Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus Volume IX

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Each week NFL Network and NFL.com Fantasy Football Editor Michael Fabiano joins Pros2Preps.com’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hilights from our most recent conversation with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer as the preseason schedule wraps up this week around the league.

Carson Palmer can still be a productive fantasy scorer: “Carson, he was the garbage point fantasy king last year. That guy would have deficits every week and after the first half he’s got three or four fantasy points and then he has to throw the entire second half and he ends up with like 17 or 18. He got weapons [in Arizona] and you know he can still toss it. Maybe he still doesn’t have the same arm he did when he was first coming out of USC but he can still throw the football vertically. He’s going to be a nice number two. He’s not going to be drafted early, though. He might not even be drafted in the middle rounds. He’s going to be more of a late-round quarterback. I would not surprised if Carson Palmer became one the better matchup-based quarterbacks in fantasy football. Carson Palmer is going to be able to help some people this season.”

Rank these four running backs: Eddie Lacy, Shane Vareen, Giovani Bernard, Le’Veon Bell: “Bell’s just dropped for me…Lacy’s gotta be number one. I still think Bell’s number two because, all thing’s being equal, he’ll be the starter. Vareen is third…Bernard is going to be a sneaky sleeper, though. I know they have BenJarvus Green-Ellis. I think the Bengals want to use this kid more than just a change-of-pace back and a guy that comes on the field during passing downs. He’s got a lot of upside. If Giovani Bernard were drafted to a team that could use him as a starter immediately he would be my number one rookie. Shane Vareen is a big-time sleeper, especially in PPR leagues. I could see him catching 40 or 50 passes this year in that offense.”

With all the injuries who is the best top-flight tight end going into the season?: “Jimmy Graham is the number one tight end in fantasy football. As long as Rob Gronkowski’s health is an issue, he is the guy. When you have a tight end who can catch 90 balls and give you 1,100 yards and double-digit touchdowns that’s a major, major advantage.”

Keep your eye on another Cardinals wide receiver not named Larry Fitzgerald: “[Andre Roberts] is worth drafting. I think he’s going to be more valuable in a PPR league. He actually had more fantasy points than Larry last season which is unreal. I mean, that could have been one of the biggest shocks in fantasy football. On a team with Larry Fitzgerald he wasn’t the leading fantasy points scorer at the position. Andre Roberts is a guy who’s going to catch quite few passes from Carson Palmer.”

To hear the entire interview, click here.