In honor of the most overrated (Susan no-talent Boyle) and the underrated (Kelly Ripa – she gets skinnier every kid) celebrities on T.V., here are the Susan Boyles and Kelly Ripas of each AFC team.
1) New England Patriots
SB: Benjamin Watson (TE) – Only 22 catches last year for 209 yards. If he keeps this up, newly acquired Chris Baker could have a better year than Watson.
KR: Fred Taylor (RB) – The former Jacksonville Jaguars running back had a career-low 556 yards on the ground, but Taylor could reach 1,000 yards if Tom Brady stays healthy.
2) Miami Dolphins
SB: Jason Allen (S) – Would anybody be shocked if the former Tennessee safety was cut in training camp? One interception last year; Bill Parcells should cut him now
KR: Cameron Wake (LB) – The former CFL star ran a 4.55 40 yard dash at the 2005 NFL Combine and should be another Bill Parcells hidden gem.
3) New York Jets
SB: Bart Scott (LB) – Let’s see what Scott can do without Ray Lewis and Ed Reed playing next to him. He is a good player, just overpaid.
KR: Shonn Greene (RB) This rookie rushed for over 100 yards every game last year for Iowa. Green is a sleeper fantasy pick that will force the Jets to get rid of Thomas Jones or Leon Wahingston in 2010.
4) Buffalo Bills
SB: Chris Kelsay (DE) – This overpaid defensive end has 4.5 sacks the past two seasons. If rookie Aaron Maybin ends his hold out and has a good training camp, Kelsay could end up on the bench or cut.
KR: Reggie Corner (CB) – The former Akron cornerback is the favorite to start at nickel for the Bills. Ashton Youboty or Drayton Florence could get caught thanks to Corner (Appropriate last name, eh?)
1) Pittsburgh Steelers
SB: Limas Sweed (WR) – This was the hardest team to pick an overrated player but Sweed had too many drops as a rookie. Big Ben needs him to make up for the loss of Nate Washington.
KR: Rashard Mendenhall (RB) – The former Illinois running back played in only four games as a rookie. If he stays healthy, the defending Super Bowl champions should have no problem repeating with Parker and Mendenhall in the backfield.
2) Baltimore Ravens
SB: Le’Ron McClain (RB) – He was a fantasy stud last year, but I expect big things out of former Rutgers running back Ray Rice this season. Did I mention McClain is close to 20 pounds overweight and Rice added muscle in the offseason?
KR: L.J. Smith (TE) – The former Philadelphia Eagles tight end hasn’t had over 300 yards in a season since 2006. I expect this to change with Todd Heap also on the downside of his career. Look for Joe Flacco to use Smith a lot more than McNabb did last season.
3) Cincinnati Bengals
SB: Chris Henry (WR) – Carson Palmer calls him Randy Moss Jr. I think that is a stretch and expect him to have a mediocre year now that Laveranues Coles is in town.
KR: Michael Johnson (DE) – I easily could have put the Bengals whole draft class here but Johnson could be the Bengals best pass rusher in two years. Johnson was a great third round pick.
4) Cleveland Browns
SB: Josh Cribbs (ATH) – I chuckle when kick returners hold out for more money. Cribbs is fun to watch but had only three touchdowns last season.
KR: Alex Mack (C) – He was picked in the first round so why do I consider him underrated? He will be one of the best centers in the NFL in three years, mark it down.
1) Tennessee Titans
SB: Nate Washington (WR) – Many Titans fans loved this pickup and I don’t know why. The former Pittsburgh Steelers receiver hasn’t reached 700 yards once in his three year career.
KR: Jared Cook (TE) – The former South Carolina tight end is in a great position to learn under tight end Bo Scaife. Cook will be the Titans starting tight end by 2011.
2) Indianapolis Colts
SB: Anthony Gonzalez (WR) – This former first round pick has yet to reach 1,000 yards. We will see what he can do this year without Al Capone Marvin Harrison.
KR: Austin Collie (WR) – This speedy former BYU receiver will be a favorite of Peyton Manning by the end of the year. A dark horse fantasy football pickup.
3) Houston Texans
SB: Matt Schaub (QB) – Remember when the Atlanta Falcons got ripped for trading away Schaub? He has yet to throw 16 touchdowns in a season. If he doesn’t improve this season, the Texans need to look elsewhere in the offseason.
KR: Jeremiah Johnson (RB) – The rookie from Oregon should be a nice back up plan for Steve Slaton. Johnson had 18 touchdowns while splitting time as a senior at Oregon.
4) Jacksonville Jaguars
SB: Derrick Harvey (DE) – The former first round pick had 3.5 sacks as a rookie. Will the former Florida Gator approach five sacks this season?
KR: Rashad Jennings (RB) – I expect this seventh round pick to make the team and eventually be a good backup for Maurice Jones-Drew.
1) San Diego Chargers
SB: Craig Davis (WR) – The former first round pick has 247 yards total in his two-year career. Chargers fans will lose patience if Davis struggles again this season.
KR: Jacob Hester (RB) – The second-year running back will be a very good goal line back.
2) Denver Broncos
SB: Josh McDaniels (coach) – He has to be the dumbest coach in the NFL with some of the comments he has made. I expect him to struggle just like former New England Patriots assistants Romeo Crennel and Charlie Weis did once they left Bill Belichick.
KR: Corey Buckhalter (RB) – If Knowshon Moreno struggles or gets injured, Buckhalter should pick up the slack.
3) Oakland Raiders
SB: JaMarcus Russell (QB) – How shocking is it that this guy was once the first overall pick? If I am Tom Cable (CABLE GUYYYYYYY) I am starting Jeff Garcia every game.
KR: Michael Bush (RB) – If he stays healthy, Bush could reach 800 yards, eight touchdowns.
4) Kansas City Chiefs
SB: Matt Cassel (QB) – This is a bold pick but I want to see him do it for two years straight. His cast is nowhere near as impressive as what he had in New England.
KR: Zach Thomas (LB) – This veteran is exactly what the Chiefs defense needs. Thomas doesn’t have much left in the tank, so expect him to give it one last shot.