Monday, August 17, 2020

12-Team PPR Fantasy Football Mock Draft - 3rd Pick

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 PPR scoring with the 3rd pick:

1.03 - Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Dallas Cowboys

A little less involved as a receiver in 2019 (54/420/2) than 2018 (77/567/3), Elliott has exceeded 300 carries every year except for his 10-game 2017 season and he's led the NFL in rushing yards per game in three of four seasons. Guaranteed for a massive workload behind one of the league's top offensive lines and in one of the league's most prolific offenses, Elliott is a slam-dunk top-three pick in 2020.

2.10 - George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers

While I don't typically draft tight ends early, I'm pleased with how this team turned out. Kittle missed a couple of games and his 2019 numbers (85/1,053/5) took a small dip compared to 2018 (88/1,377/5), but it's a two-player tier at the top of the TE position with Kittle and Travis Kelce.

MORE: San Francisco 49ers 53-man roster projections

3.03 - Allen Robinson, WR, Chicago Bears

Playing a full 16-game season, Robinson had a career-high 98 receptions for 1,147 yards and seven touchdowns in 2019. With steadier quarterback play, Robinson should post another top-12 fantasy season in 2020.

4.10 - Tyler Lockett, WR, Seattle Seahawks

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.

5.03 - Melvin Gordon, RB, Denver Broncos

It was a surprising move for Gordon to stay in the division as the Broncos already had a back-to-back 1,000-yard rusher that is also a capable receiver out of the backfield. Even so, "the belief" is that MG3 will be the team's "bell cow." Before his holdout-shortened season, Gordon was a top-10 fantasy back in three consecutive seasons.

6.10 - Mark Ingram, RB, Baltimore Ravens

Despite being second on his team in rushing (behind the team's quarterback), Ingram still performed as an RB1 in all scoring formats in 2019. Ingram eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark, averaged 5.0 yards per carry and scored a total of 15 touchdowns for the league's highest-scoring offense. Ingram's grip on the lead-back role is weakened some by the team drafting a talented back (J.K. Dobbins), but the veteran back remains a viable RB2 in 2020.

7.03 - Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks

Few teams are more commited to the run than the Seahawks, but Wilson has finished as a top-three fantasy quarterback in four of the past six seasons. One of the league's best deep passers, Wilson has thrown more than 30 touchdowns in three consecutive seasons and he's a near lock for 300-plus rushing yards and a couple more scores.

8.10 - Cam Akers, RB, Los Angeles Rams

With Todd Gurley gone (and now in Atlanta), Akers appears to be the Rams back to own even though Sean McVay has talked up the hot-hand committee approach that the 49ers used last season. Despite running behind a terrible offensive line at Florida State, the former five-star recruit became just the third back in school history to reach the 1,000-yard mark in back-to-back seasons and 3.9 yards of his 4.9 YPC came after contact, per PFF.

9.03 - James White, RB, New England Patriots

Perennially undervalued in fantasy drafts, it was White, not Sony Michel, that has led the Patriots running backs in fantasy scoring in both of Michel's first two seasons. One of the league's best pass-catching backs, White has more than 70 catches in back-to-back seasons and that trend should continue in 2020.

10.10 - Preston Williams, WR, Miami Dolphins

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. Expected to be ready for Week 1, Williams should pick up where he left off in year two.

11.03 - Ke'Shawn Vaughn, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

If anything, the one-year contract the Bucs gave to LeSean McCoy only muddies the outlook for the team's backfield. Given the poor pass-blocking grade (38.4) that PFF gave to Ronald Jones, it's possible that Vaughn outperforms the third-year back in pass-protection ands earn the trust of Tom Brady and Bruce Arians to grow his role throughout the season.

MORE: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2020 Fantasy Football Projections

12.10 - Michael Pittman Jr., WR, Indianapolis Colts

The Colts used the 34th-overall pick on Pittman, who has great size (6'4", 223 pounds) to win in contested-catch and red-zone situations and is an underrated athlete (4.52 forty). While the passing offense goes through Hilton, when healthy, it wouldn't be a surprise if Pittman led the team in receiving touchdowns as a rookie.

13.03 - Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Arizona Cardinals

Ranking second all-time in receptions and yards, Fitzgerald had 75/804/4 on 109 targets in his age-36 season. Like with Kirk, Fitzgerald will have difficulty matching those numbers with a new alpha receiver in town even though Kyler Murray has said that the team has a chance for three 1,000-yard receivers.

14.10 - Jamaal Williams, RB, Green Bay Packers

Williams has averaged only 4.67 yards per touch over his three-year career. While he played just 35% of Green Bay's offensive snaps last season, Williams finished as a top-36 fantasy running back (flex range) in 2019.

15.03 - Chicago Bears DST

16.10 - Ka'imi Fairburn, K, Houston Texans

- View Full Mock Draft Results

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