Kyle Yates’ Early 2021 Dynasty Big Board
With everything that is currently happening in the world, it feels like the 2020 NFL Draft was 10 months ago. However, it’s been only a mere 51 days since we saw players like Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa, and Chase Young land with NFL franchises.
If you’ve ever played Dynasty before, you know that it never stops. For those of us who can’t get enough of fantasy football, it’s the perfect format due to its year round involvement. With that in mind, it’s never too early to look forward to the incoming 2021 rookie class. These players will eventually become cornerstone pieces for your Dynasty roster, so there’s no time like the present to begin familiarizing yourself with the names and the talent that they possess.
Up to this point, I have watched 137 games of film on these players. At this stage of the process, the purpose of studying is to simply learn who they are as players on the field. If evaluating prospects can be thought of this way…this is the stage where we attempt to put players into the right cities. After the next CFB season, we’ll begin to place them into the right neighborhoods, and finally, place them into the right houses before the 2021 NFL Draft.
For many of these players, I’ve watched a minimum of two games. For others, I’ve watched around 5 or 6 games due to the potential that they could declare last season. I jot down extensive notes as I watch and then assign them a numerical grade based on 7 to 9 characteristics/traits dependent upon the position that they play. From there, I’ve sorted them into the overall Dynasty Big Board below to give you a sense of where these players land in conjunction with one another.
These rankings and grades will fluctuate immensely by the time next offseason rolls around. A lot of these players will see their situations change drastically and their play may rise or fall dependent upon those circumstances.
Below, you’ll find my 2021 Dynasty Big Board along with key takeaways that can help you get a sense of some trends I noticed during my tape evaluation process. This is shaping up to be a very talented class overall and I still have several players left to evaluate. If you feel like there is a player that I need to evaluate that is 2021 draft eligible, feel free to reach out on Twitter @KyleYNFL and notify me there!
There’s a two-way race for QB1
There’s a lot of buzz in NFL scouting media right now for Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields battling it out for QB1. However, based purely off of tape evaluation, I don’t believe that this is correct. There is a two-way race for QB1, but Fields is not in that group. Trey Lance has a legitimate chance to be drafted as the first QB off the board next April. While Lawrence is incredibly talented, and I really like his game, there are things that Lance does better at the QB position. Obviously, Lawrence has the experience and pedigree of winning a national championship, and Lance’s level of competition is not nearly the same in the FCS, but based purely off of tape…Lance is the better QB prospect right now.
2,786 Pass yards
1,100 Rush yards
42 Total TD
— ESPN (@espn) May 8, 2020
Fields is a fantastic college QB that helped Ohio State put up a dominant record in 2019, but he needs more refinement and playing time experience before he can be put in the same camp as Lawrence or Lance. He has a good arm, but not as strong as Lance or Lawrence, and he needs to work on his ability to read the whole field. This should come with more experience, but he needs to take significant steps forward in 2020 if he’s going to compete for QB1 in this class.
The WR class may be better at the top than the 2020 group.
Jerry Jeudy received a very high grade for me, but he’s already been dwarfed by Ja’Marr Chase from LSU. Chase has received the highest WR grade I’ve assigned in my couple of years of evaluating incoming prospects and he’s going to be a very special pro. Jaylen Waddle, Jeudy’s old teammate, is special in his own right and is absolutely electric with the ball in his hands. Rashod Bateman is a force to be reckoned with and is going to make a NFL team very happy. Additionally, Rondale Moore may be one of the most explosive receivers I’ve ever seen. He’s practically unstoppable out of the slot and is going to become a fantasy football superstar sooner rather than later, provided he can stay healthy this season. The list of talented players goes on and on and it may seriously compete with the 2020 class in terms of overall talent.
Can't Guard Him
Ja'Marr Chase is putting up the numbers to back it up 💪 pic.twitter.com/fMJfBknY59
— LSU Football (@LSUfootball) November 26, 2019
The RB1 in 2020 is not who you would expect.
There was a lot of buzz last year for guys like Najee Harris, Travis Etienne, and Chuba Hubbard potentially declaring for the NFL Draft. Instead, they all chose to stay another season and compete for the RB1 spot in the 2021 Draft. While I like these players for what they each individually bring to the table, I was shocked to see who graded out as my RB1 when it was all said and done…and it wasn’t very close.
Journey Brown is a name that not many people may recognize, but this kid is special. Penn State has cranked out some very talented RB prospects in recent years with Saquon Barkley and Miles Sanders and Brown has the potential to rise up national draft boards by next April. While Harris is my RB2, and he could certainly cement his standing as consensus RB1 with another great season at Alabama, he lacks the explosiveness that Brown brings to the table. Hubbard and Etienne are both electric playmakers in their own right, but they may be best suited as change-of-pace backs in the NFL. They lack solid change of direction ability that may force them to be elite “spark plugs” for an offense and a compliment to a bruising back. However, if they can improve in that area, they have the traits to skyrocket up my draft board by the 2021 Draft.
JOURNEY BROWN BEAST MODEpic.twitter.com/jqLMPIepcQ
— Barstool Penn State (@PSUBarstool) December 28, 2019
The 2021 TE class may be better than the 2019 group.
While I have several other names left to scout at the position, this class is shaping up to be something special. Players like Jeremy Ruckert, Charlie Kolar, and Matt Bushman can certainly rise up draft boards by next year, but it’s hard to see them catching the three guys at the top. Pat Freiermuth is a special tight end prospect that has the size to stay in and block, but has the movability of a player 40 pounds lighter. He has fantastic hands, great speed for his size, and is a handful to bring down after the catch. Kyle Pitts is a perfect move tight end for today’s game and is a fluid runner out in space. Brevin Jordan shows flashes of his potential as well, but I need to see more on tape before I put him above the aforementioned two guys. If you’re in need of youth at the TE position on your Dynasty roster, you’re in luck. This is shaping up to be a great position group.
Penn State's Pat Freiermuth is a bully, probably best to just get out of his way.pic.twitter.com/q8KdQYcwNa
— Austin Gayle (@PFF_AustinGayle) June 4, 2020
2021 Dynasty Big Board