By Chet Gresham - @ChetGresham
Aug. 1, 2018.
For this PPR draft, I tried out FantasyPros' Mock Draft Simulator
, which has its trouble keeping up with the news, but for the most part I've found it to be instrumental in doing multiple mock drafts from different draft positions to get a feel for how a draft might go.
For this draft, I chose the 11th spot and a fairly standard set up with 1QB, 2RB, 3WR, 1TE, 2FLEX, 1DEF and 1K.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 1-2:
I did have trouble picking between Dalvin Cook and Michael Thomas, but given the fact that Jerick McKinnon is gone, I expect Cook to be the only receiving back worth throwing to in this offense, and the Vikings do like throwing to their running backs. Latavius Murray may get more work than a typical backup, but he won't be involved in the passing game, which should keep Cook's potential in PPR leagues extremely high.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 1-2:
These two rounds went about as planned, so there weren't any picks who just announced value, although I do like the DeAndre Hopkins/A.J. Green pairing this season in PPR. They are both solid players who you can count on and make for a sturdy base for a PPR team.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 1-2:
Again, no picks feel like reaches here, but the Ezekiel Elliott/Mike Evans pairing feels a little risky. Elliott will be a workhorse, but the Cowboys look like they'll have trouble taking the heat off him enough to move the ball consistently, while Evans needs extreme targets to be consistent, and I don't want to rely on that with more receiving pieces around him this season.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 3-4:
The continued good news and video of Andrew Luck making all of his throws without trouble have put me back on the T.Y. Hilton train. I don't think he's as talented as a lot of receivers, but I do think he and Luck have an excellent connection, and it shows in their stats, as Hilton has averaged nine targets, 5.3 receptions. .4 touchdowns and 82.4 yards per game with Luck playing, and just seven targets, 3.7 receptions, .23 touchdowns and 61.4 yards per game without him.
Jay Ajayi is a player I've gone back and forth on this year, but the more I look at his evolution into the starting running back for the Eagles last year, the more I see a significant workload for him this season, including some targets. He looks set to average around 16-18 touches per game and will get the goal-line touches with LeGarrette Blount gone. Yes, the Eagles spread the ball around, but Ajayi will take on the Blount role and be better at it while seeing more targets in an extremely proficient offense.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 3-4:
Doug Baldwin went pretty early here, showing how much he's risen in rankings this summer, but I still like him this early, while Derrius Guice is someone I'm interested in late in the fourth round every time.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 3-4:
Quarterbacks are deep this year, and I just can't see missing out on a top receiver or back for one, even when their name is Aaron Rodgers.
I like Zach Ertz a lot, but the third round is just crazy early for a tight end not named Kelce or Gronkowski. There are too many receivers to feed in Philadelphia to grab him that early.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 5-6:
I reached for Chris Hogan because I think he's that good and in an offense that gives him great efficiency when targeted. You can check out my detailed reasoning behind my love for Hogan
Jamison Crowder is another player I can't seem to get away from. He's shown good consistency in his career and now gets Alex Smith at quarterback, which is excellent news for a slot receiver like him. I'm not sold on Josh Doctson, and we know Jordan Reed has extreme trouble staying healthy, so there should be plenty of targets for Crowder this season.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 5-6:
I'm a proponent of Michael Crabtree this season and like him in the fifth round. No other Baltimore receiver has his touchdown ability to go along with great consistency.
I had to choose between Crowder and Sony Michel and went with the safer Crowder, but there are times when I would have gone with Michel, who has a ton of upside in the Patriots' offense.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 5-6:
I wanted to like Robert Woods this year, but the acquisition of Brandin Cooks has pushed him down the target ladder too far for the sixth round.
Maybe Jordy Nelson finds a second wind in Oakland, but he looked washed last year when Aaron Rodgers wasn't throwing him the ball. I'll let others find out where Nelson is in his career.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 7-8:
I believe Dion Lewis should always go ahead of Derrick Henry in PPR leagues, which didn't happen here and allowed me to grab Lewis in the seventh round. Henry and Lewis will split work, with Henry as the lead back, but Lewis is more versatile and a much better receiver. I would always rather have the versatile player.
Lamar Miller hasn't shown much in Houston, but D'Onta Foreman may not be ready for Week 1, and Miller put up his best numbers with Deshaun Watson at quarterback. Watson's dual-threat ability keeps Miller from getting the brunt of the rushing defense targeting him. With Watson, Miller averaged 88 total yards and .58 touchdowns per game compared to 66 total yards and .22 touchdowns per game without him.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 7-8:
I like Randall Cobb this year with Jordy Nelson gone and Aaron Rodgers back. Cobb doesn't have to put up the huge numbers he has in the past to be a value this year, and as long as he is healthy, he will be a value.
