After a short break from writing, I am back folks, and man, does it feel good. Now, you’re normally used to me writing on the defensive line, but I decided to switch it up and do some offense this week. This week I will be covering ADPs of quarterbacks and tight ends, and why certain players are being drafted too high, or if they represent a nice buy low candidate at their respective ADPs. Note that two sites were used: myfantasyleague.com and ESPN.com. The former is geared more towards dynasty leagues, whereas ESPN is geared more towards standard leagues.
We are all reliant on QB in fantasy. They generally score the most or second most points for our teams week in and week out, but certain guys are rising too fast or falling too low. It’s where you draft your QB that matters. It is best to wait until you have a solid grouping of RBs and WRs and then go from there. You do not want to be caught on the back end of a run on QBs, but also don’t want to feel pressured, so timing is key. For tight ends, unless you want Gronkowski, who is currently going in the mid to late second round, it is a good idea to wait as the draft is deep on TE, and you can find a gem late. Yes, outside of Gronk, the next three: Kelce, Reed and Olsen will all cost a 4th-5th round pick, which is still pretty steep, but gives you a chance to find your RB1, WR1 and a RB/WR2 of your choice. After that, the run on TEs slows down and there is some serious value.
Cam Newton CAR (mfl: 51.91; ESPN: 64.4)- Newton will exceed expectations for where he is being drafted. Last season was an aberration for Newton as he posted career low in rushing yards (359), tied a career low in rushing TDs (5) and had only a [19:14] TD:INT ratio in 15 games. Things will change this season as he has a healthy Kelvin Benjamin as his top receiver, and the addition of Christian McCaffrey will provide him another weapon he can use all over the field and keep his legs fresh. He is consistently being drafted after Rodgers, Brady, Brees, Ryan, but should be one of the next QBs off the board.
Andrew Luck IND (mfl: 56.7; ESPN 102.3)- Luck has to be the hardest QB to place in drafts as he has an elite arm when healthy, but is currently battling a shoulder injury, and remains on the PUP list. When he was on the field last season, Luck had a respectable [31:13] TD:INT ratio and threw for 4,240 yards. The problem he has had on offense is his supporting cast as the Colts have yet to find a second receiver outside of T.Y. Hilton, who led the league in receiving last season, and need a second runningback in case something happens to Gore as he continues to age. Currently the 11th and 13th QB being taken according to myfantasyleague.com and espn.com, respectively, there is a huge opportunity to get Luck at a discount and enjoy a potential top 5 fantasy season.
Dak Prescott DAL (mfl: 60.78; ESPN: 80.4)- The rookie came out of nowhere last season, finishing in the top 10 in a majority of ESPN leagues. Let us pump the brakes on him a second, as he will likely be without tailback Ezekiel Elliot the first six games of the season, meaning he will be asked to run the ball more, and he will need to show that 2016 was the norm and not a one-hit wonder. He is a talented QB, and has the pieces around him in Dez Bryant and Jason Witten to become a perennial top 10 QB, and he will have every opportunity to prove that in 2017. He is being slightly over-drafted, however, as his 79.2 ADP in ESPN and 61.82 ADP suggests.
Marcus Mariota TEN (mfl: 54.84; ESPN: 97.3)- Do not be pressured into drafting Mariota when the dual threat QBs are flying off the board. At his current draft position, he will be costing you a 9-10th round pick, and is being taken before Luck and Dak Prescott. While he offers substantial upside, he needs to gel with his receivers, most notably rookie Corey Davis, and learn to be more of a passer than a thrower. He can make all the throws, but Tennessee threw just 55% of the time last season, limiting his upside.
Austin Hooper ATL (mfl: 112.79; ESPN: 137.7)- Hooper, in the Atlanta offense, is an enticing TE and you can get him at a discount, as all the big name TEs will be off the board and you can nab him late. After totaling only 19 receptions (3 TDs) last season, Hooper is the de facto #1 TE in an explosive Atlanta offense that had 788 yards and 10 TDs to the TE position last season. Yes, Hooper is a super sleeper at the TE position, and will not cost much come draft day, so take advantage. He should be a nice red zone target for QB Matt Ryan.
Jordan Reed WSH (mfl: 43.74; ESPN: 44.1)- Reed is being over drafted in the third and fourth rounds of drafts, so look elsewhere when looking for a TE. When on the field, he sees between eight and nine targets per game, but continues to battle injury concerns. At his draft position, you could nab a solid second RB or WR1/2 and be set for the draft at either position. While he is an elite TE when on the field, the production does not warrant taking him so high.
Jason Witten DAL (mfl: 118.78; ESPN: 116.3)- Oldie but goodie Witten is being drafted low and is a good buy low target. With an impending six game suspension for RB Ezekiel Elliot, Witten could see an uptick in targets as the Cowboys would look to pass more if he were suspended. He is no longer the force he used to be, but he will net you three to four TDs and a decent yardage clip in an explosive offense.
Rob Gronkowski NE (mfl: 21.19; ESPN: 19)- Gronkowski is currently costing a mid-late second round pick and you should not target him in your drafts. True, he is hands down the best TE, and will rack up the yards and TDs as long as he is on the field with Tom Brady at the helm, but has missed 24 games his past five seasons. He will be healthy for the start of the regular season and will dominate, but there are wiser picks to be made than Gronkowski.
Hunter Henry LAC (mfl: 76.71; ESPN: 116)- Henry is being under valued in drafts and represents a nice mid-late round pickup at the position. Note: dynasty leagues will want to bump his value up a little as he figures to play a larger role in a Charger offense that will be pass-heavy. Finishing second in red zone targets with 12 last season, he will be the top option around the goal line for the Chargers.
O.J. Howard TB (mfl: 44.8; ESPN: 132.1)- In dynasty leagues, Howard is being over drafted, and in standard leagues he is slightly over drafted. The highest touted TE to come out since Eric Ebron (2014), Howard offers drool-worthy measures and potential, but pump the brakes a bit. Yes, he will block and catch in one of the up and coming offenses, but it is unclear how many targets per game he will see, or his usage near the goal line. Yes, he is a very enticing TE to target in dynasty leagues, but do not reach for him if more consistent, proven options are available at TE.
Thanks for reading. Tune in next week for my next article, which will be a mystery as I’m not even sure what I want to write about yet. Any suggestions are welcome, and please do leave a comment or questions for debate. Hope this article helps you in your drafts as you have your eyes on the Championship.