Fantasy Football: Deep Dynasty Rookie Stashes
There will be a lot of things falling into place over the next few months, including the rounding out of depth charts. As of right now, all the casual fan can go off is what they see on the internet, and what they’ll find is typically the depth chart of the previous year. NFL teams don’t update them right away, and even if they did, there is likely a lot of smoke.
You see, rookies have to earn their place on the team and won’t be handed the keys to a starting position. If you recall Dorial Green-Beckham from a couple years ago, everyone wanted to anoint him the starter right out of the gate, but he never earned the right to play. He’s now trying to just earn a roster spot with his second NFL team.
We aren’t going to focus on those types of rookies in this article; instead we’ll be looking at the players who’re outside the starting lineup, working to earn their spot. These are the players that you’ll likely find in the third-round and beyond in your dynasty rookie drafts, and you’ll want to acquire them before their stock goes through the roof.
Davis Webb (QB – NYG) Rookie ADP: 61
This is tough with quarterbacks, because all of them are likely to outside of the top two rounds, but Webb is a player who may provide massive dividends down the road. The Giants have built an incredible nucleus around Eli Manning, who might be in danger of losing his job if he plays like he did last year. The Giants have Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard, Evan Engram, Paul Perkins, and Wayne Gallman as their foundation, and any quarterback throwing to them is going to have appeal. Webb is someone I loved in the draft process as he shows confidence and poise when sitting in the pocket. With the weapons he has, he shouldn’t need to hold onto the ball very long. By the time he takes the field, I’d imagine that the offensive line will be in much better shape.
(Wish I could include Colts running back Marlon Mack, whose ADP is at 20)
Wayne Gallman (RB – NYG) Rookie ADP: 25
Prior to the draft, I felt like someone was going to get a potential three-down running back late in the draft, and that running back was Gallman. He’s solid as a runner and even better as a receiver, which is where the Giants plan to use him right away. Everyone has their doubts on whether or not Paul Perkins can carry the workhorse role at just 5’10” and 196 pounds, leaving Gallman as the potential solution in a high-scoring offense.
James Connor (RB – PIT) Rookie ADP: 28
We all know what DeAngelo Williams did when Le’Veon Bell was injured and/or suspended, right? At 32 years of age, he finished as the No. 4 running back despite starting just 10 of the games. Not just that, but even Fitzgerald Toussaint finished with 159 total yards and a touchdown in two playoff games with Bell and Williams out. Connor is a tackle-breaking machine that’ll be playing behind an offensive line that is among the best in football. Not to mention the fact that Bell hasn’t been the picture of health to this point.
Aaron Jones (RB – GB) Rookie ADP: 46
It seems that the hype has already begun with Jones, as some even like him more than the Packers fourth-round selection Jamaal Williams. I’m not one of them, as they drafted Williams higher and weren’t guaranteed to get Jones about 50 picks later. With that being said, he was a very solid late round pick for a Packers team with minimal depth at running back. They are saying that Ty Montgomery remains the starter, but Williams and Jones will be knocking on the door before long. Getting him at the end of the third/beginning of the fourth is a no-brainer.
Elijah Hood (RB – OAK) Rookie ADP: 48
This is one of those late-round upside picks for your dynasty team. We all know the Raiders were looking at plenty of running backs in free agency, and ultimately landed on Marshawn Lynch. I’d like to remind you that Lynch was just away from football for a year and a half, and is 31 years old. Hood is the opposite of Jalen Richard and DeAndre Washington, and would likely replace Lynch on the goal-line if something were to happen to Lynch. He runs a little upright, but breaks tackles despite this. It’s possible Lynch can teach him a thing or two. He’s not a sure thing, but he landed in an ideal spot.
ArDarius Stewart (WR – NYJ) Rookie ADP: 31
His ADP is likely to slide even further after landing with the Jets. But consider this a discount on a flat-out baller who can play the wide receiver position. The Jets didn’t solidify their quarterback position, but Stewart was someone who didn’t have a good college quarterback, either. Once they get a quarterback in place, Stewart can be a fantasy starter. He’s a hard-nosed player who doesn’t take the easy road. If you’re approaching him in the open-field, he’s not going to run out of bounds. He reminds me of Steve Smith with the ball in his hands.
Kenny Golladay (WR – DET) Rookie ADP: 41
It’s rare that you’re able to find a wide receiver who’s likely to start in the fourth-round of rookie drafts, but that’s what’s happening with Golladay right now. The Lions were a team atop my list with wide receiver needs, as T.J. Jones projected to start going into the draft. That’s not likely something that the Lions want to happen. Golladay is a very tall wide receiver at 6’4” and if they decide to slide Golden Tate into the slot, Golladay can potentially start opposite Marvin Jones day one. With his size/speed combo (4.50 40-yard dash), Matthew Stafford can show off his arm strength down the field. While the Lions seemed to have taken him earlier than expected, it’s an easy rookie pick in the fourth-round.
Chad Williams (WR – ARI) Rookie ADP: 49
When the pick of Williams was made in the third-round, it was somewhat of a shock considering most expected him to be a Day 3 pick in between rounds 5-6. With that being said, Williams is in a unique situation. Not only is Michael Floyd gone, but Larry Fitzgerald is likely playing his last season, and then John Brown and Jaron Brown are free agents after this year. That leaves just J.J. Nelson as the only wide receiver who has seen significant playing time. Williams has one of the easiest paths into the starting lineup and he’ll also likely have a first-round quarterback throwing him the ball in 2018.
DeAngelo Yancey (WR – GB) Rookie ADP: 59
I’ll admit that I wasn’t too high on Yancey pre-draft, but regardless of what some tell you, landing spot does matter, especially for a wide receiver. Did you witness what happened to DeAndre Hopkins in 2016? Yancey will join a Packers team that never seems to avoid the injury bug at wide receiver, which is why Jeff Janis ever became a thing. It’s somewhat crazy that Malachi Dupre’s ADP is sitting at 38 with Yancey’s at 59, especially when you consider that the Packers took Yancey almost 75 picks earlier. Don’t get me wrong, I like both of them for their price, but Yancey’s is ridiculously low for a Packers wide receiver who was drafted in the fifth-round.
Jake Butt (TE – DEN) Rookie ADP: 33
You would’ve heard Butt’s name a lot earlier in the NFL Draft, had he not tore his ACL in the Orange Bowl. He would’ve likely went in the second round, but instead he fell down to the fifth-round, where the TE-needy Broncos snagged him. Tight ends rarely make an impact in year one, so don’t worry about his ACL injury. Butt is a player who could be the next Jason Witten, as he is pretty dang good at nearly everything.
Adam Shaheen (TE – CHI) Rookie ADP: 37
There were rumblings that Shaheen was working his way up draft boards and that he would likely go on Day 2. The Bears wasted no time, taking him as the No. 45 overall pick, as the fifth tight end off the board. Not only does he have a Rob Gronkowski-esque body, but his hands are extremely solid. Bears GM Ryan Pace has come forward saying that Shaheen will be a pass-catcher for them almost immediately. The fact that Trubisky comes to the team at the same time, these two should build plenty of rapport. He’s well worth his No. 37 price tag in rookie drafts, though that number is likely to move up.
Jonnu Smith (TE – TEN) Rookie ADP: 53
If there was one player Smith was being compared to in scouting reports, it was Delanie Walker. It just so happens that he was drafted by the Titans to learn from the soon-to-be 32-year-old Walker. The Titans are building their team around Marcus Mariota, and they spent three of their top four picks on players to do that, including Smith. His ADP of 53 overall is most definitely going to move up, but if you’re drafting now, he’s a great stash in the fourth or fifth-round.