With mandatory minicamps and training camps right around the corner, we are officially entering the thick of the hype season. Opinions will begin to shift on a variety of players over the coming weeks once we get a glimpse of who might have a clearer path to playing time than we originally believed or who is simply dominating their practice reps and potentially earning a larger role than we may have thought.
Today we’re diving into 20 different players to keep an eye on as they’re poised to rise up draft boards from their current average draft position (ADP) over the course of this summer.
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Which 20 Players Will Move up Draft Boards? (2023 Fantasy Football)
All average draft position referenced is May 1QB startup ADP, courtesy of DLF.
Jordan Love (QB – GB) – ADP 182.67 | QB23
There is a new QB1 in Green Bay following the departure of Aaron Rodgers, and with even a moderately impressive summer, Jordan Love should rise from his current price in startup drafts. We know Love has all the measurables and has shown flashes in the limited opportunities provided to him, but he also has age on his side, as he’ll only turn 25 this season. With several new additions surrounding him at wide receiver and tight end, the arrow is pointing up on Love.
D’Andre Swift (RB – PHI) – ADP 60.33 | RB19
Gone are the days of spending a first or second-round startup selection on D’Andre Swift. His price tag has grown much more palatable following struggles with injury and subsequently finding himself traded from the Lions. He lands in one of the most explosive offenses in football and should see his value rebound once fantasy managers get a glimpse of him in the Eagles’ scheme. He likely won’t return to top-12 value, but he could get back to flirting with the RB1/RB2 line.
Jerome Ford (RB – CLE) – ADP 172.00 | RB55
All signals are pointing to Jerome Ford being the RB2 in Cleveland, and that’s a role that we know can provide fantasy value even alongside locked-in starter Nick Chubb. There’s an easy path to finding at least 120 attempts for Ford, potentially even more if he can impress with his opportunity. He’s an explosive runner who could pair nicely with Chubb and can be had exceptionally cheaply in startup drafts.
George Pickens (WR – PIT) – ADP 66.00 | WR34
While the price tag associated with George Pickens might not be perceived as cheap right now, I believe there is a chance that’s the case by the end of the summer. He’s already displayed chemistry with Kenny Pickett, and with another offseason spent together, that chemistry should only flourish further. Pickens could be going at least a round earlier than this by the end of summer, if not even higher than that.
Jalin Hyatt (WR – NYG) – ADP 127.33 | WR57
The Giants added several playmakers this offseason, but Jalin Hyatt can do something that the rest cannot: win consistently in the vertical passing game. Darren Waller figures to be the primary target for Daniel Jones in 2023, but Hyatt could establish himself sooner than later as the wide receiver to roster from the Giants.
Tank Dell (WR – HOU) – ADP 133.50 | WR59
Early reviews this offseason are that Tank Dell has impressed at OTAs for the Houston Texans, and we know it’s a position group with playing time up for grabs. There has been plenty of talk about CJ Stroud wanting the Texans to select Dell, and while you’re still betting on outlier size, the undersized wideout has incredible route-running skills. He could be Stroud’s most trusted wide receiver early in his professional career.
Jelani Woods (TE – IND) – ADP 216.50 | TE31
We know how difficult the tight end landscape can be for fantasy football, so I’m all for taking late swings on players with high-end traits. Jelani Woods is incredibly athletic (he posted a Relative Athletic Score of 10.00 ahead of being drafted) and should find himself atop the tight end depth chart for the Colts. If he hits, he’ll shoot up draft boards.
Luke Musgrave (TE – GB) – ADP 151.17 | TE18
We know a young quarterback will often look for his tight end in the middle of the field, and Luke Musgrave can fill that security blanket role for Jordan Love. Once we’re outside of the top six or seven options at the position for fantasy purposes, I like the idea of trying to accumulate a few of the players going later in drafts. He has the profile to be considered a top-12 option for the position.
Bryce Young (QB – CAR) – ADP 113.33 | QB13
Bryce Young is a smooth, effortless passer who should shine in training camp practices. While he might lack the top-end wide receiver option, there are a number of proven pass catchers on the roster that should allow him to show what he’s capable of in the short term. He won’t vault himself into the top-five options at quarterback ahead of the 2023 season, but he could still see himself rising three or four spots, with room for more ahead of next season.
