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Andrew Erickson’s Top Middle-Round Draft Picks (2022 Fantasy Football)

The 2022 NFL season is approaching, which means it’s time to prepare for your fantasy football draft. Of course, there’s no better way to do that than to practice drafting with our free mock draft simulator! Beyond our tools, we will have you covered throughout the draft prep season with our content.

The goal of every fantasy football manager is to complete the perfect draft. Impossible, you say? Let’s call it a stretch goal and strive for fantasy football glory. Here’s Andrew Erickson’s perfect 2022 fantasy football draft.

And for those looking for even more in-depth analysis, check out Erickson’s full round-by-round draft strategy along with his preferred draft slot breakdown.

Beyond our fantasy football content, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you prepare for your draft this season. From our free mock Draft Simulator – which allows you to mock draft against realistic opponents – to our Draft Assistant – that optimizes your picks with expert advice – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football draft season.


Fantasy Football Redraft Draft Kit

Andrew Erickson’s Top Middle-Round Draft Picks

Round 6 Targets

  • Jalen Hurts (QB – PHI): Hurts has been a top-12 fantasy quarterback at an 85% hit rate in the 20 games he’s played in all four quarters.
  • Amon-Ra St. Brown (WR – DET): St. Brown finished the 2021 season on absolute fire as the WR3 in PPR from Weeks 13-18. But the blazing conclusion was fueled by injuries to both D’Andre Swift and T.J. Hockenson. Because before their injuries, ASB was an essential non-factor outside a stretch from Weeks 4-6, where he commanded a 22% target share despite playing fewer snaps than Kalif Raymond. Meanwhile, Hockenson was the target leader for the offense until his injury. There’s definitely some hesitance on fully buying St. Brown’s rookie breakout, but the fact that it happened at all can’t be totally ignored. Luckily the concern is baked-in to his WR ADP, which is outside the top 24. And even if ASB doesn’t replicate his earth-shattering fantasy numbers from a season ago, he likely offers a pretty solid WR3 floor with the proven upside for more. In 47% of his games, he finished as a fantasy WR3 in 2021. And it’s all gravy after that should he roll over even 80% of his second-half production, or should injuries hit the Lions’ receiving corps. Keep in mind that from Week 4 onward, St. Brown was PFF’s 6th-highest graded receiver (84.7) and fourth-highest graded among WRs with at least 100 targets. He’s a good/efficient player, and that should translate to fantasy success in Year 2.

Round 7 Targets

  • Elijah Moore (WR – NYJ): Elijah Moore remains one of my favorite WRs to target outside the top 30 because the talent is so intoxicating. The Jets’ slot receiver was the WR2 overall during his last stretch of six games played, despite catching passes from a hodgepodge quarterback carousel of Mike White, Zach Wilson and Josh Johnson. His 16.1 fantasy points per game would have ranked fifth had he continued the production for the remainder of the season.
  • Gabriel Davis (WR- BUF): Buy the Gabriel Davis breakout. Even after running 200 fewer routes than Sanders and Beasley, Davis had the second-highest WR3 finish rate on the Bills. Beasley and Sanders also combined for more top-12 finishes than Stefon Diggs last season, which just showcases the weekly fantasy ceiling within reach for Davis. Don’t forget that the Bills wideout averaged 19.8 fantasy PPR points per game in his last six games as a full-time player. And while playing on a limited snap share, Davis ranks top five in the NFL in total end-zone targets. From Week 10 onward, Davis ranked 4th in PFF receiving grade, 11th in yards per route run, and WR25 in total fantasy points/per-game basis. A starting role should increase his floor, while his fantasy ceiling remains sky-high in a high-powered offense.

