2013 Team Outlook: New England Patriots
TE Zach Sudfeld, NYJ - Sleeper (undervalued)
Update 10-25-2013 - Sudfeld is no longer on the Patriots
Profile - Don't feel bad. Sudfeld was just a guy until the undrafted University of Nevada product began practicing with the Patriots' first-team offense. The 6-foot-7 target moved past Jake Ballard and Daniel Fells on the team's depth chart with Rob Gronkowski recovering from multiple surgeries. He flashed pass-catching credentials last season with 45 receptions and eight touchdowns. Sudfeld's fantasy value is gaining steam and could add serious momentum if Gronkowski opens the season on the six-week PUP list. The epitome of a late round super sleeper.
TE Jake Ballard, ARI - Bust (overvalued)
Update August 31, 2013- Despite no Hernandez and an injured Gronk, Ballard was still cut.
Update June 20, 2013 - Ballard seems to be healthy after sitting out all of the 2013 season. With the uncertainty of Gronk and the recent Hernandez saga and release, Ballard could be a huge sleeper. Another guy to follow throughout training camp.
TE Aaron Hernandez, --- - Not Draft Worthy
Update June 26,2013 - Hernadez was arrested for Murder and then cut by the Pats. He is likely gonna be in jail for a long time.
Update June 20, 2013 - Stories are swirling about Hernandez being involved in a murder. Pay close attention as this story unfolds. Way too early to predict what will happen with him.
Despite playing in Gronk's shadow, Hernandez has been a very important part of the Pats' offense. After improving in year 2, he took a bit of a step back last season, when he missed a career high 6 games. Injuries have been an issue for Hernandez in his young career, never playing a full season and now recovering from a shoulder injury that might cause him to start training camp at less than 100%. IF Hernandez can get healthy in time for the start of the season (and can stay healthy for the entire season), don't be surprised if he puts up his best season. With no Wes Welker, Brady will look to his other weapons and Hernandez will definitely be one he wants to get the ball to more often. Hernandez should definitely be drafted as a top 10 TE. He also makes sense as a receiver in leagues that allow TEs to start as receivers, or even as a flex. Follow his injuries.
PK Stephen Gostkowski, NE - Stud (low risk)
As long as he is healthy and kicking for the Patriots, Gostkowski will be a top 5 fantasy Kicker. Last season he scored the most points amongst kickers and should be very close to that again this year. Don't expect much competition for his job, you should feel very safe drafting him.
New England Defense - Bye Week Fill-in
Pats Defense should not be on the top of your fantasy list. While they are usually very high up on turnovers, they do not score many touchdowns on those turnovers, they do not generate enough sacks either. They also tend to give up a lot of yards. Look for your fantasy defense elsewhere.