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2020 FFToday Staff League Draft Analysis

By FFToday Staff | 8/21/20 |

On August 18th, a portion of the FFToday crew got together for our staff league draft. This is a real league that will be played out during the season. Team-by-team results and commentary from each owner are below.

12 owners, 18 Rounds, PPR

Starting line-up: 1 QB, 2 RB, 3 WRs, 1TE, 2 Flex (RB, WR or TE) & 1 D/ST.

1 point for every: 10 yards rushing, receiving, 20 yards passing, reception, sack, FUM Rec, INT Ret
2 points for every: safety, PAT rushed, PAT received, PAT thrown
3 points for every: field goal
4 points for every: touchdown thrown
6 points for every: touchdown rushed, received, fumble returned, interception returned, kick returned

You can view the Round by Round results here.

Looking to ace your draft? Pickup a copy of the Draft Buddy and get customized projections and rankings for your league.

Pick #1 - Kirk Hollis

 Kirk Hollis - Pick No. 1
1.01 RB Christian McCaffrey CAR
2.12 WR Chris Godwin TB
3.01 WR DeAndre Hopkins ARI
4.12 WR A.J. Brown TEN
5.01 RB David Johnson HOU
6.12 QB Kyler Murray ARI
7.01 RB David Montgomery CHI
8.12 TE Tyler Higbee LAR
9.01 QB Tom Brady TB
10.12 RB Duke Johnson HOU
11.01 WR Sterling Shepard NYG
12.12 TE Mike Gesicki MIA
13.01 WR Breshad Perriman NYJ
14.12 DEF Chicago Bears CHI
15.01 RB Chris Thompson JAC
16.12 TE Jack Doyle IND
17.01 WR Alshon Jeffery PHI
18.12 WR Corey Davis TEN
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: Round 1 was a walk in the park, obviously, once I learned I had the No.1 pick. Christian McCaffrey is the best player on nearly everyone's board this season and it was no different for me. In Round 2, I would have considered RB if Austin Ekeler had fallen to me, but otherwise it was always going to be a WR unless Mahomes or Jackson dropped that far (they didn't). Getting two of my top five at that position made more sense than reaching for a second RB when the value at the position fell off of a cliff after Ekeler. With 2 QBs and 2 TEs picked in the first two rounds prior to my pick, I was hoping to get maximum value at WR...and I did. While the prospect of having McCaffrey and Mahomes almost came to pass, in the end, I nabbed a QB I like almost as much four rounds later. I will take it.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I really loved my first seven picks and wouldn't change any of them sans maybe wishing David Johnson was Melvin Gordon instead. In the 10th round, though, I was looking to take one WR from the trio of Mike Williams, Jerry Jeudy, and Deebo Samuel. All went prior to my pick at 10.12 and I had to settle for Sterling Shepard. So it was down the stretch in this draft as I felt I missed most of my late-round targets. I love the overall composition of the team as I think the trio of Godwin, Hopkins, and A.J. Brown might be the best WR group in the league at the onset of the season. But, some of the depth picks left a little to be desired from my perspective with Shepard being a prime example.

Final thought: I am still feeling dumbfounded as to how A.J. Brown fell to me at 4.12. Maybe it was the concern about him not being an ideal fit for the PPR scoring format, but I would have taken him a round and a half earlier without reservation. Same with Murray and Montgomery at 6.12 and 7.01. Truth be told, the early (third round) selections of Cam Akers and Jonathan Taylor really paved the way for a big-time WR to fall and that speaks to the depth that exists at the position and the desperation that also exists with respect to finding a second RB you can count on. All in all, it was a draft with few other surprises and I think my draft was made easier by way of the position I was drafting from. Getting three of the top 25 players in a 12-team redraft isn't something I'm ever going to complain about. Ever. Glad to be a part of this league once again this season.

Pick #2 - Doug Orth

 Doug Orth - Pick No. 2
1.02 RB Saquon Barkley NYG
2.11 QB Patrick Mahomes KC
3.02 RB Leonard Fournette JAC
4.11 WR Calvin Ridley ATL
5.02 WR Tyler Lockett SEA
6.11 RB Ronald Jones TB
7.02 WR Marvin Jones DET
8.11 RB Zack Moss BUF
9.02 WR Diontae Johnson PIT
10.11 WR Parris Campbell IND
11.02 TE Jared Cook NO
12.11 TE Chris Herndon NYJ
13.02 TE Jonnu Smith TEN
14.11 WR Preston Williams MIA
15.02 QB Jared Goff LAR
16.11 RB Jerick McKinnon SF
17.02 RB Bryce Love WAS
18.11 DEF Tampa Bay Buccaneers TB
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: There is only one player I believe can give Christian McCaffrey a true run for his money to be the overall RB1 this year and that would be Barkley. I'm not crazy about the Giants facing the likes of the Steelers, Bears and 49ers to begin the season (or the Ravens in Week 16), but there are a handful of players every year capable of overcoming the matchup and Barkley is one of those players. At No.23, it's highly unlikely in competitive leagues that owners will have one of the consensus top 14 backs fall into their lap. Thus, I was looking for players to give me a significant positional advantage such as Travis Kelce or George Kittle.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I guess I would say Kittle. I REALLY did not want to draft a quarterback in the second round, but I wanted to draft a receiver there even less considering how insignificant the difference is between someone like Chris Godwin and Calvin Ridley or Tyler Lockett (both of whom I drafted in Rounds 4 and 5) in fantasy.

