We are in the heart of the college football season, and now we have seen a good amount of this 2024 draft class.
Being able to see them allows for rankings to be adjusted and big boards to form. They remain fluid as always because even from just a month and a half ago, things are looking very different. Players who were atop of position rankings have fallen, players have risen, and new faces have emerged.
Here is how things are shaping up as we are halfway through this entertaining college football season.
Dynasty Rookie Big Board
Brock Bowers, TE, Georgia
Position value be damned; Bowers is far and away the best player in the 2024 NFL Draft if he declares. He has a complete skillset and is the closest thing to Travis Kelce we have seen come out of college football in years. Tight ends have learning curves in the NFL, but in the case of Bowers, look for him to be a TE1 immediately.
Marvin Harrison Jr., WR, Ohio State
Right behind Brock Bowers is Harrison, and he is almost as perfect. Harrison thrives no matter what route he runs, where he lines up, and no matter the coverage. Whatever team is drafting in the top ten come April will be drafting him to be their top target in the offense, and he has the skill set to find success in that role.
Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina
No Caleb Williams here as we bring up our top quarterback in Maye. I see nothing wrong with Williams, but in the case of Maye, his ability to find success within structure while also being mobile in a calm sense in the pocket gives him the edge.
Caleb Williams, QB, USC
Williams draws the Patrick Mahomes comparisons because of his ability to create when a play breaks down. While that trait is one every quarterback needs, he sometimes creates his own chaos while still making plays. It comes across as being picky, but when you have two top quarterbacks who can be stars immediately like Williams and Maye, you have to be.
Rome Odunze, WR, Washington
Guard him one-on-one with his size and skillset, and you will be taught a hard lesson. Against Oregon, Odunze showed he can take over a game and make impact plays under pressure. He has been on a constant climb in terms of progression as a prospect, and that is something that is critical to his NFL projection.
Malik Nabers, WR, LSU
Nabers is a playmaker and could easily be the second-best receiver when we finalize rookie rankings after the draft. The LSU offense knows to get the ball in his hands by any means necessary, and when they do, plays get made. Like Harrison Jr., Nabers could be a team’s top receiver or playmaker come April.
Emeka Egbuka, WR, Ohio State
Someone who has fallen a bit but is still very much a top-end receiver prospect is Egbuka. Great physical traits and good route running, and his best trait may be his ability to work the middle of the field as a receiver. Not many receivers do that in the NFL anymore, but those who do make a productive living.
Michael Penix Jr., QB, Washington
Despite his history of knee injuries for Penix, you cannot deny the arm talent he has. The amount of NFL-caliber throws he has on film is maybe as much as we have from Maye and Williams. He throws receivers open, hits them in stride, and, most importantly, doesn’t turn the ball over.
Quinn Ewers, QB, Texas
Ewers is going to be the toughest player to figure out in rookie rankings throughout the entire draft process and offseason. He has all the arm talent in the world and has had some mixed years of film. To his credit, his 2023 film looks world better than 2022, but Ewers can’t lose momentum down the stretch. If he finishes the year strong and puts a great combination together, look for Ewers to be a top-five pick potentially.
J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan
McCarthy doesn’t make a ton of “wow” throws like the top four quarterbacks discussed, but he does the simple things great. In terms of fantasy, someone like Kirk Cousins has made a healthy career doing just that. McCarthy may not win you a ton of games in the NFL, but when it comes to fantasy, he will be a more than serviceable starter on the right team as a rookie.
Adonai Mitchell, WR, Texas
One of the biggest benefactors of Ewers’ consistency this year, and someone who has helped out his quarterback, is Mitchell. He plays very well outside, wins jump balls, and has proven he can handle a WR1 workload. The landing spot shouldn’t matter for Mitchell; he can be productive as a WR1 or WR2 for a team in the NFL, and there is fantasy value in that.
Keon Coleman, WR, Florida State
Coleman is the first receiver in these rankings where he needs to go to a team with a WR1 established. His skill set is designed to make splash plays and be a compliment to another receiver. Similar to D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, he could go to a team and give them someone who can do that Metcalf role of being a big play receiver.
Shedeur Sanders, QB, Colorado
Another first as these rookie rankings progress, Sanders is the first player who is most likely returning to school. Outside of his dad’s impact, he could have a shot at being QB1 of the 2025 quarterback class. Like McCarthy, Sanders doesn’t make a ton of flashy throws, but he is very efficient in pushing the ball downfield in a safe way. People have compared him to Teddy Bridgewater in terms of arm talent, but Sanders projects as more of a fantasy-relevant option.
