Footballguys Staff Mock Draft 7, 12 Team PPR w/ Flex

On July 29th, the Footballguys staff got together for their seventh draft of 2017. A 20-round PPR with flex, mock draft. Ari Ingel provides an unbiased summary of each team's draft and each participant answers questions about their strategy and team. 

On July 30th, the Footballguys staff completed a 12-team PPR with flex mock draft. Below are the league's scoring and bylaws. 

League Parameters

  • 12 teams
  • 20 roster spots
  • Starting Lineup
    • 1 quarterback
    • 2 running backs
    • 3 wide receivers
    • 1 tight end
    • 1 flex (either a running back, wide receiver, or tight end)
    • 1 place kicker
    • 1 team defense

League Scoring

  • Offensive Players
    • 4 points - passing touchdown
    • 6 points - rushing/receiving touchdown
    • 0.05 points - passing yard
    • 0.1 points - rushing/receiving yard
  • Place Kickers
    • 3 points - field goal from 0 to 39 yards
    • 4 points - field goal from 40 to 49 yards
    • 5 points - field goal from 50 to 99 yards
  • Team Defense
    • 6 points - touchdown
    • 2 points - turnover forced
    • 2 points - safety
    • 1 point - sack
    • 10 points - 0 points allowed
    • 7 points - 1-6 points allowed
    • 3 points - 7-13 points allowed
    • 0 points - 15-20 points allowed
    • -3 points - 21-99 points allowed

The Draft Order

The draft order was randomly generated. After the first round, the draft continues in a regular serpentine manner. Click here for the Full Draft, pick by pick or Grid Format of the draft. 

  1. Alex Miglio
  2. Devin Knotts
  3. Adam Harstad
  4. Jeff Haseley
  5. Jeff Tefertiller
  6. Stephen Holloway
  7. Justin Howe
  8. David Dodds
  9. Danny Tuccitto
  10. James Brimacombe
  11. Chris Feery
  12. John Mamula

Starting with Alex Miglio from the 1.01 spot, we will go over each person's selections in the mock draft.

Alex Miglio - SLOT 1

1.01 1 Bell, Le'Veon PIT RB
2.12 24 Allen, Keenan LAC WR
3.01 25 Miller, Lamar HOU RB
4.12 48 Hill, Tyreek KCC WR
5.01 49 Hyde, Carlos SFO RB
6.12 72 Graham, Jimmy SEA TE
7.01 73 Jackson, DeSean TBB WR
8.12 96 Mariota, Marcus TEN QB
9.01 97 Britt, Kenny CLE WR
10.12 120 Wallace, Mike BAL WR
11.01 121 Stafford, Matthew DET QB
12.12 144 Bernard, Giovani CIN RB
13.01 145 Thomas, Julius MIA TE
14.12 168 Texans, Houston HOU Def
15.01 169 Hill, Jeremy CIN RB
16.12 192 Jones, Aaron GBP RB (R)
17.01 193 Seferian-Jenkins, Austin NYJ TE
18.12 216 Boswell, Chris PIT PK
19.01 217 Johnson, Calvin FA* WR
20.12 240 Benjamin, Travis LAC WR

Overall Strategy

Mix it up and build a well-rounded team.

Best Pick(s)
Marcus Mariota, 8.12 (QB8) – Mariota is ready to break out and could easily finish as a top five quarterback this year. This team is loaded with weapons and Mariota is by far the biggest beneficiary for fantasy purposes. He now has Erick Decker, to go along with highly touted rookies Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor, Rishard Matthews, running back Demarco Murray and tight end Delanie Walker. Not to mention depth pieces in Tajae Sharpe, Derek Henry and Harry Douglas. Last season he averaged more than 21 fantasy points a game and went on a solid run from Week 5 through 12 where he had at least two touchdowns a game, finishing as a Top 12 quarterback in every week. With one of the best offensive lines in football and in his third season, Mariota is ready to rock.

Worst Pick(s)
Desean Jackson, 7.1 (WR35) – I love Jackson the player and this is not a bad spot to draft him, but when looking at Alex’s overall team, he’s not the player for him to draft. With Tyreek Hill, Keenan Allen, Mike Wallace and Kenny Britt, I feel like a more stable PPR week-to-week option such as Brandon Marshall, who went later that round, would have served his fantasy team better. If this were a best ball league, I would have no issue with it, but in season long, it’s all about mixing and matching high floor and high ceiling guys when you set your lineup.

Lots to love with this team, he has solid starters and depth at each position. He’s got studs everywhere you look, even drafting the Texans Defense. Once again, the only hole is at wide receiver, but he still has a lot of talent there. This team should be a contender for sure. It’s also interesting to note that he went with LeVeon Bell over David Johnson; it really is pick your poison between those two.

post-draft questions

1. Which one player in particular do you see rising up ADP ranks as we get closer to September?

If we are talking about players on my team, the Giovani Bernard hype train just pulled out of the repair yard. Reports from camp are already glowing, a great sign for a guy who just tore his ACL this past November. Joe Mixon was the hot name all offseason, but a great preseason for Bernard will see his ADP skyrocket, particularly in PPR leagues.

2. What is your strategy for targeting your QB1 in drafts?  Is there a certain player you target in every draft, or do you let the draft come to you and take the best value?

I tend not to prioritize the QB position early in any draft, and the guy I tend to take the most has become Ben Roethlisberger. I have him pegged as a top-five quarterback this year if he can stay on the field for 15 or 16 games. That Pittsburgh offense is going to light the NFL on fire, and I want the guy under center who is a huge bargain. Taking Big Ben in the eighth round or beyond affords me the opportunity to fill out the rest of my roster nicely while still scoring a great quarterback. It also means I am more inclined to take a second quarterback like Philip Rivers sooner than later to hedge for injury.

3. What quarterback in the Top 10 do you tend to shy away from?

Andrew Luck. Andrew Luck. Andrew Luck.

The dude might not even start the season. He's not even throwing yet, and the Colts seem bent on bringing him along as cautiously as possible. His ADP is going to start plummeting here in a minute, and I still don't think I'd take him anywhere in the first seven or eight rounds.

Devin Knotts - Slot 2

1.02 2 Johnson, David ARI RB
2.11 23 Fournette, Leonard JAC RB (R)
3.02 26 Kelce, Travis KCC TE
4.11 47 Brady, Tom NEP QB
5.02 50 Cook, Dalvin MIN RB (R)
6.11 71 Moncrief, Donte IND WR
7.02 74 Abdullah, Ameer DET RB
8.11 95 Meredith, Cameron CHI WR
9.02 98 Decker, Eric TEN WR
10.11 119 Prosise, C.J. SEA RB
11.02 122 Rawls, Thomas SEA RB
12.11 143 Williams, Jamaal GBP RB (R)
13.02 146 Ginn Jr., Ted NOS WR
14.11 167 Flacco, Joe BAL QB
15.02 170 Vikings, Minnesota MIN Def
16.11 191 Hurns, Allen JAC WR
17.02 194 Bryant, Matt ATL PK
18.11 215 Miller, Braxton HOU WR
19.02 218 Smith, Alex KCC QB
20.11 239 Boyd, Tyler CIN WR

Overall Strategy

Late round wide receiver.

Best Pick(s)
Ameer Abdullah, 7.2 (RB29) – While this is Devin’s fourth running back, he makes for an excellent #3 that you can use in the flex spot, bye weeks and for spot play throughout the season, with the possibility for much more if he stays healthy all year. He had an elite top 97% SPARQ athletic score coming out of college, which was even higher than David Johnson and better than anyone in this years draft class. Will he approach 300 rush attempts? No. But beat writers said that they do intend to get him at least 200 carries and he should see 250+ touches.

Worst Pick(s)
Dalvin Cook, 5.2 (RB19) – I don’t hate drafting Cook here and I’ve actually started to warm up to him more as Latavius Murray continues to miss time and as reports continue to be positive out of camp. Cook produced big time in college, although slid to the second round of the draft due to a horrible SPARQ score (bottom 15 percent), fumbling issues and off-field concerns. If he plays like he did in college, he will be the Vikings lead back, but this offensive line is a major concern. My reason though for putting him here is that this is his third running back, he is weak at wide receiver and he still got Abdullah two rounds later that can fill the same role for his overall team.

This team is great except for the wide receiver position, which could be his downfall. Donte Moncrief is not a WR1 (at least yet) and Andrew Luck may not practice in the pre-season or even play the first few games to start the season. I also like Cameron Meredith and Erick Decker, but Meredith is stuck playing on a team with quarterback issues and Decker joins a very crowded receiving core, not to mention he is coming off of two surgeries in his age 30 season. All three receivers make for great WR3’s and not WR1’s or WR2’s.

post-draft questions

1. Which player on your roster do you feel you received the most value?

Tom Brady at 4.11 is an absolute steal. These drafts tend to see quarterbacks later than most leagues, but to get Brady at the end of the fourth round was a bargain. All signs are pointing towards Brady passing more than last year as the team added Brandin Cooks, Rob Gronkowski is healthy for now, and the team let LeGarrette Blount go who provided very little from the receiving game last season. 

2. If you could have a mulligan on any pick of your draft, who would it be and who would you select instead?

I would have went with Lamar Miller over Leonard Fournette due to the safety of Miller compared to Fournette. At the time of taking Fournette I did not see myself being able to get Dalvin Cook where I got him, so having two rookie running backs obviously is not ideal in the first five picks of the draft. Having Miller to complement David Johnson and then take Cook as a luxury third running back would have been a nice start, but instead I exposed myself to too much risk by taking the two rookies. 

