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Footballguys Mock Draft 6 - IDP, PPR

Six members of the Footballguys staff, along with six writers in the industry got together and completed a 12-team 32-round IDP, mock draft with PPR scoring format.

From August 4th - 20th, six members of the Footballguys Staff, along with six highly regarded writers in the IDP fantasy football community, got together to complete a 12-team, 32-round, IDP mock draft with PPR scoring. Before the draft, each of the participants answered questions regarding strategies, players they coveted and how they plan to attack the draft. To top it off, Footballguys' Sigmund Bloom will provide an evaluation of each team's roster strengths and weaknesses, chronicling the strategies and decisions that were made by each participant.

The goal of this article is to give you a look into the minds of fantasy experts throughout the entire draft process. This includes preparation, decision making, and execution. What was their plan? Did they follow it? Why did they make the decisions they made? Some drafters had similar strategies and players of interest, but how they executed their plan and built their roster, varied from person to person.

We hope you will uncover or discover a strategy that might work for you in your draft(s) this year. Learn what players the experts are targeting and why. At Footballguys, when you win, we win! If we can help give you the tools and know-how to build a winning team, we've done our job.

LEAGUE PARAMETERS

  • 12 teams
  • 32 roster spots
  • Starting Lineup
    • 1 quarterback
    • 2 running backs
    • 3 wide receivers
    • 1 tight end
    • 1 offensive flex (RB, WR, TE)
    • 2 defensive ends
    • 1 defensive tackle
    • 3 linebackers
    • 2 cornerbacks
    • 2 safeties
    • 2 defensive flex (either DT, LB, S or CB)

LEAGUE SCORING

  • Offensive Players Only
    • 4 points - Passing Touchdown
    • 6 points - Rushing/Receiving Touchdown
    • 1 point - every 25 Passing Yards
    • 1 point - every 10 Rushing/Receiving Yards
    • 1 point - Reception (QB, RB, WR)
    • 2 points - Two-Point Conversion (rush, pass or receive)
  • Defense scoring
    • 6 points - fumble recovery touchdown
    • 3 points - fumble recovery
    • 3 points - forced fumble
    • 6 points - interception for touchdown
    • 4 points - interception caught
    • 2 points - pass defensed
    • 6 points - blocked field goal or punt for touchdown
    • 6 points - block field goal, extra point or blocked punt
    • 2 points - tackle
    • 1 point - tackle assist
    • 5 points - sacked quarterback
    • 10 points - safety

DRAFT PARTICIPANTS

  1. Justin Howe, Footballguys
  2. James Brimacombe, Footballguys
  3. Gary Davenport, FantasySharks
  4. Heath Cummings, CBS Sports
  5. Mark Wimer, Footballguys
  6. Aaron Rudnicki, Footballguys
  7. Mike Woellert, 4for4
  8. Wally Spurlin, Pro Football Focus
  9. Tommy Kislingbury, Dynasty League Football
  10. John Norton, Footballguys
  11. Eric Moody, FantasyPros
  12. Daniel Simpkins, Footballguys

DRAFT GRID

View Grid

DRAFT SLOT 1

Justin Howe, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

Hopefully, I'll be the first in on Deion Jones. I'm higher on him than any of my fellow Footballguys, per our staff rankings, so I hope he slips two or even three rounds below the Bobby Wagner/Luke Kuechly tier. In my eyes, there's little real difference among the top 10 linebackers, so getting that kind of discount could be huge. I'd much rather walk away from the middle rounds with something like Jamison Crowder + Jones than, say, Wagner + Jordy Nelson.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

With the middle rounds clouded by (necessary) defensive picks, it's harder to stick to positional strategies. I'm not quite as able to chase 4-5 wide receivers between Rounds 5 and 10 - which is usually my sweet spot - if I've got unpredictable defensive needs cropping up left and right. Can only shove so many fingers into the dam and stay nimble. On offense, IDP drafts tend to be a little more about value than hard strategy.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

If the rest of the draft wants to punish Danielle Hunter for his down 2017, I'll jump. There's a chance I'll get a 3-4 round discount from his teammate Everson Griffen, which would be golden. Hunter underwhelmed last year in sack total, but put up huge pressure numbers. He has the talent and the peripherals to threaten 15 sacks a year. If I wind up punting on the big names, then I'm sure I'll target Cameron Heyward down the line. He's a versatile scorer with ever-present 12-sack potential.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I've already discussed Jones and the value that I'll draw if he falls the way I expect. Once Wagner and Kuechly go, I'll put myself on the Jones Clock and take him two rounds later. If that doesn't work, I'll wait a round or two further and pounce on a sure-thing LB1 like Blake Martinez, who should absolutely dominate snaps with Jake Ryan out for the year.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Just like at linebacker, I'm encouraged by the wide-spanning top tiers and the value that brings. I won't be the first to jump on a safety; rather, I'll wait 3-4 rounds and take Jordan Poyer and Jamal Adams back to back. Both carry big tackle upside, and Poyer showed as a 2017 starter that he's an elite playmaker on the ball.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

I'll only draft one defensive tackle, I'm sure I'll play the waiver game if and when I need to. It's just too low-scoring and unpredictable a position to sink much draft capital into. If I walk away with only, say, Damon Harrison on roster, then I'll be fine with it. At cornerback, where there is a bevy of dynamic ballhawk types available up and down the draft, I'll likely draft 2-3. But I won't be doing it early - cornerback tackles aren't very sticky, especially with so many switching teams and schemes. Rather, I'll come away with two late-rounders with the potential to break up 15+ passes on the cheap.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

K.J. Wright gets little IDP appreciation for his year-by-year consistency. Wagner is the force to chase in Seattle, of course, but Wright isn't that far behind him statistically over the last several years. To me, given all of the uncertainty in the low-LB2 tier, he's a top-20 asset. Barring injury, I won't need to juggle him one bit throughout the year. I'm also more interested than most in Tahir Whitehead. He's a talented, versatile guy that will see a full complement of snaps in Oakland's iffy rotation, and he'll likely play multiple positions.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Stephon Tuitt is a better real-life player than a fantasy one, but he's a dominant enough physical force to always assign him 55-tackle, 8-sack upside. Tuitt has yet to play a full NFL season, so his ADP should be depressed this year; he's a potential DE2 coming at DE3 cost (or lower). Similarly, I'm into Kansas City's Chris Jones, who's waffled in terms of numbers but showed the strength and athleticism of a much higher ceiling. Jones simply eviscerated the Eagles in Week 2 last year, with 4 tackles, 3 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles. Given his talent and motor, we should see that happen more often in 2018.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

There are usually noticeable gaps between the value tiers throughout every draft, and each questionable guy with big upside can settle down into one of them. For example: Mark Ingram II carries an easy RB1 ceiling, but will miss the first four weeks. So, I bump him down to where the running back value starts to dry up, generally Round 5 or 6. That's when guys like Royce Freeman and Dion Lewis are gone, but similar floors like Lamar Miller and Carlos Hyde are the best remaining.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

2 QB - 5 RB - 7 WR - 3 TE - 3 DE - 1 DT - 6 LB - 2 CB - 3 S

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Don't allow name value to pull you off your value game. Don't chase a Von Miller or a Marcus Peters into no man's land just because you see such potential in their names. IDP prospects are, generally speaking, to be viewed even more closely and deliberately than offensive ones - they're less predictable, and their scoring is more dynamic. Create a precise list - or let the Footballguys create one for you - and stick to it like glue.

Draft selections

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.01
1
RB
LAR
2.12
24
TE
NEP
3.01
25
RB
CIN
4.12
48
WR
PIT
5.01
49
WR
DET
6.12
72
RB
DEN
7.01
73
LB
ATL
8.12
96
LB
TBB
9.01
97
WR
WAS
10.12
120
RB
Ty Montgomery
GBP
11.01
121
WR
NEP
12.12
144
DE
CIN
13.01
145
S
TEN
14.12
168
QB
Ben Roethlisberger
PIT
15.01
169
LB
PIT
16.12
192
WR
SEA
17.01
193
TE
Cameron Brate
TBB
18.12
216
QB
Jared Goff
LAR
19.01
217
S
NYJ
20.12
240
RB
Peyton Barber
TBB
21.01
241
LB
Sam Acho
CHI
22.12
264
DE
SFO
23.01
265
DT
Linval Joseph
MIN
24.12
288
CB
LAR
25.01
289
DE
PHI
26.12
312
WR
Geronimo Allison
GBP
27.01
313
LB
TEN
28.12
336
QB
Tyrod Taylor
CLE
29.01
337
TE
Ben Watson
NOS
30.12
360
WR
Dede Westbrook
JAC
31.01
361
S
Barry Church
JAC
32.12
384
CB
Ken Crawley
NOS

sigmund bloom's evaluation

Strengths

Todd Gurley and Joe Mixon could be the running back 1-2 combination that no one else in the league can match if Mixon hits, and Royce Freeman gives Justin the possibility of a third top 20 running back. Rob Gronkowski should easily lead the pack at tight end when he’s healthy. Julian Edelman came at a deep discount (11th round) because of his four-game suspension and should help Justin’s lack of a true fantasy WR1. Lavonte David and Deion Jones can match any linebacker 1-2 punch in this league.

Weaknesses

Juju Smith-Schuster and Marvin Jones Jr are high variance wide receivers to have as a #1 and #2 for the first four weeks of the season while Edelman is out and leave Justin open to poor wide receiver scoring. Justin lacks a high impact scorer at defensive end with Carlos Dunlap as his #1 and Michael Bennett as his #2.

How He’ll Win It All

The Bengals offense returns to pre-2017 form and Joe Mixon enters the fantasy RB1 ranks. Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski trade off huge weeks leading the Patriots pass offense once Edelman returns from his suspension, and Gronkowski plays 14+ games. Juju Smith-Schuster, Tyler Lockett, and Jamison Crowder all post career-high numbers. Jamal Adams and Kevin Byard grow in their second and third years, respectively, and form the class of the safety position for IDP leagues.

