If your league drafts in reverse order of the previous season and
you find yourself drafting last, a belated congratulations for your
win, but now it’s all about figuring out how to repeat while
drafting last. Or perhaps you were just unlucky and drew the No.12
pill out of the jar.
Do you have a strategy? You better because it’s a tough
Fortunately, I’m here to help with some numbers that may
even give you an advantage. Below is a chart listing the PPR scoring
for the top player at each position since 2007. The average top-5,
the average No.5, the average top-12, the average for No.12, the
average top-24, and the average for No.24. These will come in
handy in your 12-team league draft.
12-Year Average Fantasy Points
Scored by Position (PPR)
Average No. 1
Average No. 12
Now let's put this information to use.
The object of this experiment is to amass the most fantasy points
from one quarterback, two running backs, two receivers and a tight
end by the end of your sixth pick (No.61).
Based on most mock drafts, by the time you are called upon to
make the last pick of the first round, likely eight running backs
and three wide receivers will already be off the board.
You could take the top rated quarterback (Patrick Mahomes or
Lamar Jackson), but the "penalty" for waiting on a
quarterback isn't worth making that pick this early. Yes,
you could get 28.52 FPts/G from Mahomes, but the fifth quarterback
off the board will still average 23.68. And you can get him, say
Russell Wilson, in the sixth round. Which makes the quarterback
position much less of a priority than the other positions.
You could also take a wide receiver at No.12 and you should expect
to get around 20.07 points from that guy. But again, the 12th
receiver off the board will get 18.46 fantasy points, so there
isn't a big advantage here. Travis Kelce, the top tight
end the past two seasons, is an option but the most fantasy points
you could lose at this position is 4.67 even if you select the
12th-best tight end.
Which means a running back is the choice because with all the
elite runners already gone you don't want to end up completely
ignoring this position and ending up with two backs scoring about
12.2 FPts/G. The combination of the two wouldn't be within
five points of Christian McCaffrey's 2019 production (29.3
Austin Ekeler, who averaged 19.6 FPts/G last season while sharing
time with Melvin Gordon is likely available as is the Packers'
Aaron Jones (19.9), Nick Chubb (16.3) or Josh Jacobs (14.9). Based
on FFToday Projections, we will go with Jones as the pick at No.12
and be smiling all the way to the bank if he repeats his 2019
And in the second of the back-to-back selections we can snap
up Jacobs, who produced solid numbers as a rookie and should get
better in season two or Ekeler. I'm an Ekeler guy, who will
be the primary back for the Chargers with Gordon in Denver. Tyrod Taylor/Justin Hebert may not give him 108 targets and 92 receptions
this season as Philip Rivers did in 2019, but every quarterback
loves his safety valve option and Ekeler is the best, averaging
10.8 ypr last season. Even a 10-percent regression leaves him
scoring 17.6 FPts/G and our expected 37.5 fantasy points from
our running backs will keep us competitive despite picking last.
If you would rather go for a young up-and-coming back with plenty
of upside, think Miles Sanders of Philadelphia. Barring a late
signing, Sanders will be the main guy for the Eagles and he's
also a very good receiver out of the backfield.
We can now go to the table with all the food and drinks as it
will be a while before we can pick again. And unfortunately, even
if we see a mistake being made, we likely won't be able
to take advantage for a long time ... pick No.36 and No.37.
Assuming both Kelce and George Kittle are off the board, it's
time to work on our wide receiver corps. Obviously, if either
tight end is still available we sprint to the table with our selection
FFToday's projections have Kupp scoring the sixth-most
wide receiver points this season. Kupp posted career highs in
targets (134), receptions (94), yards (1,161) and touchdown catches
(10) last season despite quarterback Jared Goff having regressed
a bit from his 2018 Super Bowl season.
I also like Smith-Schuster to rebound now that he won't
be trying to catch balls from Devlin "Duck" Hodges.
The return of Ben Roethlisberger to the lineup will be a huge
boost for the entire Pittsburgh Steelers offense, but in particular
for JuJu. Smith-Schuster saw 96 less targets last season and 72
less receptions and while some of that was due to missed games
(four), a lot had to do with the conservative offense run with
Mason Rudolph and Hodges under center.
So at No.36 and No.37 we select Kupp and Smith-Schuster.
And finally we select our quarterback and tight end in the fifth
and sixth rounds to fill out the primary starters for our run
to a title.
Based on mock draft results to date, both Dak Prescott (ADP 60),
Wilson (63.8) and Deshaun Watson (64.2) will still be available.
Take your pick. Despite my being an Eagles fan, I think Prescott,
with the weapons he has available to him, would be a great pick
here. He racked up 4,902 yards and 30 touchdowns in 2019 and the
team added CeeDee Lamb at the draft to go along with Cooper and
an improving Michael Gallup. (Wilson would be my second option
as Watson will have to relearn the offense without elite DeAndre Hopkins to throw to this season).
Our pick No.61 will be the tight end needed to fill out our roster
and here is where I think we get a steal. You know someone will
be overzealous and choose Rob
Gronkowski far too early (see the "Where
to slot the unretired Rob Gronkowski" piece I wrote last week)
which could leave a Darren
Andrews or Zach
Ertz on the board. At worst you could end up with Evan
Higbee or Hayden
Hurst. Right now Waller is going fifth (ADP 54.9), Gronk sixth
(67.1) and Engram seventh (73.3). Engram is a solid option, but
if you want to gamble there is the new Falcons starter, Hayden
Hurst, who will take over for Austin
Hooper (75-787-6), who is in Cleveland this season. Quarterback
Matt Ryan has
always used his tight ends well and that trend should continue
So let's select Prescott and Engram if only because Hurst
may get off to a slow start due to lack of on-field work with
his quarterback in this Covid-19 environment.
So that’s our primary starters from the 12th position.