Monday, July 26, 2021

2021 Fantasy Football Half-PPR Mock Draft - 12 Teams, 12th 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 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.

Half-PPR Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 12th Pick

1.12 - Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

Missing a significant chunk of time due to injury and playing at less than 100 percent when returning to the field, Ekeler averaged 5.5 yards per touch and scored only three touchdowns, both of which were career lows. With Joe Lombardi coming over from New Orleans to run the offense, Ekeler's immense upside as a receiver makes him a top-10 back across all formats.

More: Los Angeles Chargers 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

2.01 - Stefon Diggs, WR, Buffalo Bills

Things could not have gone better for Diggs in his first season with the Bills. Buffalo's starters played fewer snaps than usual in Week 17, as Diggs played a season-low 48% of the team's offensive snaps in the regular-season finale. Even so, that Week 17 performance (7/76) was the only game over the final five weeks where Diggs had fewer than 128 receiving yards. A top-three performer across all scoring formats, Diggs led the league in targets (166), receptions (127) and yards (1,535) in 2020.

More: Buffalo Bills 2021 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

3.12 - Amari Cooper, WR, Dallas Cowboys

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.

More: Dak Prescott 2021 Fantasy Football Outlook

4.01 - Miles Sanders, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Falling short of preseason expectations, 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% in 2020. Although he averaged an impressive 5.3 yards per carry for the season, Sanders failed to exceed 3.8 YPC in four of his final five games. That said, I'm willing to bet on his talent as my RB2 in the fourth round.

More: Philadelphia Eagles 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup

5.12 - Myles Gaskin, RB, Miami Dolphins

Gaskin was off to a strong start through Week 8, but he only appeared in three games (Weeks 13, 16 and 17) after that point. Even though he missed six games, he ranked 15th among running backs in receptions (41). In addition, only three running backs had more receptions in the 10 weeks that Gaskin played.

The former seventh-round pick out of Washington has shown the ability to be highly productive and the Dolphins were unable to draft one of the top three backs in the 2021 NFL Draft. While I currently project a first-round running back to the Dolphins in my early 2022 NFL Mock Draft, Gaskin is a nice value with upside here.

More: Miami Dolphins 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

6.01 - Tee Higgins, WR, Cincinnati Bengals

From Week 2 until Week 11 (Joe Burrow's knee injury), Higgins scored the 19th-most fantasy points amongst wide receivers. With the Bengals drafting Ja'Marr Chase over Penei Sewell, it took some steam out of Higgins' opportunity to build upon his strong rookie season. On the other hand, A.J. Green and his 104 targets (6.5/G) are no longer on the roster.

More: Joe Mixon 2021 Fantasy Football Outlook

7.12 - Travis Etienne, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars

A two-time ACC Offensive Player of the Year, Etienne surprised many by returning to school for another season. As impressive as James Robinson was as a rookie (UDFA), Etienne's talent and (first-round) draft pedigree make him the favorite to emerge as the team's primary back sooner than later even if Robinson gets more touches in Week 1.

More: 2023 NFL Mock Draft

8.01 - Raheem Mostert, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Missing half of the season, Mostert finished the year with 677 scrimmage yards (84.6/G) and only three touchdowns on 120 touches (15/G). Mostert has career averages of 5.6 YPC and 10.0 Y/R, but it's possible that Trey Sermon emerges as the team's top fantasy running back at some point this season.

More: San Francisco 49ers 2021 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

9.12 - Kenyan Drake, RB, Las Vegas Raiders

Regardless of how much the Raiders use Drake in the passing game, his volume will drop year over year. That said, I'd prefer Drake as my RB6 in Round 9 over Josh Jacobs in Round 4 (pick 4.05 in this mock).

More: Las Vegas Raiders 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup

10.01 - Tom Brady, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

In his first season in Tampa, Brady scored the eighth-most fantasy points and only three quarterbacks had more top-five weekly finishes than the future Hall-of-Famer. Brady's 40 touchdowns thrown were the second-most of his career and his 4,633 passing yards were a five-year high. Brady will have all of the team's starters and top pass-catchers back as he enters his age-44 season.

11.12 - Tyler Higbee, TE, Los Angeles Rams

I'll punt on TE every time that I can get Higbee with the 132nd pick. With Gerald Everett signing with Seattle and the team trading for Matthew Stafford, there is optimism for improved numbers from Higbee (and L.A.'s passing offense overall).

