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24 Players Who Will Rise Up Fantasy Football Draft Boards (2024)

As mandatory minicamps reach a conclusion and training camps loom on the horizon, we’re entering the peak of anticipation in the fantasy football realm. As the offseason progresses, perceptions of players are bound to evolve based on various factors, including their performance in practices and their opportunities for playing time. In this article, we’ll spotlight 24 players (and more) primed to ascend fantasy football draft boards as we approach the upcoming season. From potential breakout stars to established names with newfound opportunities, these players are poised to exceed expectations and garner increased attention from fantasy football managers. For better or for worse.

2024 fantasy football draft kit

24 Players Who Will Move up Draft Boards

All average draft positions referenced are best ball ADPs.

Kyle Pitts (TE -NO) – ADP 63.5 | TE6

Kyle Pitts has the same ADP as last season. Again. Pitts has the same ADP as last season. And that’s despite the clear-cut upgrade at quarterback with Kirk Cousins. And the fact that Pitts shouldn’t be hampered by his torn MCL/PCL from 2022. Given that Bijan Robinson and Drake London‘s ADPs are already super high, I’d bet the last part of this young offensive trio gets a well-deserved ADP bump with training camp highlights coming to a social media platform near you.

Remember, new OC Zac Robinson comes from the Sean McVay/Kevin O’Connell coaching tree that often concentrates its offenses around its top playmakers. T.J. Hockenson averaged nearly 11 half-PPR points per game in a similar offense the last two seasons. That would have been TE5 in points per game from 2023.

Jaleel McLaughlin (RB – DEN) – ADP 169.3 | RB54

Headlines like this tend to move ADPs.

However, what might be getting lost here is that if the current regime is “down” on Javonte Williams, it would be an immediate boost for rookie Audric Estime. The fift-rounder would likely take on the majority of early-down work.

Troy Franklin (WR – DEN) – ADP 172.8 | WR73

Courtland Sutton is looking for a new contract and the Denver Broncos haven’t budged. This might create a holdout scenario that gives more reps for the other Broncos WRs on the depth chart. According to The Athletic’s Nick Kosmider, the WR room behind Sutton is wide open.

And should Sutton be moved it would grant even more opportunities for guys like Troy Franklin or second-year WR Marvin Mims. Josh Reynolds could be the sneaky veteran that emerges from the bunch, but I’d much rather bet on some untapped potential of either Franklin or Mims.

Sean Payton – as he often does – doubled down on being part of the reason why we didn’t see more of Mims as a rookie despite the explosiveness the WR displayed early in 2023. He does know that as the head coach he decides who plays, right? Mims also did have a hamstring injury earlier last offseason.

“I’ve said this, and I’ll say it again: We were as much responsible for, I don’t want to say holding him back, but you’re trying to get snaps with [former WR] Jerry Jeudy [and] with [WR] Courtland [Sutton],” head coach Sean Payton said. “I think we’ll see a lot of growth from Year 1 to Year 2.”

A logical trade partner for Sutton is easily the Pittsburgh Steelers. Quarterback Russell Wilson and Sutton played together the last two seasons. Pittsburgh’s new wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni held that same role with the Broncos from 2018-2022.

If you are drafting now, maybe practice with George Pickens. His ADP will inevitably fall (for right or wrong) if/when the Steelers add another pass-catcher to the mix. Whether that be Sutton or one of the 49ers WRs.

Jonathon Brooks (RB – CAR) ADP 89.3 | RB27

This ADP could go one of two ways. If Brooks avoids the PUP list and sees fast-paced training camp and preseason action, his ADP will skyrocket as a projected bell-cow back for the Panthers. But if his return to the NFL football field is delayed, as I wrote about in my running backs to avoid article, his ADP will head in the opposite direction. Conversely, Chuba Hubbard‘s ADP will also rise/fall based on the rookie’s health/availability early in the summer months. This team has echoed a strong sentiment of wanting to run the football, so we may see more than one RB deployed in this backfield. Dave Canales was recently asked about Brooks’ availability saying he still “has a bit of way to go.” He also went out of his way to praise Hubbard and TE Tommy Tremble in his final presser out of mandatory minicamp. Canales seems to like Hubbard. First-round pick Xavier Legette‘s return from a spring hamstring injury will also be something to monitor. The more time the rookie WR misses, the more time second-year QB Bryce Young has to develop rapport with Diontae Johnson (WR38) as his clear-cut No. 1 target. Last year D.J. Chark and Jonathan Mingo ranked 143rd and 152nd in ESPN’s WR Open Score. Adam Thielen ranked 36th. Johnson ranked 12th in 2023 and has the No. 1 Open Score cumulatively dating back to 2020.

