Most Accurate Fantasy Football Draft Rankings
July is here and that means football drafts are right around the corner. As always, we’re squarely focused on helping eliminate the work involved in getting ready, while offering the tools to help you win big. One of these tools is our annual accuracy assessment. With the NFL season fast approaching, the time has arrived to give you the edge on who the most accurate experts are.
Before we jump to the results, here are a couple of quick notes about our annual accuracy study:
- 2014 preseason player rankings from 167 experts were analyzed (see: methodology). That’s up from 132 experts in 2013 and 91 experts in 2012.
- We now have 5 years (!!) of draft accuracy scores for the experts. In other words, we’ve got a very good sense of who has provided quality advice across seasons.
- For the first time, we’re unveiling reports that highlight the most (and least) accurate experts for every player (e.g. what did everyone really think of OBJ before the season?). We’ll have more interesting ways to use this data in the coming weeks so stay tuned.
Without further ado, below are the experts with the best draft rankings.
Top 10 Draft Experts in 2014
|1.||Bob Henry – FootballGuys||66.9%|
|2.||Austin Lee – FootballGuys||64.9%|
|3.||Sean Koerner – STATS||64.2%|
|4.||Neil Parker – Fantasy Sports LR||64.2%|
|5.||Joe Bond – Fantasy Six Pack||63.8%|
|6.||Rachel Wold – eDraft||63.4%|
|7.||John Paulsen – 4for4.com||63.2%|
|8.||Jeff Boggis – Fantasy Football Empire||62.8%|
|9.||Ben Standig – CSN Washington||62.7%|
|10.||The FFGhost – Dynasty League Football||62.6%|
- Congrats to Bob Henry (FootballGuys) for winning our draft accuracy competition! Henry has performed well in the contest for years (see: 2012, 2010) so it comes as little surprise to see him top the leaderboard. His rankings last season were particularly strong at the WR position. He was notably higher than the Expert Consensus on a trio of players that exceeded expectations: Mike Evans (+20 spots vs. consensus), Steve Smith (+18 spots vs. consensus) and DeAndre Hopkins (+7 spots vs. consensus). As for his RB picks, Henry was one of the few believers in Mark Ingram. His ranking (RB28) for the Saints’ veteran was roughly a round higher than Ingram’s consensus value (RB39). It served as quality advice as Ingram turned in the best season of his career (14th best RB). Henry also had a nice read on Russell Wilson’s outlook (QB6 in his rankings, +8 spots vs. consensus). Only one expert (out of 167) was higher on the Seahawks’ QB. Wilson broke through as a fantasy stud (3rd best QB), making Henry’s ranking a significant hit for anyone that followed the advice.
- Our runner-up (Austin Lee) is another expert that makes his home over at FootballGuys. This marks the first time that two writers from the same site have finished #1 and #2 in our contest. Lee stood out this past season as having the top TE score by a wide margin (an impressive 77.5% PAY). When rating experts across thousands of predictions, it often comes down to a bunch of small decisions that add up instead of one big prediction that sways the results. In Lee’s case, he ranked strong contributors such as Greg Olsen, Martellus Bennett and Travis Kelce all notably above the field of experts. He also avoided the pitfall of buying into the hype of guys such as Ladarius Green (-6 spots vs. consensus) and Jordan Reed (-3 spots vs. consensus). Those decisions (among others) all added up to give Lee the top rating at the position.
- It’s worth noting that both of the experts who finished #1 and #2 in our in-season competition also ended up in the top 10 of our draft standings. Those experts would be John Paulsen (4for4) and Sean Koerner (STATs). If you’ve followed our accuracy contests over the years you know both have been fixtures near the top of the annual leaderboard. Congrats to both….again!