DRAFT SLOT 2

James Brimacombe, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

You always have to start with a solid ILB who can rack up the tackles. I will be looking to see when one of Bobby Wagner, Luke Kuechly, or C.J. Mosley goes off the board and try to follow suit and draft one of the others.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

Follow your league mates and see when trends and runs at the different positions happen. You don't always have to follow a run at a certain position as you can look to find value with another player.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Joey Bosa would be the first name as I think he ranks higher than the rest as well. I also like Cameron Jordan as I think the Saints defense is one of the underrated defenses this year and have a strong all-around build which can lead to Jordan getting to the quarterback more than some of the other players at the position.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Bobby Wagner and Luke Kuechly are the two studs that I would be excited to have either one on my roster. I think once I have my running backs and wide receivers that I am comfortable with, I will start looking at the IDP side of my team.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Landon Collins for the Giants and Reshad Jones for the Dolphins both have big-play abilities and are tackling machines. I always look to see where I can get as many tackles from when drafting IDP players. I will look at this position after I am set with my starting LB and DE.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

I will wait until the last few rounds to look for these players as they don't offer as much upside as some of the other positions.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I like Jordan Hicks for the Eagles as he is coming off a torn Achilles and can be had at a discount right now. The Eagles defensive line and secondary have so much talent and depth right now that there are going to be tackles forced into that linebacker role. Another target late at linebacker for me will be Preston Brown for the Bengals, once again it will be based on the discount and value that I can get him at late in drafts.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Cameron Heyward in Pittsburgh and Vic Beasley Jr in Atlanta, both guys have big-play upside and play for higher ranked defenses that often go overlooked.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

With IDP the waiver wire is usually your friend as the season goes. I don't feel like you have to reach for rookies or injured players as you will have plenty of opportunities to find replacement type of players as the weeks go by with players stepping up on their teams to fill in for an injured player.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

  • 2 QB
  • 6 RB
  • 8 WR
  • 3 TE
  • 1 DT
  • 2 DE
  • 4 LB
  • 3 CB
  • 3 S

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Attack it like you would any other draft but also don't be afraid to be the one that starts to draft IDP players. Be aggressive in selecting the IDP players you want and start as early as Round 3 to do so.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.02
2
RB
Le'Veon Bell
PIT
2.11
23
RB
SFO
3.02
26
RB
CHI
4.11
47
QB
GBP
5.02
50
WR
LAR
6.11
71
RB
Ronald Jones
TBB
7.02
74
LB
WAS
8.11
95
WR
HOU
9.02
98
WR
Devin Funchess
CAR
10.11
119
DE
LAR
11.02
122
WR
NYJ
12.11
143
WR
Sterling Shepard
NYG
13.02
146
S
Sean Davis
PIT
14.11
167
TE
CLE
15.02
170
TE
O.J. Howard
TBB
16.11
191
WR
Mike Williams
LAC
17.02
194
LB
NOS
18.11
215
DE
CAR
19.02
218
DE
TEN
20.11
239
LB
NEP
21.02
242
DT
CIN
22.11
263
CB
Kenneth Acker
JAC
23.02
266
S
Malcolm Jenkins
PHI
24.11
287
CB
Jalen Mills
PHI
25.02
290
QB
Mitchell Trubisky
CHI
26.11
311
RB
Jordan Wilkins
IND
27.02
314
WR
JAC
28.11
335
TE
Austin Hooper
ATL
29.02
338
RB
James Conner
PIT
30.11
359
WR
Christian Kirk
ARI
31.02
362
WR
Martavis Bryant
OAK
32.11
383
WR
Albert Wilson
MIA

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

James has the #1 quarterback (Aaron Rodgers) and the best running back trio (Bell/Howard/McKinnon). Aaron Donald, Mario Addison, and Jurrell Casey form a deep defensive end trio, assuming Donald breaks his holdout soon. Brandin Cooks, Keelan Cole, Will Fuller V, and Robby Anderson build a ton of big-play upside into his wide receiver corps. Geno Atkins, arguably the #1 defensive tackle, came at a very cheap 21st round price.

Weaknesses

That same wide receiver corps is a risk to roll snake eyes in any given week relying on boom/bust deep threats. OJ Howard and David Njoku will both arrive in the TE1 ranks eventually, but if it’s not this year, James will be among the league’s worst scorers at tight end. Rodgers gives an advantage at quarterback, but with Wilson, Brees, and Brady lasting until the 13th round, his fourth-round price tag seems steep.

How He’ll Win It All

Aaron Rodgers, Jordan Howard, and Le'Veon Bell put up career-high numbers, while Jerick McKinnon, Zach Brown and Will Fuller V stay healthy. Brandin Cooks is treated like a true #1 and one of Keelan Cole and Robby Anderson pick up where they left off last year. Aaron Donald reports before Week 1 with a new deal and creates more disruption than ever lining up next to Ndamukong Suh.

DRAFT SLOT 3

Gary Davenport, FantasySharks

Gary Davenport is the IDP Senior Staff Writer at Fantasy Sharks, an IDP Writer at Rotoworld and a Contributing Author and Associate Editor at Football Diehards. A seven-time Fantasy Sports Writers Association Awards Finalist, Gary was named that organization's Football Writer of the Year in 2017.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

In an industry league like this, it's less likely that a team will reach for IDPs earlier than I'd expect. Even so, I probably won't be a trend-setter in that regard. I'd like to be able to get a top-five (or so) linebacker and lineman a round or two after the big names come off the board, but so long as I have one of my top 8-10 players at each spot I can live with that.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

My first five IDPs in most scoring systems are almost always some combination of three linebackers and two linemen, although the order they get taken in varies. The cornerback requirement here is a non-issue for me (I'll wait until the final two rounds), but with a DT required it's a position where you can get a nice little edge with a dependable weekly starter. I'm willing to pay ta bit of a premium for that.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

As I said, I'd like to have a top-five DE anchoring my team at that spot, and if I can get away with rostering one without paying retail all the better. In that regard I seem to be winding up with a lot of shares of Everson Griffen this year (I'm higher on him than most). When the second-tier linemen start going (Campbell, Lawrence, etc.) that's the sign that it's time to hit the DE spot if you haven't already. The pool of talent is deeper there than a year ago, but it's still shallow relative to LB and the secondary.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Blake Martinez (Green Bay) and Alec Ogletree (New York) have the upside to crash the elite tier but at a lower price in many drafts—even if this doesn't wind up being one of them. The key at linebacker is pretty simple—if you aren't willing to be aggressive and target a Luke Kuechly or CJ Mosley, you'd better not get caught on the outside of the run at the position that's going to come after those guys are taken.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

This is all a matter of what's there when I finally get around to addressing the back end. I'll freely admit that I usually wind up with speculative picks at safety. Some work out great. Others I wind up cutting loose in Week 3. But there are going to be startable options emerge at the position on the waiver wire at that spot, and I'm much more interested in shoring up my linemen and LB corps than spending draft capital on Landon Collins or Reshad Jones.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

As I mentioned earlier, in a 12-team league I'm willing to pay a bit of a premium for a dependable big man. Like Snacks Harrison a lot in that regard—ceiling isn't great, but he's a consistent tackle producer who tends to be slept on a little because of his lack of big plays.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

- Anthony Hitchens (Chiefs): Top 20 upside in the middle of a bad defense, but coming off draft boards as an LB3 or even LB4 in some leagues.

- Deone Bucannon (Cardinals): He's expected to practice soon and is the best linebacker on Arizona's roster from an IDP perspective by a fair margin. His ADP may climb as we near Week 1, but right now he's undervalued.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

- Robert Quinn (Dolphins): I don't know that you can really call Quinn "under-the-radar," but it's not every day that defensive ends with a top-five ceiling fall into middling DE2 territory. For that price, I'll roll those dice 10 times out of 10.

- Mario Addison (Panthers): Addison's not going to pile up big tackle numbers, but he quietly amassed 11 sacks last year (a career-high) and had at least half a sack in all but three of his games. Consistency is a good thing.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

Depends on the player and the situation. If there's a guy with sky-high potential I can get late because he's a chowderhead who is suspended the first four games of the season (see Burfict, Vontaze) I'm willing to add them and figure out a Plan B for early in the year. But if a promising rookie is buried on a depth chart I'm generally not inclined to burn a spot on a "maybe."

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

Off the top of my head—one tackle, three ends (one reserve spot), five or six linebackers (my flex will come from there), two corners, and three safeties (one reserve spot). If it's just five LB, either the DE or S position will get the extra spot. Not carrying a reserve CB. No way, no how. The waiver wire is my bench there.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Relax. If you're an IDP veteran, then you have a good idea what you're doing. If you're a n00b, it's really not that complicated. Do your research, know your scoring, avail yourself of all the great IDP resources out there and get after it.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.03
3
RB
ARI
2.10
22
RB
ATL
3.03
27
WR
Mike Evans
TBB
4.10
46
RB
TEN
5.03
51
TE
Greg Olsen
CAR
6.10
70
LB
BAL
7.03
75
WR
CLE
8.10
94
RB
OAK
9.03
99
LB
DAL
10.10
118
DE
DAL
11.03
123
WR
Robert Woods
LAR
12.10
142
LB
KCC
13.03
147
DE
JAC
14.10
166
WR
MIA
15.03
171
QB
PHI
16.10
190
LB
Wesley Woodyard
TEN
17.03
195
TE
George Kittle
SFO
18.10
214
S
GBP
19.03
219
DT
NYG
20.10
238
LB
Brandon Marshall
DEN
21.03
243
WR
FA
22.10
262
RB
Doug Martin
OAK
23.03
267
QB
DAL
24.10
286
DE
Muhammad Wilkerson
GBP
25.03
291
S
LAR
26.10
310
WR
MIA
27.03
315
S
TEN
28.10
334
WR
Donte Moncrief
JAC
29.03
339
LB
Malcolm Smith
SFO
30.10
358
RB
Spencer Ware
KCC
31.03
363
CB
CAR
32.10
382
CB
Jude Adjei-Barimah
FA

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

David Johnson and Devonta Freeman might be the best running back combination in the league, and adding Derrick Henry and Marshawn Lynch certainly gives Gary one of the best two running back quartets. Demarcus Lawrence and Yannick Ngakoue can hang with or surpass most teams DE1/DE2 and neither one cost a Top 100 pick. CJ Mosley, Sean Lee, and Anthony Hitchens is a rock-solid linebacker trio.

Weaknesses

Josh Gordon came at a discount, but if he isn’t cleared by the league, Gary only has two reliable starting wide receivers, with DeVante Parker and Danny Amendola as his #3 and #4 while Dez Bryant waits to sign somewhere, which is the cost of overspending on running back. The safety trio of Josh Jones, John Johnson III, and Kenny Vaccaro might not a strong weekly option. Between Carson Wentz’s recovery and Dak Prescott adjusting to new targets, Gary could get off to a slow start at quarterback.

How He’ll Win It All

Wentz returns Week 1 and looks like his old self. Ngakoue adds the tackle base to his already impressive sack stats and resides among the elite fantasy defensive ends. Lee stays healthy and Hitchens becomes the leader of the Chiefs defense in tackles. Gordon gets cleared before Week 1 and shows his best form yet now that he’s sober and playing with a competent quarterback.

