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Football Information: Will Sidney Rice Ever Produce?

Minnesota Vikings v Dallas Cowboys

Last season Sidney Rice was hampered by injury and struggled through his sophomore season with the Minnesota Vikings. What surprised me most when I looked back at Rice’s stats for last season is that he only started 3 of the 13 games he was on the field for last year.

While injury’s and the ability to find the field have been disappointing for this third year receiver, I can’t help but feel he will need to step up if they are going to the playoffs in 2009. Sure they have Bernard Berrian and young talented rookie Percy Harvin but neither of those receivers are big in size like Rice. In the little I’ve seen from Rice in his time with the Vikings he seems to be a guy that could be a good touchdown maker when the team gets inside the red zone.

For all of Sidney’s disappointments he has posted 8 touchdowns in his 46 career catches. No doubt he is built to have success in this area as he stands in at a height of 6’4 and has good leaping ability’s.

Success in the Off-Season

So far, it has been noted by reporters out of Vikings’ camp that Rice is looking more productive than ever in his career so far. This makes sense has Sidney has stayed healthy and a receiver tends to find their grooving at the pro level around their third season.

This mainly happens because for the first season or two it is hard for most receivers to process what is going on during a play and make confident decisions. Most of the time they are too busy thinking about what they should be doing on the field while a play is happening rather than reacting to what’s going on and making adjustment as they did in college.

By the third season, a receiver is usually ready to play and the NFL speed the way they did at the college level, as they have now gone through the NFL learning curve. Understanding this transition it is reasonable to believe that Rice is ready to start regularly and start showing why he was an early second round pick in 2007.

Fantasy Football Information on Sidney Rice

While I do believe Sidney is ready to start producing much better numbers for his team, I don’t think he is draft worthy in fantasy circles at this time. Maybe if Brett Favre would have come out of retirement (or if he does in a month) then Rice would be worth looking at but with Rosenfels and Jackson at quarterback this team is not going to be strong in the passing game.

Besides this team even with Favre would have been a heavy run offense as they will pound out the yardage with Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor on the ground.

San Diego Chargers v Minnesota Vikings

With that being said Rice still could make for a nice waiver pickup should injury prone Bernard Berrian go down for any length of time. In that scenario the team would look to a player like Sidney to step up and be a top producer in this offense.

Fantasy Football Information Writer Sean E. Douglas:

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