3. Name a player that wasn't drafted that you think could be a big waiver wire claim in the first quarter of the season?

Anquan Boldin is likely that guy and I am surprised he was not taken when other wide receivers that have significantly less upside were taken that late. Boldin will sign somewhere prior to the season starting and Boldin can be a guy who has great red zone upside depending on the situation he goes to which he will make sure it is a good one. 

Adam Harstad - Slot 3

1.03 3 Brown, Antonio PIT WR
2.10 22 Hopkins, DeAndre HOU WR
3.03 27 Thomas, Demaryius DEN WR
4.10 46 Lynch, Marshawn OAK RB
5.03 51 Reed, Jordan WAS TE
6.10 70 Ryan, Matt ATL QB
7.03 75 Marshall, Brandon NYG WR
8.10 94 Thielen, Adam MIN WR
9.03 99 Gore, Frank IND RB
10.10 118 Matthews, Jordan PHI WR
11.03 123 Stewart, Jonathan CAR RB
12.10 142 Sproles, Darren PHI RB
13.03 147 Howard, O.J. TBB TE (R)
14.10 166 Bortles, Blake JAC QB
15.03 171 Murray, Latavius MIN RB
16.10 190 Cook, Jared OAK TE
17.03 195 Lewis, Dion NEP RB
18.10 214 Panthers, Carolina CAR Def
19.03 219 Vinatieri, Adam IND PK
20.10 238 Smallwood, Wendell PHI RB

Overall Strategy

Give me your old, give me your injured.

Best Pick(s)
Brandon Marshall, 7.2 (WR36) - People are writing him off because he didn't put up numbers playing in a horrible offense last year with the NFL's worst rated quarterback. The simple case for Marshall: Last season over 30% of his targets were deemed off-target; the Giants do not want to force feed Odell Beckham Jr. like they did last year; Marshall won't be game planned for like Beckham will be; he will be playing against teams #2 corners and/or facing single coverage for the majority of games for the first time in his career; he stands 6'4” while Beckham and Shepard are both under 6'; he's a dominant red-zone threat up there with Rob Gronkowski and Dez Bryant; Giants will probably use a short passing attack to hide their offensive line and running back deficiencies, a game plan that suits Marshall well; and the team lacks a dominant tight end. At this point in the draft, he’s a rock solid PPR option.

Worst Pick(s)
DeAndre Hopkins, 2.10 (WR11) - Major regression last season and I'm not talking about his quarterback play. Routes, effort, precision and technique all regressed. That's not to say the quarterback play was very good, and unfortunately, it may not be very good again this year. For a big receiver, he also fared poorly against man coverage, finishing 20th out of the 50 players Matt Harmon tracked in his Reception Perception metric. Not a player I'm targeting this early in drafts until we see if Deshaun Watson can become this year’s Dak Prescott. Adam also drafted Antonio Brown with his first pick and Demaryius Thomas with his third, so no need to assume the risk with Hopkins in the second.

Matt Ryan, 6.10 (QB5) - All of their offensive pieces remain and tight end Austin Hooper could develop into a true weapon. The biggest loss was OC Kyle Shanahan moving on to the 49ers after Ryan had a career year, as his Adjusted Yards/Attempt of 10.1 was the third best of all time behind only Aaron Rodgers in 2011 and Peyton Manning in 2013, finishing the season as the QB1. Per PFF, his fantasy points per drop back also skyrocketed to 0.59 after being below the NFL average the prior three seasons. However, there is a reason Ryan was going off the board beyond round 10 last year, and we can probably assume there will be some regression to his mean. I have no problem taking Ryan this early if quarterbacks are flying off the board, but as the QB5, Adam probably could have waited a few rounds before grabbing his quarterback. That said, if he loves him, he loves him and always make sure to get your guys.

The biggest issue I have with Adam’s team comes down to age and injury. Demaryius Thomas potentially has a chronic hip issue, Marshawn Lynch is 31 and didn’t play last year, Jordan Reed has a scary concussion history and is already banged up in camp with a mysterious toe injury, Brandon Marshall is 33 years old, Frank Gore is 34 years old, Jonathan Stewart is 30, Darren Sproles is 34 and Latavius Murray has yet to practice all off-season with no projected timeline for his return. One or two of these guys, fine. But eight of them? Oh no.

post-draft questions

1. You selected your first running back at pick 4.10 (Marshawn Lynch). Other than Lynch, who are your preferred running backs that you would be happy to have as your RB1 in that same ADP range?

I usually try to stay pretty flexible on value and don't really concern myself with labels like "RB1" or "RB2". Typically if I think a back is a good value where he falls I'll grab him, and if I don't I won't, regardless of what the rest of my depth chart looks like. I was pretty comfortable taking Lynch because I really didn't think any of the other backs left on the board were good value there at all, but if the draft had played out differently and a different player had fallen, I would have been fine with any of the three backs who went before Lynch-- Ty Montgomery, Joe Mixon, or Christian McCaffrey-- instead. Or, alternately, had those three plus Lynch all been taken, I would have been happy to wait several more rounds before grabbing my nominal RB1.

2. Which player do you see dropping in ADP as we get closer to Week 1 that still has starter value?  

I'll plead ignorance on this one, as I don't pay too much attention to ADP trends. Obviously ADP is a bit of a lagging indicator, and it takes a couple weeks for news to work its way through the system and get fully reflected, but otherwise by and large I'm not looking at labels like rising or falling or looking ahead to anticipate trends. I wrote earlier this offseason about how ADP benefits from the wisdom of the crowds and will outperform the net average of all other individual strategies, so I'm usually less concerned with trying to outsmart it and more concerned with being open and catching whatever value falls my way.

3. Which one player returning from injury do you feel has the best chance to rebound this season? 

Probably Marshawn Lynch, if I'm allowed to count him even though his injury was back in 2015. In large part because his injury was back in 2015, so he will have had the most time to get over it. This is not to say that there aren't plenty of other concerns surrounding him, (there's a reason he falls to the 4th despite what would seem to be a compelling history and a clearly-defined role), but I'm more worried about him turning out to have aged a lot in the last year than I am about any injuries.

Jeff Haseley - Slot 4

1.04 4 Beckham, Odell NYG WR
2.09 21 Gurley, Todd LAR RB
3.04 28 Cooks, Brandin NEP WR
4.09 45 McCaffrey, Christian CAR RB (R)
5.04 52 Gillislee, Mike NEP RB
6.09 69 Benjamin, Kelvin CAR WR
7.04 76 Henry, Hunter LAC TE
8.09 93 Peterson, Adrian NOS RB
9.04 100 Davis, Corey TEN WR (R)
10.09 117 White, James NEP RB
11.04 124 Manning, Eli NYG QB
12.09 141 Doctson, Josh WAS WR
13.04 148 Taylor, Tyrod BUF QB
14.09 165 Kamara, Alvin NOS RB (R)
15.04 172 Fuller, Will HOU WR
16.09 189 Watson, Ben BAL TE
17.04 196 Jones, Zay BUF WR (R)
18.09 213 Crosby, Mason GBP PK
19.04 220 Giants, New York NYG Def
20.09 237 Barnidge, Gary FA TE

Overall Strategy

Great balance and a leap into the unknown.

Best Pick(s)
Zay Jones, 17.4 (WR72) – Jones is 6'2” 201 pounds with 4.45 jets. He can play outside or in the slot. He is having a good camp so far and could easily see 100 targets this year on a team devoid of any pass catchers outside of Sammy Watkins.

Worst Pick(s)
Todd Gurley, 2.9 (RB10) - He knows he played poorly last year, but he’s still the man here and they upgraded their offensive line, at least a bit. Last season, per the NFL's NextGen Stats, Gurley had -.07 yards before a defender was within 1 yard of him, which means that defenders essentially lived in the Rams backfield. Additionally, per PFF, 68.5% of Gurley's yards were gained after contact, meaning he had to work for every yard gained. It’s a make or break year in real life for Gurley, while in fantasy, he at least has a pedestrian RB2 floor with a huge ceiling if he can live up to his rookie year hype and this offensive line can get their act together. It’s just tough betting on a guy like Gurley in the second round after witnessing him struggle so badly last year.

This is a very well rounded team, with a good mix of high floor and high ceiling players. A job well done.

post-draft questions

1. Which player were you most excited to see still on the board at your turn to pick?

I was thrilled to see Christian McCaffrey at 4.09. I contemplated taking him at 3.04 as crazy as that sounds, simply because I didn't think he would make it back to me. To my astonishment, he did and I gladly took him as my RB2. People don't realize how much McCaffrey is going to help the Panthers offense. He's a capable rusher (2,000 yards at Stanford) in 2015 and we know he's an above average receiver regardless of position. I'm expecting 900 total yards, about 120-130 carries and 50-60 receptions with 5-6 touchdowns. That's good enough for Top 20 numbers and that's just my floor on him. The sky is the limit with McCaffrey. He has little to no issues with ball security and his pass protection is adequate (although it could improve), but it won't keep him from seeing the field. He's a consummate professional and a student of the game. What's not to like? 

2. You have two high-upside wide receivers on your roster in Corey Davis and Josh Doctson. Explain why you decided to take a chance on them in this draft.