Taysom Hill (TE – NO) – ADP 182.8 | TE22

Juwan Johnson will miss time during the offseason after suffering a lower leg injury. Alvin Kamara is missing time due to a contract despite. This should give Taysom Hill more opportunities to gobble up more repetitions among the Saints’ tight ends, especially in red-zone packages. New OC Klink Kubiak should integrate more player motion into the offense, which screams Hill staying heavily involved. The Swiss Army Knife player was the TE10 last season, finishing as a top-12 option in 40% of his games.

Tyrone Tracy Jr. (RB – NYG) – ADP 189.5 | RB58

The former WR-RB convert is already earning starting reps with the top offense during the Giants’ organized team activities (OTAs). Well, at least that’s what the Sleeper headline reads from NorthJersey.com’s Art Stapleton. The full article said the following on Tracy:

“Tracy spent a good portion of 11-on-11 drills on Tuesday with the first team. He’s already making a push to be the Giants’ back on passing downs, especially given his experience as a wide receiver. Pass protection this summer, as always, will be the final test. Tracy is going to have a chance to earn a spot as a returner on special teams, too.”

I love Tracy’s potential this season. He’s the RB5 in my rookie rankings. I think this is somewhat actionable news. Given his WR background, it’s great to hear the team is experimenting with how they can deploy him and that he is earning more repetitions as a pass-catcher. I was initially concerned Devin Singletary missed Tuesday’s practice and that resulted in Tracy’s uptick in reps. However, Singletary sat out team drills on Wednesday, so it wasn’t injury-related to Tracy’s increased looks.

The Giants are excited about Malik Nabers but Wan’Dale Robinson is a strong bet to lead the Giants in total raw catches and targets given his locked-in role from the slot.

Brian Thomas Jr. (WR – JAX) – ADP 97.3 | WR47

I’ll leave this here. Note that when Trevor Lawrence was asked about Gabe Davis, he referenced his willingness to do the dirty work. Blocking. Woof.

On a side note, 2024 rookie RB Keilan Robinson could end up in a Jamal Agnew-type role on offense, along with contributions on special teams as a return man.

Ezekiel Elliott (RB – DAL) – ADP 126 | RB41

No backfield draws the “ambiguous” label more than the Dallas Cowboys entering the 2024 season. But is it that tough of a code to crack? We expect no clear workhorse in Dallas, but from a perspective of high-value touches, how is Ezekiel Elliott not the first name that comes to mind? Given all the wear on his body, Elliott seems destined to work solely on third downs and in the red zone as he did in all the glory years with Dallas. The Cowboys missed Elliott last season in the red zone as Tony Pollard struggled immensely in that area of the field. Elliot scored more red-zone TDs last season (5) than Pollard despite 40 fewer red-zone touches.

Even if Rico Dowdle is the younger more explosive RB in a tandem, Elliott’s pathway to fantasy opportunities makes him the back to own in Dallas. It will take just one report of Elliott scoring in the red zone for the rest of the fantasy community to come to this conclusion. Chris Meaney of FTN made a strong case for Elliott in one of the latest episodes of the FantasyPros Football Podcast.

Other potential risers in Dallas include sixth-round rookie WR Ryan Flournoy. He’s super athletic with an absurd relative athletic score (RAS). He’s already 24 years old, but that might help him hit the ground running sooner rather than later. He’s making the most of his opportunities with CeeDee Lamb not attending offseason activities. Second-year WR Jalen Brooks has gotten some buzz as well. It’s probably not great for Jalen Tolbert‘s security in the No. 3 WR role.

Tyjae Spears (RB – TEN) – ADP 104.0 | RB33

Tony Pollard is being drafted slightly ahead of Tyjae Spears (RB29) when there’s very much unknown regarding each player’s role in the 2024 Titans offense under Brian Callahan. All the rhetoric out of offseason activities has suggested this will be a 50/50 split. Early ADP has favored Pollard given the contract and body of work, but Spears’ intrigue as a second-year RB (typically a strong bet to make) creates a value proposition where he is being drafted. Given the improvements on the Titans’ OL — ranked eighth by ESPN’s Mike Clay with the addition of OL coach Bill Callahan — one could argue that both Titans RBs are being undersold. I could say the same about Calvin Ridley and DeAndre Hopkins.

Also note that Titans senior writer Jim Wyatt highlighted TE Josh Whyle as a second-year TE who impressed during the OTAs.