12.01 - Tre'quan Smith, WR, New Orleans Saints

Posting career numbers in receptions (34) and yards (448) in 2020, Smith will almost certainly post better production in 2021 with Michael Thomas unlikely for Week 1 and Emmanuel Sanders now in Buffalo.

13.12 - Sterling Shepard, WR, New York Giants

Shepard missed four games in 2020 and he has now missed four-plus games in three of the past four seasons. Adding Golladay to the receiving corps pushes Shepard down a spot on the depth chart, but he'll likely see the second-most snaps among the team's receivers barring injury.

14.01 - Colts DST, Indianapolis Colts

15.12 - Jason Myers, K, Seattle Seahawks

- View Full Mock Draft Results

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2021 Fantasy Football Non-PPR Mock Draft - 12 Teams, 8th 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 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, 8th Pick

1.08 - Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns

Despite missing four games, Chubb still finished as fantasy's RB9 in 2020. Chubb has finished second and third in rushing yards per game in 2019 and 2020, respectively. Through his first three seasons, Chubb has never averaged fewer than five yards per carry in a season.

Even with the league's best No. 2 back (Kareem Hunt) on the roster, Chubb has averaged 18.05 touches per game since Hunt returned from his 2019 suspension. Only four teams in the league had a higher rushing play percentage than the Browns in Kevin Stefanski's first year as head coach.

2.05 - Antonio Gibson, RB, Washington Football Team

Before suffering a turf toe injury early in his Week 13 matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Gibson had a five-game stretch where he performed as fantasy's RB5, RB11, RB8, RB7 and RB2, respectively. Even without adjusting for Washington's Week 8 bye, only Dalvin Cook and Derrick Henry scored more fantasy points during that stretch. Gibson has tremendous upside in his second season.

3.08 - Mike Evans, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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, but Evans is his best in non-PPR scoring formats.

4.05 - Amari Cooper, WR, Dallas Cowboys

While I debated Cooper (and even his teammate CeeDee Lamb) and Evans when making the previous selection, I was able to get both Evans and Cooper. Cooper finished 2020 with a career-high 92 receptions for 1,114 yards, his third consecutive 1,000-yard season, and five touchdowns. If Dak Prescott is able to stay healthy, the Cowboys have a legitimate shot at being the top performing offense in the NFL in 2021.

More: Dak Prescott 2021 Fantasy Football Outlook

5.08 - Darrell Henderson, RB, Los Angeles Rams

With Cam Akers (Achilles) injured and Malcolm Brown now longer in L.A., the Rams will turn to Henderson, by default, for large workloads. It's possible that they add a veteran free agent before the start of the season as Henderson has dealt with his own share of injuries. That said, he has massive upside in what should be a much-improved offense with Matthew Stafford under center.

6.05 - Diontae Johnson, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Tied with Davante Adams and Keenan Allen, no receiver had more games with double-digit targets than Johnson (10). The second-year receiver averaged only 10.5 Y/R, but he turned his 144 targets into 88 catches for 923 yards and five touchdowns. While he needs to cut down on the drops, Johnson should be one of the league's most-targeted wideouts in 2021 even though the team re-signed JuJu Smith-Schuster.

More: Pittsburgh Steelers 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

7.08 - Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks

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.

8.05 - Deebo Samuel, WR, San Francisco 49ers

Foot and hamstring injuries (plus the COVID-19 list) limited Samuel to only seven games in 2020. Samuel played only one snap (his final snap of 2020) against WFT in Week 14, but he had 65-plus yards in each of the final four games in which he appeared before that. Due to his physical playing style, he's always a threat to miss time, but he's a viable WR3 (or better) in the weeks that he's on the field.

9.08 - Zack Moss, RB, Buffalo Bills

Many 2021 mock drafts linked the Bills to a first-round running back. Instead of adding an early-round running back, it's a positive for the outlook of Moss and Devin Singletary that the Bills only added Matt Breida in free agency. While I prefer Moss over Singletary, a concern for both is that Josh Allen has 25 rushing touchdowns over the past three seasons, but the price is right in Round 9 as my RB4.

10.05 - Corey Davis, WR, New York Jets

Davis had a career-best season in 2020 (65/984/5, 15.1 Y/R). Transitioning to a new offense with a new coaching staff and rookie quarterback, Davis will be the team's WR1 by default and adds depth as my WR5.

