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Fantasy Football Rookie Mock Draft

Fantasy Football Rookie Mock Draft

What happens on a Thursday night when all of your favorite fantasy football analysts get together and do a rookie mock draft? That was the question I wanted answered when assembling a star-studded cast for this article. After all, you want to hear from the people that have the biggest influence on ADP (average draft position), right?

There are certain people in the industry who if I disagree with, I’ll go and take a second look because I respect them that much. Yes, there are quite a few of those guys in this draft. The idea was to give you the best preparation for your upcoming dynasty drafts, with some of the biggest names in the industry.

With that being said, the participants in this draft included (in draft order): Evan Silva, Sigmund Bloom, Matt Franciscovich, Jody Smith, Scott Fish, Jeff Donovan, Pete Davidson, John Proctor, myself, Russell Clay, Matt Harmon, and Chad Parsons. I’ve included all of their Twitter handles at the bottom of this article. Needless to say, you weren’t going to sneak out with much value among this crowd. But we’re going to go round-by-round, discussing the trends that took place, as well as the areas to find the most value.

ROUND ONE

PICK FRANCHISE SELECTION
1.01 Silva WR Corey Davis
1.02 Bloom RB Leonard Fournette
1.03 Franciscovich RB Dalvin Cook
1.04 Smith RB Christian McCaffrey
1.05 Fish WR Mike Williams
1.06 Donovan RB Joe Mixon
1.07 Davidson WR John Ross
1.08 Proctor WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
1.09 Tagliere RB Alvin Kamara
1.10 Clay WR Curtis Samuel
1.11 Harmon WR Chris Godwin
1.12 Parsons RB D’Onta Freeman

 
Let me start by saying that when I text Silva letting him know that he had the first pick, his response was immediately, “Can I trade it for someone who’s actually good in the NFL already?” It was something a little behind the scenes that I thought you may enjoy, as I know I chuckled at it.

The top seven are pretty much set in dynasty drafts with some sort of combination of those listed here. While the order can vary, if you’re sitting there with a pick in between 1.04-1.07, you are in a good spot. The best value pick in the first half of the round went to Donovan, who took Joe Mixon, the player with arguably the most talent in this draft class. There are obvious off-the-field concerns with him, and it raised some questions in our group chat about where he’ll land.

Silva brought up the possibility of a team with a running back already in place drafting him, but my counterpoint was that you don’t draft him and take the negative media attention without a plan in place. The only way to escape that negativity is to have his play overshadow it, similar to what happened with Tyreek Hill last year. Mixon should be starting right away.

The second half of the first round and the beginning of the second round can almost be interchanged without blinking that someone took the wrong player. There is a cluster of players who appear to be second-tier, though the one who has arguably the highest ceiling is JuJu Smith-Schuster. My hope was that he would last until 1.09 where I was drafting, but Proctor stole him from me at 1.08.

SECOND ROUND

PICK FRANCHISE SELECTION
2.01 Parsons TE Evan Engram
2.02 Harmon TE O.J. Howard
2.03 Clay TE David Njoku
2.04 Tagliere WR Taywan Taylor
2.05 Proctor RB Kareem Hunt
2.06 Davidson RB Samaje Perine
2.07 Donovan WR KD Cannon
2.08 Fish WR Carlos Henderson
2.09 Smith WR Dede Westbrook
2.10 Franciscovich WR Zay Jones
2.11 Bloom WR Cooper Kupp
2.12 Silva RB Marlon Mack

 
This is where opinion comes heavily into play, as Parsons questioned my pick of Taywan Taylor at 2.04, though this is my area to defend that pick. Most fantasy players tend to overvalue rookie draft picks, but I actually understand what they’re worth, as I’ve done the research. That research will be coming to an article next month. But for a sneak peak, a mid-second round pick is essentially worth Rueben Randle. I know what you’re saying in your head right now, but I promise it’s dead-on accurate.

Taylor isn’t the highest upside pick, in fact, he’s the opposite. He’s a very safe pick, as I believe his skillset translates to the NFL, though he’s not going to be the focal point of the offense. In all honesty, I’m expecting results of a player like Willie Snead, or in that range. But why did I grab him that early? Because I wasn’t in love with any of the players available, and didn’t think Taylor would last until my next pick at 3.09 considering I did a mock with Ryan McDowell from DLF earlier in the week where he took Taylor at 2.05.

