Before you know it, it will be fantasy football draft time, we hope! During the next month or so, I will be conducting several mock drafts. During the drafts, I will pick in all 12 positions, with all sorts of scenarios.
As a rule, I prefer to draft three starting running backs within the first four rounds. It is a tried-and-true strategy, which has done me well for 20-plus years. The mock drafts I do will all assume 12 teams are in the league (unless otherwise noted) with the following positions: quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, tight end, a flex (running back, wide receiver or tight end), kicker, team defense and six bench spots. Therefore, it is a 16-round snake draft.
I have the ninth overall pick; let’s see how it all works out. In this format, I am playing in a half-point-per-reception league (0.5 PPR), which means that every reception is worth a half-point.
You can see the entire draft by clicking here.
Here is my roster:
Round 1, Pick 9: Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, Kansas City Chiefs
Round 2, Pick 4: Kenyan Drake, RB, Arizona Cardinals
Round 3, Pick 9: Leonard Fournette, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Round 4, Pick 4: Robert Woods, WR, Los Angeles Rams
Round 5, Pick 9: Tyler Boyd, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
Round 6, Pick 4: Jarvis Landry, WR, Cleveland Browns
Round 7, Pick 9: Cam Akers, RB, Los Angeles Rams
Round 8, Pick 4: James White, RB, New England Patriots
Round 9, Pick 9: Carson Wentz, QB, Philadelphia Eagles
Round 10, Pick 4: Tom Brady, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Round 11, Pick 9: Preston Williams, WR, Miami Dolphins
Round 12, Pick 4: Rob Gronkowski, TE, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Round 13, Pick 9: Buffalo Bills DST
Round 14, Pick 4: Harrison Butker, K, Kansas City Chiefs
Round 15, Pick 9: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Detroit Lions
Round 16, Pick 4: Parris Campbell, WR, Indianapolis Colts
My overall strategy in a half-PPR league is to treat it like a PPR league. You get a slight bonus for players who are double-digit touchdown players, but not enough to overhaul the rankings a bunch. Derrick Henry-type players may get a boost in this format, for example.
Time to jump on the CEH out-of-control-with-no-engineer train! Sitting at nine, I passed on WR2 Davante Adams and running backs Nick Chubb and Josh Jacobs to select Clyde Edwards-Helaire, the new savior of fantasy football. I immediately regretted it.
Rookies will have their moments in the NFL this year, but I worry how soon those moments will be. Especially on a Super Bowl championship team like Kansas City, how long will the coaching staff put up with normal rookie mistakes, especially early in the season?
In Round 2, I rolled the dice again by taking Kenyan Drake. Again, I rolled the dice in passing on Aaron Jones and Miles Sanders, to name a few. I like Drake, especially in that offense in Arizona, but I worry about his touches with a healthy Chase Edmonds back.
I took Leonard Fournette in Round 3 to make it three running backs in three rounds. If the Jags plan to let Fournette walk at the end of the season, I wonder if they look toward the future at that position at some point. But he represents good early-season value here.
I took three high-volume wide receivers in the next three rounds, so I felt good about that. Then I went back to the rookie running back pool with Cam Akers but also took a PPR star in James White to have some stability.
Waiting to take a quarterback works! Carson Wentz and Tom Brady in Rounds 9 and 10, respectively, will be just fine, thank you!
At tight end, pairing Rob Gronkowski with Brady makes sense, especially that late in a draft. Backing up Gronk with a young tight end in T.J. Hockenson makes a lot of sense, too. I hope that Gronk is Gronk and Hock takes the next step during his sophomore year. Gronk and Hock, that rhymes.
Overall, this is a solid team, but certainly some boom or bust to it.
What do you think of this team? Let me know at @FansFantasy on Twitter.
Please try a mock yourself as practice makes perfect. You can mock in minutes by clicking here.
Photo Credit: Courtesy of LSU Athletics
Ken Zalis ranked No. 3 in FantasyPros’ 2019 Fantasy Football Draft Accuracy Rankings.