11.08 - Tony Pollard, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Despite playing fewer than 50% of the team's offensive snaps every week except for the game Ezekiel Elliott missed (Week 15, 90%), Pollard had at least eight touches in 10 of the team's final 12 games. Excluding his one start, Pollard averaged nine touches over his final 11 games in which he appeared in less than half of the team's offensive snaps. Assuming good health for Dak Prescott and the offensive line, 8-10 weekly touches in this offense could lead to stand-alone flex value for Pollard on a weekly basis.

12.05 - Logan Thomas, TE, Washington Football Team

Thomas was the only tight end in the league to have a minimum of four targets in every game last season. While he was consistent throughout the season, he was especially productive down the stretch.

From Weeks 6 to 17, Thomas scored the third-most fantasy points with 58 receptions (third-most), 564 yards (third-most) and five touchdowns (tied fifth-most) amongst tight ends. Last year's breakout tight end will enter 2021 as a viable top-10 option even with the team bolstering its receiving corps via the draft and free agency.

13.08 - Mike Gesicki, TE, Miami Dolphins

There was a stretch (Weeks 3 to 8) last season where Gesicki had only zero or one catch in all but one game, but he was highly productive outside of that five-game span. The third-year tight end posted career highs across the board with 53 receptions, 703 yards and six touchdowns.

14.05 - 49ers DST, San Francisco 49ers

15.08 - Wil Lutz, K, New Orleans Saints

- View Full Mock Draft Results

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2021 Fantasy Football PPR Mock Draft - 12 Teams, 4th 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 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, 4th Pick

1.04 - Alvin Kamara, RB, New Orleans Saints

The versatile back had exactly 81 receptions in each of his first three NFL seasons and then set a career high (83) in 2020. That said, he was on pace for a much higher career-best number before Drew Brees (ribs) missed four weeks and the only games that Kamara failed to reach three catches came with Brees sidelined. Even so, Kamara was fantasy's top-scoring PPR back in 2020 and he's a top-four option for me in 2021.

2.09 - Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers

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. 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.

The only real concern with Jones is the status of Aaron Rodgers. If Rodgers isn't under center when the Packers open the season, Green Bay's offense will suffer overall with fewer scoring opportunities for Jones. But even if Rodgers doesn't play, I'm thrilled to land Jones here as this mock's RB13.

More: Green Bay Packers 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup

3.04 - Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

Allen missed a couple of games and was limited in others, but he finished with 100 catches for the third time in four seasons despite playing with a rookie quarterback. Although just shy of the 1,000-yard mark and averaging a career-low 9.92 Y/R, Allen tied his career high (set as a rookie in 2013) with eight touchdowns. Along with Davante Adams and Diontae Johnson, Allen was just one of three receivers to get double-digit targets in 10 games in 2020.

4.09 - D.J. Moore, WR, Carolina Panthers

Moore averaged only 6.9 targets per game through his first 10 games, but that number jumped to 9.8 over his final five games. In addition, three of his four 100-yard games occurred over that final five-game stretch. Even though his 55.9% catch rate was a career low, the 23-year-old receiver's ADOT (13.2), Y/R (18.1) and receiving yards (1,193) were all career highs.

5.04 - Kenny Golladay, WR, New York Giants

Golladay exceeded the 1,000-yard milestone in back-to-back seasons (2018 and 2019) with the Lions and led the NFL in receiving touchdowns (11) in 2019. Although 2020 was a lost season due to a hip injury, Golladay had either 100-plus yards or 50-plus yards and a score in the four games he played before sustaining the injury. Signing a four-year deal with the Giants, the QB downgrade from Matthew Stafford to Daniel Jones and a more crowded receiver room limits his ceiling a bit. That said, he's a viable WR3.

More: New York Giants 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup

6.09 - Lamar Jackson, QB, Baltimore Ravens

It's not a surprise that Jackson's year-over-year numbers dipped following his elite 2019 MVP season. Jackson threw 10 fewer touchdowns in 2020 and threw for 208 yards or less in 12 of 15 games. Even so, his real fantasy success comes from his rushing ability and he has now rushed for 1,000-plus yards in back-to-back seasons.

Over the final five weeks of the season, Jackson averaged only 161.8 passing yards per game, but he threw 11 touchdowns and rushed for 430 yards and four more scores. During that span, he averaged a massive 27.67 fantasy points per game.

