While NFL fans get ready for training camp, we will examine the top fantasy football picks for the New York Jets this season. This is the fourth of a five part series.
The 2017 offseason has not been that kind to Jets fans who have seen many long time dependable veterans released. For fantasy football fanatics, that includes many players that were counted on to produce in fantasy drafts. Gone are Brandon Marshall, Nick Folk, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Eric Decker. What players on the current Jets roster do fantasy experts predict will be someone they can depend on? Let’s take a look.
Player: Matt Forte RB – Growing up in Louisiana and attending Slidell High School, Forte stayed in state and went to Tulane for college. Despite having his junior season cut short with and injury, he still finished the school leader in many rushing categories. Forte led the Green Wave in rushing yards for a single-season (2,127) and game (342), rushing TD for a career (39), single-season (23) and game (5). He ranks second all-time in career rushing yards (4.265) behind Mewelde Moore.
The Chicago Bears drafted Forte with the 44th overall selection in the 2008 NFL draft. Forte spent eight seasons with the Bears from 2008 to 2015. During that time, Forte led the NFL in yards from scrimmage (12,608).Five times in his eight seasons with the Bears Forte rushed for over 1,000 yards.
On March 9, 2016, Forte signed a free-agent contract with the New York Jets.
2016 Fantasy Value – Forte led the Jets in rushing yards (813) and rushing TD (7), but finished with a career low in yards per carry (3.7). He started the season strong in fantasy points, registering double digits in six of his first 10 weeks. His best stretch came in a four-game stretch from Week 7-10 when he finished with the fourth most points for running backs, averaging over 18 fantasy points per week,
2017 Projection – Not too many experts think that at age 32 Forte will be counted on to be the Jets feature back, as Bilal Powell will get just as many touches as Forte will. In the 96-year history of the NFL, only 12 RB have rushed for over 1,000 yards at age 32 or older. Frank Gore did in last year, but prior to that its happened only three times since 1990 (Ricky Williams in 2009, Mike Anderson in 2005 and Emmitt Smith in 2001).
Forte is only worth drafting as a No. 4 Fantasy running back with a late-round pick in the majority of leagues. His best days are clearly behind him.
Mark Kelly covers the New York Jets for ProFootballSpot.com. You can follow him on twitter @CkmagicSports. Looking for more Jets news and features? Like our Jets Facebook page and also follow @spot_jets on Twitter.