Previous Year Recap
The Colorado Rapids were one of the biggest surprises in MLS last season. They finished top of the Western Conference behind consistent play, a next man up mentality, defense, and set pieces. A crazy Decision Day that saw them score five goals against LAFC got them the Thanksgiving Day match at home. They lost that game at the death to Portland Timbers as the lack of a consistent goal scorer undid them.
This success made Rapids players regulars in MLS Fantasy. Goalkeeper William Yarbrough led MLS in clean sheets. Outside backs Sam Vines and then Lucas Esteves got involved in the attack to record assists and passing bonuses. The center backs collected CBI bonuses. Jack Price was a very good (but not elite) option at midfield. Squad rotation and Michael Barrios being cursed for Reid meant not many Fantasy owners were starting Colorado attackers.
Fantasy Players to Watch
Yarbrough is expected to be the regular starter again this year. He should be one of the best clean sheet options in the league, especially at home against Eastern Conference teams. He won’t be getting as many saves as others but should be regularly under consideration.
Danny Wilson’s the leader of the backline but Auston Trusty and Lalas Abubakar are your better options for defending bonuses. Wilson is slightly better goal scorer. Esteves will be the most attacking of the defenders. Keegan Rosenberry should again be an Iron Man starter. If you’re going for the clean sheet, just pick the cheapest starter. Trusty is off to Arsenal on July 17, so that could open the door for the under the radar (and cheaper) Aboubacar Keita in the second half of the season.
Start with Jack Price. Set piece assists and crossing/passing bonuses, albeit with the occasional yellow card. He’ll rarely be more than $10 million. Mark-Anthony Kaye and newcomer Max Alves could do good work from the run of play. They’ll be more budget friendly options.
After that, you’re looking for bargains. Jonathan Lewis is listed as a midfielder. He’ll get more playing time this year with Braian Galvan out with an ACL injury. He’s inconsistent, but when he’s on form, ride that Switcheroo rocket ship to the moon. Robin Fraser loves to rotate his midfield so make sure you’ve got lineup notifications on.
Michael Barrios will get you assists. If Diego Rubio stays healthy, he might scrap his way to 10 goals this season. It’s slip pickings otherwise.
The Burgundy Boys are going to be very similar to last year. They’ll press well, build out of the back, score on set pieces, and rely on their depth. They’re returning the entire backline from the end of last season. You should have a Rapids defender or goalkeeper in your lineup regularly. Price should be in consideration as a midfielder and maybe one other. Given this team’s emphasis on Strength At Altitude, they’ll have some options for DGWs now that those are back in the game this year. Until that DP striker gets signed (and I’m convinced that’s not happening), you’re better off looking elsewhere for forwards.