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 2021 NFL season, we will use the 2021 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.
Non-PPR Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 9th Pick
As a rookie, Barkley was about as good as it gets. Technically, Todd Gurley was better (fantasy's RB1), but Barkley was the RB2 in his rookie season and led the NFL in scrimmage yards (2,028), scored 15 touchdowns and hauled in 91 catches. Injuries have kept him out of 17 of the team's past 19 games and "we'll see" when he'll be ready to return from his ACL rehab, but if his health cooperates in 2021, he has the skill set to a dominate fantasy running back.
Things could not have gone better for Diggs in his first season with the Bills. A top-three performer across all scoring formats, Diggs led the league in targets (166), receptions (127) and yards (1,535) in 2020.
Falling short of preseason expectations in 2020, Sanders missed four games and averaged just 3.1 yards per target after his catch rate dropped from 79.4% as a rookie to 53.8% although he averaged an impressive 5.3 YPC last season. Following last year's disappointing season, I'd still be willing to bet on Sanders' skill set as my RB2 seven days a week.
The Bears used their franchise tag on Robinson, a disappointment to fantasy managers that hoped for an improved quarterback situation. Even so, Robinson has a total of 200 receptions and a minimum of 1,147 yards over his past two seasons in Chicago with less-than-stellar quarterback play.
The full-season numbers (100/1,054/10, WR9 in half-PPR) look great and Lockett now has back-to-back 1,000-yard campaigns and three consecutive seasons with at least eight touchdowns. That said, there were three spike games (9/100/3, 15/200/3 and 12/90/2) and mostly modest performances the rest of the season. From Weeks 4 to 16, Lockett finished as fantasy's weekly WR45 (or worse) in nine of 12 games. Given Seattle's run-first tendency, there is week-to-week volatility with the team's top pass-catchers, but he's a high-upside WR3 for this team.
The former fourth-round pick has averaged 4.4 yards per carry and 7.2 yards per reception over his first three NFL seasons. With Kenyan Drake out and James Conner in, Edmonds should be Arizona's RB1 and has an opportunity to perform as a fantasy RB2 in 2021.
Harris is a non-factor as a receiver (five receptions in 2020) and that likely won't change much with James White returning to Foxboro. Especially in a non-PPR format, perhaps the biggest threat to Harris is Cam Newton's likelihood to vulture goal-line opportunities from Harris.
It was a tale of two seasons for Wilson. In his first eight games, Wilson averaged 29.52 fantasy points per game and scored no fewer than 21.9. In his final eight games, he averaged only 17.08 and scored more than 21.9 only once during that span.
Despite Pete Carroll's prioritization to establish the run, Wilson has never finished worse than the QB11 (2016) and has finished as a top-six fantasy quarterback in five of the past seven seasons.
It was a down year (59/843/5) for Gallup, who averaged 26.4 fewer yards per game than he did in 2019. Of course, the offense as a whole struggled without Dak Prescott and Gallup had 50-plus yards in four of five games with Prescott and in only three-of-11 games without him.
Singletary followed up his rookie season with 687 rushing yards (4.4 YPC) and two touchdowns to go along with 38 catches for 269 yards. Earlier this offseason, coach Sean McDermott has praised Singletary for "really trying to master the small things that come up down in and down out. ... I've really been impressed with his attention to detail over the past few days."
A fifth-round pick out of Tulane, Mooney had a highly productive rookie campaign (61/631/4). Earlier this offseason, coach Matt Nagy talked up Mooney by saying that he "has a rare element of speed, combined with route-running, hands and passion. And commitment." With the Bears trading Anthony Miller to the Texans, it further boosts Mooney's outlook for 2021.
Following a December 2019 breakout, it was a disappointing 2020 for Higbee and his fantasy managers. The fifth-year tight end saw a year-over-year dip in targets (60), receptions (44) and yards (521). That led to inconsistency as Higbee finished as a top-10 fantasy tight end in only two weeks last season. With Gerald Everett signing with Seattle and the team trading for Matthew Stafford, there is optimism for improved numbers from Higbee.
Smith missed three games last season, but the second-year tight end set career highs in YPG (28.1), Y/R (12.2) and touchdowns (five). With Kyle Rudolph no longer on the roster, the arrow is pointing up for the third-year tight end.
14.04 - Ravens DST, Baltimore Ravens
Booker provides this team with a handcuff for Barkley.
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