Fantasy Future Rankings: Week 2

After lackluster showing in opener, don't ditch Decker just yet

Originally Published: September 12, 2013
By Field Yates and numberFire | ESPN Insider

Eric DeckerRon Chenoy/USA TODAY SportsEric Decker's value should rise after hitting the floor with a three-point performance in Week 1.

Stop using past performance to evaluate fantasy players. Start using the future. Each week, numberFire will provide updated projections for future fantasy points through Week 17. To go with the numbers, Field Yates will provide analysis on what the numbers reveal. Fantasy players have a new resource to evaluate trades and roster moves: The Fantasy Future Rankings.


There were two inevitabilities stemming from the Denver Broncos' acquisition of Wes Welker this past offseason: an already lethal offense would improve, and the production of some of the 2012 holdovers was going to be scaled back.

Welker, arguably the best slot receiver in the game, averaged well over 100 catches during his six seasons with the Patriots and topped out at 174 targets in 2012. Adding such a voluminous receiving threat was bound to cut into someone else's touches.

If Week 1 was any indicator, that player will be receiver Eric Decker, who managed just two catches and 32 yards Thursday night against the Ravens, good for nothing more than a paltry three points in standard scoring leagues.

Decker owners everywhere are wondering whether it's already time to sell, as he had fewer receiving yards in the opener than four of his teammates, including Julius Thomas, the third-year tight end who had precisely one catch for 5 yards entering the season.

And yet, the folks at numberFire have a decidedly different take on what Decker's performance from Thursday means: not much, as he still ranks 21st among their wide receivers in TPS (total player score). TPS is a player's value relative to other players, incorporating such factors as positional scarcity and how much a player contributes over the average player at the position.

Field Yates has previous experience interning with the New England Patriots on both their coaching and scouting staffs. A graduate of Wesleyan University (CT), he is a regular contributor to ESPN Boston's Patriots coverage and ESPN Insider.