More: Baltimore Ravens 2021 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

7.04 - Chase Edmonds, RB, Arizona Cardinals

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 top-24 fantasy back in 2021.

8.09 - Trey Sermon, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Not only does Sermon have the highest draft pedigree (third round) among the team's running backs, but the Niners traded up to draft him. Given his frame, balance and vision, the team could look to make him their featured back sooner than later (as much as Kyle Shanahan will feature an individual back, that is).

9.04 - Mike Williams, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

In 2018, Williams had 10 touchdowns. In 2019, he led the NFL with 20.4 Y/R and posted his first (and only) 1,000-yard season. Not only were overall numbers (48/756/5) disappointing, but he had only four top-36 performances (half-PPR) out of his 15 games last season. That said, Lombardi said that he'd "bet on nice numbers coming from [Williams] on the stat sheet, that's for sure."

More: Los Angeles Chargers 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

10.09 - Noah Fant, TE, Denver Broncos

Playing at less than 100% in 2020, Fant averaged only 10.9 Y/R after averaging 14.1 in 2019. Fant's ADOT (7.6 to 6.7) and YAC/R (8.3 to 6.1) both declined year over year, but he also set career highs in receptions (62) and yards (673).

11.04 - Latavius Murray, RB, New Orleans Saints

When both Kamara and Murray are active, Murray has stand-alone flex value -- especially during bye weeks. For any weeks that Kamara may miss, Murray becomes a must-start play. In the two games that Kamara missed and Murray was active, Murray had a total of 62 touches, 307 scrimmage yards and four touchdowns.

12.09 - Jalen Reagor, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

Selected one pick before Justin Jefferson (88/1,400/7) in the 2020 NFL Draft, Reagor's disappointing 2020 campaign (31/391/1) becomes even more pronounced. Durability (five missed games) and sub-par quarterback play didn't help, but Reagor's breakout potential makes him a high-upside late-round pick.

13.04 - Rashaad Penny, RB, Seattle Seahawks

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).

14.09 - Colts DST, Indianapolis Colts

15.04 - Cole Kmet, TE, Chicago Bears

Down the stretch, Kmet leapfrogged Jimmy Graham on the depth chart based on snaps played. In addition, the rookie out of Notre Dame averaged 6.0 targets per game over his five final regular-season games. There is some potential for Kmet to have a breakout sophomore campaign.

More: Chicago Bears 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

16.09 - Robbie Gould, K, San Francisco 49ers

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Fantasy Football Projections 2021: Los Angeles Chargers

Our 2021 Fantasy Football Projections will be viewable by both position and team.

Below you will find our 2021 fantasy football projections for the Los Angeles Chargers.

MORE: Fantasy football projections for more NFL teams

QUARTERBACKS

PlayerAtt.Comp.YardsTDINTRushYardsTDPoints
Justin Herbert622.8417.34577.630.8310.5956.3244.93.94333.37
Chase Daniel25.917.5168.40.820.77.216.20.0710.66

Justin Herbert: The reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, Herbert had at least 300 passing yards and/or multiple touchdowns in 13 of his 15 starts as a rookie. Even with a new coaching staff in place for the upcoming season, the second-year quarterback should benefit from a more normal offseason as he enters the season already entrenched as the starter. Not to mention, the offense should be more QB-friendly in 2021. It wouldn't surprise me if he makes a sophomore leap that catapults him into the top five or so QBs.

RUNNING BACKS

PlayerAtt.YardsTDRec.YardsTDPoints
Austin Ekeler225.11001.74.576.1688.24.2259.24
Justin Jackson67.1298.61.3416.3118.70.862.72
Larry Rountree III62.3267.91.47.659.30.648.52
Joshua Kelley50.3211.31.0114.1104.40.648.28
Gabe Nabers2.49.60.083.323.70.26.66

Austin Ekeler: Missing a significant chunk of time due to injury and playing at less than 100 percent when returning to the field, Ekeler averaged 5.5 yards per touch and scored only three touchdowns, both of which were career lows. With Joe Lombardi coming over from New Orleans to run the offense, Ekeler's immense upside as a receiver makes him a top-10 back across all formats.

Justin Jackson: Could Jackson be the odd-man out in L.A.'s running back rotation? That's what ESPN's Shelley Smith predicts. The fourth-year back has played in only 29-of-48 career games.