Corey Davis and Josh Doctson are my 4th and 5th wide receivers on my roster, so I don't need to rely heavily on either of them. Davis was the 5th overall pick in the NFL draft and with that comes a history of success. Calvin Johnson, A.J. Green, Amari Cooper, Sammy Watkins, Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Johnson all were Top 5 picks. That's pretty good company to be in. Sure there's a few Charles Rogers, Peter Warrick's and Justin Blackmons in that group, but the pedigree of success is definitely there. I expect the Titans to utilize Davis quite a bit this year and it's possible that he turns into great player overnight. As for Doctson - I like him because of his potential and the fact that he's replacing Pierre Garcon in the Washington offense that saw Kirk Cousins throw for 4,900 yards last year. I'm all about taking players on high scoring offenses and Doctson fits the bill. If Doctson turns into a fantasy relevant player, I want a piece of that pie. To win your league, you need to take chances on the right players at the right time and wait for them to blossom into quality players. If you can do that with a bench player - all the power to you. 

3. What is your strategy for selecting a quarterback in drafts this season?

My strategy is to wait as long as I can or until the Derek Carr, Ben Roethlisberger, Marcus Mariota picks are made, then I make my move and select either Philip Rivers, Kirk Cousins or if I miss out on them, Eli Manning a round later. If Cam Newton falls into that range I may go after him as well. I have not taken a stud quarterback in any draft yet, but if Drew Brees fell into the 6th round and I'm not liking the other choices, I will pounce on him. I am a believer in filling your starting roster up before selecting your quarterback. The reason being, the 11th or 12th ranked quarterback aren't that far off from the 7th or 8th quarterback in terms of final fantasy points. Why not wait and use those picks on your WR3 or flex position?  That's my philosophy when it comes to selecting a quarterback. 

Jeff Tefertiller - Slot 5

1.05 5 Elliott, Ezekiel DAL RB
2.08 20 Bryant, Dez DAL WR
3.05 29 Robinson, Allen JAC WR
4.08 44 Bryant, Martavis PIT WR
5.05 53 Sanders, Emmanuel DEN WR
6.08 68 Henry, Derrick TEN RB
7.05 77 Riddick, Theo DET RB
8.08 92 Doyle, Jack IND TE
9.05 101 Enunwa, Quincy NYJ WR
10.08 116 Roethlisberger, Ben PIT QB
11.05 125 McFadden, Darren DAL RB
12.08 140 Dalton, Andy CIN QB
13.05 149 James, Jesse PIT TE
14.08 164 Foreman, D'Onta HOU RB (R)
15.05 173 Ross, John CIN WR (R)
16.08 188 Patriots, New England NEP Def
17.05 197 Tucker, Justin BAL PK
18.08 212 Gordon, Josh CLE WR
19.05 221 Booker, Devontae DEN RB
20.08 236 Henderson, De'Angelo DEN RB (R)

Overall Strategy

Grab your RB1 and then slam wide receivers hard.

Best Pick(s)
Allen Robinson, 3.5 (WR15) – Blake Bortles is really bad, and this year's garbage time production should be reduced due to a very strong Jaguars defense and a seeming commitment to put the ball in Leonard Fournette's belly and not Bortles' hand. Marqise Lee also started coming on strong last year and proved to be a more reliable receiving option as Robinson struggled mightily against top rated corners, averaging a pathetic 0.68 fantasy points per targets against the top 20 corners according to Scott Barett at PFF. The Jags do have the easiest overall schedule in the league this year and a middle of the pack schedule for outside receivers at least. While Robinson is still one of the best young receivers in the league, with fewer opportunities, he's a risky grab.

Worst Pick(s)
Ezekiel Elliot, 1.05 – Can’t say Elliot is a horrible pick, but it is one that comes with more downside than there appears to be. Elliot led the league in rushing with 1,631 yards (5.1ypc) and had15 touchdowns on the ground, adding 32 catches, on 40 targets, for an additional 363 yards and 1 touchdown through the air. He finished the season with a rock solid 21 fantasy points per game and played on 71% of the team’s snaps. Unfortunately this season the Dallas offensive line lost two key pieces and is now probably just a top 10 unit instead of the leagues best unit, they also go from one of the easiest schedules in the league last year to one of the hardest this year. Then there is his looking suspension, which right now can be anywhere from 2 to 6 games.

The key to Jeff’s team is Elliot. If he doesn’t miss many games and performs well, his team will do well, if not, there is very little reliable running back depth to help him out. If you go Elliot in the first round, you should probably grab another running back before the 6th round, and not someone like Derek Henry who is just a backup at that.

post-draft questions

1. Which players do you feel were your best and worst picks in the draft?

I will always take the chance on Elliott at the1.05 pick or later.  Yes, there were plenty of good WRs available.  But, I was able to get Dez Bryant and Allen Robinson at the 2/3 turn.  For those who do not like Robinson, Doug Baldwin was available.  I did not select him because he had the same bye week as the two Cowboys.  The risk of selecting Elliott was mitigated by selecting Darren McFadden with an eleventh-round pick.  For a later pick I liked, I think getting the two Bronco RBs with my final picks was a solid move.  Booker and Henderson could see time given Anderson's injury history and Charles still in a knee brace.  I like getting two backups from the same team and watch the situation play out.  For worst best, waiting too long and getting Jack Doyle was a little disappointing.  There was quite the tight end run.  Making it worse, I missed out with pairing him with Swoope.  

2. Is there any player in particular that was selected before your pick that you were most upset about?

Since I skimped on the running back position, I was hoping for Jonathan Stewart in the 11th.  Adam Harstad took him two picks before my 11.05 selection.  I shifted toward taking McFadden earlier than expected with that selection.  

3. You selected Josh Gordon as an upside pick at 18.08. Why should people take a chance on Gordon? 

This league is a redraft league with waivers running.  I would much rather take a chance on an high-upside, low-probability situation than just an average backup.  Even if Gordon has just a 5% of reinstatement, his WR1 potential makes it worthwhile.  He is expected to file again for reinstatement this "Fall" so we should know before long whether keep him - and celebrate - or drop for a different reserve. 

Stephen Holloway - Slot 6

1.06 6 Jones, Julio ATL WR
2.07 19 Cooper, Amari OAK WR
3.06 30 Rodgers, Aaron GBP QB
4.07 43 Fitzgerald, Larry ARI WR
5.06 54 Olsen, Greg CAR TE
6.07 67 Powell, Bilal NYJ RB
7.06 78 Rudolph, Kyle MIN TE
8.07 91 Cobb, Randall GBP WR
9.06 102 Johnson, Duke CLE RB
10.07 115 Rivers, Philip LAC QB
11.06 126 Williams, Joe SFO RB (R)
12.07 139 Perriman, Breshad BAL WR
13.06 150 Williams, Jonathan BUF RB
14.07 163 Thompson, Chris WAS RB
15.06 174 Lockett, Tyler SEA WR
16.07 187 Seahawks, Seattle SEA Def
17.06 198 Gostkowski, Stephen NEP PK
18.07 211 Williams, Mike LAC WR (R)
19.06 222 Kupp, Cooper LAR WR (R)
20.07 235 Richard, Jalen OAK RB

Overall Strategy

Zero RB by loading up on PPR backs.

Best Pick(s)
Cooper Kupp, 19.06 (WR80) – Kupp is a 6'1” 204 pound slot receiver who runs precise routes, can beat all forms of coverage and has very reliable hands. He’s making a name for himself in camp and Kupp could end up leading this team in catches as a rookie. Sneaky PPR upside and just might have the best rookie season in this year's wide receiver class.

Worst Pick(s)
Philip Rivers, 10.07 (QB13) – This isn’t a best ball league, so you don’t take a quarterback in the 10th round if you use your 3rd round pick on Aaron Rodgers. No idea what Stephen was thinking here, especially since he was going Zero RB.

Kyle Rudolph, 7.06 (TE7) – This isn’t a tight end premium league, so you don’t take a tight end in the 7th round if you use your 5th round pick on Greg Olsen. Once again, no idea what Stephen was thinking here, especially since he was going Zero RB.

Stephen could have crushed it if he grabbed running backs instead of Rivers and Rudolph. That said, still a solid draft and he has a slew of PPR running backs, but none are very stable or reliable.

post-draft questions

1. Which player on your roster were you most excited to see available at your turn to pick.

I was thrilled to be able to draft Larry Fitzgerald at 4.7 as the 25th wide receiver taken in the draft. Fitzgerald has averaged 108 receptions for 1,120 yards and 7.5 touchdowns for the past two seasons. Even though both he and Carson Palmer are in the twilight of their careers, these two should again produce above expectations in 2017. Fitzgerald was taken slightly above his ADP, but among Footballguy Staffers, only Bloom and Tefertiller rank him below his ADP and both Wood and Lee rank him at WR14. Among the four staff projectors, he is ranked no lower than WR17. I typically draft more heavily at wide receiver in ppr leagues and was more than excited to get Fitzgerald as my third wide receiver (Julio Jones and Amari Cooper already on board). With that trio at wide receiver and Aaron Rodgers as my top quarterback, I have already achieved strength at two positions.

