Sunday, August 27, 2017

Fantasy Football Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 5th Pick

As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. While we may not be able to draft a "perfect" fantasy football team, the more we practice, the better our teams will be.

Starting on June 10th, we began drafting (at least) one fantasy football team per day using the 2017 Fantasy Football Mock Draft Simulator and we will continue to do so up until the start of the 2017 NFL season.

Each day, we will switch things up -- e.g., PPR vs. standard scoring, league size, draft slot, 2-QB leagues, auction leagues, etc.

In addition, we will centralize links to our daily fantasy football mock drafts for an easy way to keep track of our mock drafts.

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Details of today's mock draft:
  • Scoring: Standard scoring (i.e., not PPR scoring)
  • # of Teams: 12
  • Draft Slot: 5
  • Starters: QB, 2 RB, 3 WR, TE, Flex (RB/WR/TE), K, DST
  • Bench Size: 6
With that said, here are the results of today's mock draft:

1.05 - Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons: With 1,400-plus yards in each of the past three seasons, Jones has averaged more than 100 yards per game in four consecutive seasons. The only concern with Jones is his relative lack of productivity in the red zone -- 40 career TDs on 497 receptions and 777 targets -- despite his elite combination of size and speed.

2.08 - Leonard Fournette, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars: Fournette is a back with a rare combination of size, power and speed and the Jags should make him their workhorse sooner rather than later. Given their strong defense (and poor quarterback play), the Jags are likely to shift to a run-heavy approach in 2017.

3.05 - Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos: Thomas set five-year lows across the board: 90 receptions, 1,083 yards and five touchdowns; not bad for "five-year lows." Before last season, he had averaged 100/1,447/10 in his previous four seasons. It's reasonable to expect an improvement over last year's numbers even if he doesn't return to a 100/1,400/10 level of production.

4.08 - Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers: Over his past 16 games, Allen has racked up 116 catches for 1,217 yards and eight touchdowns. Of course, the bad news is that those 16 games span three separate seasons as Allen has played just nine games over the past two years.

5.05 - Mark Ingram, RB, New Orleans Saints: The good news is that Ingram played a full 16-game slate for the second time in his career while posting career highs of 1,043 rushing yards, 5.1 yards per carry and 10 total touchdowns. Both Ingram and Adrian Peterson should be productive (and I hedged a bit with both), but Ingram has finished as a top-15 back in three consecutive seasons.

- Related: 20 Undervalued Players in Fantasy Football

6.08 - Tyler Eifert, TE, Cincinnati Bengals: The good news: 18 touchdowns. The bad news: 22 games. Unfortunately, Eifert has missed more games (26) than he has played (22) over the past three seasons, but he has been a dominant red-zone target, when healthy, with 18 touchdowns during that stretch.

7.05 - Adrian Peterson, RB, New Orleans Saints: Ingram may have a higher salary and be listed as the "starter," but it wouldn't be much of a surprise if Peterson emerged as the leader in terms of workload split (and production) in that duo. With double-digit rushing scores every year he's played at least four games, the ceiling for AP is through the roof in the high-powered, Drew Brees-led offense.

8.08 - Kirk Cousins, QB, Washington Redskins: One year after throwing for 4,166 yards and 29 touchdowns (and finishing as fantasy's QB8), Cousins threw for 4,917 yards and 25 scores (and finished as fantasy's QB5). In addition, he has a total of nine rushing touchdowns over the past two seasons combined. The QB9 in my rankings, Cousins is the 12th QB off the board in this mock.

9.05 - Darren McFadden, RB, Dallas Cowboys: If Ezekiel Elliott serves his six-game (or a reduced) suspension in 2017, McFadden becomes the Cowboys' starter (and a fantasy start) for those games. In his first season in Dallas without Zeke and Tony Romo injured most of the year, McFadden rushed for 1,089 yards (4.6 YPC) on 236 carries and added 40 catches for 328 yards.

10.08 - Martellus Bennett, TE, Green Bay Packers: Going from Tom Brady to Aaron Rodgers won't hurt Bennett's fantasy value. In fact, his outlook has improved. Not that Rodgers doesn't spread the ball around, but I'd expect Bennett to see a larger share of targets in Green Bay than he saw in New England (13.27 percent) last season. Given Eifert's durability history, Bennett gives me some insurance.

11.05 - James White, RB, New England Patriots: Signing a three-year extension this offseason, White had a career-high 60 receptions in 2016 in addition to 14 receptions in their Super Bowl victory. While he may once again have more catches than carries, White finished as the RB33 in standard-scoring formats (non-PPR) last season.

12.08 - Darren Sproles, RB, Philadelphia Eagles: Entering what is expected to be his final season, the 34-year-old running back had 865 yards from scrimmage and 52 receptions last season for the Eagles to finish as fantasy's RB30 in non-PPR formats. Another season of 800 YFS and 50 catches should be within reach for Sproles.

13.05 - Robby Anderson, WR, New York Jets: Productive last year (42/587/2), Anderson had a five-game stretch where he exceeded 60 receiving yards four times. Moving into the No. 1 receiver role due to roster moves and/or injury, Anderson could finish as a top-40 fantasy wide receiver this season.

14.08 - Chris Hogan, WR, New England Patriots: In his first season with the Patriots, Hogan set a career high with 680 yards on just 58 targets. Given the ACL injury to Julian Edelman, Hogan could be the biggest beneficiary in terms of fantasy outlook.

15.05 - New York Giants DST

16.08 - Adam Vinatieri, K, Indianapolis Colts

- View full mock draft results here

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