2014 Fantasy Football Team Preview: San Diego Chargers
The Chargers finished the season off strong just making the playoffs in an overtime win against the Chiefs in week 17. They'll look to build on last year which gave them some pleasant surprises in Keenan Allen and the resurgence of Philip Rivers. They added Donald Brown to their backfield through free agency being an addition to Danny Woodhead and Ryan Mathews. I think Donald Brown is the only running back not to own barring injury in that backfield.
Keenan Allen: Keenan Allen was an absolute monster last year tearing up defenses week after week. He seemed to click with Rivers extremely quickly and the Chargers needed just that with all the injuries they suffered at the position. Remember, he didn't necesarrily play much the first couple weeks of the season so his production will rise next season. Allen shouldn't last too long in fantasy drafts and he's the guy to have in San Diego in the fantasy world.
Philip Rivers: Rivers was a top five fantasy QB last season and he'll be around that same spot this year. He's not the usual big name "sexy" fantasy quarterback like Tom Brady or Matt Ryan, but he outplayed both of them last season. I don't forsee him going too early in drafts so if you want insurance for a quarterback you draft like RG3, he's the guy you want to target. I don't see a problem either if someone wants to wait till the 8th-9th round and take Rivers as their starting QB while they stock up at other posiitons early in the draft.
Ryan Mathews: Mathews finally had the breakout season the Chargers were looking for when they first drafted him. The only thing that fears me from taking him is what I hate most about fantasy football: a running back committee. The positive side of this is that he's the bell cow of the team so he figures to get most of the early down work. He will probably end up going in the 4th-5th rounds, but I'm not sure how much you can trust him coming off one good season. Nonetheless, there aren't enough running backs to go around in the fantasy world so he's worth the risk.
Antonio Gates: Gate won't be the worst tight end option this year with not many great ones there, just a whole bunch of solid ones. He'll go late or even go undrafted in a lot of leagues, but will still be a premier option as he's a hall of fame tight end. His production won't be the same as it had been earlier in his career, but it'll be good enough at the tight end position. Ladarius Green is another name to watch here.
Danny Woodhead: Woodhead is a PPR monster and you should most definitely target him late in the draft. He catches everything thrown to him and averaged over 5 catches a game last season; getting to the endzone more often than not. What worries me is that I believe Donald Brown might hurt Woodhead's value more than Mathews' considering the former two will be battling for passing down snaps.
Miscellaneous: Outside of tight end Ladarius Green, we should keep a close eye on who will man the WR spot opposite of Keenan Allen as whoever that'll be could end up getting some good looks in the offense with Allen gaining more attention this season. 7th round draft pick WR Tevin Reese might have a shot if he can make the team.