2017 Most Accurate Fantasy Football Draft Rankings
Fantasy football season is about to quickly kick into full gear, and there is no better way to begin than to dive head first into draft prep. When you are ready, we are offering tools, as always, that will help you get that championship in your fantasy leagues. One of our top priorities is to do the brunt of the work for you so that all you have to do is to enjoy the fantasy football season while it’s here. A key tool to help is our annual expert accuracy assessment. With drafts beginning to get underway in just a few weeks, it’s time for us to release the standings 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:
- We analyzed 2017 preseason player rankings from 130 experts and took the results from QB, RB, WR and TE to give the experts an Overall rating.
- If you remember the PAY %s from a few years back, we have since updated to a new methodology that we feel is more flexible and has increased transparency. You can read more info about the reasons for the change in our FAQ.
Without further ado, below are the experts with the best draft rankings.
Top 10 Draft Experts in 2017
- Congratulations to Jake Ciely of RotoExperts for winning our 2017 draft accuracy competition! Jake has consistently finished in the top tier of experts in both our NFL and MLB accuracy competitions. In fact, just last season, he placed 6th out of 145 experts and he has never finished outside of the top quadrant in this competition. In our weekly rankings contest, he has finished top five three times while over in baseball, Jake has two first-place finishes to his name for draft rankings accuracy.
- Jake was able to accomplish this year’s top spot by placing in the top 25 experts at ranking quarterbacks, running backs and tight ends. He placed number one at assessing running backs, thanks in part to being far ahead of the industry on Alvin Kamara RB55 (+8 vs ECR). Additionally, his insight on Dion Lewis RB56 (+25 vs. ECR), Jerrick McKinnon RB71 (+12 vs ECR), Chris Thompson RB50 (+11 vs ECR) and Jamaal Williams RB36 (+14 vs ECR) all went a long way in helping him rise to the top. Among his many other great takes, Jake’s best may have been his rankings of Derek Carr QB16 (-5 vs ECR) and Marvin Jones WR41 (+10 vs ECR).
- Joseph Dolan of Fantasy Guru managed to hold to his multi-year lead as the most accurate draft rankings expert. Dolan finished second last season, first the year before and placed in the top 20 yet again in 2017. Joseph remarkably placed in the top 15 at ranking running backs, wide receivers and tight ends last year. Like Jake, even prior to switching methodology, Joseph was a force to be reckoned with, finishing in the top 5 out of over 100 experts. This year, his most impressive rankings were on Alvin Kamara RB39 (+24 vs ECR), T.Y. Hilton WR21 (-9 vs. ECR) and Marquise Goodwin WR62 +24 vs ECR). Well done once again, Joseph!
- Some familiar names made appearances back near in the top 25 most accurate experts this season. Sean Koerner of The Action Network, who is the three-time defending champion of our in-season accuracy contest, finished fourth in 2017’s draft accuracy. He and Jason Longfellow of Razzball, were the only experts outside of Ceily who finished in the top ten back to back seasons. Likewise, long-time top performers, Pat Fitzmaurice (The Football Girl), Justin Boone (theScore), Jeff Ratcliffe (Pro Football Focus), Scott Pianowski (Yahoo! Sports) and John Paulsen (4for4.com) all kept up their success with top 35 finishes yet again. Pianowski finished first at ranking wide receivers.
- If you want, you can see the full three-year expert accuracy results using the new metrics. We also still list 2010-2014 multi-year rankings.
As always, there were more plenty of players who produced substantially above what most expected from them last season. The difference between adding one or two of these players to your roster or letting your opponent scoop them up is likely what determined your league’s champion. 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). ECR (Expert Consensus Rank) info is included in the table below to show just how far out on a limb each expert went with their ranking.
|Player||Pos||Top Expert(s)||Expert Rank*||ECR*|
|Alex Smith||QB||Rudy Gamble (Razzball)||13||25|
|Carson Wentz||QB||Walter Cherepinsky (Walter Football)||10||20|
|Jared Goff||QB||Jamey Eisenberg (CBS Sports)
Matthew Hill (Data Force Fantasy Football)
Emil Kadlec (Football Diehards)
|Todd Gurley||RB||Walter Cherepinsky (Walter Football)||4||9|
|Kareem Hunt||RB||Doug Orth (FFToday)||7||15|
|Alvin Kamara||RB||Joseph Dolan (Fantasy Guru)
|Dion Lewis||RB||Seth Klein (The Fantasy Fix)||41||71|
|DeAndre Hopkins||WR||Smitty (SleeperU)||7||13|
|Tyreek Hill||WR||Rudy Gamble (Razzball)||3||23|
|Keenan Allen||WR||Walter Cherepinsky (Walter Football)
Craig Phillips (FF Prophet)
|Marvin Jones||WR||Muntradamus (Beast Dome)||31||51|
|Adam Thielen||WR||Andy Holloway (The Fantasy Footballers)||29||43|
|Evan Engram||TE||Jason Willian (Gridiron Experts)||10||22|
|Jason Witten||TE||Dominic Petrillo (Fantasy Hot Read)||8||17|
*Ranks & ECR are at the positional level.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, here are the players whose performance obliterated a fantasy team’s chance of winning. Listed below are the experts that went against popular opinion with their rankings and wisely encouraged fantasy owners to stay away. Note that some players are not listed if their seasons were completely derailed by unforeseen injury circumstances. Give yourself a pat on the back if you somehow managed to avoid everyone on this list!
|Player||Pos||Top Expert(s)||Expert Rank*||ECR*|
|Matt Ryan||QB||Anthony Amico (RotoViz)||15||5|
|Marcus Mariota||QB||Dominic Petrillo (Fantasy Hot Read)
Rudy Gamble (Razzball)
|Derek Carr||QB||Anthony Amico (RotoViz)
Dominic Petrillo (Fantasy Hot Read)
|Jay Ajayi||RB||Chris Heil (Fantasy Sports Rants)||16||6|
|DeMarco Murray||RB||Rudy Gamble (Razzball)||15||7|
|Isaiah Crowell||RB||Smitty (SleeperU)||23||12|
|Joe Mixon||RB||Rudy Gamble (Razzball)||32||20|
|Jordy Nelson||WR||Smitty (SleeperU)
Muntradamus (Beast Dome)
|Dez Bryant||WR||Brad Evans (Yahoo! Sports)
Kyle Holden (Dynasty League Football)
|Amari Cooper||WR||Dominic Petrillo (Fantasy Hot Read)||19||9|
|Terrelle Pryor||WR||Matt Schauf (Draft Sharks)||35||15|
|Martavis Bryant||WR||Rudy Gamble (Razzball)||32||21|
|Martellus Bennett||TE||Anthony Cervino (Gridiron Experts)||18||11|
|Coby Fleener||TE||John Halpin (RotoWire)||28||14|
*Ranks & ECR are at the positional level
That wraps up our analysis of Draft Accuracy from 2017. Congrats yet again to Jake Ceily of RotoExperts for his continued success in our contest and another first-place finish. To view the entire standings, including breakouts by position and IDP, please check out the accuracy section of our site.