Miles Sanders (RB – CAR) – ADP 78.17 | RB25
One of the weapons Bryce Young has at his disposal is the newly signed Miles Sanders. Despite only having 26 targets last year, Sanders is capable of much more in the receiving game and may just be called on to do so in 2023. He had over 500 receiving yards as a rookie in 2019, and if he is seeing passing game utilization like that for the Panthers, his ADP is bound to begin climbing back up.
Jahan Dotson (WR – WAS) – ADP 67.50 | WR35
Jahan Dotson falls into the same camp as George Pickens: a talented second-year player flying a little under the radar and could see a bump in value even by the end of the summer. After scoring seven touchdowns as a rookie in only 12 games, Dotson will be tough to keep off the field and should see plenty of opportunities. He can easily see his value fall more in the WR2 range than the WR3 range it currently sits in.
Rachaad White (RB – TB) – ADP 57.50 | RB18
The value has already started to rise on Rachaad White, but if the talk of him receiving a substantial amount of looks in the passing game is true, his value can climb even higher. He was one of his draft class’s most accomplished pass-catching running backs. He saw 58 targets as a rookie, and he can easily see that number rise to closer to 90 following the departure of Leonard Fournette. Combine that with an uptick in rushing attempts, and White could be in store for a rise to top-12 value if everything goes right.
Jordan Addison (WR – MIN) – ADP 46.50 | WR23
Young wide receivers currently dominate the top end of startup drafts, and Jordan Addison falls right into that group. Even though he’s already being selected as a low-end WR2, he could find himself on the WR1 fringe with a strong summer. The most likely outcome is he’s viewed as a high-end WR2 ahead of the season. He’ll be playing across from the best wide receiver in football and has a proven passer to get him the football.
Trey McBride (TE – ARI) – ADP 154.83 | TE19
Following the release of DeAndre Hopkins, there are looks to be had in the Cardinals’ passing attack. While there will be some quarterback uncertainty as Kyler Murray recovers from his knee injury, Trey McBride could receive a good share of those vacated targets. The former Colorado State tight end had over 1,100 yards receiving in his final collegiate season, and he could be called on to shoulder a much larger workload starting in his second professional season.
Irv Smith (TE – CIN)– ADP 186.33 | TE22
I know. It feels like we’ve been waiting for Irv to swerve forever. Could this finally be the season? If Irv Smith Jr can stay healthy, no one is standing in his way on the Bengals’ tight end depth chart. Hayden Hurst saw nearly 70 targets on the Bengals last year, and Irv could be in line for the same type of target share if he can remain healthy.
Mac Jones (QB – NE) – ADP 224.33 | QB31
Mac Jones is free right now in 1QB leagues. He’s coming off a disappointing season but should find more consistency in his third professional season. Bill O’Brien has been brought in as offensive coordinator for the Patriots, which can only help Jones. It’s easy to forget now, but Jones had nearly 4,000 passing yards as a rookie. The ability is still there, and a more proven offensive staff around him can help.
Roschon Johnson (RB – CHI) – ADP 106.67 | RB35
Roschon Johnson might be too difficult for the Chicago Bears to keep off the field. This backfield will likely be a committee situation that sees a ton of rushing attempts taken from Justin Fields, but Johnson’s ability in the passing game, both as a receiver and pass protector, will only help him stay on the field. Khalil Herbert and D’Onta Foreman will also have a chance at being involved, but Johnson is the most likely to find a consistent path toward RB2 value.
Alexander Mattison (RB – MIN) – ADP 114.17 | RB37
It’s starting to feel like a foregone conclusion that Dalvin Cook won’t be on the Vikings roster this season, and if that’s the case, Alexander Mattison will see a massive shift in ADP. Rumors continue to swirl over whether or not Cook will eventually be released, but if Mattison does assume the lead role, he could return top-12 value in 2023.
Elijah Moore (WR – CLE) – ADP 107.17 | WR50
The Browns gave up a second-round draft pick to acquire Elijah Moore and a third-round draft pick, so there’s an excellent chance they will give him every opportunity to be a significant piece of their offense across from Amari Cooper. If Deshaun Watson can return to the form we were used to from his days in Houston, Moore could be a massive steal right now.
JuJu Smith-Schuster (WR – NE) – ADP 115.33 | WR53
Juju Smith-Schuster feels like the most boring pick in fantasy football drafts right now, but there’s almost no chance he doesn’t significantly outperform his current price tag. The price will creep back once we get glimpses of him in the Patriots’ offense. It’s realistic to expect him to come off the board a few rounds earlier than he is currently, with a productive summer.