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Overvalued Players: Sam LaPorta, Josh Jacobs, Rachaad White (Fantasy Football)

Here are a few players whose early prices in drafts may raise an eyebrow for fantasy drafters. Check out overvalued fantasy football players to avoid in upcoming drafts.

2024 fantasy football draft kit

Overvalued Fantasy Football Players

We still have a few months until the beginning of the 2024 NFL season, but it’s never too late to take a look at players’ Average Draft Position (ADP). Some players are definitely targets at their ADP, while some give a bit of sticker shock.

Whether it’s a change in offensive environment, a declining player that the market is slower to react to, our ability – or lack thereof – to predict volume for a player or any other number of reasons, prices can ebb and flow during the offseason.

Sam LaPorta (TE – DET)

Oh yeah, we’re coming in HOT.

Let’s make this clear:  There’s nothing wrong with Sam LaPorta, the player. He was a revelation in the late rounds of 2023 fantasy football drafts and finished as the overall TE1 in all formats. However, the price for LaPorta in 2024? Well, it’s not quite as sterling heading into the summer.

In best ball drafts, LaPorta is being drafted with an average ADP of 29.8, equating to a draft price in the middle of the third round. Yes, prices are fluid throughout the offseason and will invariably change as we get closer to draft day in seasonal formats, but that’s a steep price to pay for a tight end who isn’t a Travis Kelce-level game-changer at the position.

LaPorta’s season in 2023 was the worst overall TE1 season since 2017, and he’s not even the top target on his own team. The path to getting the top target status for LaPorta is razor-thin. The absolute ceiling case for him without injury is to be second in targets to Amon-Ra St. Brown and increased target competition from Jameson Williams and Jahmyr Gibbs on a run-first team.

Meanwhile, tight ends like Kelce, Trey McBride, Dalton Kincaid and Mark Andrews all have much clearer paths to being the top target on their team this season on offenses that are projected to pass the ball more than the Lions will.

In terms of his peers, LaPorta isn’t even ahead in some key volume-predictive and fantasy scoring metrics:

Player YPRR Weighted TPRR (wTPRR) aDOT
Sam LaPorta 1.76 (4th) 0.53 (2nd) 7.4 (2nd)
Travis Kelce 1.92 0.51 6.9
Trey McBride 2.03 0.56 6.2
Dalton Kincaid 1.46 0.44 6.7
Mark Andrews 1.96 0.51 8.2

LaPorta is not far and away better than one or more of the tight ends below him in ADP. If I pay a third-round price for a tight end, he better be leaps and bounds ahead of the field and be the top target on his offense. While LaPorta was a huge value in 2023 drafts relative to last season’s late-round ADP, the pendulum has swung way too far in the opposite direction regarding his price so far in 2024.

Josh Jacobs (RB – GB)

If you look at the total body of work over the career of Josh Jacobs, his 2022 contract season looks more of an outlier than something he can repeat. Jacobs put up an RB3 season in 2022 right in the center of a bunch of sub-RB12 seasons with a severe lack of efficiency. He now heads to Green Bay after five seasons in Oakland/Las Vegas, where the Packers have always used multiple running backs.

With an ADP settling in the middle of the fourth round, Jacobs feels much like a dead-zone running back that you have to draft way higher than you need to. It’s almost like Jacobs is still getting credit for his 2022 overall RB3 season like it happened last season. If I want to draft an inefficient running back on an efficient offense that will likely score a bunch of points, I’d much rather draft Joe Mixon two full rounds later. Plus, Mixon has much less competition for his touches.

Jacobs not only has to compete with his own declining skillset — 39th of 49 qualifying running backs in rush % over expectation (ROE%) per NFL Next Gen Stats — but the Packers also drafted MarShawn Lloyd with decent draft capital and brought back AJ Dillon. Gone are the days in Las Vegas where Jacobs would take 85% of all running back carries in 2023 and 87% in 2022. That’s just not how the Packers operate their running back room historically, dating back not just with Matt LaFleur but further back with Mike McCarthy. No single Packers running back has eclipsed 240 carries in a season since Eddie Lacy in 2014, so it will be very hard to expect that with Jacobs, who has bested that 240-carry mark in three of five seasons as a pro.

To pay off his 42.2 ADP in 2024, Jacobs will have to score a ton of touchdowns, which – let’s face it – if there’s one thing we can’t predict year to year, it’s touchdowns.

While the Packers’ offensive environment with Jordan Love and company is trending upward, Jacobs seems like a bad bet even in that new environment.

Rachaad White (RB – TB)

Staying in the RB dead zone, Rachaad White’s ADP of 56.5 is STILL behind the aforementioned Mixon, but the bet is even thinner on White keeping his job, much less receiving the volume he did in 2023. You have to select White in the middle of the fifth round currently in best ball and that ADP could creep up higher once seasonal formats begin their drafting in a couple of months.

White is your classic dead-zone running back who keeps his fifth-round ADP based on projectable volume – one of the biggest fallacies in fantasy football. He had a case to be one of the most inefficient running backs in fantasy football last season, finishing 33rd of 49 qualifying running backs in ROE% and dead last in raw rushing yards over expected with -110.

The one skill White has always shown dating back to college is his receiving work, which has translated to the NFL level. In the last eight draft classes, White’s career 2.46 YPRR in college is the third-highest behind Christian McCaffrey and Kenyan Drake. He may hold a tight grip receiving role, but White could cede some of the rushing workload to Bucky Irving this season.

The Bucs did everything in their power to find another option last season, whether it was Chase Edmonds or Ke’Shawn Vaughn when Edmonds was hurt. If White cannot improve his efficiency in his third season, there’s no way he’s getting anywhere close to the 272 carries he received last season. It’s not “Joever” for White, but it’s an uphill battle to get back into some’s good graces outside of being just a volume play in 2024.

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