Larry Rountree III: Roundtree has some sleeper appeal if he's able to beat out both Jackson and Kelley to be the early-down complement to Ekeler. The sixth-round rookie of Missouri rushed for 3,720 and 40 touchdowns over his collegiate career.

WIDE RECEIVERS

PlayerRec.YardsTDRushYardsTDPoints
Keenan Allen110.91129.56.314.20.02206.74
Mike Williams67.4913.66.61.24.70.04165.37
Josh Palmer27.23372.51.45.60.0162.92
Tyron Johnson14.1199.31.42.611.70.0436.79
Jalen Guyton13187.51.32.27.20.0233.89
Joe Reed3.342.70.30007.72
K.J. Hill3.3380.20006.65

Keenan Allen: Allen missed a couple of games and was limited in others, but he finished with 100 catches for the third time in four seasons despite playing with a rookie quarterback. Although just shy of the 1,000-yard mark and averaging a career-low 9.92 Y/R, Allen tied his career high (set as a rookie in 2013) with eight touchdowns. Along with Davante Adams and Diontae Johnson, Allen was just one of three receivers to get double-digit targets in 10 games in 2020.

Mike Williams: In 2018, Williams had 10 touchdowns. In 2019, he led the NFL with 20.4 Y/R and posted his first (and only) 1,000-yard season. Not only were overall numbers (48/756/5) disappointing, but he had only four top-36 performances (half-PPR) out of his 15 games last season. That said, Lombardi said that he'd "bet on nice numbers coming from [Williams] on the stat sheet, that's for sure."

Josh Palmer: The team's third-round pick in April should earn the team's WR3 role behind Allen and Williams in short order. Poor quarterback play at Tennessee limited Palmer's collegiate production, but he has the skill set to be a more productive pro even if he becomes more fantasy-relevant in 2022 -- Williams is a free agent after this season.

TIGHT ENDS

PlayerRec.YardsTDRushYardsTDPoints
Jared Cook42.4474.63.400089.06
Donald Parham28.3346.52.600064.4
Tre' McKitty4.347.50.30008.7
Stephen Anderson3.335.60.20006.41

Jared Cook: Cook replaces Hunter Henry atop the Chargers' depth chart, which disappointed fantasy managers hoping for a Donald Parham breakout season. Entering his age-34 season, Cook has 22 touchdowns over his past three seasons combined, but he averaged only 33.6 YPG -- a five-year low -- in 2020. At this stage of his career, Cook offers little more upside than a streaming option at the position.

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Sunday, July 25, 2021

2021 Fantasy Football Half-PPR Mock Draft - 12 Teams, 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 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.

Half-PPR Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 3rd Pick

1.03 - Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans

Not only is Henry the back-to-back rushing champion coming off a 2,000-yard campaign, but he has led the league in rushing touchdowns in each of the past two seasons with 33 rushing scores in 31 games. While he's not as involved in the passing game as other top backs, Henry still scored the second-most half-PPR fantasy points.

2.10 - Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Mixon appeared in only six games in 2020 and he has now missed multiple games in three of his four NFL seasons. That said, Mixon had a minimum of 19 touches in the six games in which he appeared in 2020. Through Week 6, Mixon had more carries (119) than all running backs not named Derrick Henry (123) and was top 10 among running backs in targets (26). With Giovani Bernard now in Tampa, Mixon should be even more involved as a receiver.

More: Joe Mixon 2021 Fantasy Football Profile

3.03 - Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

Allen missed a couple of games and was limited in others, but he finished with 100 catches for the third time in four seasons despite playing with a rookie quarterback. Although just shy of the 1,000-yard mark and averaging a career-low 9.92 Y/R, Allen tied his career high (set as a rookie in 2013) with eight touchdowns. Along with Davante Adams and Diontae Johnson, Allen was just one of three receivers to get double-digit targets in 10 games in 2020.

4.10 - Adam Thielen, WR, Minnesota Vikings

Thielen averaged only 61.7 YPG, but he scored 14 touchdowns in 2020. Only three receivers were targeted more often in the red zone than Thielen (19). While Justin Jefferson has moved ahead of him in Minnesota's wide receiver pecking order, Thielen remains a strong WR2 in fantasy.

5.03 - Myles Gaskin, RB, Miami Dolphins

Gaskin was off to a strong start through Week 8, but he only appeared in three games (Weeks 13, 16 and 17) after that point. Even though he missed six games, he ranked 15th among running backs in receptions (41). In addition, only three running backs had more receptions in the 10 weeks that Gaskin played.