Luke McCaffrey (WR – WAS) – ADP 207.00 | WR81

The 6:00 am facility meet-up narrative is full go. Jayden Daniels has been arriving at the team’s facility in the early hours of the morning, but he’s not alone. Joining the Commanders’ No. 2 overall pick is third-round WR Luke McCaffrey. Given how wide open the depth chart is for targets behind Terry McLaurinJahan Dotson withstanding — I am all about buying McCaffrey, who has been underrated throughout the entire draft process. With his sights set on the starting slot role, we could see the Daniels-McCaffrey connection blossom.

Ricky Pearsall (WR – SF) – ADP 167.3 | WR70

I’m getting my exposure to Slick Rick before something happens in the trade market with either Deebo Samuel or Brandon Aiyuk. The team can save nearly $22 million with a trade now that we are past the June 1 deadline. A Samuel trade would also balloon George Kittle‘s ADP, which currently sits 67th overall (TE7).

Blake Corum (RB – LAR) – ADP 118.5 | RB38

The contingent upside of Blake Corum should Kyren Williams suffer an injury is enormous. Sean McVay is already singing praise about how much Corum has stood out during OTAs. Mature beyond his years.

In addition to calling Corum a standout, the Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue cited Rams TEs Colby Parkinson and Davis Allen as breakout candidates in the wake of Tyler Higbee‘s injury. Between the two, I’ll chase the contract the team gave Parkinson. He’s the 14th-highest-paid player at the position.

Kendre Miller (RB – NO) – ADP 138.0 | RB43

Rumor out of Saints camp is that Alvin Kamara isn’t happy with his contract. He skipped OTAs despite the team installing a new offense under Klint Kubiak. Stock up for second-year RB Kendre Miller, especially if this “holdout” drags into training camp.

Rashee Rice (WR – KC) – ADP 78.8 | WR39

Rashee Rice’s ADP has fallen dramatically concerning his off-the-field issues earlier this year. It’s anybody’s guess when/how long Rice will be suspended with the most likely outcome somewhere from 4-6 games. But fantasy managers tend to never quite accurately predict the suspension length and when it occurs, given the appeal and legal processes, etc. It’s entirely possible Rice could be suspended for fewer games, and it might not even happen until the 2025 season. Recall Alvin Kamara’s suspension was dragged through 18 months before he served a three-game suspension at the start of 2023.

One way or another, once we get concrete information about Rice, you are either going to see his ADP rise or the ADPs of his WR Chiefs teammates — Marquise Brown/Xavier Worthy — jump after news breaks.

Recall that Brown has had stretches of WR1 production. In 2022, Brown was the WR6 through the first six weeks of the 2022 season. And in the eight games played without DeAndre Hopkins, Brown averaged nearly 12.3 points per game in half-PPR (WR15).

Patrick Mahomes spoke glowingly about his 2024 receiver group and how they can help elevate this passing game back to an elite level. The Athletic’s Nate Taylor writes how Mahomes is eager to see how Brown and Worthy’s speed opens up the intermediate level of the field for Rice and Travis Kelce. If Rice is suspended early on, Kelce might see the biggest production boost to start the season.

Hayden Hurst (TE – LAC) – ADP 254.0 | TE38

Hayden Hurst is the TE1 for the Chargers and the one most likely to inherit the pass-catching role. He is super familiar with Greg Roman’s offense from his days spent in Baltimore.

During the 2023 CFB season, only Iowa targeted its tight ends more than Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan teams among the entire FBS, per Pro Football Focus (PFF).

Josh Palmer (WR57) is also drastically undervalued despite his status as the longest-tenured Chargers WR to play with Justin Herbert. Before his injury last season, Palmer was on pace for 72-1,198-4 on 117 targets. The steam for Ladd McConkey is also creating an ADP rise, with the latest report from the Athletic’s Daniel Popper citing the rookie and Justin Herbert’s chemistry continuing to blossom.

Other Chargers notes regarding their backfield… Gus Edwards suffered an injury but is expected back for training camp. J.K. Dobbins is returning from an injury, but Greg Roman and company have spoken highly of him: “Huge asset for us.” It’s also noteworthy that there hasn’t been much “buzz” around rookie Kimani Vidal. It’s early, but not nothing.

Jermaine Burton (WR – CIN) – ADP 174.0 | WR74

With Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins missing portions of OTAs, third-round rookie WR Jermaine Burton has gotten an early crack at building chemistry with starting QB Joe Burrow. He’s got a solid pathway to the No. 3 WR role in this offense.

