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With the new season comes perhaps the largest change to hit the NFL in years: a relocating team. The Rams, originating in Cleveland, moved to LA in 1946, moved to St. Louis in 1995, and are now moving back to LA for 2016.
Fantasy relevance for the Rams while they were in St. Louis was not entirely present over the past several seasons, as mediocrity seemed to be accepted as the norm. With the franchise changing in such a significant way, it’s a safe bet that will no longer be the case. With that in mind, there are now some valuable players, though the average amount might be less than other teams.
To begin, the most valuable player to your fantasy team will be without a doubt RB Todd Gurley. Relevant in both redraft and dynasty formats, standard and PPR, and essentially any format you wish to play in, the young RB is in a great position: young, athletically gifted, and in line to receive the lion’s share of carries. There aren’t other players good enough to vulture touches from Gurley, and the passing game hasn’t developed enough to warrant much passing.
The #1 overall rookie QB – and California native – Jared Goff will be the likely starter in Week 1, after QB Nick Foles was released. While Goff will be given some room to make errors – a high honour for a rookie, earned through his lofty draft status – the offence will likely still remain on the ground.
WR Tavon Austin, who remains unproven, can be a hit in kick return/punt return leagues, and he has some – very little – value in standard leagues. The Rams also drafted WR Pharoh Cooper to give Goff some help, and if they build some chemistry, he could prove to be valuable. TE Lance Kendricks is the best option they have at the moment, with another rookie, Tyler Higbee, potentially gaining some steam later on.
The only other relevant option for players is actually the D/ST, a ferocious pass rush unit that will gain much of its value via the sacks and forced fumbles. As previously mentioned, Austin’s presence also increases the ‘ST’ value, as well.
Truthfully, there isn’t much here for fantasy players, outside of Gurley. If you’re lucky enough to grab him, definitely do so!
Recap: QB Jared Goff, RB Todd Gurley