2019 Fantasy Football: Top-12 Dynasty Rookies

By Chet Gresham – @ChetGresham
Published May 3, 2019

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    This season you will see a wide variety of dynasty rookie rankings out there because this isn’t a stacked field to choose from, but there are going to be some lottery tickets who will pay off. Hitting those will be tough, but still worth the endeavor.

  1. Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders
    Jacobs is not a no-doubt big-splash fantasy player like Saquon Barkley last year, but he’s still a much better than average back who didn’t get worn into the ground in college due to playing in a committee at tailback for Alabama. He’ll also make an immediate impact in Oakland, where his toughest competition, Isaiah Crowell, just tore his ACL. Jacobs should be able to prove himself as a capable three-down back and garner the majority of running back touches from Day 1, which is helpful in dynasty when we consider the longevity at the position.

  2. David Montgomery, RB, Bears
    I usually lean toward wide receivers in dynasty, but this year, I feel like you can get similar skill level and opportunity late in the first round or early second round. That leads me to grab the few running backs who appear to be ready for immediate impact early in drafts this year. Montgomery is one of those few, as he will take the place of Jordan Howard in Chicago and has more ability as a receiver, which fits Matt Nagy’s system better. Mike Davis isn’t an empty uniform though, which means Montgomery will have competition, but in the long term, Montgomery and Tarik Cohen should be the stalwarts of the backfield on a team with a great defense to keep games close.

  3. N’Keal Harry, WR, Patriots
    The Patriots are low on receiving talent after losing Rob Gronkowski and Josh Gordon, which should quickly give Harry a good workload early on. Harry isn’t going to blow the league away on just his ability alone, but Bill Belichick grabbed him in the first round for a reason and should be able to optimize his talent by moving him around the field and creating mismatches. As this Patriots offense grows old and weakens, opportunity will arise for new faces, and Harry should be up for the job.

  4. Kyler Murray, QB, Cardinals
    If you are in a 2QB or Superflex league, Murray is likely your No. 1 player off the board, but I like him in single-quarterback leagues as well, especially this season. Murray has plenty of work to do to become a dominant force in the league, and it would be great if he had a better offensive line, but his raw ability and the possibility of Kliff Kingsbury’s pass-happy scheme working, make his upside too good to pass on for very long. I’m guessing Murray can be had later in the first or early in the second round, so trading back or waiting on him could work out in 1QB leagues.

  5. Miles Sanders, RB, Eagles
    The Eagles don’t usually draft running backs as high as they did Sanders at 53rd overall. He will have trouble beating out Jordan Howard for early-down touches, but Sanders’ versatility as a runner and receiver should give him the long-term edge over Howard and give him a bigger chunk of running back touches than most recent backs have been able to garner. Add that to the fact that the Eagles have a good offense and a great offensive line, and I like Sanders’ path to success.

  6. D.K. Metcalf, WR, Seahawks
    Metcalf is limited in his route tree, but if he can stay healthy, his skills match well with Seattle and Russell Wilson. Wilson has a great deep ball, which is where Metcalf can hurt you, as his size and speed are truly elite, and with Doug Baldwin likely done for his career, Metcalf will get plenty of opportunity as the No. 2 behind Tyler Lockett.

  7. Parris Campbell, WR, Colts
    Campbell should fit well with the Colts, who know how to get the most out of their talent. Campbell has good route-running ability and should be able to move around the formation with ease. If he can beat out Deon Cain, who is coming back from an ACL injury, he’ll be well worth an early pick, but if Cain shows he can return to form, it might take Campbell a bit longer to make a big impact. I like his chances once he’s on the field though, and he will be at some point.

  8. T.J. Hockenson, TE, Lions
    I’ve gone back and forth on if Hockenson’s blocking ability will keep him at the line of scrimmage versus running routes, but I’m starting to lean toward his blocking being a plus, as he won’t come off the field and it will make it tougher for defenses to contain him when he does run routes. Rookie tight ends, as you’ve heard ad nauseum, have trouble putting up good fantasy numbers, but this is dynasty and Hockenson is a beast who could easily stick as an annual top-three fantasy tight end.

  9. A.J. Brown, WR, Titans
    Brown has the ability to be the best wide receiver out of this class. He didn’t land in a perfect spot, as Marcus Mariota can’t seem to stay healthy and the Titans will look to run more than your average bear, but Brown is a player who can transcend his offense and make things happen. And Corey Davis should be a good player to pair with and keep defenses off-kilter, especially if they have to worry about chunk gains from the ground game.

  10. Marquise Brown, WR, Ravens
    Brown didn’t land in the best spot for immediate production, but he should quickly be able to start and as Lamar Jackson becomes more of a passer, Brown’s numbers will rise. Many people will be worried about Jackson as a passer, but he’s better than his run-filled rookie season showed, and with Miles Boykin also there, they should be able to help each other get open deep while Jackson is avoiding tacklers.

  11. Hakeem Butler, WR, Cardinals
    Andy Isabella was drafted before him, but Butler has more potential long term as a true No. 1 receiver while Isabella is likely too small to beat man coverage on the outside in the NFL and will need to work out of the slot. Butler should be able to work anywhere in the formation and once Larry Fitzgerald is gone, will be Kyler Murray’s go-to receiver.

  12. Deebo Samuel, WR, 49ers
    The 49ers are suddenly stacked with talent at receiver. Dante Pettis and Marquise Goodwin are the base, but Deebo Samuel and Jalen Hurd both have great ability. Samuel should be able to make the earliest impact and has ability to be used all over the formation, much like Pettis. Goodwin’s injury trouble could continue as well, which would push Samuel into more work early on. Add in Jimmy Garoppolo and Kyle Shanahan, and this offense should be able to move the ball.

Check out the next round of 12 dynasty rookies.

Check out the third round of 12 dynasty rookies.

For more recommendations, check out WalterFootball.com’s Fantasy Football Rankings.

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