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: 14 Teams, 6th Pick
1.06 - Davante Adams, WR, Green Bay Packers
I generally prefer to start my drafts with a stud running back, but the settings for this mock is to start three receivers (up to four counting the flex). If there were only two required starters at wide receiver, I likely would have taken Adams' teammate Aaron Jones.
Adams led the NFL in receiving touchdowns (18) and yards per game (98.1) and also set a career high in receptions (115) despite missing a couple of games. With double-digit touchdowns in four of five seasons, Adams has a total of 58 scores in 71 games over that span. Given that Aaron Rodgers is still playing at an MVP level, Adams has moved back into the WR1 spot with the Rodgers drama behind us.
2.09 - 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 Outlook
3.06 - Chris Carson, RB, Seattle Seahawks
Few teams want to "establish the run" more than the Seahawks so returning to Seattle on a two-year deal was Carson's ideal landing spot. Even though the Seahawks let Russell Wilson "cook" in the first half of the year, Carson performed as a weekly fantasy RB13 or better in four of the team's five games before their Week 6 bye. In fact, he was a top-five performer from Weeks 1 to 5. Coming out of the bye, Carson sustained a foot injury in Week 7 that kept him out of several games. Carson's physical running style lends itself to a greater propensity to get banged up, but he's a high-end RB2.
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.
More: Carolina Panthers 2021 Fantasy Football Projections
5.06 - Mark Andrews, TE, Baltimore Ravens
Andrews missed a couple of games, but the third-year tight end led the team in YPG (50.1). The team has added more competition for targets and the size of the pie (league-worst 171.2 YPG in 2020) limits upside to a certain degree, but Andrews has 17 touchdowns over the past two seasons.
6.09 - 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.
7.06 - 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. Teammates Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb are both viable WR1 options (top-14 receivers) in 14-team leagues, but I am generally higher on Gallup than most and consider him a viable WR3.
More: Dallas Cowboys 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup
8.09 - Kenyan Drake, RB, Las Vegas Raiders
The Raiders plan to use Drake in a variety of ways including at receiver. Where Drake is going in fantasy football mock drafts, I think he is fairly valued (more so than Josh Jacobs) and there is plenty of massive upside if Jacobs were to miss any games.
9.06 - Jamaal Williams, RB, Detroit Lions
In his four NFL seasons, Williams has averaged 736.5 scrimmage yards, 155.5 touches and 30.5 receptions per season with the Packers. While he remains his team's RB2 (to D'Andre Swift instead of Aaron Jones), Williams should get 8-10 touches per game even with both Swift and Williams healthy. Especially during bye weeks, he's a viable flex play.
10.09 - T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts
Over the past two seasons, Hilton averaged 50.8 (2020) and 50.1 (2019) YPG, which are the two lowest of his NFL career. Assuming Carson Wentz (foot) returns sooner than later, Hilton has a quarterback more capable of taking advantage of his speed compared to the last couple of seasons.
11.06 - Tyler Higbee, TE, Los Angeles Rams
Since I am bullish on Higbee's 2021 outlook, this pick makes me regret the Andrews pick in Round 5. Normally, I prefer to wait on TE and usually I can double-down later in drafts on some upside plays at the position. With Gerald Everett signing with Seattle and the team trading for Matthew Stafford, there is optimism for improved numbers from Higbee.
More: 10 Undervalued Players in 2021 Fantasy Football Drafts
12.09 - Jakobi Meyers, WR, New England Patriots
Meyers led the Patriots with 81 targets, 59 receptions and 729 yards in 2020. While the team added Nelson Agholor and Kendall Bourne in free agency, there's a good chance that the Meyers leads the position group in receiving once again.
More: NFL Predictions 2021: AFC East
13.06 - Tre'quan Smith, WR, New Orleans Saints
Smith posted career numbers in receptions (34) and yards (448) in 2020. Even with Brees retiring, Smith should set new career highs with Emmanuel Sanders leaving for Buffalo and Thomas likely to miss the start of the season. Marquez Callaway was already off the board in this mock.
14.09 - Chiefs DST, Kansas City Chiefs
15.06 - Harrison Butker, K, Kansas City Chiefs
16.09 - 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. Given Mixon's durability history, Perine is a sensible last-round pick as a handcuff for Mixon.
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