The former seventh-round pick out of Washington has shown the ability to be highly productive and the Dolphins were unable to draft one of the top three backs in the 2021 NFL Draft. While I currently project a first-round running back to the Dolphins in my early 2022 NFL Mock Draft, Gaskin is a high-end flex for this team.

6.10 - Chase Claypool, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers

Claypool scored 11 touchdowns -- nine receiving and two rushing -- in the regular season and added two more receiving scores in the team's playoff loss to Cleveland. Re-signing JuJu Smith-Schuster to a one-year deal puts a dent into Mapletron's upside in year two, but it wouldn't surprise me if he was the team's top-producing wideout in 2021.

More: Pittsburgh Steelers 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

7.03 - Russell Wilson, QB, Seattle Seahawks

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.

8.10 - Will Fuller, WR, Miami Dolphins

Once again, Fuller missed five games, but this time it was due to suspension. In fact, he will finish serving his six-game suspension in Week 1 of the 2021 season.

Fuller set career highs in receptions (53), yards (879), YPG (79.9), Y/R (16.6) and touchdowns (eight) in 2020. Before the suspension, he was on a 77/1,279/12 pace. Signing with the Dolphins lowers Fuller's upside with the corresponding downgrade at quarterback from Deshaun Watson to Tua Tagovailoa. (On a related note, Miami hasn't ruled out a trade for Watson.)

9.03 - Trey Sermon, RB, San Francisco 49ers

Not only does Sermon have the highest draft pedigree (third round) among the team's running backs, but the Niners traded up to draft him. Given his frame, balance and vision, the team could look to make him their featured back sooner than later (as much as Kyle Shanahan will feature an individual back, that is).

10.10 - Michael Gallup, WR, Dallas Cowboys

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.

11.03 - Gus Edwards, RB, Baltimore Ravens

While better in standard (non-PPR) formats, Edwards performed as fantasy's RB35 in half-PPR formats in 2020. Edwards has a minimum of 133 carries, 711 yards and 5.0 YPC in all three of his NFL seasons. While J.K. Dobbins will handle the bulk of touches, Edwards should approach double-digit touches per game and has stand-alone flex value.

12.10 - Mike Gesicki, TE, Miami Dolphins

There was a stretch (Weeks 3 to 8) last season where Gesicki had only zero or one catch in all but one game, but he was highly productive outside of that five-game span. The third-year tight end posted career highs across the board with 53 receptions, 703 yards and six touchdowns. There is more competition for targets in Miami this year, but Gesicki and my next pick are both on the TE1/TE2 border.

13.03 - Irv Smith, TE, Minnesota Vikings

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.

14.10 - 49ers DST, San Francisco 49ers

15.03 - Samaje Perine, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Perine averaged 6.6 YPC last season for the Bengals and he slides in as the RB2 behind Mixon with Bernard now longer on the roster. I considered handcuffing Henry with Darrynton Evans, but I think Perine is more likely to get large workloads if there's an injury to the starter and Mixon has greater durability risk than Henry.

16.10 - Robbie Gould, K, San Francisco 49ers

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Fantasy Football Projections 2021: Pittsburgh Steelers

Our 2021 Fantasy Football Projections will be viewable by both position and team.

Below you will find our 2021 fantasy football projections for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

MORE: Fantasy football projections for more NFL teams

QUARTERBACKS

PlayerAtt.Comp.YardsTDINTRushYardsTDPoints
Ben Roethlisberger606.3391.14213.830.6210.3126.327.60.26274.73
Mason Rudolph42.226.1282.71.960.954.45.50.0217.92

Ben Roethlisberger: With Pittsburgh re-signing JuJu Smith-Schuster to a one-year deal, Roethlisberger has one of the league's best wide receiver trios at his disposal. Only the one-win Jaguars (66.2%) threw it on a larger percentage of plays than the 12-win Steelers (65.48%) in 2020, per Team Rankings.

At this stage of his career, however, he no longer pushes the ball down the field -- his 9.5 Y/C and 6.3 Y/A were the lowest of his career (excluding a two-game 2019 season). The Athletic's Ed Bouchette highlights why those peripherals may be better in 2021, but given that the Steelers used their first-round pick to draft Najee Harris, Alabama's all-time leading rusher, fantasy managers should expect a greater shift towards the run in 2021.

