Even though some Bengals didn’t perform up to expectations, others exceeded them. These players may not have had stellar seasons, but they excelled, given their 2016 pre-ranking.
Projected Position Rank: 86, Actual Position Rank: 33
Coming over from New England In 2016, LaFell looked to fill in for Marvin Jones as the Bengals’ number two receiver. He was drafted in most leagues as a later round pick and not too much was expected from him fantasy-wise. LaFell didn’t perform like a number one receiver, but he did lead all Bengals wide receivers in fantasy points. LaFell had four games of double-digit points and scored six touchdowns. He proved to be a pleasant surprise to anyone looking for a decent fantasy three receiver in the late rounds.
Can LaFell duplicate his 2016 success? It really depends on the health of A.J. Green and whether Tyler Boyd can take a step forward and take some of LaFell’s targets. He should still be looked at as a late round fantasy wide receiver.
Projected Position Rank: 17, Actual Position Rank: 12
Much like LaFell, Dalton didn’t necessarily take the league by storm in 2016. However, he was a handy replacement for quarterbacks during a bye or for anyone who drafted Tony Romo as their top QB. According to ESPN’s pre-rankings, Dalton was slated to be the 17th best quarterback in fantasy football for 2016. He actually finished the year 12th, ahead of some notable names such as Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, and Cam Newton. Dalton never scored under ten fantasy points in a game but only broke the 20 point mark three times. Nonetheless, his low floor made him a solid backup fantasy quarterback that could be obtained late in drafts or in free agency.