAngelo Williams RB CAR Elite talent would be top five were it not for Jonathan Stewart
17 Greg Jennings WR GB Reliable home-run threat for Aaron Rogers
18 Chris Wells RB ARZ Showed power and speed down the stretch; needs to stay healthy
19 Jamaal Charles RB KC Chris Johnson light in season's second half; Thomas Jones will cut into workload
20 Shonn Greene RB NYJ Speedy power back broke out during playoffs. Runs behind elite offensive line
21 Drew Brees QB NO Plays in the ideal system and ideal environment; highest floor among QBs
22 Aaron Rodgers QB GB Rushing ability, huge arm give Rodgers highest ceiling among QBs
23 Roddy White WR ATL Opportunity increased last year, but efficiency declined
24 Steve Smith WR CAR Rare elite receiver under six feet, had excellent chemistry with Matt Moore
25 Reggie Wayne WR IND Polished pro is still Peyton's favorite target, even in red zone. Lacks explosiveness
26 Anquan Boldin WR BAL Best per game receiving avg. (79.2) of all time. Now Joe Flacco's No. 1 target
27 Tom Brady QB NE Another year removed from knee surgery, should be even sharper in 2010
28 Peyton Manning QB IND Safest pick on the board and has more weapons than in years past
29 Michael Crabtree WR SF Top prospect could take leap to stardom in Year 2
30 Cedric Benson RB CIN Workhorse back should tote the rock another 300 times
31 Ryan Grant RB GB Reliable workhorse in elite offense
32 Tony Romo QB DAL Dallas loaded with weapons. Romo knows how to make good use of them
33 Pierre Thomas RB NO Per-play star in ideal system, but was underused in 2009
34 Jay Cutler QB CHI Mike Martz's arrival removes the ceiling on elite talent; must cut down on picks
35 Marques Colston WR NO Top target in Saints passing offense, but has to share the wealth
36 DeSean Jackson WR PHI 10 catches of 40-yards plus last year will be hard to repeat
37 Antonio Gates TE SD Red-zone monster delivers every year
38 Jahvid Best RB DET Dynamic rookie back should start for improving offense; needs to prove durability
39 Ronnie Brown RB MIA Almost always produces when healthy; rarely healthy for long
40 LeSean McCoy RB PHI Feature back in strong offense; could yield carries at the goal line
41 Philip Rivers QB SD Would be top-3 QB but for Norv Turner's run-first philosophy
42 Matt Schaub QB HOU 4,770 passing yards last year was sixth-highest total ever
43 Jonathan Stewart RB CAR Bruising power back would be top-5 but for DeAngelo Williams
44 Vernon Davis TE SF Big-time breakout for league's most athletic tight end
45 Dallas Clark TE IND 100 catches, 1,106 yards and 10 TDs from tight end spot last year
46 Brandon Jacobs RB NYG Knee injury derailed 2009, but how much shelf life for 265-pound back?
47 Robert Meachem WR NO Better than Colston during season's second half
48 Mike Sims-Walker WR JAC Top target on a team that's likely to throw more, thanks to poor defense
49 Steven Smith WR NYG First-rate possession receiver has the trust of Eli Manning
50 Sidney Rice WR MIN Hip injury and Favre situation hurt value
51 Hakeem Nicks WR NYG Big-play receiver showed explosion as a rookie
52 Dwayne Bowe WR KC 2009 was a lost year, but still a good red-zone threat and team's likely No. 1 target
53 Michael Bush RB OAK Power back is team's top option between the tackles and near the goal line
54 Knowshon Moreno RB DEN Downgraded due to hamstring injury; should be ready near start of the season
55 Joseph Addai RB IND Nothing special, but well-rounded and great fit for Colts offense
56 Matt Forte RB CHI Healthier now, but Chester Taylor looms as good fit in Martz' scheme
57 Chad Ochocinco WR CIN No longer an elite receiver and few red-zone looks, but still useful
58 Pierre Garcon WR IND Peyton Manning's big-play receiver
59 Jerome Harrison RB CLE Exploded down the stretch; will battle Hardesty for carries
60 Johnny Knox WR CHI Fastest player on the Bears - slated to start opposite Hester at press time
61 Arian Foster RB HOU In the Texans RB mix - was good down the stretch
