With the NFL draft in the rearview mirror, many of our dyanasy fantasy rookie drafts are on the horizon. Immediately following the draft I conducted a rookie mock draft to get the immediate feel of dynasty players on how the rookies fair now they have a place to call home. With many rookies being very close in the overall rankings, the draft helps us shift those ties. There are risers and fallers right out the gate and statuses will change as training camps start to roll out, and we can see the players on the field.
Rookie drafts are the backbones to dynasty leagues as we’ve given up the right to re-draft leagues and are stricken to build our teams via free agency, trades and the coveted rookies. Hitting on multiple rookies who become stars can propel your team into a championship contender for years to come; it is what makes dynasty fantasy football the greatest form of fantasy sports out there today. Mock drafts help you see how others view the rookies and help you prepare for your own leagues’ real draft. The key to succeeding in your rookie draft is being prepared and knowing where to find good value. Put in the work and reap the benefits for years to come.
Here are the results of Round 1 of a four-round rookie mock draft
1.01 @Thr0ws0meDeas selects Todd Gurley, RB, Rams
Gurley was my No. 1 rookie before the draft and nothing has changed after this past weekend. Gurley will be going to play in a dome with no true No. 1 receiver on the roster. Look for the Rams to run their offense through Gurley, who does everything very well from blocking, receiving and of course, running the ball. He may start off slow due to injury and possibly miss the first month of the season, but his long-term upside is sky high.
1.02 @James_8 selects Amari Cooper, WR, Raiders
Cooper comes off the board right where he should as this year’s top receiver prospect. He is an elite route-runner that should have no problem getting open at the next level. Derek Carr showed good promise last year as the Raiders now have to build an offense around him to succeed, and Cooper will help his progress greatly. Cooper will step in and immediately become the No. 1 target in Oakland and be able to help team owners right out the gate likely putting up WR3 numbers in his first season. James Jones led the team last year with 73 receptions and Cooper is far superior to Jones in every way possible.
1.03 @Fantasy_Alpha selects Kevin White, WR, Bears
Where I would’ve gone Melvin Gordon here, I certainly can’t argue against this pick. White oozes with upside as an explosive athlete who will now line up across Alshon Jeffery, who should help free White up on the outside. Jay Cutler has the arm to get the ball to White down field allowing the Bears to use White’s elite speed to get pass defenders on the outside. Some may argue that White takes a hit going to Chicago with Jeffery there, but there is a strong chance that White will be able to surpass him within the next few years and become a true No. 1 receiver. It’s a passing league and all of us would start Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson at the same time in any league.
1.04 @Prhanes selects Melvin Gordon, RB, Chargers
Gordon is one of the most explosive running backs to enter the draft in years and goes to a team that traded up to acquire his services. Very similar to Jamal Charles, Gordon can take any carry the distance, which can make him a fantasy goldmine. He showed at his pro day that he is very capable of catching he ball out of the backfield, so if he can pick up protection, he can become an NFL rarity in a three-down back. The Chargers are in a win-now mode, and Gordon will make everyone on offense look better when he is on the filed. He should slide right into your starting lineup Week 1 and stay there for some time. RB1 numbers his rookie year is what I expect him to produce, which makes this pick a great value pick.
1.05 @Himynameismark2 selects DeVante Parker, WR, Dolphins
The draft really opens up at the fifth pick and I expect opinions to vary greatly from this point out. Parker is my No. 2 rookie receiver and lands in nice spot with tons of talent around him. Some will argue that there are too many receiving options now in Miami, but the cream always rises to the top. Parker is now the tallest wide receiver on the roster by more than 3 inches, and has the most talent. He will see plenty of single coverage and should have success from the get go as he has some of the surest hands coming out of this year’s draft. Ryan Tannehill owners rejoice as the Dolphins have put him in a great position to take the next step forward. Look for Parker to be a great fantasy receiver for many years to come.