RUNNING BACKS

PlayerAtt.YardsTDRec.YardsTDPoints
Najee Harris273.81163.78.0853.4418.22.9250.77
Benny Snell54.8219.21.379.265.20.242.46
Jaylen Samuels24.192.80.2412.587.70.428.14
Anthony McFarland Jr.35141.80.445.2360.123.62
Derek Watt1.130.02190.12.42

Najee Harris: The all-time career rushing leader in Alabama history, Harris rushed for 1,466 yards and 26 touchdowns and added 43 receptions for 425 yards and four more scores last season. With few holes in his game, Harris will step in as a Week 1 workhorse. Given the team's propensity to feature its lead back, Harris has the chance to vastly exceed his ADP.

Benny Snell: While there is some competition on the depth chart, Snell -- or whichever back ultimately slides into the RB2 role -- would become a top waiver-wire add if the team's first-round rookie misses any time given how the team historically features one back.

WIDE RECEIVERS

PlayerRec.YardsTDRushYardsTDPoints
Diontae Johnson87.6953.36.83.314.90.02181.54
Chase Claypool68.8944.36.81135.80.88178.49
JuJu Smith-Schuster75.1854.36.4000161.38
James Washington24.23353.400066
Ray-Ray McCloud16.5143.90.54.4330.0929.48

Diontae Johnson: Tied with Davante Adams and Keenan Allen, no receiver had more games with double-digit targets than Johnson (10). The second-year receiver averaged only 10.5 Y/R, but he turned his 144 targets into 88 catches for 923 yards and five touchdowns. While he needs to cut down on the drops, Johnson should be one of the league's most-targeted wideouts in 2021 even though the team re-signed JuJu Smith-Schuster.

Chase Claypool: Claypool scored 11 touchdowns -- nine receiving and two rushing -- in the regular season and added two more receiving scores in the team's playoff loss to Cleveland. Re-signing JuJu Smith-Schuster to a one-year deal puts a dent into Mapletron's upside in year two, but it wouldn't surprise me if he was the team's top-producing wideout in 2021.

JuJu Smith-Schuster: After averaging 65.5 and 89.1 yards per game, respectively, in his first two seasons with the Steelers, Smith-Schuster has averaged 46.0 and 51.9 per game in 2019 and 2020, respectively. The Steelers re-signed Smith-Schuster to a one-year contract and he is a WR3 (both in fantasy and on his own team).

TIGHT ENDS

PlayerRec.YardsTDRushYardsTDPoints
Eric Ebron46.9481.1400095.56
Pat Freiermuth14.6148.40.800026.94
Zach Gentry2.120.20.10003.67

Eric Ebron: In his first season with the Steelers, Ebron finished with 56 catches for 558 yards and five touchdowns. Given the team's talented trio of wide receivers and the likelihood that the Steelers run more often in 2021, Ebron's year-over-year numbers will likely dip.

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Fantasy Football Mock Draft 2021 - 12 Teams, 2-QB PPR Scoring

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.

2-QB, PPR Mock Draft: 12 Teams, 10th Pick

1.10 - Austin Ekeler, RB, Los Angeles Chargers

When making this pick, only Patrick Mahomes (1.01) and Josh Allen (1.03) were off the board, so the thought process was I could go Ekeler-QB and be happy with that start if I went in that direction. Especially given his ability as a receiver and that this 2-QB mock draft utilizes full PPR scoring, Ekeler has immense upside if he can stay healthy in 2021.

2.03 - Aaron Jones, RB, Green Bay Packers

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. 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. The only question is the status of Aaron Rodgers and how much Jones and the offense will suffer if he actually sits out the 2021 season.

More: Green Bay Packers 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup

3.10 - Keenan Allen, WR, Los Angeles Chargers

Allen missed a couple of games and was limited in others, but he finished with 100 catches for the third time in four seasons despite playing with a rookie quarterback. Although just shy of the 1,000-yard mark and averaging a career-low 9.92 Y/R, Allen tied his career high (set as a rookie in 2013) with eight touchdowns. Along with Davante Adams and Diontae Johnson, Allen was just one of three receivers to get double-digit targets in 10 games in 2020.

4.03 - Jalen Hurts, QB, Philadelphia Eagles

With three (most likely) first-round picks next year, the Eagles have positioned themselves to potentially draft a quarterback early in the 2022 NFL Draft. In addition, ESPN's Adam Schefter recently said to "watch Philadelphia" when it comes to a potential Deshaun Watson trade.