62 Marion Barber RB DAL Will back up injury prone Felix Jones and get goal-line work
63 Jermichael Finley TE GB Should be a monster in Green Bay's offense if he can stay healthy
64 Justin Forsett RB SEA Early favorite to start with LenDale White cut, and Leon Washington recovering
65 Felix Jones RB DAL Upside is off the charts, but can he hold up under anything close to full load?
66 Ahmad Bradshaw RB NYG Giants' best back last year; faster, shiftier and better receiver than Jacobs
67 C.J. Spiller RB BUF Explosive game breaker, but in bad environment and sharing touches with Jackson/Lynch
68 Jeremy Maclin WR PHI Playmaking deep threat opposite DeSean Jackson
69 Lee Evans WR BUF Only game in town again now that T.O. is gone
70 Brent Celek TE PHI Heavily targeted, polished receiver in pass-first offense with no other red-zone threat
71 Devin Aromashodu WR CHI Jay Cutler's big-play receiver down the stretch; team's No. 3 option at press time
72 Steve Slaton RB HOU Dynamic runner/receiver if healthy; competing for carries with Tate and Foster
73 Dez Bryant WR DAL Superstar talent with some personal baggage lands in good passing environment
74 Percy Harvin WR MIN Versatile all-around weapon, but plenty of competition for touches in Minnesota
75 Malcom Floyd WR SD Yet another big, fast receiver in San Diego; should start opposite V. Jackson
76 Kellen Winslow TE TB Only game in town; produced even in terrible conditions last year
77 Jason Witten TE DAL One of many options, but still heavily targeted and trusted by Tony Romo
78 Devin Thomas WR WAS Has all the physical tools; finally has a good quarterback, too
79 Braylon Edwards WR NYJ No problem getting open deep; just needs to hold onto the ball
80 Hines Ward WR PIT Turned back the clock last two years, but without Big Ben for at least four games
81 Santana Moss WR WAS Finally gets to play with an above-average quarterback
82 Kenny Britt WR TEN Big target should be Titans' No. 1 receiver
83 Clinton Portis RB WAS One-time star has lots of miles and competition for carries
84 Donovan McNabb QB WAS Leaves pass-happy system, but Mike Shanahan is no slouch for offense, either
85 Donald Brown RB IND Joseph Addai's backup should see significant work
86 Reggie Bush RB NO Will be involved, but Pierre Thomas is the team's star back
87 Devin Hester WR CHI Quick, speedy receiver a good fit for Mike Martz' offense
88 Vincent Jackson WR SD Why not roll the dice at this point? Suspended for three games in any event
89 T.J. Houshmandzadeh WR SEA Possession receiver on a team in transition
90 Donald Driver WR GB Turned 35 this past winter, but can still get down the field
91 Eli Manning QB NYG Coming off career year, and developing wide
92 Chris Chambers WR KC Big second half in Kansas City, but Dwayne Bowe was out
93 Mike Wallace WR PIT Deep threat will start opposite Hines Ward
94 Darren McFadden RB OAK Injuries and upright running style put former top prospect's future in doubt
95 Julian Edelman WR NE Wes Welker-lite with less quickness, but more strength; big role early as slot man
96 Cadillac Williams RB TB Miraculously returned after multiple knee surgeries; dealing with subpar offense
97 Tony Gonzalez TE ATL Still getting it done at age 34
98 Zach Miller TE OAK Reliable producer in terrible environment, but gets a QB upgrade
99 Joe Flacco QB BAL Finally has a legit No. 1 receiver to go along with Derrick Mason and Ray Rice
100 Kevin Kolb QB PHI Showed signs last year; has keys to pass-happy, playmaker-rich offense
101 Montario Hardesty RB CLE Will battle Jerome Harrison for touches; could start immediately
102 Ricky Williams RB MIA 33-year old back will share carries with injury prone Ronnie Brown
103 Wes Welker WR NE Late-season ACL tear puts early availability in some doubt
104 Chester Taylor RB CHI Good fit for Martz' offense; will push Matt Forte for carries
105 Mohamed Massaquoi WR CLE Browns No. 1 receiver if such a thing could be said to exist
