I liked the fantasy football prospects of each of these players, but after recent arrests, how will that impact my fantasy drafting?
Should I Participate in Fantasy Drafts Later Rather than Earlier?
Yes. Lots can happen between now and early September when the NFL regular season starts. Injuries, demotions, roster changes, and of course, arrests that can impact a promising fantasy football player. I prefer to wait until late August for fantasy drafts--it gives me more time to evaluate how players charged criminally will fair in court as well as if any team or league punishment will be a factor.
Was the Player Expected to be Critical in Their Team's Success?
Each of the four players mentioned above are stars, and their respective teams would love to have them on the field. Peterson and Britt are coming off serious injuries and were not expected to be ready early in the season anyway. The Titans and the Vikings already have a Plan B in place. From a fantasy perspective--I'll need to evaluate if grabbing the "Plan B" players early and then selecting Peterson and/or Britt is better than alternative selections.
How will the arrest impact their draft value?
Of the four players, only Britt tumbled on ratings boards. Combine the arrest with his past discipline problems and multiple surgeries, he fell from an under 60 to a now over 100 ranking on NFL.com. In Week 3 last year, Britt was a fantasy star WR--having 289 yards and three TDs in limited action. Insiders still rave about his abilities, and taking Britt with one of your last fantasy picks is much more appealing than risking a 5th or 6th round selection on him.
How much NFL news is enough?
Ha, I don't think I can put a ceiling on the amount of information that one can gain about the teams, coaches, and players. Figuring out what role each arrested player is expected to assume, what the commissioner or general manager is saying about him, and what non-criminal behaviors are being reported, can certainly give you a heads-up as to what players to avoid or take a risk on pre-draft.
In sum, when an NFL player is arrested, it is certainly something worth monitoring, but it can also allow you to draft a good player at an improved value--after the situation is resolved.