If you could only pick one dynasty player from each position to take in 2016, who would it be? This is a topic for tremendous discussion and I will give you my views below. When considering the best dynasty players at each position this season I’m considering not only their value for the 2016 season but also their future value and the length of service at an elite level you may receive from them. There are going to be a lot of opinions on this, that is for sure. So feel free to share your thoughts in the comments but pound for pound, if I could get my hands on any of these guys today I’d be a very happy man.
QB – Cam Newton
Cam Newton has been in the league for five years and four of those have seen him finish in the top 5 in QB fantasy production in most league scoring systems. Only in 2014 when he dealt with a tremendous range of injuries and had lost several support players did he suffer. All of this he has achieved from a fantasy perspective and he is only 26 years old. That means, in very real terms, barring injury Cam should be expected to be an elite fantasy QB for about another decade. No other QB currently in the NFL has that potential in my mind, and so Cam gets the nod here. The beautiful thing about Cam is that you can see him evolving from year to year and while he may never have a passing season like Peyton Manning, Drew Brees or Tom Brady, he also won’t need to rush for 700+ yards a season in the future in order to maintain his elite fantasy production. He’ll score 8-10 rushing TDs a season even as he slows down over time. Others considered…Russell Wilson, Blake Bortles, Aaron Rogers
RB – Todd Gurley
For RB you almost have to go with a rookie or second year player here as their value waxes and wanes very quickly. While Leveon Bell and a few others could be considered here, my vote goes to Gurley. Gurley proved last year that even with a poor support cast he can produce and now that he will get a rookie QB this season to work with, the Rams will need his production heavy over the next few years. He does have injury risk but most RBs have a serious injury once in their productive lives and he’s past his already. I say the Rams lean on Gurley heavily and he responds with elite production over the next 5 years or so which is about all that you can ask for in this day and age. Others considered…David Johnson, Doug Martin
WR – Odell Beckham
Again there are a few players who could take this mantle but there is no doubt that OBJ has taken the league by storm and his production will even increase in my mind over the next few years as he grows into his prime production years. He’s only 23 today and has accomplished quite a bit. Even with an aging Eli Manning I feel that OBJ’s production is so important to that team that when Eli steps away OBJ will probably suffer only a little. He has a solid decade of elite production in him given his talent and athleticism so the sky is the limit for OBJ. Others to consider…Antonio Brown, Julio Jones, Mike Evans, Allen Robinson
TE – Rob Gronkowski
Knucklehead status aside, there is really nobody to consider at the tight end position today that could come close to the elite production already produced and potential for future production as Gronk. He’s only 26 and has at least 6 more years of elite production in him barring injury. There’s questions on how long Brady can last but like OBJ, Gronk is too important to this offense to not get his even if the QB position switches at some point. Others considered…None!
DT – Aaron Donald
Now we get into IDP and it always gets more interesting here as opinions can differ widely. That said, at DT there is really only one player that has proven to be elite already at a very young age and that is Aaron Donald. He’s been the top fantasy DT for each of his first two years in the league and he’s only 24. His explosion off the ball and ability to make plays from the 3-technique position is unmatched. There is no doubt in my mind he will dominate the league for years to come. Others considered…Kawann Short
DE – JJ Watt
A no-brainier in the mold of Gronkowski at his position. I don’t care how much he talks about retiring early, there is nobody that dominates at DE in the league today like Watt and I’d take that production even if it was for only the next 3-4 years. That said, I don’t believe at this point he’s only in it for the short haul. Even with the injuries he suffered last year he vastly outplayed his peers. Don’t be afraid of retirement, go use that to get him if you can. Others considered…Olivier Vernon
LB – Luke Kuechy
This was actually tougher than it might look. Guys like Alec Ogletree, Lavonte David, Telvin Smith and even Jordan Hicks are undoubtedly young and are positioned to be very productive for a very long time in this league. Kuechly beats them out on his instincts and leadership. He’s got the best instincts of an MLB in the league and is always in the right position to make the tackle or even interception as he showed in the playoffs last year. He’s still only 25, which is hard to believe as he seems to have been around forever, so he’s not slowing down any time soon. The fact that Carolina has two players on this list (and the Rams too btw) bodes very well for them. Others considered…Alec Ogletree, Lavonte David, Telvin Smith, Jordan Hicks
DB – Tyrann Mathieu
This was another tough one because at DB it’s tough to get a read on long term potential but the guy who stands out for me is Mattieu. He’s only 23. Let me say that again, he’s only 23. He’s proven to be a fantasy playmaker when he’s on the field but that is also his Achilles heel. There is a big question mark as to how long he can last given his slight build. It is valid to consider for sure but if I had a shot at him I’d take him as my guess would be he resolves his medical issues and goes on to have an elite career. Others considered…Josh Norman, Reshad Jones
So there you have it, the list of guys I would choose at each position given I could only take one. Some are obvious, some are not but each has elite dynasty potential for many years to come. Let the debate begin!