Troy Franklin, WR, Oregon
A deep threat who can burn anyone lined up across from him, Franklin is going to be a problem in the NFL. So many teams are seeing what the Dolphins are doing and recognizing the edge of having a true deep threat. Franklin may not have a ton of consistency as an NFL receiver, but his big weeks will make you forget the slow weeks.
Ladd McConkney, WR, Georgia
Puka Nacua has taught everyone a valuable lesson: don’t forget about the guys who do the small things right. Nacua is off to a historic start by doing the simple things right, and that is what McConkney does. He thrives in the slot and could easily be an eight-to-ten-catch guy for an NFL team while also working on special teams.
Xavier Worthy, WR, Texas
An undersized receiver who plays like he is the size of Shaquille O’Neal, Worthy is a gamer you should bet on. He may not be drafted to be a top receiver, but he could easily turn into one after two to three years. Worthy is going to be an investment you have to make on your dynasty roster, but he has a very high return value.
J. Michael Sturdivant, WR, UCLA
Sturdivant is someone I didn’t even have my eyes on entering the season. He wasn’t in my rookie rankings, but he is now for good reason. Physically gifted with great size, but he just hasn’t had much consistency outside of this year for the Bruins. Having a quarterback who can push the ball down the field has helped him demonstrate his playmaking ability better.
Jonathon Brooks, RB, Texas
A new face as RB1, and it is from the same school that gave us the top running back last year. Brooks has been the most complete back in college this year, and when Texas is driving downfield, he is a major reason. He is a dual threat out of the backfield who isn’t afraid to lay the lumber blocking as well. In a running back class that is begging for someone to stand out, Brooks is doing it.
Jermaine Burton, WR, Alabama
After a slow start to the season, Burton has hit a groove in the past couple of weeks for Alabama. The passing game for the Crimson Tide has been…interesting. A bright spot has been Burton, who has shown he can be the five-star receiver everyone thought he could be. Burton has a chance to test very well and could rise up rookie rankings as the draft process goes on.
Braelon Allen, RB, Wisconsin
The situation at running back in rookie rankings will be fluid, and Allen could be a loud voice in the overall discussion. Allen has been more hot and cold than Katy Perry at times, but when he is on, he plays as the best back in the country. His age and physical traits will have teams excited to draft him, but he may have to work on a limited basis as a rookie.
1). Drake Maye, North Carolina
2). Caleb Williams, USC
3). Michael Penix Jr., Washington
4). Quinn Ewers, Texas
5). J.J. McCarthy, Michigan
6). Shedeur Sanders, Colorado
7). Riley Leonard, Duke
8). Cameron Ward, Washington State
9). Jordan Travis, Florida State
10). Spencer Rattler, South Carolina
This quarterback class is the best we have had in recent memory. At the top, you have two guys who could be the top guys in a lot of other classes. Throughout the entire rankings, you have NFL traits galore with each passer. Not all of them can be fantasy-relevant, but all could have a chance to be in the right system or roster.
Running Back Rankings
1). Jonathan Brooks, Texas
2). Braelon Allen, Wisconsin
3). TreVeyon Henderson, Ohio State
4). Trey Benson, Florida State
5). Raheim Sanders, Arkansas
6). Bucky Irving, Oregon
7). Donovan Edwards, Michigan
8). Audric Estime, Notre Dame
9). Jase McClellan, Alabama
10). Devin Neal, Kansas
These rookie rankings are the toughest to gauge and believe in. After being spoiled by a lot of running back talent in recent drafts, it seems we have hit a dry spell. While some of these guys will be starters due to where they get drafted, they are all carrying a lot of questions as the season goes on and we get closer to draft season. Proceed with caution with every name within these running back rankings.
Wide Receiver Rankings
1). Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State
2). Rome Odunze, Washington
3). Malik Nabers, LSU
4). Emeka Egbuka, Ohio State
5). Adonai Mitchell, Texas
6). Keon Coleman, Florida State
7). Troy Franklin, Oregon
8). Ladd McConkney, Georgia
9). Xavier Worthy, Texas
10). J. Michael Sturdivant, UCLA
This group being limited to just ten isn’t fair at all. Thus, it is important to understand just how loaded this wide receiver group is. You have four guys who could be number one guys on day one, then you have 10-12 who could be a WR2 for a team. A super deep class with a lot of potential to bring value deep into rookie drafts.
Tight End Rankings
1). Brock Bowers, Georgia
2). Ja’Tavion Sanders, Texas
3). Bryson Nesbit, North Carolina
4). Cade Stover, Ohio State
5). Ben Sinnott, Kansas State
Of all the rookie rankings, the running backs are confusing, but the tight ends are rough. Outside of Brock Bowers, there is honestly no one I would bother investing in right now. Tight end is a tough position to produce at going from college to the NFL, and this group is behind the eight ball.
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