DRAFT SLOT 4

Heath Cummings, CBS Sports

Heath Cummings is a Senior Fantasy Football Writer for CBS Sports and an analyst on Fantasy Football Today. Before joining CBS Sports he was a staff writer for Footballguys and hosted a Fantasy Football show with Jeff Haseley on ESPN 1510 in Kansas City.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

With Watt's injury risk and Mack's holdout I can't imagine I'll take a defensive player in the first four rounds. If Luke Kuechly is still there in the 5th I'l be tempted. LB is definitely the first position I plan on filling.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

It doesn't really change much for me other than I'm even more likely to wait on quarterback. I will say, if there's an early run on defensive players I will be more likely to keep drafting offensive players.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I would love it if Watt would fall because of injury risk. It's easy to forget just how awesome he was when he was right. Myles Garrett is another DE I'll be looking for but not until I've filled most of my skill positions and picked up a linebacker.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Kuechly in the 5th or Bobby Wagner in the 6th. If linebackers go way earlier than I'm anticipating then Jarrad Davis is a guy I could see settling for once everyone else has a LB.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I'm not going to focus on getting a safety early at all but I would be pretty happy to land Karl Joseph or Budda Baker late in the draft. These are two safeties I could see on the field a lot this year without linebackers in front of them who steal a lot of tackles.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

Wait, wait, wait. Cornerback especially is more of an icing position for me than a necessity. I'll try to look more towards big-play players, counting their stats as a bonus whenever I get them

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Vic Beasley Jr. He would have been much more exciting as a defensive end, but that may cause him to fall too far. He's still exciting as a late pick for his big-game potential.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Justin Houston. He shouldn't be under the radar but injury and age have dropped him a lot. He's underrated against the run and there's hope that the Chiefs send him after the quarterback more this year.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

With deep DST rosters like these I'm a little bit less interested in injured and suspended players on defense unless they fall a long way. On offense, I'll treat them the same. As for rookies, I try to work more on the basis of my expectations for them, not their theoretical upside.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

  • 2 QB
  • 5-7 RB
  • 5-7 WR
  • 1-3 TE
  • 1-2 DT
  • 3 DE
  • 4-6 LB
  • 2-3 CB
  • 3-5 S


11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

If you're not an expert on defensive players, first find a resource. Second, know your scoring system. The weighting of a tackle vs. a sack/int is the most important thing. In most leagues I'm focusing on linebackers and safeties until the later rounds, but a player like Bosa, Mack or Watt having a career year can literally win you your league. So don't be afraid to take a shot.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.04
4
RB
Ezekiel Elliott
DAL
2.09
21
WR
IND
3.04
28
WR
ARI
4.09
45
WR
DET
5.04
52
LB
CAR
6.09
69
RB
IND
7.04
76
TE
GBP
8.09
93
RB
GBP
9.04
100
LB
JAC
10.09
117
DE
MIN
11.04
124
RB
NEP
12.09
141
WR
MIA
13.04
148
DE
ATL
14.09
165
S
Harrison Smith
MIN
15.04
172
QB
Kirk Cousins
MIN
16.09
189
WR
D.J. Moore
CAR
17.04
196
DT
PHI
18.09
213
QB
Philip Rivers
LAC
19.04
220
TE
Hayden Hurst
BAL
20.09
237
LB
CHI
21.04
244
S
KCC
22.09
261
RB
Austin Ekeler
LAC
23.04
268
LB
WAS
24.09
285
CB
JAC
25.04
292
WR
Rishard Matthews
TEN
26.09
309
CB
DET
27.04
316
DE
MIA
28.09
333
S
Antoine Bethea
ARI
29.04
340
RB
D'Onta Foreman
HOU
30.09
357
TE
Ricky Seals-Jones
ARI
31.04
364
WR
Mike Wallace
PHI
32.09
381
LB
Leon Jacobs
JAC

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

T.Y. Hilton and Larry Fitzgerald could give Heath two WR1s without spending a top 20 overall pick on a wide receiver, and Golden Tate is a very strong player to have as a WR3. Jalen Ramsey and Darius Slay gives Heath’s team as high a ceiling at corner in any given week as any team in the league. Eric Berry, Vic Beasley Jr, and Myles Jack all have the potential to greatly outscore their draft slot.

Weaknesses

Sony Michel, Jamaal Williams, and Marlon Mack could all be in unpredictable committees and leave Heath without a reliable RB2 option, and all three suffered injuries in the preseason. Mason Foster and Danny Trevathan could be underwhelming LB3/defensive flex options. Heath paid a DT2 overall price for Fletcher Cox even though he didn’t crack the top 15 in this league’s scoring last year.

How He’ll Win It All

Jimmy Graham scores double-digit touchdowns. One of Williams, Mack, and Michel emerge as lead back and stay healthy. Fitzgerald, Hilton, and Golden Tate all remain the clear leaders in targets and catches on their teams, and Kenny Stills becomes the #1 for Miami. Vic Beasley Jr gets back among the league leaders in sacks and Eric Berry returns to form. Trevathan’s stats are actually helped by the addition of Roquan Smith to the Bears defense as blocker focus on the rookie.

DRAFT SLOT 5

Mark Wimer, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

Given my draft position is 1.05, I will be in the middle of the rounds, which is a perfect position for NOT getting trucked by runs. My usual strategy with IDP players is to wait for 2-3 of my opponents to "pull the trigger" on a particular IDP position, and then dive in to secure one of the top five players at that position. I love where I'll be positioned for this draft. According to my analysis, we'll start seeing the top inside linebackers start coming off the board at the end of the fourth round. So I am likely to be aiming for C.J. Mosley BAL; Blake Martinez, GB or Deion Jones ATL - I am not interested in Bobby Wagner SEA he is too old for my taste and the Seattle defense is in transition - that team may be 4-8 by Week 12 and trying out new faces in the starting lineup - no thanks on SEA IDP's this year.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

As is usual, part of the art of fantasy football is letting the draft come to you. So I will seek value in every round past the "elite" tiers (Rounds 1-3). If there is exceptional value in a particular IDP position I'll go there. Over many years of fantasy drafting I've been known as a "maverick" but really what has been going on is that I seek value where I see it - not where conventional opinion indicates the value is. Going against the grain of "received opinion" is key to finding upside in fantasy drafts.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I'm looking at Everson Griffen and Aaron Donald, two guys who were considered top five players last year but now are in relative disfavor with both at the cusp (or below) of #10 on most draft lists. I think both guys are potential top three players if everything breaks right for them but I won't have to pay the premium top-five price THIS year. Once Jason Pierre-Paul goes off the board it's probably time to prioritize grabbing Griffen or Donald.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I am likely to be aiming for Blake Martinez, GB or Deion Jones ATL - I am not interested in Bobby Wagner SEA he is too old for my taste and the Seattle defense is in transition. If Bobby Wagner or C.J. Mosley goes ahead of me I know it is time to pull the trigger on Martinez or Jones.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I may be the first player into the S market as I am an Atlanta homer and I love what Keanu Neal brings to the table. So I may be a round earlier than anyone else on Neal (after 10 or so linebackers are drafted). I also would love to draft Reshad Jones so I might be triggering the rest of the field here.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

I will slough these positions and aim to take a top-10 player and a top-20 player in the middle of the pack at each position. Defensive tackles are oft-injured due to the hazards of being in the middle of the trenches and cornerbacks are plentiful in the NFL - you can "churn" these positions in free agency so I don't emphasize them in the draft.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Joe Schobert, CLE and Darron Lee, NYJ are being vastly underrated in my opinion. They are young, on a squad with a bad offensive team to sub-par team, and will have plentiful opportunities to make plays each game. These guys have top-10 upside in my opinion. I'll be gunning for them at LB #2 and LB #3.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Takk McKinley is being seriously underestimated as the pass rush partner of Vic Beasley Jr. These two are set to wreck havoc on the NFC South - I would love to roster both of them, but McKinley will come cheapest so he's my preferred "late-round flyer". I also think Yannick Ngakoue is vastly under-rated I will have him on my shortlist for DE #2.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

In a redraft league such as this, (excepting rookie CBs expected to start) I will wait for waiver wire opportunities with these sorts of players. Josh Gordon? No thanks he's proven his unreliability again and again. I wish him well in his recovery but I have no clue when he'll be back on the NFL field.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

In my perfect Draft, I would end up with viable starters out of the 32 positions as such: two quarterbacks; four running backs; six wide receivers, two tight ends; two defensive tackles, four defensive ends, five linebackers, three cornerbacks and three safeties with one extra position floating (likely another safety).

However, as I have stated previously, I seek value in my drafts so I am likely to have imbalances on my roster that will need to be addressed in free agency after the third preseason games. I do not fixate on achieving the optimal mix during the draft as bye weeks/injuries/suspensions and etc are all variables in the mix that I cannot predict before the actual picks land and the draft is in flux. And then comes preseason games and non-contact injuries, etc. Do not be too constrained by the roster limits of your league. You can always address thin positions in free agency in Week 2 or 3 of the regular season before the byes come down to plague fantasy owners.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Let the draft come to you do not force yourself to reach for top three talents unless they are available to be plucked. It is a long season with many unknowns ahead seek an outstanding team at every position according to YOUR projections and let the cards fall as they may.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.05
5
WR
PIT
2.08
20
WR
MIN
3.05
29
WR
KCC
4.08
44
RB
TEN
5.05
53
QB
HOU
6.08
68
RB
ATL
7.05
77
LB
TBB
8.08
92
LB
CHI
9.05
101
RB
CLE
10.08
116
DE
JAC
11.05
125
S
ATL
12.08
140
TE
CHI
13.05
149
QB
CAR
14.08
164
RB
CLE
15.05
173
WR
JAC
16.08
188
DE
SEA
17.05
197
WR
WAS
18.08
212
S
BUF
19.05
221
LB
DAL
20.08
236
TE
IND
21.05
245
LB
Nigel Bradham
PHI
22.08
260
RB
Rob Kelley
WAS
23.05
269
DT
TBB
24.08
284
CB
Ronald Darby
PHI
25.05
293
CB
Jason McCourty
NEP
26.08
308
DE
Emmanuel Ogbah
CLE
27.05
317
LB
De'Vondre Campbell
ATL
28.08
332
S
Tavon Wilson
DET
29.05
341
DT
Grady Jarrett
ATL
30.08
356
CB
Denzel Ward
CLE
31.05
365
DE
Takkarist McKinley
ATL
32.08
380
WR
Rashad Greene
JAC

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Mark has two strong QB1s in Deshaun Watson and Cam Newton and if he plays the matchups, he could blow away the quarterback scoring from the other 11 teams. Antonio Brown, Tyreek Hill, and Adam Thielen can match or even surpass any wide receiver trio in this league. Keanu Neal and Micah Hyde form an elite fantasy safety combination, and Hyde came at a discount considering his 2017 scoring level.