That said, Hurts is squarely in the top-10 mix in fantasy (barring a Watson trade). After the Eagles benched Carson Wentz, Hurts scored more than 17 fantasy points in all four of his starts and averaged 23.74 per game over that stretch. While he threw for 300-plus yards in two of his four starts, his rushing stats (46/272/3) over that span put him on a Lamar Jackson-esque full-season pace of 184/1,088/12 rushing.

5.10 - Adam Thielen, WR, Minnesota Vikings

Thielen averaged only 61.7 YPG, but he scored 14 touchdowns in 2020. Only three receivers were targeted more often in the red zone than Thielen (19). While Justin Jefferson has moved ahead of him in the wide receiver pecking order, Thielen remains a strong WR2.

More: Minnesota Vikings 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

6.03 - Miles Sanders, RB, Philadelphia Eagles

Falling short of preseason expectations, 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% in 2020. Although he averaged an impressive 5.3 yards per carry for the season, Sanders failed to exceed 3.8 YPC in four of his final five games. Despite last year's struggles and a relatively crowded running backs room, what's not to love about getting Sanders as my RB3 in Round 6?

7.10 - Kirk Cousins, QB, Minnesota Vikings

Throwing 35 touchdowns and 13 interceptions (both career highs) in 2020, Cousins was especially good down the stretch. Cousins scored a minimum of 20 fantasy points in seven of his final nine games last season. Even though Stefon Diggs led the NFL in receiving, rookie Justin Jefferson (88/1,400/7) more than compensated for the 2019 version of Diggs (63/1,130/6).

8.03 - Will Fuller, WR, Miami Dolphins

Once again, Fuller missed five games, but this time it was due to suspension and he'll finish serving his suspension in Week 1. Fuller set career highs in receptions (53), yards (879), YPG (79.9), Y/R (16.6) and touchdowns (eight) in 2020. Before the suspension, he was on a 77/1,279/12 pace. The change of scenery almost certainly means lower per-game production in 2021, but this and my next pick give me a high-upside WR3.

More: Miami Dolphins 2021 Fantasy Football Projections

9.10 - Laviska Shenault, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars

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 (half-PPR) over that stretch.

10.03 - Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Washington Football Team

While I project WFT to draft a QB in the first round of my 2022 NFL Mock Draft, the fact that they didn't add any competition in this year's draft for Fitzpatrick makes him one of my favorite late-round streamers at the position. Meanwhile, Washington upgraded their receiving corps by signing Curtis Samuel and Adam Humphries and drafting Dyami Brown in the third round. I'd be comfortable with him as my QB2 and especially like him as my QB3.

11.10 - Leonard Fournette, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Down the stretch in their Super Bowl run, the Buccaneers relied on Fournette as their lead back. In four playoff games, Fournette totalled 448 scrimmage yards and four total touchdowns on his 82 touches including 18 receptions. I expect Fournette to continue his role as the team's 1(a) going into 2021, but the workload split will include Ronald Jones as the 1(b) and Giovani Bernard as 1(c).

More: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2021 NFL Power Rankings Roundup

12.03 - Logan Thomas, TE, Washington Football Team

Thomas was the only tight end in the league to have a minimum of four targets in every game last season. While he was consistent throughout the season, he was especially productive down the stretch.

From Weeks 6 to 17, Thomas scored the third-most fantasy points with 58 receptions (third-most), 564 yards (third-most) and five touchdowns (tied fifth-most) amongst tight ends. Last year's breakout tight end will enter 2021 as a viable top-10 option even with the team bolstering its receiving corps via the draft and free agency.

13.10 - Jalen Reagor, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

Selected one pick before Justin Jefferson (88/1,400/7) in the 2020 NFL Draft, Reagor's disappointing 2020 campaign (31/391/1) becomes even more pronounced. Durability (five missed games) and sub-par quarterback play didn't help, but Reagor's breakout potential makes him a high-upside late-round pick.

14.03 - Irv Smith, TE, Minnesota Vikings

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.

15.10 - Washington Football Team DST

16.03 - John Brown, WR, Las Vegas Raiders

Two seasons removed from a 1,000-yard campaign, it wouldn't be far-fetched for Brown to lead the wide receivers in production. That said, consistent weekly production is likely to elude the position group with Darren Waller dominating targets.

17.10 - Robbie Gould, K, San Francisco 49ers

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