2016 Dynasty Outlook: Arizona Cardinals

With the dog days of summer kicking in and training camps still a month or so away, let’s take this time to review each team and provide a dynasty outlook.  In alphabetical order, we’ll point out their dynasty relevant players, both offense and IDP, as well as some notes on the long term arch of each offense and defense we’re talking about.  Below is a convenient set of links to keep track of each article we produce in this series.  We’re going alphabetical, so first up is Arizona.

AFC: BAL | BUF | CIN | CLE | DEN | HOU | IND | JAX | KC | MIA | NE | NYJ | OAK | PIT |SD | TEN

NFC: ARI | ATL | CAR | CHI | DAL | DET | GBP | LAR | MIN | NOS | NYG | PHI | SF | SEA| TB | WAS

Offensive Outlook

With offensive mastermind Bruce Arians at the wheel, the Arizona offense is primed for another solid year.  Arians has done enough in Arizona to stay for a while so from a continuity perspective.  This offense should be productive for many years to come, given the right QB After Palmer hangs it up.

Dynasty Stars – Guys who you want on your team…Period.

David Johnson, RB – Johnson has a short CV but exhibited explosiveness and productivity in his few opportunities as a rookie.  Due to that productivity, his young age (24) and he’s in only the 2nd year of a 4 year rookie deal, his price is high.  So if you don’t have him you’ll have trouble getting him.  Certainly the sky is the limit for Johnson, though he’s yet to really prove anything on a full year basis, so there is risk getting him at this steep a price in start-up drafts.  That said, I’d er on the side of taking him!

Serviceable Veterans – Guys who could help you short term.

Larry Fitzgerald, WR – Fitz is a dynasty legend, I picked him up with the #1 pick the year he came out and only sold him at age 30.  He had a great bounce back year last year and while there is no reason he can’t come close to the 176 standard fantasy points he produced last year, he’s 32 and there are a lot of mouths to feed here.  Solid for another 2-3 seasons in dynasty if you’re trying to win now.

Michael Floyd, WR – Just hasn’t lived up to his potential and while he’s still only 26 it’s hard to see him going “elite” any time soon.  Injuries did hold him back early last year so it’s possible he improves his point total in 2017, but he’s not a guy to hang your hat on.  Probably a WR2 at best for the rest of his days, though that plays a part in your strategy if you get him at a decent price.  Also keep in mind at this point he is playing out his rookie contract and is expected to be a UFA next season.  This significantly clouds his future potential until we know whether he stays or goes.

Carson Palmer, QB – At 36 he’s not going to get your dynasty juices flowing, but he was a top 5 QB last year and it’s entirely probable that he maintains top 10 status for the next 2-3 years in this offense.  Beware that he’s currently only signed through 2017 for right now at least.

Chris Johnson, RB – He’s 30 and will be behind Johnson and will possibly share with Andre Ellington.  Nothing more than an injury flyer candidate at this point.

Andre Ellington, RB – Just not cut out for full time duty, though he’s only 27 and in PPR leagues with injury can be relevant at some point.

John Brown, WR – Very solid WR3 who could develop into WR2 as Fitz ages out.  Only 26 and finished with 1,000+ receiving yards last year.  Good young betting option.

Dynasty Sleepers – High potential, low production players to consider.

JJ Nelson, WR – Super small and super fast, Nelson didn’t get a ton of looks as a rookie but is a player that Bruce Arians loves to add to his arsenal for blowing the top off of defenses.  It’s possible he fills a bigger role as Fitz ages out and/or Floyd moves on.  Probably not big enough to be high volume producer over time but could be a low volume, high yardage WR2/3 option as he evolves.

Jaron Brown, WR – Undrafted out of Clemson, Brown has good size and if he’s able to stick on the roster, could be a poor man’s Michael Floyd in this offense if he leaves after this season.

Dynasty Frauds – Players who should not be considered in dynasty.

Kerwynn Williams, Stepfan Taylor, Darren Fells, Jermaine Gresham, Troy Niklas – These RBs are what they are at this point and TE is not a high priority in the passing offense for Bruce Arians so from a dynasty perspective, there is very little to see here.

IDP Outlook

The Cardinals play a 3-4 defense with hybrid linebacker/former safety Deonne Buchanon in one ILB slot.  They create a ton of pressure and the back end are ball hawks so this is a defense that can produce for you.  Again, Arians seems around for the long haul, so little chance they change their stripes for a while.

IDP Stars- Guys who you want on your team…Period.

Deonne Buchannon, LB – Even as a full time LB he produced very well last year and obviously will stay on the field all three downs for this defense.  At 23 he’s got a long time to go in this league and even if he’s a “hybrid” player, his stats are not hybrid!

Tyrann Mathieu, FS – Elite ball-hawking safety that plays with reckless abandon which causes many injuries on his slight frame.  About to get a new long term contract and is only 24 so as long as he can stay on the field he’s worth investing in.

Serviceable Veterans – Guys who could help you short term.

Chandler Jones, LB – Moved over in the off-season from NE as a trade in the last year of his rookie contract.  As long as he produces should get that new contract and he should produce.  Solid buy candidate here.

Calais Campbell, DE – 3-4 DE’s usually aren’t great IDP producers but Campbell is one of those penetrators that disrupts and makes plays.  He’s a solid DE2 in leagues that separate DE/DT

Patrick Peterson, CB – Is elite enough to not get a ton of opportunities but can be a serviceable starter in leagues that are CB specific.

IDP Sleepers – High potential, low production players to consider.

Robert Nkemdiche, DE – Will play opposite Campbell and has such athleticism if he doesn’t have off-field problems that plagued him in college, can produce from this position.  worth a rookie late round or UDFA flier.

Kevin Minter, LB – Invisible as a rookie and second year player, he finised with 94 combined tackles in year 3.  That’s solid for a LB3 with upside at only 25 years old.

Tony Jefferson, SS – Finished at 15th best safety producer in 2016 and is only 24 years old.   Still plenty of upside there.

IDP Frauds – Players who should not be considered in dynasty.

Alex Okafor, Brandon Williams, Justin Bethel

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