2. Who is a player that you tend to stay away from in drafts?

I have no doubt that I will not draft Melvin Gordon in 2017. His current ADP is #9 overall and RB4. Over his first two seasons, he has averaged only 3.7 ypr. In addition, he has already missed five games. He improved greatly in his second season, but still averaged under 4.0 ypc and failed to reach 1,000 yards (only 3 short). The only thing area where he significantly improved was scoring touchdowns. He has 12 in his second season after failing to score in 217 total touches as a rookie. He caught a few more passes, but had 20 more targets in his second season. The targets should be less this season as the Chargers have their best receiving depth in several years. I know that he is very likely to be the Charger bell-cow, but for the 4th running back off the board, I need better production per opportunity.

3. If there is one rookie running back that you could have on your roster this year, who would it be and why?

I like several of the rookie running backs but with my tendency to draft multiple wide receivers early, I frequently miss out on the top choices. Picking rather late, I love the apparent value of both Kareem Hunt and Joe Williams, with Williams being my favored choice due to his much lower ADP. Hunt is going at RB38 while Joe Williams is currently RB 54.  

Justin Howe - Slot 7

1.07 7 Gordon, Melvin LAC RB
2.06 18 Howard, Jordan CHI RB
3.07 31 Baldwin, Doug SEA WR
4.06 42 Diggs, Stefon MIN WR
5.07 55 Snead, Willie NOS WR
6.06 66 Coleman, Tevin ATL RB
7.07 79 Eifert, Tyler CIN TE
8.06 90 Maclin, Jeremy BAL WR
9.07 103 West, Terrance BAL RB
10.06 114 Prescott, Dak DAL QB
11.07 127 Matthews, Rishard TEN WR
12.06 138 Fiedorowicz, C.J. HOU TE
13.07 151 Njoku, David CLE TE (R)
14.06 162 Conner, James PIT RB (R)
15.07 175 Kizer, DeShone CLE QB (R)
16.06 186 Tannehill, Ryan MIA QB
17.07 199 Davis, Vernon WAS TE
18.06 210 Zenner, Zach DET RB
19.07 223 Rams, Los Angeles LAR Def
20.06 234 Prater, Matt DET PK

Overall Strategy

Take impact players with every pick, while waiting on quarterback.

Best Pick(s)
Doug Baldwin, 3.7 (WR16) – Justin must have been thrilled to have Baldwin fall to him this last, with a current ADP of 2.10. Has some serious mojo with Russell Wilson and that cannot be underestimated. He's an underrated talent and finished in the top 10 in both PFF and Football Outsider rankings, look for that to continue this year.

Worst Pick(s)
Dak Prescott, 10.06 (QB12) – It’s tough to find a bad pick on this team, but with some other solid quarterback options still on the board, Justin grabbed Prescott who may be in line for some regression this season. The team’s offensive line is not quite as good as last year, outside of Dez Bryant, this team lacks any reliable dynamic receiving weapons and they will still run their offense through Zeke. Teams will also now have a full year to game plan for him and they go from having one of the easiest schedules in the league to one of the hardest.

This is a great overall team that has no real weaknesses. You can tell Justin knew he had issues with quarterback, which is why he drafted Deshone Kizer and Rayn Tannehill later in the draft.

post-draft questions

1. If you could only start one wide receiver, would you rather have a high target receiver who doesn't score as often, or a receiver with average targets that scores a lot of touchdowns?

I almost always chase target hogs. Their production is just steadier and more predictable than that of an Allen Robinson type who needs dynamic quarterbacking and a bevy of huge plays to reach value. Generally speaking, for a wideout taken in the first 5 rounds, I like to see fair projections of at least 75-80 catches. That comes from a healthy diet of targets, but also from target-to-target efficiency, which we can measure solidly with catch rate and air yardage. I'm certainly not opposed to guys like Robinson or Davante Adams, but they tend to need ideal situations and a few external variables to pan out. Generally speaking, we as fantasy folk are much stronger at predicting volume than at predicting efficiency, so it makes a lot more sense to chase the predictable with premium picks than the wildly variable.
Consider that, by my projections, Jarvis Landry (13.67 PPR points per game) checks in as almost identical to Davante Adams (13.50). But whose outlook should we trust more? Landry projects to see about 20 more opportunities on the ball than does Adams, after all. And since efficiency wavers year-to-year more than volume, I absolutely prefer the voluminous Landry. It's more likely a high-volume guy like that turns a few of his many receptions into long plays or touchdowns, then a guy like Adams maintains last year's wild touchdown rate, or Robinson again registers 31 long receptions.

2. You selected Dak Prescott as the 12th quarterback off the board, but Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers and Eli Manning were all available. Explain why you like Prescott this season.

Simply put, my projection model spits out markedly better 2017 numbers for Prescott than any of those guys. My model tabs him as the QB12, ahead of Roethlisberger (QB14 and a major injury risk), Rivers (QB15), and Manning (QB16). Fantasy drafters tend to underrate rushing contributions from quarterbacks, and Prescott projects to virtually triple theircombined rushing production. And that's a huge boon. After all, his 2016 rushing numbers equaled 705 passing yards and 9 passing touchdowns. In other words, if Prescott hadn't taken a single 2016 carry, he still would've scored parallel to a QB who threw for 4,616 yards and 34 scores over 16 games. That's pretty much the realistic ceiling for any of the three pass-only guys listed above. And if Prescott's volume increases due to an Ezekiel Elliott suspension and/or regression, that will be an even sexier advantage.

3. Which players do you feel were your best and worst picks in the draft?

Readers of mine know how much I love Rishard Matthews, and to scoop him up as the WR52 looks like larceny. I know his ADP deserves a modest hit with Eric Decker and Corey Davis on board, but this is just too far a fall. Matthews averaged 4 catches for 65 yards and 0.7 scores over the final 13 weeks last year; he's an exceptionally efficient receiver who's developing into a nose-for-the-end-zone guy (13 touchdowns on his last 108 receptions). To me, WR52 is his absolute floor, and he carried the upside of a top-30 wideout.
I also love the value I got from Tevin Coleman. There are plenty of reasons not to like him: he's a limited back who doesn't break tackles, and the Falcons offense is certain to regress in 2017. But RB26 is too low. He's proven himself an NFL producer, which is more than we can say of the four rookie backs that came off the board before him. And he's definitely more dynamic than the likes of Marshawn Lynch, C.J. Anderson, and Doug Martin, all of whom also went first. Coleman finished 2016 as the per-game RB13 while never usurping Devonta Freeman on the totem pole. If that's his floor, and he boasts a top-12 ceiling should Freeman go down, then RB26 is a sheer steal.

The pick I'm least excited about is Jordan Howard. Round 2 is not where I like to select top-tier running backs, and Howard especially comes with some major question marks. His offense looks terrible, and his rookie production was far above his as-a-prospect expectations, suggesting an overachievement. Sadly, this was a value-driven pick made after Michael Thomas and T.Y. Hilton were both sniped just before my slot. I opted for Howard because he at least has the upside to outdo the next several RBs on the board by a good bit, and I don't quite believe the same for Dez Bryant at WR.

David Dodds - Slot 8

1.08 8 Freeman, Devonta ATL RB
2.05 17 Hilton, T.Y. IND WR
3.08 32 Crowell, Isaiah CLE RB
4.05 41 Crabtree, Michael OAK WR
5.08 56 Edelman, Julian NEP WR
6.05 65 Brees, Drew NOS QB
7.08 80 Parker, DeVante MIA WR
8.05 89 Ertz, Zach PHI TE
9.08 104 Winston, Jameis TBB QB
10.05 113 Forte, Matt NYJ RB
11.08 128 Shepard, Sterling NYG WR
12.05 137 Witten, Jason DAL TE
13.08 152 Beasley, Cole DAL WR
14.05 161 Vereen, Shane NYG RB
15.08 176 Sanu, Mohamed ATL WR
16.05 185 Clay, Charles BUF TE
17.08 200 Turbin, Robert IND RB
18.05 209 Cardinals, Arizona ARI Def
19.08 224 Santos, Cairo KCC PK
20.05 233 McKinnon, Jerick MIN RB

Overall Strategy

Safe floor, reliable and steady options.

Best Pick(s)
Shane Vereen, 14.05 (RB55) – He can’t seem to stay healthy, but has a good shot to be a reliable PPR flex option if he can this year. This a Giants team built to spread it out and pass the ball. As someone betting against Paul Perkins, Vereen makes for a great late pick.

Worst Pick(s)
DeVante Parker, 7.08 (WR37) – I get why Dodds grabbed him here, a potential number one receiver all the way in the 7th round. However, I’m not buying. Can he have a third-year breakout like Davante Adams had in Green Bay? I'm still skeptical, but the Dolphins keep talking him up, like they do every pre-season. His Reception Perception numbers were very poor, with just a 51% success rate against man coverage, something he has struggled with since his days in college. Additionally, after Week 4, the Dolphins became increasingly run heavy, finishing as the leagues 5th most run heavy team in the league, even in games they were losing in the 4th quarter compared to other teams. I also think when bodies start flying, Jarvis Landry, and not Parker, becomes the safety blanket.

You can’t fault Dodd’s start, grabbing very solid players through the first 6th round, after that though, things start to get away from him. Fantasy football is a game about coming in first, and Dodd has almost no upside players on his team. This is true throughout his draft, but especially towards the middle rounds, grabbing players like Matt Forte, Cole Beasley, Sterling Shepherd, Jason Witten, Mohamed Sanu and Julian Edelman. Where is the excitement?

post-draft questions

1. You selected Devonta Freeman and Isaiah Crowell in the first and third round respectively. Explain why you like both of those backs as your RB1 and RB2 this season.

