Half-PPR Mock Draft (Fantasy Football)
With the start of the NFL season mere days away and the final week of fantasy drafts upon us, it’s time to tackle a penultimate mock draft. Or another one, if you tagged along for the standard mock earlier this week. The useful part of preseason football has passed, illuminating a number of formerly cloudy fantasy dilemmas. And a slew of big injuries and suspensions over the past month have tossed ADPs around like a rag doll.
For this exercise, we will be drafting from the second spot in a 12-team league, with standard rosters and 0.5 PPR scoring, 14 rounds to the finish. Special thanks to the FantasyPros Draft Simulator within the Draft Wizard client – it’s an incredible tool that enables massive customization in preparing your mocks.
Note, ADPs are per FantasyPros Consensus ADP for non-PPR formats, so half-PPR ADPs would vary slightly.
1.02 Le’Veon Bell (RB – PIT) (ADP 2, RB2)
Some have suggested taking Antonio Brown with the second overall pick in light of Le’Veon Bell’s “contract concerns.” Don’t get cute. Bell has stated he will report to the team on Friday, September 1st, and if last year was any indication, he won’t need time to ramp up to full fantasy speed. If it was full PPR, we may have hesitated a second longer with AB on the board, but Bell was the clear pick in half-PPR and even gains an additional boost in this format over other top running backs.
2.11 Doug Baldwin (WR – SEA) (ADP 28, WR12)
With an elite RB already locked in and a guarantee we’d have options after the turn, this was a clear choice between Doug Baldwin and Amari Cooper. While we couldn’t have gone wrong with either pick, the elite play we’ve seen from Russell Wilson and Baldwin throughout the preseason, combined with the heavier competition in Oakland, tipped the scales toward the Seattle WR. Baldwin also had 12 more catches than Cooper in 2016, which added a spritz of fuel to the fire in half-PPR.
3.02 Isaiah Crowell (RB – CLE) (ADP 30, WR14)
We could have easily snagged another receiver here in Round 3 (Demaryius Thomas, Keenan Allen), but knowing we wouldn’t get another shot for 20 picks compelled us to take an RB before they all vanished. Christian McCaffrey and Dalvin Cook were both enticing, but the Cleveland offense seems to be on the rise and we wanted on board. Head Coach Hue Jackson has stated an emphatic desire to run the ball, DeShone Kizer’s mobility could open up defenses, and the offensive line is stellar. The Crow will make for a high-floor RB2.
4.11 Drew Brees (QB – NO) (ADP 40, QB3)
Really, we wanted Stefon Diggs or Kelvin Benjamin at this spot. But with our next pick merely three spots away, we were confident at least one would be on the board after the turn. This empowered us to take the third, and last, of the truly elite fantasy quarterbacks. Brees is one of the most consistently dominant players in the NFL and in fantasy and gives us a weekly advantage over almost every opponent. His ADP is also a few spots earlier, which helps justify our early-QB pick with a dash of value.
5.02 Stefon Diggs (WR – MIN) (ADP 66, WR27)
While common opinion would have had us go for Jarvis Landry, Golden Tate, Larry Fitzgerald and others, Diggs has the highest upside in this range heading into 2017. He missed three games and played less than 100 percent for most of last year with a groin issue but still set a 103-reception full-season pace. Reports out of Minnesota suggest that Diggs may play more from the perimeter, which means the Vikings are looking to feature him as a true WR1 rather than just a slot weapon.
6.11 DeVante Parker (WR – MIA) (ADP 89, WR34)
With a pair of safe, ball-hog receivers in our WR1 and WR2 slots, we decided to take a shot on DeVante Parker as our WR3. Parker is one of the highest risers in fantasy football this preseason and it’s all because of Jay Cutler. The gunslinger was signed as Miami’s starter after the loss of Ryan Tannehill and has taken an immediate and emphatic liking to Parker. With several huge plays through the preseason, this pairing may finally enable Parker to produce the breakout season we’ve expected from him for years.
7.02 Zach Ertz (TE – PHI) (ADP 91, TE10)
Ertz is the ideal tight end in half-PPR or PPR-leagues, especially after the top five evaded our grasp. He has shown target-monster upside in recent years and in the preseason and will likely have the most catches in Philadelphia behind Alshon Jeffery. If he can add a healthy handful of touchdowns to his stat line, Ertz is easily capable of outperforming his ADP and will be a reliable starter at the position for our squad.
8.11 Rob Kelley (RB – WAS) (ADP 84, RB32)
In need of a third running back, and with options beginning to run thin, we took one of the few surefire starters left on the board, Rob Kelley. Kelley easily won the starting job in Washington ahead of rookie Samaje Perine, largely thanks to performances like his 57 yards and a TD on 10 carries in the third preseason game. Kelley plays on a productive offense and should get 15-plus touches per game, which was more than could be said of the remaining options at RB, including Adrian Peterson and Paul Perkins.
9.02 John Brown (WR – ARI) (ADP 122, WR44)
John Brown has one of the lower floors of any receiver going in this 8th-10th round range due to his health concerns over the past year. However, he easily has the highest ceiling. Incredible, explosive talent combine with a dynamic and successful offense, a strong quarterback in Carson Palmer, and a No. 1 WR that plays a completely different role (Larry Fitzgerald) to give Brown WR2 upside. He’s shown it before, with a WR21 finish in 2015, and even flashed it this past week with a two-touchdown preseason game featuring some excellent receiving work. Coming off our bench, Brown could become a regular starter or tantalizing trade-bait if he stays healthy.
10.11 Terrance West (RB – BAL) (ADP 98, RB36)
Sometimes, value cannot be ignored no matter how unexciting a player may be. In this case, Terrance West – commonly picked in the eighth or ninth round – fell to the back of the 10th and we had to take him. He offers excellent, reliable RB depth as a clear-cut lead back and has flashed some ability in the preseason. More than anything, this pick is about opportunity, as West is guaranteed to out-touch the guys in this range – like Darren McFadden, Jeremy Hill, and Jacquizz Rodgers – over the course of the season.
11.02 Cole Beasley (WR – DAL) (ADP 153, WR53)
With the volatile John Brown as our current WR4, we needed some insurance at the position before the draft concluded. Cole Beasley is basically the definition of insurance in half-PPR or PPR leagues, as he will be a consistent safety valve for Dak Prescott and snag upwards of 75 catches. Beasley was actually a borderline WR3 in 0.5 PPR leagues last year and will be an excellent fill-in for our team when needed.
12.11 Josh Doctson (WR – WAS) (ADP 199, WR65)
Going safety-first with Cole Beasley before the turn also allowed us to shoot for the moon after the turn. Josh Doctson, like John Brown in Round 9, has a basement-level floor due to injury concerns. But the quasi-rookie (spent his first season on IR) is a first-round NFL talent on a roster full of unproven WRs. If he gets healthy and steps into the role the Redskins drafted him to fill, Doctson could be a touchdown-machine sleeper pick with surprisingly high upside.
13.02 Justin Tucker (K – D/ST) (ADP 108, K2)
Yet again, we were able to grab the best kicker in football with the second-to-last pick of the draft. The Vikings, Cardinals, and Patriots D/STs all looked enticing, but all three start the season with relatively tough schedules. D/ST streams, here we come.
14.11 Los Angeles Rams D/ST (ADP 180, DST11)
The Rams have a strong defense on paper and open the year against the Andrew Luckless Colts. Scott Tolzien will be a mess up against this talented group and hand us an excellent start in Week 1.
Thanks for reading and check out the full draft results using the link below!