2012 Fantasy Football Preview: Atlanta Falcons

Contributed by: Al king
Last Updated: Jul 13, 2012 11:28 AM


Notable Additions:  None

Notable Losses: None

Schedule             Depth Chart

The “dirty birds” are shifting gears this season and taking to the skies more often. Early reports are indicating that the Falcons will run more three wide sets and no-huddle offense this season. This strategy equates to more plays from scrimmage and extra yardage for all the offensive skill positions. The Falcons will fly high this season and could be one of the top offenses this upcoming season. Of course, with a top offense comes many fantasy options.


(BUY NOW! BUY NOW!) QB MATT RYAN: With promises of spreading the ball around and more "no huddle" offense, this could be the year Matt Ryan blows up. Between Roddy White, Julio Jones, Harry Douglas and Tony Gonzalez the Falcons can dominate the airways. Ryan threw for 29 touchdowns last season and should easily eclipse that total this season. Matt Ryan loves his Georgia cookin' and plays lights out at home, the story is much different away from the Georgia Dome. This is the year that he turns that around and blossoms into a top ten quarterback.
Projections: 4,375 yds 36 TD 14 INT

We hear it every season that the burner is going to get less carries, not going to hold up, he's getting old, he's going to slow down and so on and so on. Then the season comes along and he proves us all wrong and performs like he always has. This very well could be the season that it actually happens, it seems as if Michael himself is realizing that he may slow down this season. With a revamped offense the workhorse may not get as many carries and doesn't catch the ball well out of the backfield, which may leave him off the field while the Falcons go to no-huddle. With that being said, Turner is still a very good value late in round 5 or anywhere in round 6, where he is currently falling to.
Projections: 285 att 1,150 yds 8 TD

Second year running back Jacquizz Rodgers should see more playing time this season as Turner's primary backup. The Falcons want to give more of a workload to Quizz and lighten the load on Michael Turner. Rodgers is also a perfect fit for the fast-paced spread 'em out offense that the Falcons want to play. A good receiver out of the backfield he could have more than a few screens that could be big gainers, as the defenses scuffle to get ready against the no-huddle offensive scheme.
Projections: 135 att 525 yards 4 TD

(NOT MR. WHITE, BUT HE IS MR. WHITE NOW) WR RODDY WHITE: What has Roddy White done over the last two seasons? Only led the league in targets each of the two, had at least 100 receptions in both, and 2,685 yards and 18 TD. He is one of the most solid wide receivers in the game, and in my opinion number two to only Calvin Johnson. Roddy White is currently being drafted 30th overall and as the eigth receiver off the board. This is an absolute STEAL in any draft, especially in PPR leagues. When a QB and WR have had those types of target numbers (360 over 2 seasons) it does not just go away in one off-season. Even with reports of White not being involved as much, even if it is a five percent drop off, that still does not make him the eighth overall WR. My advice, DRAFT HIM and reap the benefits.
Projections: 110 rec 1,385 yds 12 TD

(HEY MR. JONES!) WR JULIO JONES: Julio Jones had a pretty impressive rookie season and showed off plenty of explosiveness, especially late in the season. Jones lines up opposite of Roddy White who demands attention, leaving the coverage on Jones somewhat slim. Jones can beat most corners off the line and get behind the defense as the Falcons deep threat going into the season. His value is only rising with all the talk of the new offensive style in Atlanta. Both White and Jones will be very good picks this season in an offense that almost looks like you can't go wrong. Jones's current ADP is 31, right after White, a little early but if you are a believer of Jones over White this season, that could be a perfect spot to take him.
Projections: 85 rec 1,075 yds 8 TD

(THE UNKNOWN WR) WR HARRY DOUGLAS: Hello Mr. Douglas, we meet again. The most unspoken of wide-out on the roster. Harry Douglas flies under the radar every season, except for those two or three weeks of the season where either White or Jones is out. You know what weeks I'm talking about, when Harry Douglas pops up on every waiver wire pick-up article and is featured in all the fantasy videos. Douglas may be more than just a weekly filler with the increase of three wide sets where he would play the slot. He has plenty of speed and can turn a quick slant into thirty yards in an instant. Douglas also handles the occasional punt returns and could have added value in return yardage leagues. He could be worth a very late round gamble, has some upside that could be shown this season.
Projections: 35 rec 465 yds 3 TD

(OLE' RELIABLE) TE TONY GONZALEZ: Coming into his 16th season, Tony Gonzalez is still an elite talent at TE and keeps drinking from the fountain of youth. Last season he finished with an impressive 80 rec for 875 yds and 8 TD. While those numbers look great it is very unlikely that he will repeat those. Matt Ryan and Tony Gonzalez have built up a rapport that may have hit its peak last season. With that being said Gonzalez could still have an impressive campaign. Currently being drafted 100 over all, it makes him a good value pick.
Projections: 67 rec 725 yds 6TD

SLEEPER: Harry Douglas: Reports of an increase roll for the speedster and a possible aging year of Tony Gonzales, Douglas could turn some heads this season. Up to this season Douglas has not reached his fantasy potential, causing fantasy owners to be hesitant to draft him. Not much of a gamble if you can get him in the last couple of rounds.

BUST ALERT: Julio Jones: A strong candidate of the dreaded sophomore slump, Julio Jones may be a disappointment this season. With his current ADP of 31, if he repeats his number from last season, he could be considered a bust.

Follow @FFChamps on Twitter

The views and content in this article are not necessarily the opinion of Fantasy Football Champs, www.FFChamps.com, and its in-house experts.