Over the last 3 years, the 5th best RB has put up an average of 268.8 PPR fantasy points for the season (or 16.8 PPR FP per game). Devonta Freeman  has averaged a whopping 20.0 PPR fantasy points over his last 30 games so he could perform at 85% of past performance and be as good as the RB5 for the year.  The Falcons return essentially the same offense making Freeman one of the safer selections at the position.

The Browns have one of the best offensive lines in football and should be looking to exploit that advantage in matchups this year.  Crowell finished the year as RB14 (in PPR leagues) despite logging just 198 carries.  He did that by being the 9th best RB in yards per carry.  At just 24 years old and running behind a very talented offensive line, Crowell could be primed for a significant breakout this season.

2. There's a lot of speculation about how New England will utilize Julian Edelman now that they have Brandin Cooks on their roster. How do you see the Patriots passing offense shaking out this season?  

29 WRs were selected before Julian Edelman in this draft. The 30th best PPR WR has averaged 190 PPR fantasy points per year over the last 3 years.  The addition of Brandin Cooks will change the target distribution, but it also means Edelman will face more coverage against LBs.  Julian Edelman has averaged 16.3 PPR FPs per game over the last 2 years.  Even with a different distribution of targets, he should easily reach value as the 30th WR selected. 

3. Which player were you most excited to see still available when it was your turn to pick? Explain why you have such high hopes for that player this season.

Drew Brees at 6.05 seems like robbery to me.  I wrote his downside Faceoff, but that was because he was being drafted with a 3rd round ADP.  Getting a QB in the 6th round who has averaged 5,010 passing yards and 34 passing TDs a season over the last 3 years is robbery. 

Danny Tuccitto - Slot 9

1.09 9 Green, A.J. CIN WR
2.04 16 Gronkowski, Rob NEP TE
3.09 33 Watkins, Sammy BUF WR
4.04 40 Tate, Golden DET WR
5.09 57 Ware, Spencer KCC RB
6.04 64 Martin, Doug TBB RB
7.09 81 Williams, Tyrell LAC WR
8.04 88 Wilson, Russell SEA QB
9.09 105 Hunt, Kareem KCC RB (R)
10.04 112 Coleman, Corey CLE WR
11.09 129 Brate, Cameron TBB TE
12.04 136 Washington, DeAndre OAK RB
13.09 153 Palmer, Carson ARI QB
14.04 160 Nelson, J.J. ARI WR
15.09 177 Mack, Marlon IND RB (R)
16.04 184 Golladay, Kenny DET WR (R)
17.09 201 Swoope, Erik IND TE
18.04 208 Janikowski, Sebastian OAK PK
19.09 225 Eagles, Philadelphia PHI Def
20.04 232 Sims, Charles TBB RB

Overall Strategy

Take Gronkowski and wait a bit later on running back.

Best Pick(s)
Tyrell Williams, 7.09 (WR38) – With rookie Mike Williams looking like he is done for much of the year, Tyrell Williams is shaping up to be a great pickup. He finished 7th overall against man coverage and 5th overall against zone coverage last year in Matt Harmon's Reception Perception methodology. Additionally last year Williams had at least 65 yards and/or a touchdown in 12 of the 16 games he played in last year, and that includes two games against a tough Denver defense.

Worst Pick(s)
Marlon Mack, 15.09 (RB62) – Hard to call Mack a bad pick this late, but he is clearly third or fourth on the depth chart right now and bounces everything outside, literally everything. I don’t see him holding much early value and hopefully, he can learn from Frank Gore how to run it up the gut. Like most players that bounce everything, in college, most production came on very few runs.

Teams that grab Gronkowski in the second round always come off looking a little funky. I would never say drafting Gronk in the second round is a bad thing, in fact, you don’t want to let another team get that sort of advantage, but you have to work hard to make up for it elsewhere. How conformable do you feel having Spencer Ware, Doug Martin, Kareem Hunt, DeAndre Washington, Charles Sims and Marlon Mack as your running backs? I wouldn’t feel too comfortable myself.

post-draft questions

1. Which players based on your True Fantasy Points research are targeting the most in drafts this year?

They're almost all quarterbacks and tight ends. Extrapolating from their "true" efficiency stats, Kirk Cousins is expected to be 8.0 points better than our projection in this scoring system, Tyrod Taylor is expected to be 14.2 points better, and Carson Palmer is expected to be 27.6 points better.

At tight end, Rob Gronkwoski's True Fantasy Points is 7.2 points above his projection, Kyle Rudolph's is 13.1 points above his projection, and Cameron Brate's is 5.8 points above his projection.

So far, in the two Footballguys staff mock drafts, I've selected everyone listed above except for Rudolph. But that's mainly because I'm ending up with a lot of Gronkowski.

2. What player selected just before your pick, were you most upset about? How did it affect your strategy going forward?

In the fifth round, there was a two-headed monster of Alex taking Carlos Hyde and Devin taking Dalvin Cook. My plan was to go either four wide receivers or three wide receivers and one tight end in my first four picks, and then grab my RB1 at the 5-6 turn. When both Hyde and Cook were still there at the end of the fourth round, and with nearly everyone ahead of me in the fifth already being pretty much set at running back, I got excited by the thought of getting one of them. I ended up with Spencer Ware, which was fine, but I'm really high on Hyde and Cook this season as RB1s when using an Upside-Down (aka ZeroRB) draft strategy.

In terms of how it affected my strategy afterwards, I would have gone running back-wide receiver or running back-quarterback at the 5-6 turn rather than running back-running back.

Another less-consequential instance was James Brimacombe taking John Brown with the pick immediately before mine in Round 8. That was slightly ahead of Brown's ADP, so I was almost certain I'd be getting him. Obviously, if I would have gotten Brown at 8.03, I wouldn't have taken Russell Wilson, and therefore wouldn't have taken a quarterback at all until several rounds later. 

3. If you could have a mulligan on any pick of your draft, who would it be and who would you select instead? 

DeAndre Washington at 13.02 was an awful pick brought on by panicking about not having a viable RB2 for Weeks 1-3. After watching my running back targets getting selected just before my pick over and over again, Rob Kelley in this specific instance, I got paranoid and reached for someone -- anyone -- who would at least not produce a goose egg during the Doug Martin suspension weeks. To make matters worse, Jacquizz Rodgers was still available, so why didn't I just take him? Well, he was lower down my list and I didn't see him. Yeah, this one was a real stinker of a brain fart.

James Brimacombe - Slot 10

1.10 10 McCoy, LeSean BUF RB
2.03 15 Ajayi, Jay MIA RB
3.10 34 Jeffery, Alshon PHI WR
4.03 39 Adams, Davante GBP WR
5.10 58 Anderson, C.J. DEN RB
6.03 63 Crowder, Jamison WAS WR
7.10 82 Perkins, Paul NYG RB
8.03 87 Brown, John ARI WR
9.10 106 Ebron, Eric DET TE
10.03 111 Cousins, Kirk WAS QB
11.10 130 Woods, Robert LAR WR
12.03 135 Hooper, Austin ATL TE
13.10 154 Wentz, Carson PHI QB
14.03 159 Rodgers, Jacquizz TBB RB
15.10 178 Stills, Kenny MIA WR
16.03 183 Gabriel, Taylor ATL WR
17.10 202 Gallman, Wayne NYG RB (R)
18.03 207 Funchess, Devin CAR WR
19.10 226 Gano, Graham CAR PK
20.03 231 Jaguars, Jacksonville JAC Def

Overall Strategy

Take the best player possible, while keeping in mind the flow of the draft and his board.

Best Pick(s)
Kirk Cousins, 10.03 (QB11) – I doubt Cousins is available this late in most drafts, but he is pure value at this point. Arguably an even better receiving core this year with the additions of Terrelle Pryor and a healthy rookie Josh Doctson to go along with Jordan Reed and Jamison Crowder. Per ESPN's Matt Berry, last season Cousins threw for either 300 yards or 2 touchdowns in 14 games and the Redskins have the 5th most passing yards in the league since head coach Jay Gruden took over the reigns there in 2014. Playing once again for a big contract, Cousins should be once again a reliable weekly starter.

Worst Pick(s)
Paul Perkins, 7.10 (RB31) – As the 31st running back selected, he’s not a horrible pick, but there is a ton of other value on the board still at this point in the draft. Perkins stands 5’10” 208 pounds with 4.54 forty speed. At the combine last year he finished as the 67th rated running back in SPARQ score, which is a metric that measures a players athleticism. He just isn't a gifted athlete for someone his size. He’s their starting back headed into camp, but I think he is this year’s Matt Jones and Shane Vereen finishes higher than him in fantasy this season.

Paul Perkins aside, James killed it and comes away with one of the better teams in the draft. Late in the draft is where fantasy championships are won, and he gets a ton of upside with guys like Austin Hooper and he at least backed up Perkins with Wayne Gallman, who has a chance to supplant him for early down work sooner than later.

post-draft questions

1. Who is one player that you tend to target the most in drafts this year? 

Anytime I can get my hands on Jay Ajayi in the 2nd Round I am pretty happy and that was the case in this draft when I snagged him at pick 2.03 to pair with LeSean McCoy. I like the idea of going heavy at RB early in drafts especially if I miss out on Antonio Brown, Julio Jones and Odell Beckham in the 1st Round. Jay Ajayi was outstanding in 2016 breaking out for 1,272 rushing yards and 8 touchdowns (in 15 games) but more importantly his yards per carry was sitting at 4.9 which is something I am always looking at when choosing my running backs. With the recent news of Ajayi suffering a concussion at practice his ADP might even slip a little and getting him in the late 2nd Round might be a possibility now. I like the upside that comes with Ajayi, who has fresh legs entering his third season and I feel that some people are still a little uncertain of him and don't trust him 100% so he is slipping in drafts where he should be a 1st Round selection you can safely get him in the 2nd Round.

