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Don't Underestimate Martavis Bryant

Gregg Sussman, Frank Stampfl, and Michael Florio discuss random topic in fantasy for a "Potpourri Tuesday" edition of BFFs!

For someone coming off a year long suspension, you're not hearing much on Steelers WR Martavis Bryant. I think you should capitalize on this and grab Bryant in your fantasy leagues this year.  His average draft position is 65, or WR30 - around Kelvin Benjamin and Donte Moncrief.

In his two years in the league, he's averaged 10.75 FPPG (standard). Last year, a player who played 16 games and averaged 10.75 FPPG would have finished 7th in fantasy scoring, or right behind Julio Jones.

Bryant is an athletic freak. We've all seen the dazzling spin moves and seemingly impossible catches Martavis has made. According to Pro Football Focus, only Odell Beckham Jr. has more yards per route run than Bryant out of all third year WR's. Martavis's average is 0.72 yards more than the 3rd year WR average. Bryant was also the 5th highest-graded WR by PFF in the 2014 football season.

For every 3 games he has played in his career, he has two touchdowns. Not too many WR's can boast a ratio like that.

Looking ahead to the 2017 season, Bryant is set for a breakout year. According to Ben Roethlisberger, Martavis "looks like a stud, as usual." He's been working hard since his suspension. He moved from Los Angeles to an area outside Las Vegas, and trained almost daily at a local high school.

The Steelers had to rely on Eli Rogers and Sammie Coates as a WR2 last year, and even they were fantasy relevant at times. If they were able to produce, just imagine what a 6"5 WR who runs a sub 4.30 40 can do.
We can't forget that Martavis is, fortunately, in a contract year. Players in contract years typically perform better, knowing that this could be the difference between a big contract and a small contract. Bryant is in an ideal situation, as he is a big play threat with a QB who can certainly chuck the ball in Roethlisberger. Antonio Brown will definitely see a majority of the targets, but as we saw in 2014 and 2015, this does not affect Bryant's upside.

One of the most important keys is the presence of Le'Veon Bell. Not only does the opposing defense have to focus on possibly the league's best receiver in Antonio Brown, but they also have to pay attention to the ground game.  Bryant has legitimate top 10 talent, but will not be defended by the opponent's best cornerback! Bryant is being heavily undervalued in this year's fantasy drafts.

We ranked Bryant as the 28th WR in our initial rankings.

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