You can clearly see the run on tight ends at the start of the round, which is likely going to happen at the end of the first round in your home league draft. The hype on the top three tight ends is real and they won’t last into the middle of the second round. The best value in the round probably went to Fish who took Carlos Henderson at 2.08, a player that I considered along with Taylor. If you can land a stud like Mike Williams in the first and pair him with Henderson in the back of the second, you’re in good shape.

THIRD ROUND

PICK FRANCHISE SELECTION
3.01 Silva RB Jeremy McNichols
3.02 Bloom WR ArDarius Stewart
3.03 Franciscovich RB James Conner
3.04 Smith WR Josh Reynolds
3.05 Fish RB Wayne Gallman
3.06 Donovan WR Malachi Dupre
3.07 Davidson TE Bucky Hodges
3.08 Proctor RB Jamaal Williams
3.09 Tagliere WR Chad Hansen
3.10 Clay RB Joe Williams
3.11 Harmon WR Isaiah Ford
3.12 Parsons TE Adam Shaheen

 
Surprisingly, this was my favorite round in the draft. There were so many picks in this round where I nodded at my screen in approval. It started with Jeremy McNichols at 3.01, as he’s a player who is going to slide up draft boards very soon. While I think his landing spot will affect his draft stock mightily, he could be an immediate contributor in fantasy. The pick right after that by Bloom was ArDarius Stewart, another player that I considered with the 2.04 pick. Stewart has so many strengths and is very flexible with what he can do for his potential team. If he lands on a team with a creative offensive coordinator, he should move to the beginning of the second round.

The pick of Chad Hansen at 3.09 was probably the favorite pick of my draft, because I got some serious value with him. He’s a wide receiver that I have in my top-10 at the position, so getting him at the end of the third was a no-brainer. While I have my concerns about Isaiah Ford in the NFL, Harmon landing him at 3.11 is well worth the risk.

FOURTH ROUND

PICK FRANCHISE SELECTION
4.01 Parsons WR Ishmael Zamora
4.02 Harmon RB Elijah Hood
4.03 Clay WR Robert Davis
4.04 Tagliere WR Amara Darboh
4.05 Proctor QB Deshaun Watson
4.06 Davidson TE Jordan Leggett
4.07 Donovan RB Elijah McGuire
4.08 Fish WR Josh Malone
4.09 Smith TE Gerald Everett
4.10 Franciscovich QB Mitch Trubisky
4.11 Bloom WR Ryan Switzer
4.12 Silva RB Brian Hill

 
The important takeaway that you should have from the fourth round is that the first player taken wasn’t even in the MFL database. In fact, Parsons pick of tight end Adam Shaheen at the end of the third round wasn’t in there, either. This may change by the time your draft rolls around, but Parsons is someone who dedicates all of his time to dynasty formats. It’s a good idea to take down both players names and have them handy for the later rounds in your draft.

You can also see that the first quarterback (Deshaun Watson) wasn’t taken until 4.05 by Proctor, with the only other quarterback (Mitch Trubisky) taken at 4.10 by Franciscovich. This appears to be later than usual for home leagues, though that’s pretty typical with any industry draft with quarterbacks lasting a while. Watson is likely to be an immediate contributor, while Trubisky’s team may want him to be eased into action.

CONCLUSION

In the end, there were 22 wide receivers drafted, 17 running backs, seven tight ends, and two quarterbacks. After the NFL Draft takes place, you should expect there to be more wide receivers and fewer running backs taken in the first four rounds of rookie drafts. And don’t worry, we’re going to reassemble after the NFL Draft and get you together another rookie mock draft to work with. Until then, pleasant rookie drafting.

Evan Silva – @evansilva
Sigmund Bloom – @sigmundblooom
Matt Franciscovich – @mattfranchise
Jody Smith – @jodysmithnfl
Scott Fish – @scottfish24
Jeff Donovan – @jeffdonovan_ff
Pete Davidson – @rotobahn
John Proctor – @johnproctordfs
Mike Tagliere – @miketaglierenfl
Russell Clay – @russelljclay
Matt Harmon – @mattharmon_byb
Chad Parsons – @chadparsonsnfl

Ep. 72: Dynasty Rookie Draft


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Mike Tagliere is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @MikeTagliereNFL.

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