1.06 @DynastyRich selects Nelson Agholor, WR, Eagles
I was initially torn between Dorial Green-Beckham and T.J. Yeldon here, but I went with my immediate gut reaction with Agholor. Coming out with a lot of Jeremy Maclin comparisons, Agholor ends up right where Maclin left off in Philly leaving his 276.8 PPR fantasy points, good for ninth overall, behind. Agholor’s excellent route running should help him step right into Chip Kelly’s up-tempo offense and start contributing. The Eagles now have two young, promising receivers in Agholor and Jordan Matthews, and if Sam Bradford can stay healthy, it should be the best receiving corps he’s played with. The system is made for fantasy production; if Agholor can come close to Maclin’s numbers in the next few years, then no matter where you draft him it will end up being good value. I’m sure my opinion may change as the weeks go by, but as of today, I can’t find a reason not to take him here.
1.07 @joshpopovich selects Ameer Abdullah, RB, Lions
Good bye Reggie Bush, hello Abdullah. Going to the Lions with the 22nd pick in the second round, Abdullah was the fourth back to be selected in this year’s draft. With former Saints quarterbacks coach Joe Lombardi as their new offensive coordinator, Abdullah should have high upside in PPR leagues. An explosive running back that is dangerous on the outside, Abdullah should see a fair share of screens and sweeps in Detroit. Abdullah lands with a terrific offense and should split carries with 29-year-old Joique Bell. Look for the Lions to see if they have a future bell-cow on their hands this year as they use the committee approach, but Abdullah has the talent to get the majority of carries throughout the season. The league is full of RBBCs and you can now add Abdullah to the list of guys you want on your roster.
1.08 @mfaiella2001 selects Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Titans
The Titans is not a good spot for any fantasy player, currently, but this is dynasty league and we have to look at the big picture. DGB will be paired up with the No. 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota and should instantly become the team’s No. 1 receiver. Standing nearly 6-foot-6 with 4.47 speed makes DGB a threat whenever he is on the field. There are likely growing pains ahead as the team needs to find their identity on offense, but the potential here is far too great to pass up. If Mariota can develop into a quality NFL starter, it’s easy to see DGB becoming the new Brandon Marshall.
1.09 @joeyeoman selects Jameis Winston, QB, Buccaneers
We have preached Winston’s name for months now on the podcast and there can’t be much more said on how I believe that Winston will translate into a top-tier NFL quarterback. If you have a hole at QB on your roster, this is your main target come your draft. Pairing up with Mike Evans makes it that more salivating as Winston will have no problem getting Evans the ball downfield. Elite quarterbacks take your team a far way and Winston could provide that stability for the next 10 years, which is a lifetime in fantasy football. Winston to me is one of the best quarterback prospects to come out in the last 15 years.
1.10 @Glosser13 selects TJ Yeldon, RB, Jaguars
I considered Yeldon at six so that shows you how high I am on the former Alabama running back. I had Yeldon as my No. 3 back before the draft and that ranking stands firm today, landing with the Jaguars who are building a nice offense around Blake Bortles. Yeldon should step in Day 1 as the starting RB for the Jaguars and has the tools to be a true three-down player. As the team continues to groom Bortles, look for them to balance the offense nicely, not being shy with the amount of carries Yeldon will receive. I’m a big fan of Yeldon’s skill set and think he will be a 1,000-yard rusher from Year 1 — a true plug-and-play guy. Anytime you can get a starting back this late in the draft you are coming away winner.
1.11 @burnsyy selects Breshad Perriman, WR, Ravens
I like Perriman more than the recently-departed Torrey Smith, and he will step into Smith’s role now that he has signed the 49ers. Perriman has elite speed and can get downfield in a hurry, and that’s great new for the strong-armed Joe Flacco. Perriman had some drop issues in college, but I believe that had a lot to do with concentration and bad quarterback play. In a few years Perriman should be a quality WR2 and put up similar stats to what Smith had in Baltimore with a slightly higher ceiling. Perriman should come off boards consistently in the late first of all rookie drafts.
1.12 @theivor selects Tevin Coleman, RB, Falcons
Coleman is a fast running back that should compliment Devonta Freeman nicely and has the talent to open the year as the starting tail back. Coleman fits into new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan’s system perfectly as a one-cut, get-up-field runner, and Shanahan has had success getting the best out of his backs. Coleman has elite speed, running a 4.39 at his pro day, and averaged a whopping 7.12 YPC while at Indiana. While there is bust potential with this pick, the ceiling is very high and well worth the risk this late in the draft. All owners in need of a RB will covet Coleman and almost everybody is always in need of a RB.