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Draft Day Digest: How to build a Superflex team from the 1.12

As startup season continues, Alex Matteo will walk you through the ideal draft from the 1.12 draft slot

It’s that time of year again! The dynasty drafts are rolling in! No two drafts are the same, and that adds even more fun! Each draft has a different approach based on a multitude of factors. The draft slot you select from, how many teams are in the league, lineup, and roster size.

Picking from the 12 slot is different than any other spot in the draft. We must try and predict runs as much as possible with 23 picks in between each pair of picks. As important as ADP is, there will be times when you have to ‘reach’ to get the guy you want.

That said, we will be using the latest ADP from Sleeper, and we will be going through a 15-round Superflex startup draft when picking from the 1.12. This roster will have ten starting players and five bench spots.

(Lineup we are drafting for is QB, RB, RB, WR, WR, WR, TE, SF, Flex, Flex, and five Bench spots)

Draft Pick 1.12: Dak Prescott, QB DAL

Other options: Kyle Pitts, TE ATL

At pick 12, you can determine what position will be an anchor for your team. In a Superflex or even a 2QB league, the QB position is the most important position to lock down. Prescott will be throwing the ball often in a high-powered offense that should be Top-5 in pass attempts per game. Prescott will likely be able to continue to be a Top-8 QB.

Draft Pick 2.01: D’Andre Swift, RB DET

Other options: CeeDee Lamb, WR DAL

Before injuring his ankle in Week 12 against the Chicago Bears, Swift saw at least 15 opportunities (carries + targets ) in all but two games. In the 13 games Swift participated in, he saw over 200 opportunities and had over 1,000 yards. If Swift stays healthy, he will be in the conversation for the RB1 OVERALL.

Draft Pick 3.12: Tee Higgins, WR CIN

Other options: Trevor Lawrence, QB JAX, or Travis Etienne RB JAX

Going into his third year, Higgins is in a prime spot to truly breakout. This past season Higgins saw 110 targets (7.8per game) in his 14 games and had 1,091 yards and six touchdowns. With improvements to the offensive line, QB Joe Burrow being another year removed from the knee injury, 130-140 targets are in the realm of possibilities for Higgins.

Draft Pick 4.01: Travis Etienne, RB JAX

Other options: Trevor Lawrence or Saquon Barkley, RB NYG

Taking Etienne at pick 37 is one that seems a little early. This is where you have to anticipate a run of RBs over the next couple of rounds, and he likely won’t make it back to you. Why Etienne over older proven backs or 2020 RBs? Etienne, in college, had a complete profile. He grew as a passer each year and set multiple ACC records as a rusher. Etienne is in a very similar spot to rookie Miles Sanders (coached by Doug Pederson as well). There is little competition in the backfield, both with a young QB who had complete college profiles. Etienne should see 200-250 touches, and similarly to Swift, whom we took in the second round, he will see his fair share of targets too.

Draft Pick 5.12: Zach Wilson, QB NYJ

Other options: Mac Jones, QB NEP, or Keenan Allen, WR LAC

After an up and down rookie year, the Jets did everything in their power to put second-year QB to succeed. They added offensive tackle Lanken Tomlinson from the San Francisco 49ers, two TEs who can make an impact in the receiving game, as well as blockers, in TJ Uzomah and Tyler Conklin. This is all without mentioning: they spent a Top-10 pick on Ohio State WR Garrett Wilson and a second-round pick on Iowa State RB Breece Hall. Going off the board at QB20, Wilson has a great chance to outperform his ADP and become a young piece you want to build around.

Draft Pick 6.01: Keenan Allen, WR LAC

Other options: Mac Jones

With a team filled with youth and upside, a reliable high floor and high ceiling player. Insert Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Allen. Since 2015, he has seen no less than 130 targets, six or more touchdowns, and 1,000 yards in all but one season (2020). In a division with four extremely high-powered offenses, expect a lot of shootouts. Allen, if healthy, can be penciled in for 100 catches, 1,100 yards, and six touchdowns at the minimum. That’s a weekly floor and ceiling that can win your matchups.

Draft Pick 7.12: Darnell Mooney, WR CHI

Other options: Dallas Goedert, TE PHI or Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR DET

They say wide receivers break out in their third year. Bears WR Mooney is just that. Going into his age 24 season, he is a prime candidate for a breakout. Justin Fields will not be looking over his shoulder all season, and with no real target competition, Mooney should see close to 140 targets again. Only this time, they will be quality targets.