Weaknesses

Mark is without a true RB1, and if Dion Lewis and Tevin Coleman are the lesser parts of RBBCs and Carlos Hyde and Nick Chubb form one, he’ll be without an RB2. Marqise Lee and Paul Richardson Jr give Mark thin and middling wide receiver depth for flex plays and bye/injury coverage. If Roquan Smith gets off to a slow start, he and Kwon Alexander might not pack the scoring punch of other linebacker duos that cost the premium Mark paid.

How He’ll Win It All

Cam Newton clicks in Norv Turner’s offense and Deshaun Watson stays at 2017 levels, which allows Mark to trade one for a key piece at his weakest position. One of Eric Ebron and Trey Burton become a favorite target for their new quarterback. Dion Lewis stays healthy and Devonta Freeman doesn’t. Frank Clark takes a step to the elite level to help the Seattle defense remain in the top half of the league.

DRAFT SLOT 6

Aaron Rudnicki, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

Not sure on the player, as that is difficult to predict ahead of time and I don’t normally like to start a run for a particular position. Despite that, I also don’t want to wait too long and miss out on getting some elite players at shallow positions. For IDP leagues, that normally means drafting an elite defensive end relatively early as the dropoff at the position is steep. There aren’t that many 3-down linebackers I feel comfortable building a team around either, so it’s important not to wait too long given how many points they can score. Most likely I’ll take one IDP but possibly two in the first ten rounds as I generally want to focus on offense first.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

I don’t change much up in the early rounds as the positional scarcity and fantasy scoring potential forces most owners to focus on offensive players in the early rounds as they would in an offense-only draft. Running backs still go early and often, followed by receivers with some tight ends sprinkled in. If I feel good about my players at those positions, then I normally start expanding my player pool to look at IDP positions like defensive end and linebacker, followed up by safety. The main difference is that you have to look across a lot more positions to figure out where the tier breaks are likely to happen to help you figure out which position to draft in each round.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I always try to draft one of the truly elite options at this position, so that would include players like Joey Bosa, Cameron Jordan, Khalil Mack, and J.J. Watt this year. There are some concerns with Mack (holdout) and Watt (injury), however, so I’d be just as happy with players in the next tier like Chandler Jones, Demarcus Lawrence, or Melvin Ingram III. In general, I try to get two players that are very likely to post DE1-type numbers this year as I’m less interested in the boom/bust guys that fill out the following tiers (assuming the draft is for a standard league where you have to pick starters and not a best-ball format).

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I don’t really target specific players in any draft because I like to keep my options open and let the draft come to me. If a player I like happens to be available at a spot when I think he represents value, then I will draft him. Otherwise, I’ll most likely look to a player ranked similarly or at another position. I think there’s a pretty large group of linebackers that I’d consider safe every-week starting options, so as long as I can get two of my top-20 I’ll feel comfortable. There isn’t a ton of separation in my projections from LB1 to LB16 so I’m not sure it’s worth reaching too high to get a highly ranked linebacker.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

This is a position that likely does warrant some effort to draft an elite player. There are two players that stand out at the top in Landon Collins and Keanu Neal so I’d love to add one of them. After that, the tiers start to get larger and bunched more closely together so if I miss out on the first two, I’d feel comfortable waiting awhile to address that position as long as there are good players available elsewhere.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

Defensive tackle has a large dropoff as there aren’t many interior linemen who put up great fantasy numbers in terms of tackles or sacks. So, I will make an effort to land one of the top-10 or so but there’s not a huge need to draft one of the first tackles off the board. Cornerback is one of the least predictable fantasy positions from year to year and also very deep so I will probably wait the longest to address that position. I’m just not sure there’s a clear advantage from drafting CB1 vs CB12 this year so it makes the most sense to wait and fill that position in towards the end of the draft.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I like Darron Lee quite a bit this year. He’s a young player coming into his own and Demario Davis left to sign in New Orleans after posting 97 solos a year ago. Avery Williamson will also see a big uptick in production as the Davis replacement, but I worry about the fact he couldn’t hold off rookie Jayon Brown in nickel last year with the Titans. I also appear to be quite a bit higher on Tahir Whitehead than most of my fellow staffers. He outplayed Jarrad Davis last year in Detroit and now looks like the only clear 3-down linebacker in Oakland, assuming they don’t bring back Navarro Bowman.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I don’t think he’s under the radar but I seem to be much higher on Cameron Heyward than most. He is coming off an exceptional season that saw him post 12 sacks and seems like one of the rare 3-4 defensive ends who can generate consistent pressure on the quarterback. I also have high expectations for Jabaal Sheard with the defensive shift in Indianapolis. He moves back to defensive end after spending last year as a 3-4 outside linebacker and should be a solid DE2 option.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

On the offensive side, I’ve been very bullish on drafting suspended players like Mark Ingram II and Jameis Winston since they could provide top-10 production at their respective positions once activated. On the defensive side, I think there is typically enough depth that there is less need to reach for a player like Vontaze Burfict. I’m probably less concerned about holdouts like Khalil Mack and Aaron Donald than I should be, but I assume they will work it out somehow given how valuable they are to their teams. I’d say it makes the most sense to use those types of situations as a tie-breakers so if you have two players in the same tier but one has some injury/holdout/suspension concerns and the other doesn’t, then I’d likely take the safer player. If you want to win, however, you need to take some chances so don’t be scared to draft these types of players.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

I always try to keep my roster as balanced as I can, but I’d project to wind up with something like 2 quarterbacks, 5 running backs, 6 wide receivers, 2 tight ends for 15 players on offense. On defense, I would want at least 1 defensive tackle, 3 defensive ends, 5 linebackers, 2 cornerbacks, and 4 safeties for another 15 players. That leaves me with 2 additional spots that I can use to address any positions of weakness. I wouldn’t be afraid to wind up with the minimum number of players at defensive tackle and cornerback since those positions are typically easy to fill on the waiver wire.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

They aren’t really any different than offense-only drafts, except for the fact you have a much larger pool of players and positions to choose from. As long as you are relying on a solid set of projections/rankings and can figure out where the tier breaks are, you should be able to build a solid roster. Pay particularly close attention to the most important positions like linebacker and defensive end, and don’t be afraid to wait to fill out the other IDP spots. IDP leagues are a lot of fun and give you a lot more to pay attention to when watching the games or checking out box scores.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.06
6
RB
Alvin Kamara
NOS
2.07
19
WR
A.J. Green
CIN
3.06
30
TE
Travis Kelce
KCC
4.07
43
WR
SEA
5.06
54
LB
SEA
6.07
67
DE
HOU
7.06
78
LB
JAC
8.07
91
WR
Cooper Kupp
LAR
9.06
102
RB
CHI
10.07
115
S
NYG
11.06
126
WR
SFO
12.07
139
DE
PIT
13.06
150
QB
Russell Wilson
SEA
14.07
163
RB
SEA
15.06
174
WR
BUF
16.07
187
LB
NYJ
17.06
198
LB
OAK
18.07
211
DE
Leonard Williams
NYJ
19.06
222
S
Jaquiski Tartt
SFO
20.07
235
RB
Samaje Perine
WAS
21.06
246
DT
Kenny Clark
GBP
22.07
259
RB
Javorius Allen
BAL
23.06
270
QB
TBB
24.07
283
CB
Marshon Lattimore
NOS
25.06
294
TE
Jared Cook
OAK
26.07
307
WR
Taywan Taylor
TEN
27.06
318
LB
Reggie Ragland
KCC
28.07
331
CB
Quandre Diggs
DET
29.06
342
WR
Trent Taylor
SFO
30.07
355
DE
Dion Jordan
SEA
31.06
366
S
Jahleel Addae
LAC
32.07
379
CB
Shaq Griffin
SEA

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

No one can match Aaron’s 1-2 punch at linebacker of Bobby Wagner and Telvin Smith Sr. He also has a top five tight end (Kelce) and quarterback (Wilson). Landon Collins and JJ Watt are both elite options at their position. Aaron’s early draft capital was spread out between IDPs and offensive studs, allowing him to overwhelm the competition in weeks where most of his top players perform near their ceiling.

Weaknesses

Aaron sacrificed depth at running back and wide receiver to amass a strong IDP core. Doug Baldwin’s knee is a critical point of failure with Kelvin Benjamin’s balky knee and Pierre Garcon’s uncertain place in the pecking order as his wide receiver depth. One of Tarik Cohen or Chris Carson could pan out as an RB2, but there will likely be weeks that other teams outscore him by a good margin at RB2 and offensive flex. If JJ Watt doesn’t return to form, Aaron is without a stud edge rushing defensive end, which lowers his weekly upside.

How He’ll Win It All

Doug Baldwin’s knee holds up and gives Aaron a second WR1 along with AJ Green, and adds to his weekly ceiling with the Wilson-to-Baldwin hookup in effect. JJ Watt returns to form and delivers on his DE2 draft investment. Chris Carson holds off Rashaad Penny all year and Tarik Cohen is used to his full effectiveness to give Aaron a strong combination at his weakest offensive position. Pierre Garcon ends up being a 1A to Marquise Goodwin’s #1 receiver and his chemistry with Jimmy Garoppolo comes on line quickly after the season starts.

DRAFT SLOT 7

Mike Woellert, 4for4.com

Mike is an IDP veteran who has been playing in IDP leagues since 2007. He's currently 4for4's IDP ranker and content producer and when he's not poring over IDP depth charts, he can be found agonizing over his Cleveland sports teams.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

I usually target the LB position. I want to come away with a guy who'll rack up at least 130 tackles. Hard to say which player. As much as I'd love Bobby Wagner or Deion Jones, they'll probably go earlier than I want. I usually target the 8th or 9th round before targeting my first IDP. I like to build my offense first.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

I like to target my offense first and foremost. I usually like to have a few RBs/WRs I can start on a given week. I also like to build some depth. So, typically, I'll target the 8th or 9th round for my first IDP and then build my defense.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

This season, I'm targeting guys on the rebound from injury, poor play or a position designation switch. I really like Robert Quinn in Miami opposite Cameron Wake. Another guy I'm targeting is Vic Beasley Jr, who appears to be playing more with his hand in the dirt and has the DE tag. Vinny Curry is another late round target of mine. There really isn't a trigger for me for the DL position. As much as I'd love to have Joey Bosa, or Melvin Ingram III or even Khalil Mack, they'll probably go earlier than where I'm comfortable taking them.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I'm hoping to come away with a lot of Avery Williamson this season. He'll be a top target for me, as I'm hoping he becomes a tackle machine for the Jets. Another LB I'm targeting is Myles Jack. He's entering his 3rd year, and like last season, will be calling the plays. However, with Paul Posluszny gone, he's going to be the 3-down MIKE. Again, like the DL spot, I tend not to get rattled when LBs start getting drafted. I'm confident I'll get the guys I want at the exact round. I've got my pivot plays, as well.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster?

Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players? I love Landon Collins, but he's not someone I'll have a ton of exposure to unless he falls to me in the 10th round or later. I tend to stream/wait on the DB position. Two guys I am targeting are Adrian Amos and Bradley McDougald.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

For the CB position, I'll usually target the CB2 opposite a shut-down corner. I usually go for the CBs who've been targeted 90+ times. Guys like James Bradberry, Adoree' Jackson, Darius Slay or Trumaine Johnson (just to name a few). As far as the DT position, I'll target a guy with a high tackle rate or someone who's going to get 60% of the defensive snaps. Oh, I also avoid 3-4 nose tackles. I typically target 4-3 "3-technique" defensive tackles.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I think Jatavis Brown ends up being the tackle leader among Charger LBs. I'm not a fan of Denzel Perryman. If Brown plays at the level he did in his rookie year, he could hit the 100 tackle mark if he can stay on the field for 90% of the snaps. Let people flock to Kamalei Correa after his HOF game performance. My money is still on Patrick Onwuasor getting the snaps opposite CJ Mosley. Also, Oren Burks from Green Bay now that Jake Ryan is done for the year. If Tyler Matakevich has a stranglehold on the ILB opposite Vince Williams, I might have a dangerous amount of shares.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

If you know your league and how the draft IDP, then Kerry Hyder Jr is going to be free for you. He's coming off an Achilles' rupture and is impressing the coaching staff so far. He carries tremendous upside after producing 8 sacks in 2016. I also like Kawaan Short. Three straight seasons of 45+ tackles/6+ sacks from the DT position.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I target all of the above. Injured players especially. One guy I love is Raekwon McMillan. If you're in a league where you think your league-mates go by last season's scoring, McMillan is going to fall under the radar for sure. I usually avoid the suspended players pre-draft. If they get drafted, I don't worry. If they do undrafted, I'll tend to target them in free agency a game or two before their suspension ends if they're worth it. Vontaze Burfict is the exception. He won't be on any of my rosters. As long as a rookie is projected to get snaps, I'll target them. I love Tremaine Edmunds out of Buffalo and Marcus Davenport from the Saints. Snaps = Opportunity which leads to potential stats.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

Out of a 32 round draft, I expect to have at least 6-7 LBs, 3 S, 2 CB, 2 DT, 3 DE.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Have fun. Don't get too overwhelmed. There is lots of IDP content being put out which is a good thing. Target your position players first before going IDP. When it comes to LBs, target 4-3 MLB/WLB and 3-4 ILBs; DE, target 4-3 ends.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.07
7
WR
HOU
2.06
18
WR
LAC
3.07
31
WR
MIN
4.06
42
RB
MIA
5.07
55
RB
SEA
6.06
66
WR
BAL
7.07
79
LB
BUF
8.06
90
RB
WAS
9.07
103
DE
LAC
10.06
114
LB
NYJ
11.07
127
WR
GBP
12.06
138
LB
SEA
13.07
151
QB
NOS
14.06
162
DE
Akiem Hicks
CHI
15.07
175
TE
MIA
16.06
186
RB
Bilal Powell
NYJ
17.07
199
S
OAK
18.06
210
LB
HOU
19.07
223
S
SEA
20.06
234
WR
Cameron Meredith
NOS
21.07
247
WR
John Ross
CIN
22.06
258
QB
WAS
23.07
271
RB
Nyheim Hines
IND
24.06
282
LB
GBP
25.07
295
LB
BAL
26.06
306
TE
JAC
27.07
319
WR
Courtland Sutton
DEN
28.06
330
DT
Larry Ogunjobi
CLE
29.07
343
CB
Stephon Gilmore
NEP
30.06
354
DT
Sheldon Rankins
NOS
31.07
367
CB
A.J. Bouye
JAC
32.06
378
S
Andrew Adams
NYG

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

DeAndre Hopkins, Keenan Allen, and Stefon Diggs have the potential to give Mike three WR1s week in, week out. Michael Crabtree and Randall Cobb as a WR4 and WR5 are better than some teams WR3. Drew Brees and Alex Smith give Mike a potential top five and top ten quarterback at the price of a 13th and 22nd round pick. Mike’s top four linebackers (Tremaine Edmunds, Avery Williamson, KJ Wright, Benardrick McKinney) should all be reliable weekly performers.

Weaknesses

Kenyan Drake might be inconsistent under Adam Gase with Frank Gore on the roster, and Rashaad Penny might not even be worth a flex start if Seattle has a three-headed backfield. Chris Thompson is starting the season less than 100% so it could be a bleak picture at RB2 at first. Mike Gesicki and Austin Seferian-Jenkins will probably leave Mike at or near the bottom in tight end scoring.

How He’ll Win It All

Drake and Penny assert control over their backfields. Diggs plays 16 games and pulls away from Adam Thielen in the Vikings target pecking order. Brees gets back to the fantasy elite levels of production. Edmunds comes out of the gate as a top-five fantasy linebacker and Williamson matches Demario Davis’s numbers for the Jets last year.

DRAFT SLOT 8

Wally Spurlin, Pro Football Focus

Wally has been writing about fantasy football since 2012 and currently work for Profootballfocus mainly as an IDP contributor. Have been published in the USA Today (and their award-winning former fantasy football magazine) as well as the Pro Forecast fantasy magazine for the past two years. Former co-host of the Fantasy Football Feeding Frenzy pod cast with Gary Davenport and current co-host of the Nickel podcast with Ross Miles of PFF. On a side note, I am also featured on page 176 of Matthew Berry's 'Fantasy Life' NY Times bestseller.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

I like to go DE early with my IDP picks due to lack of depth and would ideally land either Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack or possibly Chandler Jones in the 6th round.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

I usually look to come out of the first five rounds with 2-RB, 3-WR. The IDP players being involved means I'll likely look to stock up on pass-catching RBs later in the draft as I fill out some IDP positions in the middle rounds.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster?

Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players? I'm looking for either Joey Bosa or Khalil Mack as my first DE and the selection of either would be my trigger to select the other.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I'm targeting LBs such as Blake Martinez and Zach Brown to anchor the position. I figure once someone like Kwon Alexander goes off the board it would be time to look to draft Martinez who I rank higher than Brown.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster?

Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players? Budda Baker and Jamal Adams are the first two S that I'm targeting. Once the big three of Reshad Jones, Landon Collins and Keanu Neal are off the board I'll wait for the run on safeties later in the draft to look to land these two.

6.Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will you address both of these positions?

I generally wait on both positions until I feel I have a solid base of DE, LB and S covered. That being said I will be looking to use the 'rookie corner rule' when I do pull the trigger.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Raekwon McMillan and Preston Brown. McMillan is back after missing his rookie season and penciled in as the starting MLB in Miami in a three-down role. Preston Brown will do what he does best now that he is in Cincinnati and that is racking tackles (especially with Burfict suspended...again). Brown has triple-digit tackles in every season he's played.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I am targeting Derek Barnett and Robert Quinn now that he is back at a DE designation. I love all edge rushers that play for the Eagles in Jim Schwartz's Wide-9 scheme and Barnett should flourish. Quinn is back at his more comfortable DE position and is coming off a 7.5 sack season.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players,and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I generally avoid rookie DL as the learning curve seems the steepest there and they struggle. Love starting rookie cornerbacks so do target them late in drafts. I avoid players that start the season with an injury as I worry about lingering effects. As for suspended players, I will pull the trigger on them late if they fall to a position of value. I have been able to scoop up Vontaze Burfict in quite a few mocks to date.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

2-QB, 5-RB, 6-WR, 2-TE, 2-DT,4-DE,5-LB,4-S,2-CB

11. What advice would you give others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Embrace the diversity it brings to the draft and of course most importantly know your league's scoring system/roster requirements inside and out. Don't wait on edge rushers (especially in leagues that score 4 or more points for sacks) as the position thin outs quickly. Stock up on three-down linebackers which there are plenty of them to be had. Wait on cornerbacks if your league requires them as it's the most waiver wire driven position for IDP in my opinion.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.08
8
WR
Odell Beckham
NYG
2.05
17
RB
CAR
3.08
32
WR
CLE
4.05
41
RB
HOU
5.08
56
DE
LAC
6.05
65
WR
OAK
7.08
80
DE
OAK
8.05
89
LB
CLE
9.08
104
RB
Devontae Booker
DEN
10.05
113
TE
Kyle Rudolph
MIN
11.08
128
LB
ARI
12.05
137
S
ARI
13.08
152
DE
MIA
14.05
161
QB
Matthew Stafford
DET
15.08
176
WR
Ted Ginn Jr
NOS
16.05
185
LB
CIN
17.08
200
RB
James White
NEP
18.05
209
S
Morgan Burnett
PIT
19.08
224
DT
LAR
20.05
233
QB
Marcus Mariota
TEN
21.08
248
TE
CIN
22.05
257
LB
LAR
23.08
272
WR
DeSean Jackson
TBB
24.05
281
DT
MIN
25.08
296
LB
Antonio Morrison
IND
26.05
305
WR
Mohamed Sanu
ATL
27.08
320
CB
Tre\'Davious White
BUF
28.05
329
CB
Trae Waynes
MIN
29.08
344
RB
T.J. Yeldon
JAC
30.05
353
DE
Shaq Lawson
BUF
31.08
368
S
Glover Quin
DET
32.05
377
S
Andrew Sendejo
MIN

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Joey Bosa and Khalil Mack can be the #1 and #2 scorers at defensive end as long as Mack’s holdout ends soon. Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry should be a potent 1-2 punch at wide receiver. Sheldon Richardson and Ndamukong Suh can both finish as elite scorers at defensive tackle and max out Wally’s scoring at the position if he plays the right matchups. Christian Kirksey, Deone Bucannon, and Preston Brown are a solid trio that should keep Wally in the top half of linebacker scoring. Tyler Eifert could provide top 5-7 tight end scoring in the 21st round.

Weaknesses

Wide receiver depth after Beckham and Landry could be a problem if Jordy Nelson doesn’t regain that lost step with limited upside options stocking Wally’s bench. Budda Baker and Khalil Mack cost premium prices at their positions, but both carry risk with Mack’s holdout and Baker potentially only playing in nickel packages. Robert Quinn as depth was overkill in the 13th round with the biggest investment at defensive end of any team in the league by a large margin.

