FFL Mailbag

Chris, Bayside, N.Y.: I'm in a 12-team league where we are only allowed to retain one keeper. My options are Larry Fitzgerald (I sacrifice a sixth-round pick in 2006) and Steven Jackson (10th-round pick). The other owners will be keeping some good RBs as well, (Larry Johnson, Tiki Barber, Willis McGahee, Thomas Jones, Willie Parker and Warrick Dunn to name a few). With these factors in mind, who would you keep and why?

Engel: I do believe Jackson can be a top fantasy RB as soon as 2006. Once he gets to the second level, there might not be a tougher guy to tackle in the NFL, and he is nearly unstoppable in the red zone. But Jackson still has to develop more consistency, and Fitzgerald is already an established standout after only two years in the league. A top-level receiver such a Fitzgerald can be one of two keys to a title run, the other being a consistently outstanding RB. Jackson isn't quite there yet, so keep Fitzgerald and just make sure you take the best RB available in your next draft with the first choice. Considering that some top RBs will already be gone, don't be afraid to trade up to get in prime draft position. Or consider taking three RBs with your first three picks to increase your chances of getting good seasons from the RBs that will still be available.