2. You selected Paul Perkins at pick 7.10. Explain why you like him this season.

The Giants backfield is wide open right now with Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen, Wayne Gallman and Oreleans Darkwa at top of the depth chart. On the other side of the offense you have Odell Beckham Jr, Brandon Marshall, Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram which is a loaded receiving crew for Eli Manning. The focus for defenses is going to be on the passing game and that will open the door for the running game to see a lot of holes in the defense. With the RB depth chart not being a scary bunch the only name that I want and have interest in is Perkins and sure taking him in Rounds 6-9 seems like a premium pick to risk on an unproven RB talent but those are the exact Rounds in the Draft that you want to take your shots at hitting on a player. For me the player that can win your leagues this year is Paul Perkins who is entering his second season and will have every opportunity to produce as the Giants lead running back.

3. What is your strategy for selecting tight ends in your draft this year? Is there any one TE1 that you target the most this season?

I have been for the most part passing on the top tight ends this year in Rob Gronkowski, Travis Kelce, Greg Olsen, Jordan Reed, Jimmy Graham, Kyle Rudolph and Tyler Eifert because of where they are being drafted. I tend to favor loading up on running backs and wide receivers at those price ranges that they are being drafted. For that reason my main TE targets this year have been Eric Ebron, Martellus Bennett, Zach Ertz, Jack Doyle, and Hunter Henry. I have been looking to draft one or two of those guys in Rounds 8-11 depending on where they fall and I feel pretty good about that strategy as it allows me to load up on WR's and RB's earlier in the draft.

Chris Feery - Slot 11

1.11 11 Thomas, Michael NOS WR
2.02 14 Murray, DeMarco TEN RB
3.11 35 Montgomery, Ty GBP RB
4.02 38 Pryor, Terrelle WAS WR
5.11 59 Lacy, Eddie SEA RB
6.02 62 Garcon, Pierre SFO WR
7.11 83 Newton, Cam CAR QB
8.02 86 Bennett, Martellus GBP TE
9.11 107 Blount, LeGarrette PHI RB
10.02 110 Carr, Derek OAK QB
11.11 131 Fleener, Coby NOS TE
12.02 134 White, Kevin CHI WR
13.11 155 Charles, Jamaal DEN RB
14.02 158 Austin, Tavon LAR WR
15.11 179 Smith-Schuster, JuJu PIT WR (R)
16.02 182 Chiefs, Kansas City KCC Def
17.11 203 Gates, Antonio LAC TE
18.02 206 Bailey, Dan DAL PK
19.11 227 Stewart, ArDarius NYJ WR (R)
20.02 230 Conley, Chris KCC WR

Overall Strategy

Studs and duds.

Best Pick(s)
Terrelle Pryor, 4.02 (WR20) – Pryor has a legit shot to finish as a top 12 receiver this year, so as the 20th off the board, that’s value. Pryor is a freak of an athlete standing 6'4" 240 pounds with 4.38 forty speed. His conversion from quarterback to receiver looks to finally be complete, and he could end up turning in a monster year, especially after training with Antonio Brown during the off-season.

Worst Pick(s)
Cam Newton, 7.11 (QB6) – Newton is not even throwing in practices yet, so spending a 7th round pick on him, with so many other top level quarterbacks on the board, just doesn’t make sense. Additions of rookie running back Christian McCaffrey and do it all player Curtis Samuels should help give this team some speed and weapons near the line of scrimmage, which will help since Cam was pretty erratic throwing the ball down the field, although he was also the worst passer the league on throws 5 yards or less, so there’s that. Can we expect a major bounce back this year? It’s a risk at this price to find out.

Chris does a great job early in the draft, which should help him contend for sure, but like some others, it gets a little funky on the back part, where I have a feeling he will be dropping a bunch of these guys for other waiver wire options. Kevin White is looking like a lost cause, Tavon Austin is trying to now make it as a deep threat who probably isn’t a starter for the Rams anymore, JuJu Smith-Schuster is a young player who probably needs a year or two to make an impact, and the Chiefs have too little production to go around for Chris Conley to make much noise in fantasy this year.

post-draft questions

1. You selected Cam Newton at pick 7.11 as the sixth quarterback off the board. Did the recent news of him saying he will continue to run raise your interest in him this season? Share your thoughts on Newton this season. 

I was intrigued by Cam Newton’s prospects for the 2017 season prior to the recent news breaking, but that definitely helped to pique my interest. While there are some valid concerns about how effective he will be out of the gate following shoulder surgery, I’m firmly in the camp that believes this will be a big bounceback season for Newton and the Panthers as a whole. Newton seems determined to make the stench of the 2016 season a distant memory. A Panthers squad that has plenty of talent on both sides of the ball receives the gift of a fourth-place schedule as a reward for a disappointing year. Add those two factors together, and I’m optimistic that Newton will reclaim his standing as one of the top signal callers in the league. 
2. Which player were you most excited to see still available when it was your turn to pick? 
I was quite pumped to see Martellus Bennett still available in round eight. Nine tight ends were already off the board at that point, and it was time for me to pull the trigger to insure I had one I was happy with. Bennett essentially fell into my lap, and I didn’t hesitate to pull the trigger. He joins one of the top offenses in the league with the Green Bay Packers, and he’ll benefit immensely from being on the receiving end of tosses from Aaron Rodgers. In the second half of 2016, Rodgers went on one of the more memorable runs that any signal caller has had in recent memory. I firmly believe that his strong play will carryover into this season. There’s plenty of competition for targets in Green Bay behind Jordy Nelson, but Bennett should quickly carve out a role. Optimistically, that role will translate into plenty of red zone targets. Sign me up for Bennett in 2017, and he makes an outstanding target for those that prefer to wait on drafting a tight end.  
3. What changes in player ADP (up or down) do you foresee as we get closer to Week 1? 
I’m fully expecting optimism to continue to grow on Pierre Garcon’s prospects for the 2017 seasons. Savvy early drafters are already on board with the opportunity in front of him, and word on that will continue to get out as we move through the summer. Garcon has shuffled off to San Francisco to become the WR1 in what’s expected to be a pass-friendly offense from new head coach Kyle Shanahan. He’s in line to see a boatload of targets, and he’s proven himself as a productive pass catcher when opportunities head his way. Garcon’s high watermark for production came in 2013 when he dropped a line of 113/1,346/5. Last season, he was able to produce a line of 79/1,041/3. Somewhere between those two lines is not out of the question in 2017, and he should see a boost in red zone opportunities to boot. 

John Mamula - Slot 12

1.12 12 Evans, Mike TBB WR
2.01 13 Nelson, Jordy GBP WR
3.12 36 Mixon, Joe CIN RB (R)
4.01 37 Landry, Jarvis MIA WR
5.12 60 Ingram, Mark NOS RB
6.01 61 Luck, Andrew IND QB
7.12 84 Walker, Delanie TEN TE
8.01 85 Woodhead, Danny BAL RB
9.12 108 Jones, Marvin DET WR
10.01 109 Perine, Samaje WAS RB (R)
11.12 132 Kelley, Rob WAS RB
12.01 133 Broncos, Denver DEN Def
13.12 156 Watson, Deshaun HOU QB (R)
14.01 157 Lee, Marqise JAC WR
15.12 180 Burkhead, Rex NEP RB
16.01 181 Allen, Dwayne NEP TE
17.12 204 Treadwell, Laquon MIN WR
18.01 205 LaFell, Brandon CIN WR
19.12 228 Yeldon, T.J. JAC RB
20.01 229 Lutz, Wil NOS PK

Overall Strategy

Take the best player possible, while keeping in mind the flow of the draft and his board.

Best Pick(s)
Danny Woodhead, 8.01 (RB32) – In a PPR league, Woodhead is going to be money, especially with Kenneth Dixon done for the year. His ADP is sure to rise, but in the 8th round, he is a value pick.

Samaje Perine (10.01) and Rob Kelly (11.12) – Pretty savvy move grabbing both of these guys in these middle rounds and waiting to see who wins the battle in camp. Right now it looks like Kelly, but Perine has the more natural talent. Just keep in mind, Chris Thompson is the team’s unquestioned passing down back.

Worst Pick(s)
Andrew Luck, 6.01 (QB3) – In analyst drafts, people wait forever on quarterback, so in the sixth round Luck is not bad value. That said, in the context of this draft, he is bad value. With so many quarterbacks still on the board, including Drew Brees, you don’t draft a guy who is not going to throw the ball all pre-season and may miss the first few games of the regular season.

