25-Year-Old Center – Winnipeg Jets
Mark Scheifele Contract Information:
Signed an eight-year contract with the Jets in July of 2016 worth $49 million.
Scheifele failed to tally a point in the Jets' last two playoff contests.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Across the final box score for his season, Scheifele churned out an excellent campaign that has the Jets -- and dynasty owners -- giddy with excitement on his prospects moving forward. The young pivot set career highs with 29 goals, 32 assists, a plus-16 rating and 48 PIM. Understandably, the seventh overall pick in 2011 is right on the heels of Bryan Little and could end up on the top line when it's all said and done. The power-play scoring wasn't as high last year as the campaign before -- 11 points compared to 13 -- but he's still one of the game's rising stars at age 23. Scheifele was second on the team in points last season, and while he may not surpass Blake Wheeler this year, another 60-point campaign (or more) should be in the offing.
Scheifele had a fantastic season in 2014-15, breaking out with career highs in goals (15) and assists (34) for a total of 49 points in 82 games with the Jets. The former first-round pick is a big (6-foot-3) and skilled center, and he thrived as a member of Winnipeg’s second-line last season. As a part of the Jets’ second power-play unit, Scheifele was given additional opportunities to set up his teammates and tickle the twine. He should return to a similar role with Winnipeg in 2015-16, but perhaps with some added responsibility. Scheifele is only 22 years old, and he could ultimately develop into one of the league’s top centers over the next few years. Given his talent and significant role with the up-and-coming Jets, Scheifele makes for quite an attractive fantasy option heading into the upcoming season.
Scheifele’s first full season in the NHL ended rather abruptly when he went down with an MCL sprain in March, but there’s a lot to like about the young center. He managed to put up 13 goals and 21 assists in 63 games before getting hurt and figures to be a key piece for the Jets again in 2014-15. He was drafted seventh overall in 2011 and will only be 21 years old when the season starts, so it’s reasonable to expect his numbers to trend upward. After all, he drastically improved in the second half of last season, posting 10 goals and 13 assists in his last 31 games. The only question is how much will his production increase. He’s expected to be the man in the middle on a line with Evander Kane and Blake Wheeler, and if the enigmatic Kane can unlock his full potential as a net crasher, Scheifele could take off.
With Alexander Burmistrov leaving the Jets to continue his career in Russia, Scheifele is likely to play his first full NHL season this year. Although he failed to record a point in four games with the team last year, the Jets' 2011 first round pick did manage an outstanding 30 goals and 49 assists in just 45 games with the OHL's Barrie Colts last season. If you like to gamble on a young up-and-coming star late in your fantasy draft, Scheifele should be one of the names you consider. Be warned, however, that he's not necessarily going to provide star-level numbers right out of the gate, as he'll be given a chance to develop. He also is by no means a shoo-in to be on the team's top two offensive lines to start his big league career.
Scheifele split his time in 2011-2012 between the Ontario Hockey League, the AHL, and the NHL, scoring one goal in seven games to begin the seasons before Winnipeg sent him back juniors. Though the 19 year-old did not dazzle during his short time with the big club, his potential is undeniable. The Jets used a seventh-overall pick on this very raw Ontario native in 2011, understanding that he would require some seasoning in the minors, and for owners in long-term dynasty formats, Scheifele makes for a great upside pick.