The off-season hype in the Buffalo passing game has centered around the arrival of Terrell Owens. However, it is fellow wideout Lee Evans that will provide the better value.
The latest Average Draft Position (ADP) reports in leagues drafted on MyFantasyLeague.com have Owens going off the board as the 14th wideout selected and somewhere between the 38th and 39th overall selection (Round 4 in 12-team leagues). Meanwhile, Evans is being taken as the 25th receiver somewhere near pick 70 (end of Round 6 in 12-team leagues). In many formats, Owens will be taken even earlier.
While I give a thousand reasons to stay away from T.O., this post is more about why to like Evans. Here are a couple of factors to consider:
Evans hasn't had a receiver opposite of him that warranted much consideration by opponents since Eric Moulds departed Buffalo in 2005. During the two years he had Moulds in the mix, Evans found his way to the end zone 16 times. Meanwhile, over the past two seasons he's only scored eight times. Owens' arrival will force teams to place single coverage on him and allow Evans more chances to make big plays.
IMPROVED QUARTERBACK PLAY
Trent Edwards still needs some more development before being considered a legitimate NFL starting quarterback, but he shows promise and is a huge upgrade over JP Losman (no longer with team).
SOLID RUNNING GAME
The Bills offensive line is improving and the running attack is viable. Once Marshawn Lynch returns from his three-game suspension and rejoins Fred Jackson and newcomer Dominic Rhodes, the backfield will demand attention and open up the passing attack even more.
FINAL TAKE: Evans has always struggled with consistency, but has proven time and time again he's capable of putting up some huge days. For where he's falling, the value couldn't be better. Evans should be viewed as a low-end option WR2 in deeper leagues and a stellar WR3. He possesses top 10 potential though and would be more than worth a 6th round pick.
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