Weeks ago in early July I released an article with a sample size of players under the headline a Risk vs Reward. We’re still weeks away from the regular season, but with training camps in full force, and those unfortunate injuries already taking place, players all around the league will find themselves in situations where they have to carry a heavier load than expected–or fighting for playing time, a contract, or even consistency. In no particular order here’s the continuing part for Risk vs Reward fantasy players to think about when you come across these names in your draft.

risk vs reward fantasy

Ty Montgomery

This is an interesting name to keep an eye out on when drafting. Let me start by saying this in my opinion I’m not paying the full third-round price that Montgomery is currently being drafted at in mock drafts. Montgomery was in an interesting spot last season being listed as a WR/RB after Eddie Lacy was sidelined with a season ending ankle injury, but if you’re banking on him as a low-end RB1 or high-end RB2 hang on. Reports out of camp so far is that Jamaal Williams has been taking reps with the starters and has not only looked good, but is pushing Montgomery for reps. Aaron Jones isn’t too far behind. Of course, this could be just be smoke in the air, but it wouldn’t shock me if Montgomery received most of his playing time during passing situations and Williams won the starting “running” role.

C.J. Anderson

It wasn’t that long ago when CJ broke out at the end of the 2014 season to turn around and deliver a huge dump to fantasy owners the following season. His injury last season didn’t help his case either but look, this isn’t 2015 and fantasy owners are no longer paying the premium for Anderson. A lot of my lineups have Anderson and I’m getting him at a bargain around the late 7th to mid 8th. His stock can easily rise going into the regular season– there is definite risk when drafting a guy like Anderson. To help CJ’s case however, Devontae Booker completely wet the bed when given the opportunity to take the starting role while Anderson was out, and hasn’t looked great early in camp. Even if Anderson doesn’t bounce back completely, some of the other guys in the eighth round with him are Adrian Peterson, Doug Martin who’s currently suspended, and Matt Forte to name a few so Anderson is definitely worth the risk with the huge reward he can present.

Sammy Watkins

The young Buffalo receiver is also a big name who’s been landing on my roster in some drafts. I get it Tyrod Taylor is supposedly horrible, and Watkins has been on the wrong side of luck with injuries, but let’s not forget this guy was once a top five wide receiver in the draft, and when healthy there’s no doubt that Sammy can ball. On a contract year I’m all in on Sammy Watkins. Personally, I believe it was not only physically, but mentally his foot injury was constantly on his mind. Sammy is now planting on his surgically improved foot, and showing his power and speed that ended up getting him drafted so high to begin with.  I totally get the risk that’s involved, but Sammy has taken the time to recover, and get the work done to his foot that he needed. If it makes you feel better as fantasy owners did anybody shy away from drafting Julio Jones, Dez Bryant, or even Julian Edelman after coming back from serious foot injuries? I didn’t think so, Watkins is on the top of my list as a bounce back candidate who can bring end the season with a bang when it comes to reward.

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Joe Mixon

There’s no questioning the talent here, but the only risk here with this rookie running back besides his character issues is the current running backs in front of him. Giovanni Bernard has proven himself numerous times, but not quite enough to be the number one guy for Cincinnati and Jeremy Hill has seen and given more ups and downs than a roller coaster to his owners who have continuously given him the chance. Sure the reports right now coming out of Bengals camp is that Bernard is looking like a stud, and that Hill should be the starter, but one screw up for Hill and once Mixon is in, don’t be shocked if the rookie ends the season as the starter going into next season. The risk here is drafting him when you can with all the hype building up, and if you can afford to roster him until it’s his time. If you have the depth, and find yourself with a good record that doesn’t hurt you I’d hold on to Mixon to cash in on the reward.

Danny Woodhead

Even at age 32, Danny Woodhead should not be overlooked by fantasy owners specifically in PPR formats. Unfortunately the veteran back ended his final season as a Charger with a torn ACL, but with Kenneth Dixon out for the Ravens you can’t convince me that Woodhead won’t find himself in the mix with Terrance West. Woodhead is too good to not produce on the field, and great players earn their reps. Woodhead is known for his receiving skills and with Steve Smith and Dennis Pitta no longer there don’t expect the aging Jeremy Maclin to hog up all the receptions. Woodhead still provides plenty of reward in this Ravens offense who honestly will look for scoring anywhere, and that is something Danny Woodhead is no stranger to.


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