Mark Ingram is someone I'm looking harder at, as many have soured on him after his suspension. Alvin Kamara will not be the lead back between-the-tackles, and I don't see anyone else putting up Ingram's numbers while he is gone, so he should come back to a reasonable workload behind a tremendous offensive line and offense.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 7-8:
I don't hate any of these picks even though I wouldn't have made some. Jack Doyle does stand out as someone with a low floor with Eric Ebron on the team. Ebron's hype is always high in preseason, and then he craps out, but there's no doubt these two will hurt each other's upside.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 9-11:
Like I mentioned with Hilton, I like what I've seen from Luck so far in training camp, and I'm more than willing to grab Luck in the ninth round to pair with his No. 1 receiver.
Jamaal Williams may not even be the best running back on his team, but he's the steadiest and hasn't been suspended.
Nyheim Hines is a perfect player for Frank Reich and Andrew Luck, and the Colts don't have a top running back who must see 300 touches. Hines is a play-maker and a worthy pick at this point in PPR leagues.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 9-11:
Rex Burkhead is a player to target, especially this late in a draft. His ability around the goal line along with his versatility as a receiver make him someone who will find a way to give you a good game even if his touches don't get to where you'd like.
Any defense at this point is nuts.
I had my eyes set on David Njoku, but he was scooped up. The guy is a beast and will be a stud in the NFL. I can't say that it will happen this year, but he has enough ability to force targets.
The Lions have Kerryon Johnson and LeGarrette Blount, who has pushed Ameer Abdullah to fourth on the depth chart, but neither of those guys is reliable receivers, which should allow Theo Riddick to be a consistent PPR FLEX play.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 9-11:
I like Mike Williams' upside with Hunter Henry gone, but I prefer Tyrell Williams, and he's who I'd rather pick.
I absolutely love Duke Johnson but Jebus, that team is packed with running backs and receivers. At this point, it's not a bad pick, but I am worried that Jarvis Landry and Njoku limit Johnson's upside too much.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 12-14:
Seattle is down to Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett as its best two receivers now, and that fact should give Lockett plenty of opportunities this year.
The hype for Doug Martin has been loud out of Oakland, and even though I don't see much upside out of the Raiders' offense, Jon Gruden loves Martin, and Martin gets a significant upgrade in his new offensive line.
Vance McDonald would be a top-five tight end for me on the Steelers if it weren't for his numerous injuries in the past. I love his upside too much though, so I've been grabbing him late in most drafts.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 12-14:
Matt Breida has been putting on a show in training camp and currently is slated for a decent workload next to Jerick McKinnon in Kyle Shanahan's 2-RB offense. McKinnon makes for a robust late-round pick, especially in PPR.
Anthony Miller is another player who has looked great early in training camp and has good upside in Matt Nagy's offense.
Chris Ivory is just "bluh" as a starter, but if LeSean McCoy ends up in legal trouble, Ivory is the starter and getting a starter this late would be great.
WORST PICKS, ROUNDS 12-14:
At this point in the draft, there aren't many picks I'd consider bad. I mostly see players here with upside to beat their draft slots.
MY PICKS, ROUNDS 15-18:
As I mentioned when talking about Mike Williams, I'd rather have Tyrell Williams, and I ended up with him much later in the draft.
Danny Amendola's draft stock should be on the rise, as he's been practicing as the No. 1 slot receiver in Miami and looking good doing so. His injury history is troubling of course, but with Landry gone, there are a ton of targets open in the middle of the field in Miami.
I'm looking forward to Chicago's defense this season. The Bears have put together a functional group and a strong defensive coordinator in Vic Fangio.
Patriots kicker. You know.
BEST PICKS, ROUNDS 15-18:
Frank Reich is in love with Eric Ebron, and with Andrew Luck hopefully back that gives Ebron good upside at this point in the draft.
Christian Kirk is one of my favorite rookies, and even though he'll likely be waiver-wire fodder in most leagues, I want him on my teams to start the season where I can.
My Fantasy Team:
Andrew Luck, Colts
Dalvin Cook, Vikings
Jay Ajayi, Eagles
Keenan Allen, Chargers
T.Y. Hilton, Colts
Chris Hogan, Patriots
Vance McDonald, Steelers
Jamison Crowder, Redskins
Dion Lewis, Titans
Stephen Gostkowski, Patriots
Lamar Miller, Texans
Jamaal Williams, Packers
Nyheim Hines, Colts
Doug Martin, Raiders
Tyler Lockett, Seahawks
Tyrell Williams, Chargers
Danny Amendola, Dolphins
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