2011’s Most Accurate Draft Rankings
It’s an exciting time for football fans. Training camps are less than 2 weeks away and that kicks off 6 straight months of football action. Does it get much better than that?
Just as important, the timing means now is as good a moment as ever to make sure you’re prepping for your fantasy drafts. To help out in that regard, we’re pleased to reveal the results of our 2nd Annual Draft Accuracy study!
Before we get to the standings, below are a few notes about the contest:
- We first want to acknowledge the great work the FFLibrarian (Sara Holladay) does with her own draft accuracy contest (5 years running). Note that we use a different methodology to measure results so we feel our study serves as a companion to Sara’s analysis.
- The assessment here measures the accuracy of last year’s draft rankings. The competition should not be confused with our in-season accuracy contest that analyzes weekly rankings.
- Rankings from 80+ experts have been scored for the contest. That’s up from 34 experts tracked last year!
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the top 10 Draft experts from 2011. Full standing are available in our accuracy section.
Top 10 Draft Experts
|Overall* Draft Accuracy Scores|
|1.||Staff Rankings – Bruno Boys||69.6%|
|2.||Paul Greco – F911||69.0%|
|3.||Ben Doughty – Fantasy Sharks||68.7%|
|4.||Andy Behrens – Yahoo! Sports||68.6%|
|5.||David Dodds – FootballGuys||68.1%|
|6.||Staff Composite – Yahoo! Sports||68.1%|
|7.||Brandon Funston – Yahoo! Sports||68.1%|
|8.||Staff Rankings – Fantazzle||68.0%|
|9.||Jeff Ratcliffe – Pro Football Focus||68.0%|
|10.||Dave Richard – CBS Sports||68.0%|
- Congratulations to the staff at Bruno Boys for coming through with the year’s most accurate draft rankings! While they may have been 1st time entrants into our competition, Bruno Boys is no stranger to handing out excellent draft advice. In 2010, they were also the winner of the FFLibrarian’s Accuracy Contest. So where did Bruno Boys get things right this time? Their best advice came at the WR position (#3 rank), where their picks were notably higher than the expert consensus for several key players (Wes Welker, Steve Smith & A.J. Green). In addition to pushing those studs, Bruno Boys also downgraded several players that ultimately flamed out including Mike-Sims Walker, Steve Smith (PHI) & Mike Thomas. Combine these picks with strong ratings at other positions (RB: #8, QB #12) and the Bruno Boy’s staff is well deserving of the 2011 draft accuracy honor.
- Checking in at #2 as our runner-up is Paul Greco (FP911). It’s always important to nail the top players and Greco did just that at the RB position. He managed to rank 8 out of the top 10 fantasy backs as well or better than the field of experts. This includes unexpected stars such as Reggie Bush and Marshawn Lynch. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have a read on a few deep sleepers too. Greco helped his cause in that regard by slotting both DeMarco Murray and Roy Helu above the expert consensus. On top of his RB picks, Greco cemented his lofty overall score by rating 3rd best in TE accuracy.
- Another newcomer to the competition, Ben Doughty (Fantasy Sharks), put up an impressive showing to finish in 3rd place. While Doughty wasn’t the top expert at any one position, he delivered a well-rounded set of advice across his predictions. Perhaps most impressively, he showed solid foresight when it came to avoiding many hyped-up players. Specifically, Doughty slotted the much-ballyhooed Felix Jones lower than every single expert we tracked. He was also notably down on several other underachievers – Michael Vick, Miles Austin, Brandon Lloyd – that disappointed fantasy owners. On the flip side, only 2 experts had Rob Gronkowski rated higher than Doughty.
- Two experts that have proven time and again that they’re among the best prognosticators in the industry are Andy Behrens (Yahoo! Sports) and David Dodds (FootballGuys). Behrens was our in-season champ in 2009 and he followed that up with top 10 finishes in both our draft and in-season competitions the next year. Dodds, meanwhile, has now finished in the top 5 in four out of the five accuracy competitions we’ve held. That’s a claim no other expert can make.
- As a new addition to the contest, we also tracked IDP rankings this year. Congratulations are in order for Ross Miles (Pro Football Focus), who finished as the #1 IDP expert. Miles also finished tops in our 2011 in-season IDP competition so he’s proving to be quite the force with his predictions.
As is the case every year, there were notable players that performed above expectations. The difference between drafting or passing on those guys would have had a major impact on any team’s fantasy fortunes.
Recognition is given below to the experts that were the strongest advocates of each player (i.e. they had the player ranked higher than anyone else). In the case of Jimmy Graham, Smitty from DraftCalc even wrote the following on our site:
“Breakout alert! This kid could be the next elite TE and could have a top 3 fantasy TE season in 2011.”
It’s safe to say that anyone who listened to that advice benefited greatly. Here are the other picks that stood out from the pack:
|Notable Breakout Players|
|Player||Position||Top Expert||Expert Rank*||ADP*|
|Reggie Bush||RB||Site Projections – scoutPRO||17||31|
|DeMarco Murray||RB||Clayton Gray – FootballGuys||37||52|
|Darren Sproles||RB||Jeff Haseley – FootballGuys||23||44|
|Marshawn Lynch||RB||James Elvins – Fantasy Sharks||19||30|
|Victor Cruz||WR||Smitty – DraftCalc||37||Outside top 60|
|Jordy Nelson||WR||Derek Lofland – Fantasy Football Maniaxs||31||47|
|A.J. Green||WR||Jeff Tefertiller – FootballGuys||19||36|
|Cam Newton||QB||Sigmund Bloom – FootballGuys||19||24|
|Jimmy Graham||TE|| Smitty – DraftCalc
Site Rankings – Bloomberg Sports
|Rob Gronkowski||TE|| Mike Krueger – FFToday
Mike Woellert – Pro Football Focus
*Ranks & ADP are at the positional level
That wraps up our analysis of 2011’s expert draft rankings. Congratulations again to Bruno Boys and the rest of the top experts. If you’d like to view the entire list with breakouts by position, you can do so here.
Best of luck to everyone with your upcoming draft prep!