How He’ll Win It All

Mack reports soon and both he and Bosa have their best seasons yet. Christian McCaffrey takes over the Carolina backfield to the tune of 300+ touches and Lamar Miller does the same in Houston. Tyler Eifert stays healthy and scores double-digit touchdowns. Budda Baker is an every-down player and carries over his elite scoring pace from the second half of 2017.

DRAFT SLOT 9

Tommy Kislingbury, Dynasty League Football

Tommy hails from London, England and is an NFL degenerate and lover of defense. He is currently a Senior writer for Dynasty League Football and he hosts the Read & React podcast. Consults with Dynasty Command Channel.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

I'll be likely to add a premier DE first. As soon as they start going off the board I'm likely to be close behind.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

I’ll be stocking up on RBs and WRs early on. I’ll likely not go after one of the top three tight ends and wait until a late QB seems good value (as I expect everyone else will also be doing).

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Joey Bosa. Because he’s a stud and just fantastic fun to watch. After that I’d love to grab Trey Flowers. I see him as very much a top 5 end but he doesn’t seem to quite get the respect he deserves.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I’ll be waiting on linebackers. I like to leave it as late as I possibly can so I suspect 15 at least will be off the board before I make my move. Someone like Denzel Perryman might be the first guy I go after.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Safety is another position I’ll be happy to let players fly off the board at. I’ll definitely not be looking at the elite guys. Matthias Farley and Shawn Williams are both players I like who can be had very late. Farley because people (for some reason) think Clayton Geathers is good and Williams because a lot of people haven’t realized yet that the Bengals are probably going to play more with a strong safety under new defensive coordinator Teryl Austin.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

At tackle, I could be persuaded to take a relatively early one. Similar to tight end there’s a small top tier of guys who offer a distinct weekly advantage. I’ll consider taking one of those if they start going at a decent spot.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Kyle Van Noy was super useful early in 2017 but suffered when he moved to the edge after Dont'a Hightower was hurt. People have gone off him because they don’t know about the switch in position. He’s the clear top dog again in the middle and should be a top 15 LB.

As a dark horse who can be had late I’m a big fan of Kyzir White. There’s a really good chance he can win a significant role as a rookie. And his role in Gus Bradley’s defense would be the one Telvin Smith Sr made famous in Jacksonville. White was even selected a round earlier than Telvin Smith Sr was.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Mario Addison has 20.5 sacks over the last two years. He’s clearly the top pass rusher in a defense that features a top interior rusher and a spectacular linebacker unit. And people still don’t really know who he is.

Jabaal Sheard managed more total pressures in 2017 than Jadeveon Clowney, Ryan Kerrigan, Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter. Sheard just had an unusually low pressure to sack ratio. Which meant he recorded just 5.5 sacks. Now he’s moved to end in a 43 defense he should be able to improve that. There’s no reason he can't be a top 10 end in 2018.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I’ll be targeting full-time players wherever possible. I value sheer volume of snaps more than anything else in IDP so I’ll be avoiding players where I don’t see obvious playing time. Even to the extent that I’ll avoid players in rotations. Myles Garrett and Cam Wake for example, are not ideal because they play limited time.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

I expect to have just a single defensive tackle, four or five ends, six or seven linebackers, just two corners and three or four safeties. I’m happy going into a season and needing to stream at tackle and corner and even safety if I have to.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

WAIT. Linebacker, corner and safety are the flattest positions in fantasy in terms of drop-off in quality. So for all the reasons we know it’s sensible to use the late round QB strategy, it’s exactly the same for LB, CB and S. There are 64 each linebackers, and safeties each and every week in the NFL. But most IDP leagues only start a fraction of that. So even top production is relatively replaceable.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.09
9
WR
NOS
2.04
16
WR
ATL
3.09
33
RB
Derrius Guice
WAS
4.04
40
RB
PHI
5.09
57
WR
TEN
6.04
64
RB
CLE
7.09
81
TE
Delanie Walker
TEN
8.04
88
DE
NEP
9.09
105
DE
MIN
10.04
112
DE
ARI
11.09
129
RB
CIN
12.04
136
RB
GBP
13.09
153
WR
ATL
14.04
160
TE
Jack Doyle
IND
15.09
177
WR
CHI
16.04
184
QB
ATL
17.09
201
LB
LAC
18.04
208
LB
MIA
19.09
225
WR
TBB
20.04
232
RB
DET
21.09
249
DE
PHI
22.04
256
DE
NOS
23.09
273
S
Derwin James
LAC
24.04
280
LB
PHI
25.09
297
LB
ARI
26.04
304
QB
CIN
27.09
321
S
IND
28.04
328
RB
SFO
29.09
345
LB
Jon Bostic
PIT
30.04
352
DT
Maurice Hurst
OAK
31.09
369
CB
Rashaan Melvin
OAK
32.04
376
CB
Kevin King
GBP

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Julio Jones and Michael Thomas both have top-five upside and might compromise the best wide receiver duo in this league. Trey Flowers, Danielle Hunter, and Chandler Jones are the best trio of ends on any roster. Corey Davis, Chris Godwin, Anthony Miller, and Calvin Ridley build a ton of ascendant young receiver upside into Tom’s WR3/Flex options. Matt Ryan and Andy Dalton were modestly priced choices with proven QB1 upside.

Weaknesses

Losing Guice mid-draft was a shock and between Duke Johnson Jr, Giovani Bernard, Matt Breida, Aaron Jones, and Theo Riddick, Tom may find himself without a solid RB2 choice, while starting a boom/bust weekly option in Jay Ajayi at RB1. The extra roster spots tied up at running back also hampered Tom’s overall depth. Between Raekwon McMillan, Jordan Hicks, Haason Reddick, and Denzel Perryman, the linebacker group is relying on growth from young players to hit levels they haven’t previously reached to hang with other teams.

How He’ll Win It All

Ajayi becomes the Eagles feature back. Corey Davis hits as an instant top 20 wide receiver in Tennessee. Hunter and Flower post-career years still on the upslope of their arcs. One of Joe Mixon and Jerick McKinnon go down with a season-ending injury or Aaron Jones seizes control of the Packers backfield upon his return. McMillan, Reddick, and Perryman experience surges in production and Hicks stays healthy.

DRAFT SLOT 10

John Norton, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

I generally enter IDP drafts looking to take advantage of my experience and knowledge of defensive players. In leagues with this scoring format the elite defensive guys usually start going off the board in round five or six. Depending on how hard they are hit, I like to wait and take guys I consider to be at the bottom of the elite tiers in rounds six or seven. This allows me to grab an extra starter or two on offense which is huge in a draft with sharks like the Footballguys staff in this one. It is important to know your competition and I know in this draft even the best kept secrets are not secrets; especially on offense.

When it comes to which position is first, the answer is usually linebacker. That said I will take a look at how much depth is in the top tier at both linebacker and defensive end. It is vital to be willing to adjust with the flow so when I go defense I will often consider how many guys are left in the top tier at each position and what position the managers between my pick have already taken. This helps me calculate for example; if one of the linebackers on my short list is likely to make it back.

I currently have 10 players on my DL1 list and 9 on my LB1 list. My goal is to have at least one player from each group at the end of the draft. My elite tier at defensive end is Calais Campbell, Joey Bosa, Cameron Jordan, and Khalil Mack (though I am concerned about Mack’s holdout). There are six other I would be happy to have as my DL1 if it allows me to take an extra offensive guy in round six. The elite tier is a little deeper at linebacker with C.J. Mosley, Bobby Wagner, Luke Kuechly (#1 if not for injury concern), Blake Martinez, Telvin Smith Sr, Deion Jones, and Kwon Alexander.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

Old habits are hard to break so I almost always go running back in round one and often in the second as well unless the position had been hit hard. After my pick in round six I like to have two backs, a tight end and at least two receivers. The sixth player being best available at the time he was taken. Sometimes a third back, sometimes a third receiver and sometimes a quarterback.

There are almost always late round gems on the defensive side and defenders are generally much easier to find on the waiver wire early in the season. For that reason I will emphasize quality depth on offense in the middle rounds. I always make sure to get two or three sure starters at linebacker and at least one stud end then will look to add the rest of my defense after rounds 12-14 depending on how the draft unfolds.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Tiers! Tiers! Tiers! I organize my draft board by groups of players at each position that I value similarly. The trigger comes when the names within that tier start to become few. Earlier I mentioned the elite tier of defensive ends. It would be great to land one of those guys but I probably will not go there early enough to land one of them. J.J. Watt, Demarcus Lawrence, Chandler Jones, Everson Griffen, Jason Pierre-Paul and Myles Garrett are the rest of the names on my DL1 target list. There are a few others (Aaron Donald and Trey Flowers for example) that might fit here if I decide to gamble and wait too long, but I see all of these guys being close as it can get in football to a sure thing (barring injury of course). Watt and Lawrence could easily be part of the elite tier. I put them just below those guys due to Watt’s injury risk and the possibility Lawrence could be a one year wonder at last year’s level of production.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

The one player at linebacker I really want this year is Blake Martinez. Enough so in fact, I might break from my normal draft strategy to make sure I get him. He is exceptionally consistent on a week to week basis, contributes significantly in every scoring category and is in a great situation.

Plan B for me would be either Deion Jones or Kwon Alexander. I like Jones for many of the same reasons as Martinez, and Alexander because he may slide a few picks further after injuries impacted his overall numbers last season.

There is no particular player that will trigger me to take a linebacker. Again it will come down to thinning numbers on the first tier. I will say it is more important this year than normal to make sure I get one of these linebackers. The position is traditionally deep, which remains the case this year, but the number of risk free players is considerably smaller. Once you get beyond the top-12 or so, it seems everyone has a reason for concern.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

There are only three players on my elite tier at safety. Reshad Jones and Landon Collins are safety one and one-A, with Keanu Neal a somewhat distant third. These guys are the most productive tackle producers at the position on a per game basis over the last two seasons and all three make strong contributions in the big-play columns as well. Jordan Poyer and Kevin Byard were right up there in points per game average but am never completely comfortable relying on lightning to strike twice when so much of a player’s value relies on big plays.

I have always waited on defensive backs until well after the position has been broken but Jones and Collins are so far above the rest of the field, I may consider jumping on one of them before round 10 if they fall that far.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

Tackle is one of the thinnest positions in the IDP game. There are a select few exceptionally productive ones then a sharp drop off to the rest of the field. With this consideration it would seem wise to grab one of the top guys at the position fairly early but for some reason managers never seem to hit tackles until most of their starting defense is set. Like most of the other positions I have a short list of targets and want to make sure I get at least one of those guys. Most of the time that will be somewhere after round 20.