Russell Wilson (QB – PIT) – ADP 202.0 | QB32

The unquestioned starter for the Pittsburgh Steelers can only be drafted behind his backup Justin Fields for so long. I understand the fantasy appeal of Fields in formats that favor Weeks 15-17, but a Day 1 starter with QB32 ADP doesn’t seem appropriate.

Ty Chandler (RB – MIN) – ADP 143.5 | RB44

Ty Chandler showed last season that he deserves to be more than just a backup. He stole the job from Alexander Mattison. And this year, it’s just an injury-prone Aaron Jones on a one-year, $7 million contract with zero guaranteed money.

Minnesota Vikings beat writer Alec Lewis from The Athletic believes Chandler’s usage will increase in 2024. Vikings defensive tackle Harrison Phillips compared the RB duo of Jones and Chandler to the RB pairing in Detroit. He also said he would buy stock in Ty Chandler if he could.

Also, Sam Darnold is entering training camp as the QB1 in this offense, which will boost his value in offseason drafts as he looks to hold off rookie first-rounder, J.J. McCarthy.

Hunter Henry (TE – NE) – ADP 161.8 | TE18

As Patriots beat reporter Evan Lazar wrote in his piece “Six Observations on Offense From the Patriots First Minicamp Practice” Hunter Henry is the top dog in the tight end room as Mr. Reliable. Given his experience and appealing role in a TE-centric Alex Van Pelt offense, nobody should be shocked when Henry emerges as the Patriots’ leading pass-catcher with so much ambiguity among the WRs. Whether it’s Jacoby Brissett or Drake Maye as the QB1. Henry’s also always been a featured red-zone weapon, bolstering the case for him as a great late-round tight end target.

In 2022, Van Pelt’s Browns put Brissett in a position to finish 17th in passing EPA and 12th in PFF passing grade. David Njoku also finished second among all TEs in red-zone targets.

In Brissett’s first year as the Colts starting QB, the leading receiver was tight end Jack Doyle. He caught 80 balls for 690 yards. In 2019, Doyle tied for the team lead in total targets.

Lazar also mentions that second-rounder Ja’Lynn Polk is already far ahead compared to the recent Patriots’ top WR draft selection that didn’t pan out.

Braelon Allen (RB – NYJ) – ADP193.8 | RB59

It didn’t take long for rookie RB to assert himself as the No. 2 atop the backfield depth chart. Every report out of OTAs has cited Braelon Allen as a big riser, while Breece Hall has been nursing a minor injury as a precaution.

Derrick Henry (RB – BAL) ADP 32.5 | RB10

I couldn’t stop at just 20 guys after Ravens HC John Harbaugh dropped this nugget on Derrick Henry.

I realize the upside Henry carries (literally) in the Ravens offense, given his chance for a strong workload in a backfield alongside Lamar Jackson. Defenses won’t be able to focus on taking him away. But when does it become too pricy to pay up for a 30-year-old RB who doesn’t catch passes? I weigh in on Henry’s potential downside in my latest RB piece.

Jameson Williams (WR – DET) ADP 98.8 | WR48

The human hype piece of the early NFL 2024 fantasy football offseason has undoubtedly been third-year WR Jameson Williams. Lions HC Dan Campbell continues to sing his praise every opportunity he gets. Man on a mission.

But a WR4 price tag is starting to get expensive for a player who could realistically be the fourth option in Detroit’s offensive hierarchy. Williams can take a step forward and help the Lions get to the next level, but it might not necessarily carry over to fantasyland.

Cedric Tillman (WR – CLE) – ADP 289 | WR133

Second-year WRs that don’t produce in Year 1 are typically bad bets. Especially when they earn playing time like Cedric Tillman did last year. But the QB play was always changing for the Browns in 2023, making it tough for Tillman to establish any rapport. Flashback to early last offseason, and Tillman flashed chemistry with Deshaun Watson. And with Amari Cooper not at OTAs because of contract negotiations, Tillman is the one who is stepping up the alpha platform instead of non-alphas such as Jerry Jeudy (dealing with a minor injury) and Elijah Moore (beta).

Also, note that the expectation is that Jerome Ford will be the Browns’ RB1 if Nick Chubb is not ready for the start of the season.

Zay Flowers (WR – BAL) – ADP 44.3| WR25

Drafting second-year WRs after strong rookie seasons doesn’t need to be overly complicated. Zay Flowers burst onto the scene as a rookie and all reports out of OTAs “although highlighted mostly by Derrick Henry” suggest the chemistry between Flowers and Lamar Jackson is on another level. I wrote about Flowers as one of my favorite dynasty trade targets earlier this offseason.

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