Round 8 Targets

  • Kareem Hunt (RB – CLE): Last year Hunt was limited to just eight games due to a calf injury — but he maintained his effectiveness when healthy through the first six weeks of the season. He was a top-10 running back in PPR, averaging 17 fantasy points per game and just south of 15 touches per game. His sixth-ranked yards after contact per attempt (3.54), sixth-ranked yards per route run (1.81), and 26% target rate suggest he’s not slowing down entering the age 27 season.
  • Brandon Aiyuk (WR – SF): During Weeks 1-7, Brandon Aiyuk was a dud in fantasy football. He ranked 98th in yards per route run. But he turned things around in the second half of the season, finishing the year 13th in yards per route run with the same target rate per route run as Deebo Samuel. The former first-round pick also ranked sixth in yards after the catch per reception (6.9). If Aiyuk can roll over his second-half production into 2022, he could be a smashing fantasy value in a similar way that his teammate Samuel was viewed in 2021. His overall disappointing sophomore campaign should not overshadow his electric rookie season. But be warned that a run-heavy offensive philosophy led by mobile QB figures to suppress pass attempts in the 49ers offense cast uncertainty about what Aiyuk’s consistency will look like, especially if Samuel and George Kittle remain healthy.

Round 9 Targets

  • Trey Lance (QB – SF): Lance only started two games but showed off the rushing that excited fantasy managers during draft season. The 49ers’ first-year signal-caller averaged 22.4 expected fantasy points and 60 rushing yards per game.
  • Rhamondre Stevenson (RB – NE): Stevenson experienced a very successful rookie season that should not be overlooked. After fully escaping the Bill Belichick doghouse in Week 9, Stevenson earned top grades across the board. He was PFF’s third-highest graded running back (84.2). Stevenson also ranked 13th in rushing yards and yards per route run (1.41). For fantasy, the rookie running back was the RB25 in total points scored, eight spots behind his backfield teammate Damien Harris. Stevenson (93) and Harris (86) split touches nearly 50/50 in the team’s remaining seven games. In the six games together, Stevenson slightly edged out Harris in expected fantasy points per game (9.3 vs. 8.9) with more favorable usage. With impressive reports coming out of Foxborough as a receiver, Stevenson is a dark horse to see an expanded role on third downs with James White returning from a hip injury. The second-year back needs to be a priority target as the draft slips into the double-digit rounds. He was PFF’s highest-graded rookie RB last year…putting him into a tier with the likes of Jonathan Taylor, Josh Jacobs, Nick Chubb and Alvin Kamara — all of who were top-8 fantasy RBs in their second seasons.

Round 10 Targets

  • James Cook (RB – BUF): Rookie running back James Cook has immediate sleeper fantasy appeal across all PPR formats based on his second-round draft capital, pass-catching prowess, explosiveness and offensive situation. The 5-foot-11, 199-pound running back has more than enough heft to manage a decent workload, especially as a receiver out of the backfield. The 5-foot-7, 203-pound Devin Singletary was the RB3 over the last six weeks of the regular season when the Bills entrenched him as the featured guy. Round 2 running backs have finished as top-36 running backs more than half the time (55%) since 2013.
  • Kadarius Toney (WR – NYG): Toney flashed future target-magnet potential after posting 2.14 yards per route run (11th) and commanding a 25% target rate per route run in 2021 — tied for 7th best in the NFL in 2021. His 92nd percentile PFF receiving grade versus single coverage suggests that Toney can win wherever he lines up. There’s no denying that Toney’s flashes of brilliant play came in short supply last season. The Giants’ offense might still be below average even with upgrades across the OL and coaching personnel with Daniel Jones under center. Even so, that’s factored into Toney’s WR40 ADP. Buy the dip.

Andrew Erickson’s 2022 Redraft Fantasy Football Rankings

 

 

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If you want to dive deeper into fantasy football, be sure to check out our award-winning slate of Fantasy Football Tools as you navigate your season. From our Start/Sit Assistant – which provides your optimal lineup based on accurate consensus projections – to our Waiver Wire Assistant – which allows you to quickly see which available players will improve your team and by how much – we’ve got you covered this fantasy football season.

 

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