Corner is the most hit or miss position on the defensive side on a year to year basis. It is also the easiest to address once the season starts. Like every other position there are a few guys we can count on but I rarely address the position until the last few rounds. If one of the dependable guys happens to slide he is my pick. If not I will often look to a rookie starter as they are often targeted by offensive coordinators and have an accelerated number of opportunities. If the guys I take late flop, there are plenty of free agents to replace them.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

My top sleeper target at linebacker is Cory Littleton. He is in line to replace Alex Ogletree as the Rams inside linebacker and was a big part of the team’s decision to trade their former starter. Littleton played sparingly before the last few games of 2017. When he finally got on the field replacing Mark Barron, the numbers were there. Littleton accounted for 33 fantasy points in the final two games. No one is talking about him so Littleton is flying way under the radar so far. That may change once we see a preseason game or two but for now he can be snagged late when most managers are taking fourth or fifth linebackers.

The other guy not getting the love he deserves is Anthony Hitchens. He has never put up eye-popping numbers over the course of an entire season but nearly every time the Cowboys put him on the field in a three down role, Hitchens put up quality numbers. He goes to a Chiefs defense in need of a full-time three down inside backer and is the hands-down favorite to hold that role.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

There are a couple guys I’ll be looking to add later as possible second starters. Miami’s Robert Quinn had three great seasons from 2012 to 2014 that included 113 solo tackles, 40 sacks, 15 turnovers and 9 batted passes. Injuries caused Quinn to all but vanish for two years, he was then miss cast as a linebacker in a 3-4 in 2017. He’s healthy and back at end in an aggressive 4-3 with the Dolphins. At 28 years old there is still a lot of football left in the tank.

Going a little further under the radar, I’m looking at Solomon Thomas. His rookie season was not particularly impressive but then a lot of young pass rushers start slowly. Thomas is on a much-improved defense and has been moved to the right end position where the team’s best pass rusher plays.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I take rookies and injured players on a per case basis. Situation is vital with the rookies. If I am reasonably confident they will soon have a full-time role, I’ll gamble on them in late rounds as depth with upside. Injured players will depend on the nature of the injury and how much upside the player has when healthy.

Suspended players are sometimes money in the bank. They are going to be available for the stretch run and playoffs, have no risk of injury while suspended and will have fresh legs upon return. If I can grab a Vontaze Burfict as my LB3 then get a decent LB4 to start the first month of the season, I’ll make that play every time.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

The target numbers will be:

  • QB-2
  • RB-5
  • WR-6
  • TE-3
  • DE-3
  • DT-2
  • LB-6
  • CB-2
  • S-3

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

  • Do your homework on both sides of the ball
  • Be flexible
  • Know your competition
  • Remember it is easier to improve on defense via early season waivers

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.10
10
RB
LAC
2.03
15
WR
Davante Adams
GBP
3.10
34
TE
PHI
4.03
39
RB
NOS
5.10
58
RB
DET
6.03
63
LB
GBP
7.10
82
WR
DEN
8.03
87
WR
SFO
9.10
106
LB
CLE
10.03
111
WR
PHI
11.10
130
S
MIA
12.03
135
DE
PHI
13.10
154
QB
NEP
14.03
159
RB
C.J. Anderson
CAR
15.10
178
LB
CIN
16.03
183
DE
OAK
17.10
202
DT
Malik Jackson
JAC
18.03
207
S
CHI
19.10
226
LB
Jamie Collins
CLE
20.03
231
DT
Kawann Short
CAR
21.10
250
RB
Corey Clement
PHI
22.03
255
QB
Derek Carr
OAK
23.10
274
S
Kurt Coleman
NOS
24.03
279
WR
LAC
25.10
298
TE
Vernon Davis
WAS
26.03
303
WR
WAS
27.10
322
CB
Janoris Jenkins
NYG
28.03
327
CB
TEN
29.10
346
LB
Jaylon Smith
DAL
30.03
351
DE
Adrian Clayborn
NEP
31.10
370
LB
B.J. Goodson
NYG
32.03
375
CB
NYJ

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Reshad Jones and Adrian Amos is probably the best safety combination in the league. Joe Schobert and Blake Martinez give John two LB1s to anchor his defense. Zach Ertz and Tom Brady can both end up in the top five at their positions. Tyrell Williams and Josh Doctson were very cheap wide receiver depth with upside, and Emmanuel Sanders, Marquise Goodwin, and Nelson Agholor were drafted as WR3/WR4 cost but all have WR2 upside.

Weaknesses

After Melvin Gordon III, John will rely on rookie Kerryon Johnson to start hot or he might get very little from his RB2 position. Martinez and Schobert were new members of the LB1 ranks last year and might not deliver return on blue chip IDP picks. The team might lack top-end scoring punch at defensive end with Brandon Graham and Bruce Irvin as the starters.

How He’ll Win It All

Mark Ingram II and Vontaze Burfict return from suspensions and post top 10-12 numbers at their positions. Johnson hits as a RB2/Flex option early, while Agholor and Goodwin become #1 receiver for their teams. Schobert and Martinez repeat their LB1 seasons, and Reshad Jones remains one of the few elite fantasy safeties to give John a balanced attack every week.

DRAFT SLOT 11

Eric Moody, FantasyPros

Eric Moody is a featured writer at FantasyPros and contributor to RotoViz, Gridiron Experts, and Two QBs. He is also the Social Media Co-Manager at RotoViz and member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA). Eric has a lifelong passion for the game and played at the collegiate level as an offensive lineman. He also participated in Dan Hatman's Scouting Academy in order to learn the process of player evaluation at an NFL level by using game film.

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

The first IDP position I plan to target is the DE position. The scoring rules in this league reward players who can make sacks (5 points). My goal is to land at least one top-tier DE like Joey Bosa, Khalil Mack, or Calais Campbell to complement the rest of my defensive players as early as the third round.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

Flexibility is a great way to describe my strategy. I could see myself to begin drafting IDPs as early as the sixth round, but if a number of great offensive players are available I will continue to draft them. Monitoring the supply and demand of IDPs and maximizing my positional tiers will be critical in this fantasy draft. The two IDP positions I will prioritize landing as many top tier players early giving the scoring rules of this format are middle LBs and safeties. 37 of the top 50 IDP finishes over the last three seasons belong to these two positions. The other 13 top IDP finishes belong to DEs. My priority is, to begin with, a solid foundation of offensive players before shifting my focus IDPs.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I mentioned three DEs I plan to target in one of my previous answers. In this format, I believe it is critical to land a Tier 1 DE and I plan to use J.J. Watt as the triggering player. The perception is that he is elite in this format, but Watt is not a player I plan to target. He was an IDP fantasy monster from 2012 to 2015. Watt has only played eight games over the last two seasons.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Telvin Smith Sr and C.J. Mosley are two LBs I plan on targeting early in the draft. I consider Luke Kuechly a trigger player that would prompt me to draft these players. I view all three along with Bobby Wagner as Tier 1 players at the position.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

Reshad Jones and Keanu Neal are two players I am most interested in targeting as my first S on my roster. There are no particular triggers players that would prompt me to draft these players considering the depth at the safety position.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

My strategy at Defensive Tackle is to only start the minimum and to use an LB in the defensive flex position. Aaron Donald, DeForest Buckner, and Nazair Jones are three players I am targeting as my DT1. While Gerald McCoy, Jurrell Casey, and Fletcher Cox are three players I am targeting as my DT2. The cornerback position is streamable in fantasy football. Selecting Darrius Slay as a CB1 would be optimal. He led the position with 26 passes defended and eight interceptions. Three other CBs I would target who had similar production to Slay are Kyle Fuller, Casey Hayward, and Robert Alford. You will see the most year to year fluctuation in fantasy production at the CB position. As a result, I do not plan on reaching for certain players at the position.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Cory Littleton and Dee Ford are two under the radar players I am targeting at the LB position.

Littleton had 36 tackles, a sack, an interception, and a forced fumble last season while seeing limited snaps. The Rams trading of Alec Ogletree opens the door for him to see an expanded role in 2018 in a three-down role as the Mike LB.

Injuries sabotaged Ford’s 2017 season. The Chiefs parting ways with Tamba Hali positions him for an expanded role in 2018. A double-digit sack season is in the realm of possibilities for Ford and he can be selected late in fantasy drafts.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Charles Harris and Derek Barnett are two under the radar players I am targeting at defensive end.

Harris will be competing for a starting position this season and the Dolphins coaching staff appear to have big plans for him. Robert Quinn, who the Dolphins traded for, has had difficulty staying healthy and the clock is ticking on Williams Hayes time in Miami. Harris could be lining up opposite of Cameron Wake sooner rather than later.

Barnett only played 40 percent of the defensive snaps last year for the Eagles, but accumulated five sacks. The Eagles led the NFL in quarterback pressures last season. Barnett will continue to be featured in pass rush packages and be in a prime position to generate fantasy production.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I am very open to drafting rookies in IDP formats if they have a reasonably clear line of sight of playing a high percentage of snaps. I am also very comfortable drafting injured players at a value. It comes down to the specific injury, recovery timetable, and the player’s position. The two things I evaluate with suspended players are the number of games missed and their specific role on the team.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

My strategy on the offensive side is to draft two quarterbacks, seven running backs, five wide receivers, and two tight ends with the intention of flexing the RB position.

On the defensive side, my strategy is to draft two defensive tackles, three defensive ends, six linebackers, two cornerbacks, and three safeties with the intention of flexing the LB position.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

Here are three tips I would give others who are competing in an IDP draft: know your league settings, do not draft IDPs too early and make LBs the foundation of your IDP group.

There is no universal format for IDP leagues and players are willing differently depending on the scoring format. It is optimal to build a solid core of offensive starters during the first eight to nine rounds of a draft. My strategy in this draft is to select RBs in the first five rounds followed by three WRs and a TE.

There are plenty of strong players available in IDP drafts who could have a positive impact on your team. I advise players not to panic if the household defensive players are beginning to come off of the board. Defensive position tiers are an excellent resource to use in an IDP fantasy draft.

