Fantasy Football Mock Draft: How to Handle the No. 10 Pick (2020)
Earlier this month, I took a closer look at how to handle picking first, second or third in a 12-team, standard league snake draft. Now, it’s time to examine what to expect when picking at the tail-end in the draft order.
I used the FantasyPros Draft Wizard to conduct a mock draft that will help you navigate the 10th pick in your league. For simplicity, this league starts one quarterback, two running backs, two receivers, a tight end, a flex, a defense and a kicker. Here’s how the draft turned out:
My assumption is that the top six running backs (McCaffrey, Barkley, Elliott, Kamara, Cook and Henry), plus Michael Thomas and Davante Adams will likely be off the board by the 10th pick. So, my goal in the first round in a standard league is to land either Chubb or Joe Mixon.
Mixon went one spot ahead of me, but I’m very happy to end up with Chubb. There’s really nothing wrong with him. He’s an immensely talented runner who can catch passes on occasion and will benefit greatly from what should be a run-heavy scheme under first-year head coach Kevin Stefanski.
Sure, Kareem Hunt will figure into the equation, but Chubb will still get the majority of the touches. And let’s not forget that Minnesota ran the ball 476 times last season with Stefanski calling the plays, the fourth-highest attemps in the NFL. There should be plenty of touches to go around to ensure Chubb remains a top-1o tailback.
Round 2 presented me with an interesting decision, as Golladay and Chris Godwin were still on the board. While 41% of our experts recommended Godwin, compared to only 33% in favor of Golladay, I chose the Lions receiver because he’s the clear No. 1 receiver on his team.
Both guys are studs, but I view Godwin and Mike Evans as the 1A and 1B in Tampa Bay. And while Tom Brady is an enormous upgrade over Jameis Winston, I worry that Brady’s presence along with an improved defense will result in a more controlled game script featuring fewer pass attempts.
Meanwhile, Marvin Jones is very clearly the second fiddle in the Lions offense. Plus, I love Golladay’s ability as a deep-ball and red-zone threat. Some might say his ceiling isn’t as high, but keep in mind that Golladay only finished seven fantasy points behind Godwin in standard leagues last year.
While I was originally hoping to land my RB2 in this round, the group of guys available was just too gross. Leonard Fournette is way too volatile and untrustworthy. Melvin Gordon is running behind what remains a terrible offensive line in Denver and has Philip Lindsay to worry about. I don’t like James Conner from a talent perspective and all, and can’t justify a third-round pick on Jonathan Taylor no matter how high his upside is.
So, I turned to receivers, where the available options were much more appealing. A.J. Brown was the top receiver on the board, according to our Expert Consensus Rankings. However, I’m not nearly as high on Brown as many are. His explosive playmaking ability is real, but I don’t buy the Ryan Tannehill renaissance.
The decision then came down to Allen Robinson and Moore. I like both receivers a lot, but decided to target a player with some more upside in Moore, who should be a perfect schematic fit in Joe Brady’s new offense. He also should mesh perfectly with new quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who is more of a short field thrower. Moore is explosive enough to break big plays from anywhere.
The pick: Jonathan Taylor (RB – IND)
The decision to wait at running back paid off. I’m more comfortable with the idea of taking Taylor in early Round 4 than in late Round 3. Taylor is one of the most productive collegiate runners of all time and he’ll run behind one of the best offensive lines in the NFL.
But here’s the problem: Marlon Mack is still in town. Taylor is most likely the tailback of the future, but the future might take awhile, especially with this shortened virtual offseason.
Part of me thinks it’ll only be a matter of time before Taylor’s talent forces him on the field. But I’d be ignorant to assume he’ll be a real RB2 right away.
I’ve already got one rookie running back starting his career in a timeshare, so why not make it two? There were a ton of options to choose from in Round 5. I could’ve opted for Cam Akers, another rookie with perhaps a less muddled path to starting duties. Kareem Hunt was also still available to handcuff with Chubb. And at receiver, Stefon Diggs was still available to add as my explosive WR3/flex.
However, I chose Swift because I thought he was the most talented back available, aside from Hunt. And in a standard league, I want to accrue as many good running backs as possible. Swift has three-down ability and might have the least resistance to starting duties among his fellow draftees. Kerryon Johnson had his chance and unfortunately couldn’t stay healthy long enough to take advantage of it. Don’t be surprised if Swift is the first rookie running back to assume his team’s starting duties.
Akers and Hunt were still on the board and certainly tempted me. But I wanted to add another high upside receiver and found just the guy in Brown. The second-year receiver showed off his big play ability throughout his rookie season. Now he has to string together a consistent campaign. Better health and a more nuanced route tree will certainly help. He’s a high-upside WR3 with WR2 potential.
The pick: Kareem Hunt (RB – CLE)
After passing on Hunt during the last two rounds, I’m thrilled to get him here in Round 7 as a high-upside handcuff to Chubb. As I outlined in my blurb about Chubb, there should be enough carries to go around for both guys. If Hunt gets some snaps at wide receiver, then I could end up starting both of them some weeks. The worst-case scenario is I get injury insurance for my first-round pick.