Draft Pick 8.01: Dallas Goedert, TE PHI

Other options: Courtland Sutton, WR DEN

The Eagles made it known that they want to throw the ball more by trading for AJ Brown. While this on a surface level, may not seem like a great thing for the 27-year-old TE, having a receiver like Brown will open things up for Goedert in the middle of the field. Should Hurts throw the ball another 4-6 attempts a game, Goedert would see close to 90 targets, giving him Top-5 upside at the TE position.

Draft Pick 9.12: Chase Edmonds, RB MIA

Other options: Matt Ryan, QB IND, or Brandin Cooks, WR HOU

You will rarely be able to get a starting RB in the ninth round who is capable both as a rusher and a pass catcher. That is EXACTLY what you get with Dolphins starting RB Edmonds. In each of the last two years, he has had 800 all-purpose yards while in a complementary role, including a career-high in carries (116) in 2021. Coming off the board at RB38 behind backup RBs Michael Carter, Isiah Spiller, and Rachaad White, Edmonds has the coveted ‘league winning upside.’

Draft Pick 10.01: Matt Ryan, QB IND

Other options: Brandin Cooks

Throughout his career, Ryan has been the epitome of stability. Before 2021, Ryan had ten consecutive seasons with at least 4,000 passing yards and twenty touchdowns, and he fell short of that by 32 yards this past season. After being traded from the Falcons to the Colts, Ryan’s situation has significantly upgraded. He has a Top-5 offensive line, a stud RB, and a legitimate WR1 in Michael Pittman. Should our fifth-round pick Wilson have some growing pains or any of our other QBs get hurt, Ryan can step in and provide a consistent 15-18 PPG.

Draft Pick 11.12: Adam Thielen, WR MIN

Other options: Alexander Mattison, RB MIN, or Melvin Gordon, RB DEN

All signs point to the Vikings throwing the ball much more in 2022 than in previous years, with former Las Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell taking over as head coach. Should Thielen stay healthy, he provides a 100-target floor which is ideal this late in the draft.

Draft Pick 12.01: Alexander Mattison, RB MIN

Other options: Melvin Gordon

Time to double up with Minnesota Vikings. This time it is with RB Mattison. Over the past few years, Dalvin Cook has missed multiple weeks, and Mattison has provided RB1 upside when playing. In all six games where Mattison played at least 50% of snaps, he’s scored at least 15 fantasy points, including four games above 20 points.

Draft Pick 13.12: Jalen Tolbert, WR DAL

Other options: Russell Gage, WR TBB, or Tyler Boyd, WR CIN

Swing for the fences, right? Tolbert is undoubtedly that. No Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup will likely start off on the PUP list. Tolbert is in a great spot to earn targets early and often as a rookie.

Draft Pick 14.01: Russell Gage, WR TBB

Other options: Tyler Boyd

After signing a three-year deal with Tampa Bay, there was immediate speculation that Gage would step into the WR3 role with the team. However, he is currently slated to be the number two in an offense that threw the ball 719 times in 2021. No Antonio Brown, no Rob Gronkowski, and Chris Godwin potentially missing time this season. Gage is a must-draft, low-risk, high-reward pick.

Draft Pick 15.12: Justyn Ross, WR KCC

Other options: Odell Beckham Jr., WR Free Agent, or K.J. Osborn, WR MIN

Come round 15, and it’s okay to have a dart throw pick rather than a veteran roster clogger. That’s exactly what Ross is here. The Chiefs’ WR room is wide open, and Ross has a chance to make the roster as the WR3 for the Chiefs. If he doesn’t, he’s a very replaceable player. Once again, another low-risk, high-reward play.

Roster Recap

QBDak Prescott1.12Pick 12
RBD’ Andre Swift2.01Pick 13
RBTravis Etienne4.01Pick 37
WRTee Higgins3.12Pick 36
WRKeenan Allen6.01Pick 61
WRDarnell Mooney7.12Pick 84
TEDallas Goedert8.01Pick 85
SFZach Wilson5.12Pick 60
FlexChase Edmonds9.12Pick 108
FlexAdam Thielen11.12Pick 132
BNMatt Ryan10.01Pick 109
BNAlexander Mattison12.01Pick 133
BnJalen Tolbert13.12Pick 156
BNRussell Gage14.01Pick 157
BNJustyn Ross15.12Pick 180
Lineup and Bench through 15 rounds

Early in the draft, I felt it was most important for us to lock down two of the scarcest positions in fantasy, spending four of the first five picks on QBs and RBs. This gave the roster stability while not sacrificing the ceiling. Adding Higgins in the third provided a young receiver to build around.

The flexibility of building a stable RB core early on allowed me to take shots at the receiver positions in rounds 13-15 with high ceiling plays in Tolbert, Gage, and Ross with minimal risk.

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