106 Fred Jackson RB BUF Will split work with C.J. Spiller and possibly Marshawn Lynch; hand injury ends camp
107 Tashard Choice RB DAL Will back up the injury-prone Felix Jones and Marion Barber
108 Steve Breaston WR ARZ Slated to start opposite Larry Fitzgerald with Boldin gone
109 Terrell Owens WR CIN Still beat defenses deep last year with five catches of 40-plus
110 Derrick Mason WR BAL Relegated to No. 2 with Anquan Boldin in town
111 Austin Collie WR IND 17 catches, 241 yards, 2 TD in 2009 playoffs - should have a significant role
112 Santonio Holmes WR NYJ Suspended four games, but could be Jets' No. 1 target upon return
113 Matt Ryan QB ATL Could take the leap in Year 3, but plays for run-first team
114 Mike Williams WR TB Locked down the No. 1 receiver job in Tampa
115 John Carlson TE SEA Quality pass-catching TE could see more work under new regime
116 Greg Olsen TE CHI Big-time upside, but Martz didn't typically use the TE in season's past
117 Visanthe Shiancoe TE MIN Red-zone specialist averaged nine TD past two years; downgrade if Favre retires
118 Heath Miller TE PIT Quietly had 76 catches for 789 yards and six scores
119 Thomas Jones RB KC Should see goal-line work at the very least in KC
120 Owen Daniels TE HOU Was top-3 TE before tearing ACL in Week 8; should be ready for the season
121 Laurence Maroney RB NE Our best guess for the top option in New England's murky backfield
122 Jerricho Cotchery WR NYJ Reliable receiver will remain in the mix
123 Jacoby Jones WR HOU Big-play threat should push Kevin Walter for targets
124 Jabar Gaffney WR DEN Huge game in Week 17 last year; in the running for No. 1 Denver receiver
125 Roy Williams WR DAL An afterthought with the Dez Bryant pick, but still an effective red-zone target
126 Donnie Avery WR STL Needs to stay healthy, but could be No. 1 for Sam Bradford
127 Brett Favre QB MIN Likely to return after ankle surgery; will turn 41 this fall
128 Mario Manningham WR NYG Showed playmaking ability, but lapses in focus and Nicks' emergence make him NY's No. 3
129 Chaz Schilens WR OAK Size and speed, but recovering from foot surgery; could be Raiders' No. 1 WR
130 Tim Hightower RB ARZ Will split carries with superior Beanie Wells; caught 63 passes last year
131 Marshawn Lynch RB BUF No. 3 back in Buffalo, could be dealt before season starts
132 Derrick Ward RB TB Will split carries with Cadillac Williams
133 Larry Johnson RB WAS One of several vets in the mix for Redskins tailback job
134 Willis McGahee RB BAL Goal-line back on strong offense, but second fiddle to Ray Rice
135 Darren Sproles RB SD Change of pace back will spell Ryan Mathews on occasion
136 Anthony Gonzalez WR IND Speedy receiver will be in the mix if healthy
137 Bernard Berrian WR MIN Deep threat was odd man out last year, but upside with Favre if injuries strike
138 Demaryius Thomas WR DEN Big, speedy playmaker should be in the mix early on
139 Legedu Naanee WR SD If Vincent Jackson is really out 10 weeks, Naanee likely starts opposite Floyd
140 Laurent Robinson WR STL Looked good in camp and early on before breaking leg; should start if healthy
141 Antonio Bryant WR CIN Physical wideout; knee injury and T.O. complicate things
142 Ryan Torain RB WAS A Shanahan draft choice - could have a big role if Portis goes down
143 Kevin Walter WR HOU Will compete with Jacoby Jones for targets leftover by Andre Johnson
144 Arrelious Benn WR TB Big, fast rookie has chance to start out of the gate
145 Darrius Heyward-Bey WR OAK Reach of 2009 draft; worked hard during offseason, looks good in camp
146 Josh Cribbs WR CLE All-time great returner could see bigger role as runner/receiver in offense
147 Earl Bennett WR CHI Anyone in the Cutler/Martz offense has upside if things break his way
148 Eddie Royal WR DEN One-team rookie phenom will compete for starting WR role
149 James Jones WR GB In the mix at WR behind Jennings and Driver
150 Devery Henderson WR NO Drew Brees' long-time deep threat likely eclipsed by Robert Meachem