John did a really nice job of drafting impactful players at each position, mixing floor plays with higher ceiling guys. Even in later rounds, guys like Marqise Lee and Brandon LaFell are at least serviceable for some PPR points in a pinch, unlike some other teams who took total shots in the dark. The biggest issue John faces is Luck, as Deshaun Watson is probably not the answer for his team.

post-draft questions

1. What player or team matchups cause you to target or shy away from when selecting a player?

For redrafts, I prefer to assume some risk with an unknown commodity, such as Dalvin Cook or Josh Doctson, as compared to a player that is nearing the end of the road. Rarely will I be in a position to draft a player such as Frank Gore or Matt Forte due to the lack of upside. I would rather be a year early as compared to a year late when projecting skill positions.  

2. Which late round upside player are you most confident in as a fantasy relevant player this year?

Josh Doctson is going to be an every week starter in fantasy before the midpoint of this season. Jordan Reed is already injured and it's early August. The Redskins let Pierre Garcon and DeSean jacked walk this past offseason. They combined for 135 receptions, 2046 yards, and 7 touchdowns in 2016. Many are quick to assume Terrelle Pryor and/or Jamison Crowder will pick up that slack. Pryor is playing on a 1-year trial contract. Doctson was a first round pick with the talent to be a star in the NFL. Last season was a wash after Doctson suffered an Achilles injury in the preseason and was placed on Injured Reserve after two games. Look for Doctson to make an impact this season. 

3. Name a player that wasn't drafted that you think could be a big waiver wire claim in the first quarter of the season?

There is never much meat left on the bone after 20 rounds in a FootballGuys staff draft! Injuries would more than likely have to play a part for a big waiver claim to make an impact during the first quarter of the season. Many backups, such as Darren McFadden and James Conner, have already been drafted. If I had to choose, I will go with Roger Lewis, WR from the New York Giants. Sterling Shepard rolled his ankle in practice on Wednesday August 2 and was carted off the field. While we are still awaiting a diagnosis, the injury is believed to be serious. With an injury to Brandon Marshall or Odell Beckham Jr., Lewis will be immediately thrust into the spotlight.  Lewis was signed as an undrafted free agent after the 2016 draft. He flashed some big-play potential at Bowling Green in two seasons with 158 receptions for 2,637 yards and 23 touchdowns. Last season, Lewis worked his way up the depth chart while splitting time with Victor Cruz. Without Cruz in the mix this season, Lewis is waiting in the wings waiting to make an impact. 

