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Fantasy Football Dynasty Rookie Mock Draft

May 23, 2018

It may be the case that Ridley is going underdrafted

Chances are, your rookie draft is right around the corner for your big dynasty league. Mine is this evening and I’ve compiled enough picks that it would make your head spin. This year’s class is oozing with talent so I wanted to get my hands on as much of it as possible. Today, I’ll run you through a four-round ten-team mock draft using rookies only for dynasty leagues. I used a random generator which gave me the 6th pick in the draft. With each round, I’ll provide commentary, plus ten additional players I’ll be targeting in even larger drafts.

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Round 1

1.01 Saquon Barkley (RB – NYG)
1.02 Sony Michel (RB – NE)
1.03 Derrius Guice (RB – WAS)
1.04 Rashaad Penny (RB – SEA)
1.05 Nick Chubb (RB – CLE)
1.06 Calvin Ridley (WR – ATL)
1.07 Ronald Jones (RB – TB)
1.08 DJ Moore (WR – CAR)
1.09 Royce Freeman (RB – DEN)
1.10 Courtland Sutton (WR – DEN)

I am without question alone here, but I’ve actually got Ridley as the #3 player on my rookie big board for dynasty leagues behind Saquon and Sony. Everyone seems to think this is suddenly a running back league because of the multitude of quarterback injuries last season. That couldn’t be further from the truth, however. Passing will continue to trend upward, especially with the new rule about running backs not being able to lead with their head. Plus, there is the fact that wide receivers have extra value in dynasty leagues because they are significantly more durable with longer shelf lives. Guice and Penny may get the lion’s share of carries this year and perhaps another season or two, but chances are, I’ll get 6+ solid years of usage out of Ridley while the Penny owner is searching for a replacement before long. Mohammed Sanu plays almost exclusively out of the slot, so you can bet on Ridley starting opposite of Julio Jones and getting plenty of one on one opportunities as a result. Let’s not forget that Matt Ryan just posted one of the greatest quarterback seasons of all-time two years ago and that he was Pro Football Focus’ #2 graded QB even in 2017. Ridley is extraordinarily polished for a rookie and should see more targets than DJ Moore.

Round 2

2.01 Kerryon Johnson (RB – DET)
2.02 Baker Mayfield (QB – CLE)
2.03 Lamar Jackson (QB – BAL)
2.04 Christian Kirk (WR – ARI)
2.05 Michael Gallup (WR – DAL)
2.06 James Washington (WR – PIT)
2.07 Anthony Miller (WR – CHI)
2.08 Josh Rosen (QB – ARI)
2.09 Kalen Ballage (RB – MIA)
2.10 Equanimeous St. Brown (WR – GB)

Picking between Gallup, Washington and Miller here was quite difficult. Frankly, I would have loved for Lamar to slip a few more picks, as I currently have him #10 on my big board behind Freeman. His running ability has received praise, but nowhere near enough. As far as I’m concerned, he is the single most underrated player in the class from a fantasy perspective and I’d take him in the top-five of a Superflex dynasty league. Ok, back to the wideouts. Washington was my highest graded WR of the trio prior to the draft, but he has to contend with Antonio Brown, Le’Veon Bell and Juju for targets. No thanks. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to have Washington, but not with Miller, who steps right into a starting job with Matt Nagy taking over in Chicago, or especially Gallup on the board. Gallup may not have been drafted until the third round, but he is a terrific talent and the best receiver on the Cowboys’ depth chart. Let’s not forget that Dak Prescott is actually good when he has a decent running back to hand the ball off to and an offensive line featuring a healthy Tyron Smith. Sign me up for his new number one target.

Round 3

3.01 Mike Gesicki (TE – MIA)
3.02 Dallas Goedert (TE – PHI)
3.03 DJ Chark (WR – JAX)
3.04 Sam Darnold (QB – NYJ)
3.05 Dante Pettis (WR – SF)
3.06 Mason Rudolph (QB – PIT)
3.07 Trequan Smith (WR – NO)
3.08 Mark Walton (RB – CIN)
3.09 Josh Allen (QB – BUF)
3.10 Hayden Hurst (TE – BAL)

If I had waited another round, chances are that I would be able to get Rudolph in the fourth, but there was no way I was taking that risk. I believe him to be a safer bet than Sam Darnold and especially concussion-prone Josh Rosen and accuracy-prone Josh Allen. Granted, the ceiling is nowhere near as high, but that’s what they said about Kirk Cousins too, right? The matter of the fact is that if this wasn’t the deepest quarterback class in a decade, Rudolph would have been in the conversation as a top 10 pick. In fact, I’d go as far as saying that had he been in last year’s draft class, the Bears may have been tempted to take Rudolph above even Mitch Trubisky. He checks every box with size, intangibles, stats, tape, experience, arm strength, durability, oh and he gets to throw to Brown, Bell, Juju and Washington in the near future. How can you not be excited enough about that to “reach” for Rudolph in the third round? I also considered Trequan, Callaway and the guy I ended up nabbing in the fourth.

Round 4

4.01 Antonio Callaway (WR – CLE)
4.02 Deon Cain (WR – IND)
4.03 Simmie Cobbs (WR – WAS)
4.04 Richie James (WR – SF)
4.05 J’mon Moore (WR – GB)
4.06 Josh Adams (RB – PHI)
4.07 Mark Andrews (TE – BAL)
4.08 Akrum Wadley (RB – TEN)
4.09 Keke Coutee (WR – TEX)
4.10 Deontay Burnett (WR – TEN)

Oh, baby! I can’t believe people are still taking Equanimeous St Brown higher than Moore, let alone two full rounds higher. The Packers passed on ESB for 84 more picks! In fact, they took a second wideout before giving in to ESB still being on the board. He might not even make the roster as it stands now. The one they loved, and that’s what is important here, is Moore. He does not stand out on film, but surely can be another competent wide receiver for the greatest quarterback of all-time. There is a chance he never amounts to anything, but there are significant question marks about everyone this late in dynasty drafts. I’m looking for the next Greg Jennings or Davante Adams that Aaron Rodgers can turn into a WR1. The chance may be slim for Moore to become that guy, but at least the chance is alive, unlike every other player drafted from pick 4.03 on.

On my radar after the fourth

I would have taken each one of these guys over a handful of players who went in the fourth round and even some in the third. Schultz may start as a rookie and has an oddly similar profile to the future Hall of Famer he is replacing. That isn’t to say Schultz is a future superstar or anywhere close to it, but he is the same mold of tight end. Hamilton may get more run than Courtland Sutton as a rookie and has a good deal of upside. Behind them, we are looking at another electric back in Hines, a Julian Edelman prototype in Berrios and perhaps Le’Veon’s future replacement in Samuels. Handcuffing a stud like Todd Gurley always makes sense in a deep league, so keep an eye on Kelly, plus Scott is stepping into the number two role to begin the season in New Orleans. If he can break a few big runs, his stock will soar. Finally, Ito Smith is immensely talented, but an injury away from playing time, Thomas is an athletic freak filling Jerick McKinnon‘s old role with the Vikings, and Akins is another rookie tight end who should get a crack at the starting job.

Thanks for reading and good luck in your drafts!

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