I prefer to build my IDP roster on the defensive side of the football around LBs. The perception is that middle LBs should be prioritized. I prefer to target LBs who play all three downs and are on the field during sub-packages.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.11
11
RB
NYG
2.02
14
RB
KCC
3.11
35
RB
BUF
4.02
38
WR
DEN
5.11
59
WR
CHI
6.02
62
RB
NEP
7.11
83
LB
NYG
8.02
86
WR
NEP
9.11
107
LB
Eric Kendricks
MIN
10.02
110
DE
NOS
11.11
131
DE
TBB
12.02
134
TE
WAS
13.11
155
DT
SFO
14.02
158
S
BUF
15.11
179
WR
DAL
16.02
182
QB
SFO
17.11
203
LB
LAC
18.02
206
TE
BUF
19.11
227
LB
DEN
20.02
230
LB
Olivier Vernon
NYG
21.11
251
S
Ha Ha
GBP
22.02
254
QB
Blake Bortles
JAC
23.11
275
DT
SEA
24.02
278
RB
Chris Ivory
BUF
25.11
299
RB
Latavius Murray
MIN
26.02
302
LB
Justin Houston
KCC
27.11
323
DE
Jerry Hughes
BUF
28.02
326
WR
PIT
29.11
347
S
Tony Jefferson
BAL
30.02
350
S
Tyrann Mathieu
HOU
31.11
371
CB
CHI
32.02
374
CB
Patrick Peterson
ARI

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Saquon Barkley and Kareem Hunt present ceilings that could make Eric’s team tops in running back scoring with LeSean McCoy giving Eric the highest ceiling RB3 in the league. Chris Hogan was cheap and combined with Demaryius Thomas and Allen Robinson, he forms a potent trio that lacks a WR1, but could have three strong WR2’s. Cameron Jordan was DE1 in this format last year and Jason Pierre-Paul was DE8 - Eric didn’t have to pay a Top 100 pick and secured this duo as his starters. Jordan Reed gives Top 3 tight end upside and he lasted until the 12th round.

Weaknesses

Eric has no proven depth after his wide receiver trio with rookie Michael Gallup and James Washington at WR4 and WR5. If they are slow to adjust to the pro game, bye weeks and injuries at wide receiver will be a big problem. Charles Clay is getting up there in years and injuries and might leave Eric with no startable tight end if Reed goes down. Rex Burkhead gives Eric a high weekly floor RB4 who might not find his way into his lineup often at the cost of a sixth-round pick.

How He’ll Win It All

Barkley immediately joins the fantasy elite and Hunt puts up the numbers he did at the beginning and end of 2017, not the middle. Allen Robinson returns to 2015 form and Gallup and Washington play large roles immediately for their teams. Reed plays 14+ at his highest level. Von Miller gets back to his highest levels of production now that he’s got a strong running mate in Bradley Chubb.

DRAFT SLOT 12

Daniel Simpkins, Footballguys - Bio

PRE-DRAFT QUESTIONS

1. What IDP position and/or player do you expect will be your first IDP pick and what round will you make that pick?

It’s very difficult to predict the specific player and round given the lack of ADP data we have for IDP, but my first IDP selection will likely be at linebacker. I like to target guys that could ascend this season to be top options, but are flying under the radar. Zach Cunningham and Myles Jack come to mind as players that don’t go off the board as premium picks, but have the upside potential of a Deion Jones or C.J. Mosley. I could see selecting them somewhere in the 15th-18th round range.

2. What is your strategy for selecting positional players in this draft? How do additional IDP players affect your strategy?

I typically don’t put emphasis on grabbing elite IDPs early. I basically treat the draft the same as a regular redraft league and wait for other folks to break the seal on taking the first IDPs. I want to spend early picks on RB and WR and take my quarterbacks and tight ends a little later. I am confident in my ability to identify IDP waiver wire talent in-season to shore up my team if I come up a little weak in that area. Positional scarcity is still so much more pronounced at the offensive positions.

3. Which two players at the DE position are you most interested in targeting as your first DE on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I tend to take older guys that are still producing at a high level, but end up getting dinged because of aging concerns. Calais Campbell goes many rounds after Joey Bosa, but I trust he’ll continue to put up similar production to the young stud. I feel despite being 30 years old, Brandon Graham also has a lot left to contribute this year. I wouldn’t say there is a clear trigger player that will key me to draft either one of these two and I may not get them depending on how things shake out. They will just be two that I’m interested in making a part of my plan because of the discount at which they typically come.

4. Which two players at the LB position are you most interested in targeting as your first LB on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I’ve already mentioned Cunningham and Jack as being target players. I also could see myself taking Zach Brown as my first linebacker. He’s in for another great year because he is a tackle magnet and still has no serious competition. He’ll produce comparable to Luke Kuechly and Bobby Wagner at a fraction of the price. Christian Kirksey typically goes ahead of Brown, so when he comes off, that’s when I’ll start considering selecting him.

5. Which two players at the S position are you most interested in targeting as your first S on your roster? Is there a particular trigger player that will prompt you to draft these players?

I won’t place a lot of emphasis on safety. I like the cheap guys that are in great situations. Clayton Geathers is particularly interesting to me. He’s got a pretty weak group ahead of him, is very talented, and is finally getting healthy after battling with a neck injury for the better part of a year. Bradley McDougald is a sneaky grab in Seattle because folks don’t realize that he’ll start since they no longer have Kam Chancellor. That defense is a mess, which will mean lots of tackle opportunities for McDougald.

6. Defensive tackle and cornerback are part of the starting lineup in this draft. How will address both of these positions?

Defensive tackle-required leagues are tricky because there are very few really good players at that position. The thing is, most people still undervalue them, even in a format like this one. I’ll be looking hard at guys that are getting injury discounts like Gerald McCoy and Fletcher Cox. These guys were considered top options at the position not that long ago, but injuries have pushed them down. I look for both to bounce back now that they are healthy and have really good supporting casts.

7. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at linebacker? Explain why others should be targeting them.

Kiko Alonso is everyone’s favorite player to trash for poor play, but that doesn’t stop him from putting up great stats in IDP leagues. The coaching staff seems content to ride or die with Alonso, so I am OK with him being one of the depth options on my squad.

Anthony Hitchens in Kansas City is another that people don’t see as being very good, but will have great opportunity in his new landing spot. He replaces Derrick Johnson and was paid a handsome sum in free agency, signaling that the coaching staff has full confidence in him. I’ll gladly have him on my IDP team.

8. Name two under the radar players you are targeting at defensive end? Explain why others should be targeting them.

I like Marcus Golden this year because of the scheme change in Arizona. Many do not realize he’s moving to a productive 4-3 end spot and that he’s capable of double-digit sacks in this capacity.

Robert Quinn in Miami is also of interest to me. He played at 3-4 outside linebacker last season and now gets to go back to playing his natural position of 4-3 defensive end. I would not be surprised to see him put up 10 or more sacks opposite of Cameron Wake.

9. What's your approach to rookies, injured players, and/or suspended players that may not have a full workload to start the season?

I love rookie corners. It’s important to identify which ones will get significant starting time out of the gate and also have a competent starter playing at the opposite corner position. That’s a recipe for good fantasy production and one I like to exploit every year. I’m a little more cautious about rookie linebackers and even more cautious about rookie defensive ends. In this class, I think that I would be comfortable taking Roquan Smith and Tremaine Edmunds without much hesitation. I like the talents of Leighton Vander Esch and Rashaan Evans, but I question that they’ll immediately get the role they need to produce right off the bat.There is not a defensive end that is a rookie that I would be willing to take.

Whether or not I take injured players is really on a case-by-case basis. If they were injured last year and are looking to be recovered fully for this one, I’ll gladly take the discount usually applied to those players. If it’s something that happened in camp and looks to be a lingering issue, it’s going to make me less likely to take that player. As far as suspensions go, I’ll happily take a great player who got suspended if it’s not for a significant portion of the year. Reuben Foster is someone who fits that bill for me this year and is someone I’ll target in the draft. I know that he will come roaring back once he returns.

10. How many players at each position do you expect to have at each position at the conclusion of the draft?

Ideally, my roster construction will look something like this: 2 QB, 6 WR, 6 RB, 2 TE, 2 DT, 3 DE, 5 LB, 3 CB, and 3 S.

11. What advice would you give to others who are competing in an IDP draft?

If your benches aren’t crazy deep, don’t worry as much about IDP. There will be talent out there on the waiver wire that you can harvest. Put more of the emphasis on building a solid offense and turn your attention to IDP later in your draft. You can still construct a very solid IDP squad that doesn’t have a single premium IDP player on it.

DRAFT SELECTIONS

Pick
Overall
Position
Player
Team
1.12
12
RB
JAC
2.01
13
RB
MIN
3.12
36
RB
BAL
4.01
37
WR
OAK
5.12
60
WR
PHI
6.01
61
WR
KCC
7.12
84
TE
NYG
8.01
85
RB
Isaiah Crowell
NYJ
9.12
108
LB
DET
10.01
109
LB
LAR
11.12
132
DE
DET
12.01
133
DE
CLE
13.12
156
QB
IND
14.01
157
LB
SFO
15.12
180
WR
Allen Hurns
DAL
16.01
181
WR
DET
17.12
204
LB
MIA
18.01
205
LB
HOU
19.12
228
QB
Patrick Mahomes
KCC
20.01
229
DE
IND
21.12
252
WR
BAL
22.01
253
DE
Markus Golden
ARI
23.12
276
TE
Adam Shaheen
CHI
24.01
277
LB
Darius Leonard
IND
25.12
300
DT
A'Shawn Robinson
DET
26.01
301
RB
MIA
27.12
324
DT
Malcom Brown
NEP
28.01
325
S
Justin Evans
TBB
29.12
348
S
IND
30.01
349
CB
Josh Jackson
GBP
31.12
372
CB
Donte Jackson
CAR
32.01
373
S
Jabrill Peppers
CLE

SIGMUND BLOOM'S EVALUATION

Strengths

Daniel two solid RB1s in Leonard Fournette and Dalvin Cook and a potential third RB1 in Alex Collins. Myles Garrett and Ezekiel Ansah could give him two DE1 level plays even though they were DE14 and DE15 off of the board. Evan Engram and Andrew Luck both have top five potential at their position. Kenny Golladay and John Brown are both high ceiling bench wide receivers who can help if Alshon Jeffery is out to start the season.

Weaknesses

There’s upside in young linebacker starters Jarrad Davis and Reuben Foster, but if both perform at 2017 levels, Daniel will be without an LB1 level scorer. Amari Cooper, Sammy Watkins, and Alshon Jeffery as a top three at wide receiver are all players with some risk of disappointing at ADP. The team is lacking an impact scorer at the peripheral IDP positions of defensive tackle, safety, and cornerback.

How He’ll Win It All

Andrew Luck returns to form and Evan Engram stays heavily involved in the offense. Alex Collins and Dalvin Cook pick up where they left off. Sammy Watkins becomes a 1A to Tyreek Hill’s #1 receiver in Kansas City, Amari Cooper finally puts together a consistent quality season, and Alshon Jeffery looks like his old self early in the season. Myles Garrett and Reuben Foster become elite players at their positions in year two.

View Full Draft Grid

Questions, suggestions and comments are always welcome to haseley@footballguys.com