Top 10 Draft Experts from 2011-2014 (Multi-Year)
|1.||Scott Pianowski – Yahoo! Sports||64.5%|
|2.||Sablich Brothers – The NY Times||64.1%|
|3.||Jeff Ratcliffe – Pro Football Focus||63.7%|
|4.||John Paulsen – 4for4.com||63.7%|
|5.||Bob Henry – FootballGuys||63.6%|
|6.||Derek Lofland – Fantasy Football Maniax||63.4%|
|7.||Brandon Funston – Yahoo! Sports||63.3%|
|8.||Kevin Hanson – EDSFootball||62.7%|
|9.||Jamey Eisenberg – CBS Sports||62.6%|
|10.||Jeff Haseley – FootballGuys||62.5%|
If you’re curious about how the experts have fared over different time frames, we have that info available too (see links below). Note that there is a benefit to looking at the more recent views (e.g. 3 or 4 years) because these cuts include a deeper pool of experts.
As always, there were more than a few players that performed above expectations last season. The difference between drafting or passing on these guys would have had a major impact on any team’s fantasy fortunes. Below are the experts that had the best read on these players in the preseason (i.e. they had the player ranked higher than anyone else). ADP data is included in the table below to show just how far out on a limb each expert went with their ranking.
Note: Check out our player accuracy report to see where every expert ranked the players.
|Player||Position||Top Expert(s)||Expert Rank*||ADP*|
|Jeremy Hill||RB||Raju Byfield – WinMyFantasyLeague||16||39|
|Justin Forsett||RB||Eric Mack – FanDuel||66||NR|
|C.J. Anderson||RB||Dave Major – XN Sports||43||61|
|Odell Beckham Jr.||WR||Raju Byfield – WinMyFantasyLeague||45||73|
|Emmanuel Sanders||WR||Marcus Grant – NFL.com||13||23|
|Mike Evans||WR||Muntradamus – Beast Dome||23||40|
|DeAndre Hopkins||WR||Adam Rank – NFL.com||20||44|
|Kelvin Benjamin||WR||Dave Major – XN Sports||18||42|
|Ben Roethlisberger||QB||KJ – Fantasy Team Advice||6||16|
|Antonio Gates||TE||Jason Longfellow – Razzball||7||13|
|Delanie Walker||TE||Eddie Cooley – Sundays Are For Football||10||23|
|Travis Kelce||TE||Sigmund Bloom – FootballGuys||10||24|
*Ranks & ADP are at the positional level.
On the flip side, here are the notable disappointments from 2014 along with the experts that went against popular opinion with their rankings. Note that some players (e.g. Adrian Peterson) are not listed if their seasons were completely derailed by unforeseen circumstances. Consider yourself fortunate if you avoided everyone on this list!
Note: View our player accuracy report to see where every expert ranked the players.
|Player||Position||Top Expert(s)||Expert Rank*||ADP*|
|Montee Ball||RB||Jason Longfellow – Razzball||22||8|
|Doug Martin||RB||Joe Bond – Fantasy Six Pack||23||11|
|Zac Stacy||RB||Site Rankings – KFFL||31||14|
|Reggie Bush||RB||Raju Byfield – WinMyFantasyLeague||34||16|
|Toby Gerhart||RB||Muntradamus – Beast Dome||44||19|
|Ben Tate||RB||Aaron Maples – Top Tier Football||38||23|
|Keenan Allen||WR||Muntradamus – Beast Dome||28||12|
|Larry Fitzgerald||WR||Scott Swanay – Fantasy Football Sherpa||39||13|
|Pierre Garcon||WR||Scott Cullen – TSN||40||17|
|Cordarrelle Patterson||WR||Muntradamus – Beast Dome||44||18|
|Percy Harvin||WR||Site Rankings – FantasyOMatic||64||20|
|Wes Welker||WR||David Dodds – FootballGuys||70||26|
|Matthew Stafford||QB||Jeff Collins – Fantasy Contrarians||16||4|
|Nick Foles||QB||Avery Dorfman – Fantasy Sports LR||17||7|
|Robert Griffin III||QB||Adam Rank – NFL.com||24||10|
|Vernon Davis||TE||Tommy Rowan – Juan Elway||13||4|
|Jordan Cameron||TE||Michael Pichan – Fantasy Alarm||15||6|
*Ranks & ADP are at the positional level
That puts the wraps on our Draft Accuracy assessment. Congrats again to Bob Henry and the rest of the top-rated experts. To view the entire standings, including breakouts by position and IDP, please check out the accuracy section of our site.