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5 Players Overvalued by ECR (2019 Fantasy Football)

May 10, 2019

Mahomes won’t come cheap in 2019.

Now that the NFL Draft has passed, we’re going to take a closer look at a few players that our writers feel are overvalued and undervalued. We’ll kick it off this week with players that appear to be going a bit earlier than they should.

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Which player is most overvalued based on Expert Consensus Rankings?

Le’Veon Bell (RB – NYJ)
“I’m a gambling man who often views the juice as worth the squeeze, but even I’m hesitant to draft Bell at his current ADP within the top 10. When you’re selecting a running back in that range, there’s an implication that he could finish as a top-three option at the position. Are we sure Bell’s ceiling is that high? Pittsburgh’s offense finished sixth in points per game and fourth in yards per game last year while the Jets ranked in the bottom third in both categories. It’s an obvious talent downgrade, especially along the offensive line. One might think increased volume could make up for the slide in offensive efficency and supporting cast, but there’s not a lot of evidence to suggest new head coach Adam Gase globs onto bell cow ball-carriers (Kenyan Drake owners can attest to that). Just once in his head-coaching tenure has one of his running backs topped 250 carries in a season. In terms of PPR value, there’s even more reason to be concerned. Only one Gase-led offense has ever ranked in the top-20 in running back receptions and that came all the way back in 2013 with Peyton Manning under center. As impressive as Sam Darnold looked down the stretch, it’s hard to envision a scenario where this offense supports a 100-plus target season. Bell turned 27 this offeseason and has been out of football for a year. Throw in the reported weight concerns and, well, I’m more comfortable with him as a low-end RB1. That doesn’t make him the single-most overvalued player, but it does bake in some risk at his current price.”
– Brandon Katz (@great_katzby)

Patrick Mahomes (QB – KC)
“I think there is a tendency to think that when a player looks unstoppable one year, that every season will showcase that player as an unstoppable fantasy force. The reason we remember Dan Marino in 1984, Peyton Manning in 2004 and 2013, Tom Brady in 2007 and Aaron Rodgers in 2011 is that every year of their career was not that special. They were consistently among the best at their position, but those years stand out as being much better than the rest. Even if Mahomes had all his players back in 2019, it would be hard for him to throw for 5,000 yards and 50 touchdown passes in back-to-back years. Furthermore, the reason Kansas City was such an attractive situation for him in 2018 was they were loaded with some of the most explosive skill position talent in the league. That is going to change this year. RB Kareem Hunt was released from the team late in the 2018 season. WR Tyreek Hill is likley facing a suspension and he could be released from the team later this offseason. WR Sammy Watkins is their top returning wide receiver and he has had numerous injury issues in past seasons. It is very possible that Watkins misses time with an injury this year and TE Travis Kelce will be the top target in the offense, followed by rookie WR Mecole Hardman. Yet Mahomes is still the top-ranked fantasy quarterback with an ADP of 33 and he is 11 spots ahead of the next quarterback, Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck. I am a believer that elite fantasy quarterbacks are overvalued in fantasy football and picking a player to have a repeat monster season with that much offseason drama is a risky proposition. Mahomes is still one of the most talented quarterbacks in the NFL and he should put up some big numbers in 2019. I think it is risky to ignore the importance that Hill and Hunt had on his breakout season and to just assume Mahomes will have a monster 2019 season without both of them. I have Andrew Luck as the top-ranked fantasy quarterback in 2019 and there is no way that I would use the 33rd pick in a fantasy football draft on Mahomes. His current ranking does not relect that it is hard to post back-to-back historic seasons and that there has been a lot of changes to the skill position players in Kansas City from 2018 to 2019.”
– Derek Lofland (@DerekLofland)

Todd Gurley (RB – LAR)
“This may be low-hanging fruit to choose Gurley, as we have most likely all heard about the rumor that he is suffering from arthritis in his knee (apparently the one he injured in college). To win whatever league you’re in you typically have to hit on some sleepers late, but you also usually can’t survive blowing your first-round pick. The fact the Rams moved up to draft the explosive Darrell Henderson is a tell, as the Rams certainly had other positions they needed to address. Another eye opener is the limited use (16 touches combined) he received in the NFC Championship Game and Super Bowl. To draft Gurley at the eight spot last year would be unthinkable and that may turn out to be the shrewd move to put you over the top, but I think his best scenario going forward will be as part of a productive tandem with Henderson. Nobody on a pitch count should be taken eighth overall so I’m looking elsewhere if he’s available in my drafts. He may still produce some monster games for you and then disappear the following week, which is not what you’re looking for in a top-eight pick.”
– Sheldon Curtis  (@sheldon_curtis)

James Conner (RB – PIT)
“2018 proved to be the coming out party for Pittsburgh Steelers running back James Conner, as the Pitt product finished with nearly 1,000 yards and 12 touchdowns on the season. Solely based off his 2018 performance, your average fan will look to Conner for major production heading into 2019. However, the Steelers don’t appear too eager to shovel more carries on Conner’s plate. Pittsburgh was very clear on addressing the running back position through the draft, and the arrival of Kentucky RB Benny Snell signals the Steelers are serious about spreading the love around in the backfield. Cause for concern for Conner? The Steelers days of giving 400+ touches to one running back are in the past. Mix the expected loss of touches with his injury history (MCL surgery in 2017, lower leg contusion in 2018) and you have reason for concern JC won’t produce at similar levels. Conner is an extremely talented back with his best days ahead of him, and the Steelers intend on keeping him as healthy as possible by being proactive about his touches, a red flag for fantasy players everywhere.”
– Donnie Druin (@DonnieDruin)

Damien Williams (RB – KC)
“Williams is the most overrated player at this point of the offseason. Williams has had only five games with over 11 carries in his entire career, and was unable to beat out Kenyan Drake in Miami. The Chiefs saw fit to bring in additional competition in the form of the starter-ready Carlos Hyde, pocket rocket Darwin Thompson in the draft, and receiving specialist extraordinaire James Williams as an undrafted free agent. He will be facing competition from three superior talents at running back, including Hyde who has seen 170 carries in three consecutive seasons. Williams is a player I will be actively avoiding in all formats.”
– Raju Byfield (@FantasyContext)

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