Fantasy Football: Shopping Days

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By the end of Labor Day, most Fantasy Football leagues will have completed their drafts. The attention will then turn to how one can upgrade their team even more before the season officially begins on September 8. Most Fantasy owners are never shy about making trades, as it’s an instant opportunity to improve your team, and an adrenaline rush that only the Fantasy owner can understand.

Of course, you should never make a deal just for the heck of it. Moving Brandon Lloyd for Steve Johnson is nearly a waste of time. When you make a trade, you should fill a need, make an upgrade, or buy low on a player on the rise. With those approaches in mind, here are some guys to target.

Mark Ingram


The Saints rookie running back is the goal-line finisher the team has lacked in recent seasons. He will complete many scoring drives for a powerful offense. Move for him before he has his first two-TD game early in the year.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis


The Patriots brought in some fresh faces to join the RB picture. Competition will only fuel Green-Ellis to ascend higher, and he will be a fine No 2 Fantasy RB who scores often.

Marshawn Lynch


The Seahawks have revamped the offense to center around their running game. The offensive line has been rebuilt. There may be some early disappointing performances, but Lynch will post some quality numbers during the second half of the schedule. If left tackle Russell Okung can stay healthy, Lynch can be a very good option as a regular starter.

Anquan Boldin


It wasn’t very long ago when Boldin was considered one of the very best wide receivers in Fantasy Football. Last year, he struggled to break free of double coverages after a hot start. With Lee Evans now in Baltimore to loosen up defensive attention, Boldin is set for a big rebound year.

Dez Bryant


He has superstar skills, and QB Tony Romo enters the season in good health. With a shaky defense causing Dallas to engage in a lot of shootouts, Bryant will be very busy as a top target for Romo.

Jordy Nelson


It appears that Donald Driver may finally be fading away for good. If you didn’t land Nelson late in a draft, you may not have to give up much to get him. He’ll enjoy a significant breakthrough season, as Nelson emerges as a go-to guy for Aaron Rodgers. Nelson has great hands and nifty separation quickness.

Greg Olsen


He may be available on the free agent list in some leagues, and can come cheaply in a trade. Olsen was not utilized properly in Chicago, where Mike Martz ignored the tight end. In Carolina, he will become a needed safety valve for Cam Newton. A rookie passer certainly needs a security blanket, and Steve Smith cannot be that for Newton. Tight ends are the guys thrown to when a kid like Newtown wants to get out of trouble.

Jamie Harper

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He could be a big sleeper in 2011. Yes, Chris Johnson has finally signed, but will he be in proper game shape after missing the entire preseason? Can he stay healthy? Even if he does, Harper could take some carries away, especially near the goal line. If Johnson misses any time, watch out for Harper. If he is still available as a free agent, scoop him up now. Open another browser or tab and get it done.

Sam Bradford


He doesn’t have a stellar receiving crew, but it will not matter. Bradford is astute and poised enough to know the individual strengths and tendencies of all of his pass-catchers. He will spread the ball around well to all of his targets, while making sound decisions. Some quarterbacks don’t need outstanding receivers to play well, because they know how to take advantage of whatever resources they do have. Bradford is on his way to becoming a master “distributor” and will take his game to another level in 2011. He’s on the verge of stardom.

Matthew Stafford


It may not be easy to land him in a deal, but if you need QB help and cannot trade for a major name, Stafford is the guy you want. This is the year when he and Bradford burst into the forefront. Stafford can pump instant life into the Detroit offense when he is on the field, and his appeal is down because Fantasy owners question if he can stay healthy over a full season. Nab him before people start talking about him in more glowing terms. If he is not on the sidelines, Stafford can be a No. 1 Fantasy QB, a guy who can be locked in the lineup every single week without question.

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