The best way to become good at something is to practice. So, what should you do if you want to draft a better fantasy football team?
Practice, of course!
Leading up to the start of the 2020 NFL season, we will use the 2020 Fantasy Football Mock Draft Simulator (powered by FantasyPros) to complete fantasy football mock drafts.
We will use a variety of scoring formats -- PPR, half-PPR, standard scoring and even 2-QB leagues, league sizes and draft slots. The goal is to give you a good representation of the team that you may be able to construct given your league settings and the rationale of why we made the picks we did.
+ Our mocks will be tracked here: Fantasy Football Mock Drafts.
That said, nothing beats practicing yourself so (check out the simulator) and complete a mock in a matter of minutes.
Without further ado, here are the picks of our 12-team 2020 fantasy football mock draft using standard (i.e., non-PPR) scoring with the 5th pick:
Through three NFL seasons, Cook has played only 29 games but he had his healthiest campaign (14 games) in 2019, which was by far his most productive as well. The centerpiece of a run-first offense, Cook has averaged 4.6 yards per carry and 8.8 yards per reception over his career and only Christian McCaffrey averaged more fantasy points per game (half-PPR) than Cook (19.0) in 2019.
With DeSean Jackson departing in free agency, Godwin (more than) delivered on the breakout that was expected of him. Despite missing two games, he shattered previous career highs with 86 catches for 1,333 yards and nine touchdowns to finish as fantasy's WR2.
Carson (hip) is expected to be ready for Week 1. Playing 15 games last season, Carson handled a career-high 315 touches for 1,496 yards from scrimmage and nine touchdowns.
While the Seahawks rank near the bottom of the league in pass attempts every year, Lockett is one of the most efficient receivers in the NFL and saw a significant uptick in target share (21.3% in 2019 vs. 16.4% in 2018) with the retirement of Doug Baldwin. Despite playing through injury in the middle of the season, Lockett set career highs in targets (110), receptions (82) and yards (1,057) in 2019. The 5'10" receiver led the NFL in red-zone targets (23) in 2019.
Running behind one of the league's worst offensive lines in 2019, Bell rushed for 52.6 yards per game and averaged 3.2 yards per carry, both of which were career lows. Bell's 311 touches were eighth-most last season, but Bell ranked 35th (4.02) in yards per touch among the 38 running backs that amassed 140-plus touches last season. Improved efficiency should be expected from Bell as the Jets improved their offensive line, but the addition of the ageless Frank Gore casts serious doubt on Bell's ability to come close to last year's volume.
Green has missed at least six games in three of the last four seasons including the entire 2019 season. The obvious risks are Green's durability history as well as the difficulty of establishing chemistry with a rookie quarterback in such an unorthodox offseason, but there is upside from his low-end WR2/high-end WR3 ADP as well. In 2018, Green averaged 5.1/77.1/0.7 per game, equivalent to a full-season pace of 82/1,234/11.
Once again, Jones had his season cut short by injury as he missed three games in 2019 and seven games in 2018. Based on his per-game production when both Jones and Matthew Stafford were healthy, Jones was on pace for an 84/1,070/12 stat line in 2019.
Crowder led the Jets in targets (122), receptions (78), yards (833) and touchdowns (six) last season. With Robby Anderson and Demaryius Thomas no longer on the roster, Crowder could be even better in 2020 if Sam Darnold can stay healthy. The slot receiver's ADP has been steadily rising in August.
Breida was the odd-man out in San Francisco's backfield down the stretch and he moves to a situation where he has a legitimate shot to lead Miami's backfield in usage and production. The former UDFA has averaged 5.0 yards per carry and 8.4 yards per reception over his first three NFL seasons. While Miami had the league's worst offensive line last year, they made numerous investments -- via the draft and free agency -- to upgrade the unit.
The Dolphins made a number of roster improvements through free agency and the draft, but there were no significant additions in terms of pass-catchers. In fact, the group is worse off with Wilson and Hurns opting out. More talented (four-star high school recruit) than his UDFA status (due to off-field reasons) would imply, Williams made an immediate impact for the Dolphins with 32/428/3 in eight games before tearing his ACL. After observing training camp practices open to reporters, Adam Beasley from the Miami Herald wrote that Williams may be "potentially better than ever."
Gibson possesses a superior combination of athleticism (4.39 forty) for his size (228 pounds) and broke tackles at a ridiculous rate (33 on 77 career touches) at Memphis. With Guice released and Peterson now 35 years old, it wouldn't be a shock to see the (early) third-rounder see his rookie role continue to expand throughout the season. Earlier this offseason, Ron Rivera said Gibson has "a skill set like Christian (McCaffrey)."
Hurst doubled his production in 2019 to 30/349/2, but that paled in comparison to (now former) teammate Mark Andrews. Hurst's trade to Atlanta does wonders for his fantasy outlook as Austin Hooper signed a free-agent deal with Cleveland. Before Hooper's mid-season injury, he was fantasy's top-scoring tight end and finished second behind Julio Jones in team targets.
Leading the NFL in completion percentage in each of the past three seasons, Brees posted a career-high 7.1 TD% in 2019 and he has posted a 59-to-nine TD-INT ratio over the past two seasons combined. The team's offseason moves will help Brees, the NFL's all-time leading passer, continue his high level of play into his age-41 season. Not only did the Saints use their first-round pick on the top interior offensive lineman in the draft, but they added Emmanuel Sanders as an upgrade opposite Michael Thomas.
14.08 - Chicago Bears DST
16.08 - Chase Claypool, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Claypool provides the Steelers with a physical mismatch due to his size (6'4", 238 pounds) and athleticism (4.42 forty and 40.5" vertical). While he may start out as the team's fourth receiver, it's possible that he pushes James Washington for snaps in three-wide sets. Not only are teammates calling Claypool a "PROBLEM" (in a good way), The Athletic's Mark Kaboly recently wrote that "practice after practice, the rookie is making non-rookie-like plays after running non-rookie-like routes and making non-rookie-like catches."
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