Full Draft 

pick by pick

1.01 1 Alex Miglio Bell, Le'Veon PIT RB
1.02 2 Devin Knotts Johnson, David ARI RB
1.03 3 Adam Harstad Brown, Antonio PIT WR
1.04 4 Jeff Haseley Beckham, Odell NYG WR
1.05 5 Jeff Tefertiller Elliott, Ezekiel DAL RB
1.06 6 Stephen Holloway Jones, Julio ATL WR
1.07 7 Justin Howe Gordon, Melvin LAC RB
1.08 8 David Dodds Freeman, Devonta ATL RB
1.09 9 Danny Tuccitto Green, A.J. CIN WR
1.10 10 James Brimacombe McCoy, LeSean BUF RB
1.11 11 Chris Feery Thomas, Michael NOS WR
1.12 12 John Mamula Evans, Mike TBB WR
2.01 13 John Mamula Nelson, Jordy GBP WR
2.02 14 Chris Feery Murray, DeMarco TEN RB
2.03 15 James Brimacombe Ajayi, Jay MIA RB
2.04 16 Danny Tuccitto Gronkowski, Rob NEP TE
2.05 17 David Dodds Hilton, T.Y. IND WR
2.06 18 Justin Howe Howard, Jordan CHI RB
2.07 19 Stephen Holloway Cooper, Amari OAK WR
2.08 20 Jeff Tefertiller Bryant, Dez DAL WR
2.09 21 Jeff Haseley Gurley, Todd LAR RB
2.10 22 Adam Harstad Hopkins, DeAndre HOU WR
2.11 23 Devin Knotts Fournette, Leonard JAC RB (R)
2.12 24 Alex Miglio Allen, Keenan LAC WR
3.01 25 Alex Miglio Miller, Lamar HOU RB
3.02 26 Devin Knotts Kelce, Travis KCC TE
3.03 27 Adam Harstad Thomas, Demaryius DEN WR
3.04 28 Jeff Haseley Cooks, Brandin NEP WR
3.05 29 Jeff Tefertiller Robinson, Allen JAC WR
3.06 30 Stephen Holloway Rodgers, Aaron GBP QB
3.07 31 Justin Howe Baldwin, Doug SEA WR
3.08 32 David Dodds Crowell, Isaiah CLE RB
3.09 33 Danny Tuccitto Watkins, Sammy BUF WR
3.10 34 James Brimacombe Jeffery, Alshon PHI WR
3.11 35 Chris Feery Montgomery, Ty GBP RB
3.12 36 John Mamula Mixon, Joe CIN RB (R)
4.01 37 John Mamula Landry, Jarvis MIA WR
4.02 38 Chris Feery Pryor, Terrelle WAS WR
4.03 39 James Brimacombe Adams, Davante GBP WR
4.04 40 Danny Tuccitto Tate, Golden DET WR
4.05 41 David Dodds Crabtree, Michael OAK WR
4.06 42 Justin Howe Diggs, Stefon MIN WR
4.07 43 Stephen Holloway Fitzgerald, Larry ARI WR
4.08 44 Jeff Tefertiller Bryant, Martavis PIT WR
4.09 45 Jeff Haseley McCaffrey, Christian CAR RB (R)
4.10 46 Adam Harstad Lynch, Marshawn OAK RB
4.11 47 Devin Knotts Brady, Tom NEP QB
4.12 48 Alex Miglio Hill, Tyreek KCC WR
5.01 49 Alex Miglio Hyde, Carlos SFO RB
5.02 50 Devin Knotts Cook, Dalvin MIN RB (R)
5.03 51 Adam Harstad Reed, Jordan WAS TE
5.04 52 Jeff Haseley Gillislee, Mike NEP RB
5.05 53 Jeff Tefertiller Sanders, Emmanuel DEN WR
5.06 54 Stephen Holloway Olsen, Greg CAR TE
5.07 55 Justin Howe Snead, Willie NOS WR
5.08 56 David Dodds Edelman, Julian NEP WR
5.09 57 Danny Tuccitto Ware, Spencer KCC RB
5.10 58 James Brimacombe Anderson, C.J. DEN RB
5.11 59 Chris Feery Lacy, Eddie SEA RB
5.12 60 John Mamula Ingram, Mark NOS RB
6.01 61 John Mamula Luck, Andrew IND QB
6.02 62 Chris Feery Garcon, Pierre SFO WR
6.03 63 James Brimacombe Crowder, Jamison WAS WR
6.04 64 Danny Tuccitto Martin, Doug TBB RB
6.05 65 David Dodds Brees, Drew NOS QB
6.06 66 Justin Howe Coleman, Tevin ATL RB
6.07 67 Stephen Holloway Powell, Bilal NYJ RB
6.08 68 Jeff Tefertiller Henry, Derrick TEN RB
6.09 69 Jeff Haseley Benjamin, Kelvin CAR WR
6.10 70 Adam Harstad Ryan, Matt ATL QB
6.11 71 Devin Knotts Moncrief, Donte IND WR
6.12 72 Alex Miglio Graham, Jimmy SEA TE
7.01 73 Alex Miglio Jackson, DeSean TBB WR
7.02 74 Devin Knotts Abdullah, Ameer DET RB
7.03 75 Adam Harstad Marshall, Brandon NYG WR
7.04 76 Jeff Haseley Henry, Hunter LAC TE
7.05 77 Jeff Tefertiller Riddick, Theo DET RB
7.06 78 Stephen Holloway Rudolph, Kyle MIN TE
7.07 79 Justin Howe Eifert, Tyler CIN TE
7.08 80 David Dodds Parker, DeVante MIA WR
7.09 81 Danny Tuccitto Williams, Tyrell LAC WR
7.10 82 James Brimacombe Perkins, Paul NYG RB
7.11 83 Chris Feery Newton, Cam CAR QB
7.12 84 John Mamula Walker, Delanie TEN TE
8.01 85 John Mamula Woodhead, Danny BAL RB
8.02 86 Chris Feery Bennett, Martellus GBP TE
8.03 87 James Brimacombe Brown, John ARI WR
8.04 88 Danny Tuccitto Wilson, Russell SEA QB
8.05 89 David Dodds Ertz, Zach PHI TE
8.06 90 Justin Howe Maclin, Jeremy BAL WR
8.07 91 Stephen Holloway Cobb, Randall GBP WR
8.08 92 Jeff Tefertiller Doyle, Jack IND TE
8.09 93 Jeff Haseley Peterson, Adrian NOS RB
8.10 94 Adam Harstad Thielen, Adam MIN WR
8.11 95 Devin Knotts Meredith, Cameron CHI WR
8.12 96 Alex Miglio Mariota, Marcus TEN QB
9.01 97 Alex Miglio Britt, Kenny CLE WR
9.02 98 Devin Knotts Decker, Eric TEN WR
9.03 99 Adam Harstad Gore, Frank IND RB
9.04 100 Jeff Haseley Davis, Corey TEN WR (R)
9.05 101 Jeff Tefertiller Enunwa, Quincy NYJ WR
9.06 102 Stephen Holloway Johnson, Duke CLE RB
9.07 103 Justin Howe West, Terrance BAL RB
9.08 104 David Dodds Winston, Jameis TBB QB
9.09 105 Danny Tuccitto Hunt, Kareem KCC RB (R)
9.10 106 James Brimacombe Ebron, Eric DET TE
9.11 107 Chris Feery Blount, LeGarrette PHI RB
9.12 108 John Mamula Jones, Marvin DET WR
10.01 109 John Mamula Perine, Samaje WAS RB (R)
10.02 110 Chris Feery Carr, Derek OAK QB
10.03 111 James Brimacombe Cousins, Kirk WAS QB
10.04 112 Danny Tuccitto Coleman, Corey CLE WR
10.05 113 David Dodds Forte, Matt NYJ RB
10.06 114 Justin Howe Prescott, Dak DAL QB
10.07 115 Stephen Holloway Rivers, Philip LAC QB
10.08 116 Jeff Tefertiller Roethlisberger, Ben PIT QB
10.09 117 Jeff Haseley White, James NEP RB
10.10 118 Adam Harstad Matthews, Jordan PHI WR
10.11 119 Devin Knotts Prosise, C.J. SEA RB
10.12 120 Alex Miglio Wallace, Mike BAL WR
11.01 121 Alex Miglio Stafford, Matthew DET QB
11.02 122 Devin Knotts Rawls, Thomas SEA RB
11.03 123 Adam Harstad Stewart, Jonathan CAR RB
11.04 124 Jeff Haseley Manning, Eli NYG QB
11.05 125 Jeff Tefertiller McFadden, Darren DAL RB
11.06 126 Stephen Holloway Williams, Joe SFO RB (R)
11.07 127 Justin Howe Matthews, Rishard TEN WR
11.08 128 David Dodds Shepard, Sterling NYG WR
11.09 129 Danny Tuccitto Brate, Cameron TBB TE
11.10 130 James Brimacombe Woods, Robert LAR WR
11.11 131 Chris Feery Fleener, Coby NOS TE
11.12 132 John Mamula Kelley, Rob WAS RB
12.01 133 John Mamula Broncos, Denver DEN Def
12.02 134 Chris Feery White, Kevin CHI WR
12.03 135 James Brimacombe Hooper, Austin ATL TE
12.04 136 Danny Tuccitto Washington, DeAndre OAK RB
12.05 137 David Dodds Witten, Jason DAL TE
12.06 138 Justin Howe Fiedorowicz, C.J. HOU TE
12.07 139 Stephen Holloway Perriman, Breshad BAL WR
12.08 140 Jeff Tefertiller Dalton, Andy CIN QB
12.09 141 Jeff Haseley Doctson, Josh WAS WR
12.10 142 Adam Harstad Sproles, Darren PHI RB
12.11 143 Devin Knotts Williams, Jamaal GBP RB (R)
12.12 144 Alex Miglio Bernard, Giovani CIN RB
13.01 145 Alex Miglio Thomas, Julius MIA TE
13.02 146 Devin Knotts Ginn Jr., Ted NOS WR
13.03 147 Adam Harstad Howard, O.J. TBB TE (R)
13.04 148 Jeff Haseley Taylor, Tyrod BUF QB
13.05 149 Jeff Tefertiller James, Jesse PIT TE
13.06 150 Stephen Holloway Williams, Jonathan BUF RB
13.07 151 Justin Howe Njoku, David CLE TE (R)
13.08 152 David Dodds Beasley, Cole DAL WR
13.09 153 Danny Tuccitto Palmer, Carson ARI QB
13.10 154 James Brimacombe Wentz, Carson PHI QB
13.11 155 Chris Feery Charles, Jamaal DEN RB
13.12 156 John Mamula Watson, Deshaun HOU QB (R)
14.01 157 John Mamula Lee, Marqise JAC WR
14.02 158 Chris Feery Austin, Tavon LAR WR
14.03 159 James Brimacombe Rodgers, Jacquizz TBB RB
14.04 160 Danny Tuccitto Nelson, J.J. ARI WR
14.05 161 David Dodds Vereen, Shane NYG RB
14.06 162 Justin Howe Conner, James PIT RB (R)
14.07 163 Stephen Holloway Thompson, Chris WAS RB
14.08 164 Jeff Tefertiller Foreman, D'Onta HOU RB (R)
14.09 165 Jeff Haseley Kamara, Alvin NOS RB (R)
14.10 166 Adam Harstad Bortles, Blake JAC QB
14.11 167 Devin Knotts Flacco, Joe BAL QB
14.12 168 Alex Miglio Texans, Houston HOU Def
15.01 169 Alex Miglio Hill, Jeremy CIN RB
15.02 170 Devin Knotts Vikings, Minnesota MIN Def
15.03 171 Adam Harstad Murray, Latavius MIN RB
15.04 172 Jeff Haseley Fuller, Will HOU WR
15.05 173 Jeff Tefertiller Ross, John CIN WR (R)
15.06 174 Stephen Holloway Lockett, Tyler SEA WR
15.07 175 Justin Howe Kizer, DeShone CLE QB (R)
15.08 176 David Dodds Sanu, Mohamed ATL WR
15.09 177 Danny Tuccitto Mack, Marlon IND RB (R)
15.10 178 James Brimacombe Stills, Kenny MIA WR
15.11 179 Chris Feery Smith-Schuster, JuJu PIT WR (R)
15.12 180 John Mamula Burkhead, Rex NEP RB
16.01 181 John Mamula Allen, Dwayne NEP TE
16.02 182 Chris Feery Chiefs, Kansas City KCC Def
16.03 183 James Brimacombe Gabriel, Taylor ATL WR
16.04 184 Danny Tuccitto Golladay, Kenny DET WR (R)
16.05 185 David Dodds Clay, Charles BUF TE
16.06 186 Justin Howe Tannehill, Ryan MIA QB
16.07 187 Stephen Holloway Seahawks, Seattle SEA Def
16.08 188 Jeff Tefertiller Patriots, New England NEP Def
16.09 189 Jeff Haseley Watson, Ben BAL TE
16.10 190 Adam Harstad Cook, Jared OAK TE
16.11 191 Devin Knotts Hurns, Allen JAC WR
16.12 192 Alex Miglio Jones, Aaron GBP RB (R)
17.01 193 Alex Miglio Seferian-Jenkins, Austin NYJ TE
17.02 194 Devin Knotts Bryant, Matt ATL PK
17.03 195 Adam Harstad Lewis, Dion NEP RB
17.04 196 Jeff Haseley Jones, Zay BUF WR (R)
17.05 197 Jeff Tefertiller Tucker, Justin BAL PK
17.06 198 Stephen Holloway Gostkowski, Stephen NEP PK
17.07 199 Justin Howe Davis, Vernon WAS TE
17.08 200 David Dodds Turbin, Robert IND RB
17.09 201 Danny Tuccitto Swoope, Erik IND TE
17.10 202 James Brimacombe Gallman, Wayne NYG RB (R)
17.11 203 Chris Feery Gates, Antonio LAC TE
17.12 204 John Mamula Treadwell, Laquon MIN WR
18.01 205 John Mamula LaFell, Brandon CIN WR
18.02 206 Chris Feery Bailey, Dan DAL PK
18.03 207 James Brimacombe Funchess, Devin CAR WR
18.04 208 Danny Tuccitto Janikowski, Sebastian OAK PK
18.05 209 David Dodds Cardinals, Arizona ARI Def
18.06 210 Justin Howe Zenner, Zach DET RB
18.07 211 Stephen Holloway Williams, Mike LAC WR (R)
18.08 212 Jeff Tefertiller Gordon, Josh CLE WR
18.09 213 Jeff Haseley Crosby, Mason GBP PK
18.10 214 Adam Harstad Panthers, Carolina CAR Def
18.11 215 Devin Knotts Miller, Braxton HOU WR
18.12 216 Alex Miglio Boswell, Chris PIT PK
19.01 217 Alex Miglio Johnson, Calvin FA* WR
19.02 218 Devin Knotts Smith, Alex KCC QB
19.03 219 Adam Harstad Vinatieri, Adam IND PK
19.04 220 Jeff Haseley Giants, New York NYG Def
19.05 221 Jeff Tefertiller Booker, Devontae DEN RB
19.06 222 Stephen Holloway Kupp, Cooper LAR WR (R)
19.07 223 Justin Howe Rams, Los Angeles LAR Def
19.08 224 David Dodds Santos, Cairo KCC PK
19.09 225 Danny Tuccitto Eagles, Philadelphia PHI Def
19.10 226 James Brimacombe Gano, Graham CAR PK
19.11 227 Chris Feery Stewart, ArDarius NYJ WR (R)
19.12 228 John Mamula Yeldon, T.J. JAC RB
20.01 229 John Mamula Lutz, Wil NOS PK
20.02 230 Chris Feery Conley, Chris KCC WR
20.03 231 James Brimacombe Jaguars, Jacksonville JAC Def
20.04 232 Danny Tuccitto Sims, Charles TBB RB
20.05 233 David Dodds McKinnon, Jerick MIN RB
20.06 234 Justin Howe Prater, Matt DET PK
20.07 235 Stephen Holloway Richard, Jalen OAK RB
20.08 236 Jeff Tefertiller Henderson, De'Angelo DEN RB (R)
20.09 237 Jeff Haseley Barnidge, Gary FA TE
20.10 238 Adam Harstad Smallwood, Wendell PHI RB
20.11 239 Devin Knotts Boyd, Tyler CIN WR
20.12 240 Alex Miglio Benjamin, Travis LAC WR


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