The pick: Marlon Mack (RB – IND)
It’s handcuff heaven on this team. Mack was the handcuff I planned on taking all along, as there’s a legitimate chance he starts for at least the first half of the season. People forget Mack finished as the RB17 in standard leagues last year. If Taylor wasn’t on the depth chart, he’d probably be one of the first 15 running backs off the board.
Mack covers me at RB2 until Taylor takes over. And in the event that Taylor can’t put it together during his rookie season, then at least I can probably bank on Mack being a top-20 running back again.
Did I plan on six of my eight picks being Browns, Lions and Colts? Absolutely not. But sometimes in fantasy football you have to adapt based on how the draft is going.
I’ve already got two of the top running backs in the 2020 draft class and now I’ve got arguably the best receiver in the class. Lamb is an impressive talent who somehow fell to the Cowboys in the middle of Round 1. He could start his career in the slot alongside Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup and likely won’t match up against many top cornerbacks during his rookie season.
Lamb has the skillset to feast in the slot if he gets enough targets. The good news is the Cowboys could pass more under new head coach Mike McCarthy. I’ll gladly take the shot on him as my WR4.
I’m a proponent of waiting on a quarterback, especially in leagues where you only start one. My wait is over in Round 10. Wentz is the only quarterback left on the board who has top-12 safety and top-five upside.
Mainstays such as Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert and DeSean Jackson should give Wentz enough to work with as rookie Jalen Reagor gets up to speed. Wentz has shown MVP-caliber talent before, and he still finished as the QB9 last season with a depleted supporting cast.
What’s not to like, especially at this price?
We’re at the point in the draft where every pick is essentially a lottery ticket and Edmonds is one of my favorites. Remember when he carved up the Giants to the tune of 126 rushing yards and three touchdowns? Sure, the Giants had a pretty lousy defense, but I’m not sold on the notion that his performance was a fluke.
This pick is also a fade of Kenyan Drake, who’s been a wildly inconsistent player throughout his career. The fact that the Cardinals are only committed to him for one year after his outburst to end the 2019 season tells you everything you need to know. There’s a chance that Drake, not Edmonds, is the fluke.
Arizona’s offense could be the breakout unit of 2020, which means I’m willing to take a flier on a backup who has starting upside if Drake doesn’t perform.
If you look up the term “post-hype sleeper,” in the dictionary, you might find a picture of N’Keal Harry. The 2019 first-round pick has almost become an afterthought after a discouraging rookie campaign. But here’s the thing: lots of receivers struggle as rookies. It’s one of the hardest positions to make the transition from college to the pros.
I admit that before Cam Newton signed with the Patriots, I wasn’t interested in Harry either. But now I’m intrigued. To get a second-year receiver with first-round talent as my WR5 is the definition of the low-risk, high-reward play that fantasy champions are built upon.
You might think my team is already doomed because I have three Lions on it, but I’m sticking to my guns and taking Hockenson, who has the potential to be the next stud tight end. With Matthew Stafford back under center, Detroit’s passing game is being undervalued. Hockenson has top-10 potential with more polish and better health.
There might not be a rookie receiver with more opportunity for a large target share than Mims. The Baylor product is a heck of an athlete with the widest catch radius in the draft. And unlike some of his rookie counterparts, Mims joins a Jets roster that has, well, nobody at receiver.
Okay, that’s maybe an exaggeration. The Jets have career slot guy Jamison Crowder and took a flyer on Breshad Perriman after he broke out at the end of last season with Tampa Bay. Otherwise, Mims has a pretty easy path to being one of Sam Darnold‘s top weapons. If he can cut down on the drops that plagued him in college, he could develop a rapport quickly with Darnold.
Rounds 15 and 16
The picks: Minnesota Vikings D/ST and Will Lutz (K – NO)
Mike Zimmer always puts up a good enough fantasy defense, and Lutz kicks for one of the highest scoring offenses in the league. You can do much worse than this combo at D/ST and kicker.
Final Draft Grade
The Draft Wizard wasn’t too fond of my youth movement roster, giving me a “B-,” grade and an 81-out-of-100. The Draft Wizard said I had the best bench in the league, so my handcuff strategy certainly didn’t backfire. I ranked fourth at receiver, but only seventh at running back, which was surprising.
The youthful approach I took clearly led to a high-risk, high-upside roster. If the majority of my rookies pan out, I’ll be likely headed to the playoffs. If they struggle, I could be a bottom-feeder.
What do you think of the roster I assembled with the 10th pick? Let me know on Twitter @RealMattBarbato!
Full Draft Board
How do you think I did picking 11th? Let me know on Twitter @RealMattBarbato.
- Fantasy Football Mock Draft: How to Handle the No. 1 Overall Pick
- Fantasy Football Mock Draft: How to Handle the No. 2 Overall Pick
- Fantasy Football Mock Draft: How to Handle the No. 3 Overall Pick
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