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.
PPR Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 9th Pick
One year after leading the NFL in touchdowns (19, 2019), Jones averaged a career-high 5.89 yards per touch for the league's top-scoring offense. Through four NFL seasons, Jones has averaged at least 5.5 yards per carry in three of them. Even though he missed two games and scored eight fewer touchdowns in 2020, he has finished as a top-five fantasy running back in consecutive seasons.
Ridley closed the season the same way he started it -- with 100-plus yards in four of five games. Along with Davante Adams (six) and Stefon Diggs (three), Ridley was one of three receivers to finish as a top-two weekly fantasy receiver at least three times in 2020. Ridley finished last season with 90 catches on 143 targets for 1,374 yards and nine touchdowns and is a top-four fantasy wide receiver in 2021 with Julio Jones in Tennessee.
Cooper finished 2020 with a career-high 92 receptions for 1,114 yards and five touchdowns. It was his third consecutive 1,000-yard season and fifth of his career. In 41 games as a member of the Cowboys, Cooper has averaged 73.9 yards per game.
Although he set a career low in yards per game (62.9), Evans exceeded the 1,000-yard mark -- now seven consecutive seasons to begin his career -- and set a career high with 13 scores. The Bucs have franchise tagged Chris Godwin and re-signed Antonio Brown, which could lead to more week-to-week inconsistency for all of the team's receivers. That said, there's tremendous upside with Evans as my WR3.
Filling in for a mostly-injured Christian McCaffrey in 2020, Davis performed as a top-15 (half-PPR) fantasy running back last season. Limited competition for running back touches makes Davis a back-end RB2/flex option in 2021 with Arthur Smith taking over as Atlanta's head coach.
While Murray played all 16 games, shoulder and leg injuries slowed him a bit down the stretch. Even so, he finished his sophomore campaign as fantasy's QB2 (and was QB1 after Week 16). When healthy, Murray scored more than 20 fantasy points and finished as a top-12 fantasy quarterback in 10 consecutive games to start the season. Heading into 2021, Murray will be a top-four option once again even if he hopes to run a little bit less.
Shenault Jr. played only 10 snaps in Week 9 and then missed the following two games. Outside of those three games, the rookie had a minimum of three receptions in every game. Over the final five games of the season, he had 25 catches (on 36 targets) for 246 yards and four touchdowns and added six carries for 31 yards and he was the WR16 (PPR scoring) over that stretch.
The former fourth-round pick out of Fordham 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' workload will almost certainly exceed the 150 touches he had in 2020. This eighth-round draft-day cost seems priced fairly close to his floor, but there is plenty of upside as well.
Williams' 2020 numbers were a bit disappointing (48/756/5) and he finished as a top-36 (half-PPR) weekly wide receiver in only four of 15 weeks played last year. Before that, however, Williams scored double-digit touchdowns in 2018 and led the NFL in yards per reception (20.4) in 2019, his only 1,000-yard season. Offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi has said that he'd "bet on nice numbers coming from [Williams] on the stat sheet, that's for sure."
While I prefer Moss over Devin Singletary, a concern for both is that Josh Allen has 25 rushing touchdowns over the past three seasons. That said, there is some breakout potential for Moss if he's able to stay healthy.
The fifth-year tight end saw a year-over-year dip in targets (60), receptions (44) and yards (521), but he did set a career high in touchdowns (five), though three were caught in one game. With Gerald Everett signing with Seattle and the team trading for Matthew Stafford, there is optimism for improved numbers from Higbee.
Callaway has generated some training camp buzz and has the potential to be the team's most productive receiver for as long as Michael Thomas (ankle) is out. Either way, he's an upside sleeper pick in the double-digit rounds.
Fun watching Marquez Callaway really take ownership of being the top dog at receiver right now. Playing with so much confidence.— Luke Johnson (@ByLukeJohnson) August 6, 2021
13.09 - Rondale Moore, WR, Arizona Cardinals
The Cards will look to manufacture touches for their dynamic rookie. Playing only seven games over the past two collegiate seasons, Moore was uber-productive as a true freshman in 2018 (114/1258/12 receiving and 21/213/2 rushing). It's certainly possible that Moore performs as Arizona's second-best receiver.
A surprise first-round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, Penny has failed to live up to his draft pedigree. On relatively limited touches, however, Penny has been efficient -- 5.1 YPC and 9.3 Y/R -- and Carson's violent running style could lead to a missed game (or several). While it's become a cliche, Penny enters 2021 in the best shape of his life.
15.09 - Bills DST, Buffalo Bills
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