Final thought: My best advice is to remember this quote: "Begin with the end in mind." Far too often, fantasy owners get caught up in trying to draft the best lineup for now or September as opposed to looking ahead to what the landscape may look like in December. For example, virtually everyone believes Jonathan Taylor will run away with the starting job in Indy before long. OK then, act on it! If you're wrong, you probably have a low-end RB2 at worst. If you're right, you probably landed a high-end RB1 in the third round. It's more than thinking outside of ADP, it's about going to get your guy.

I can't personally rank Taylor over someone like Leonard Fournette on my Big Boards because Marlon Mack isn't exactly chopped liver (and I can't ask readers to believe he is), but owners have to ask themselves where they would rank Taylor if they knew for sure he was going to be the alpha in the Colts' backfield after Week 4 or maybe even after Week 8. Ultimately, I went with Fournette in this draft because I do respect Mack. Volume should once again not be a concern with Fournette and positive touchdown regression should help him recoup whatever work he loses to Chris Thompson in the passing game. But if this was one of my high-stakes leagues, I would probably roll the dice on Taylor. Why? Barkley and the best-case scenario for Taylor (especially behind his offensive line) almost guarantees me a finish in the money.

Pick #3 - Jason Katz

 Jason Katz - Pick No. 3
1.03 RB Ezekiel Elliott DAL
2.10 TE George Kittle SF
3.03 WR Adam Thielen MIN
4.10 RB D'Andre Swift DET
5.03 WR D.J. Chark JAC
6.10 WR Marquise Brown BAL
7.03 QB Deshaun Watson HOU
8.10 RB Tarik Cohen CHI
9.03 RB Kerryon Johnson DET
10.10 WR Anthony Miller CHI
11.03 RB Boston Scott PHI
12.10 WR Curtis Samuel CAR
13.03 RB DeAndre Washington KC
14.10 WR Steven Sims WAS
15.03 DEF New England Patriots NE
16.10 TE Irv Smith MIN
17.03 WR Denzel Mims NYJ
18.10 QB Kirk Cousins MIN
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: Picking at the three spot, or rather, anywhere on the front end, is typically what you want. Not this year. In every mock I’ve done recently, I ended up with no clear and obvious pick at the 2-3 turn. This draft was no different. The top 15 running backs were all gone. The top four wide receivers were all gone. I wanted to go RB-RB, but the value just didn’t feel like it was there. George Kittle represents a decisive advantage at the tight end position so I went that direction and hoped the rest of the draft would fall into place

What player(s) did you miss out on? Leonard Fournette and Diontae Johnson, both times sniped by defending champ, Doug Orth. In each instance, given how close my even round picks are to my odd round picks at the front end turn, I regretted not taking the guy first. I would call both misses “blunders” on my part.

Final thought: I don’t want to pick on the front end this year. Sure, there’s definitely an advantage in having Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, or Ezekiel Elliott. Even Alvin Kamara should be an advantage. But on the back end, I can be certain I can go RB-RB and then still get the same caliber wide receivers in rounds three and four that I can get in rounds two and three from the front end. I felt like I shined in the later rounds, securing a lot of guys I wanted at good value, but I’m not thrilled with how my first few picks turned out overall.

Pick #4 - Steve Schwarz

 Steve Schwarz - Pick No. 4
1.04 RB Alvin Kamara NO
2.09 RB Todd Gurley ATL
3.04 WR Kenny Golladay DET
4.09 WR Cooper Kupp LAR
5.04 WR Courtland Sutton DEN
6.09 WR Michael Gallup DAL
7.04 RB Raheem Mostert SF
8.09 QB Matthew Stafford DET
9.04 TE Hunter Henry LAC
10.09 WR Jerry Jeudy DEN
11.04 WR John Brown BUF
12.09 RB Darrynton Evans TEN
13.04 DEF Buffalo Bills BUF
14.09 TE Dallas Goedert PHI
15.04 QB Joe Burrow CIN
16.09 WR Antonio Brown FA
17.04 WR Larry Fitzgerald ARI
18.09 QB Sam Darnold NYJ
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: After analyzing the last six season winners from FFToday’s past (see; “Know Thy Enemy”), it became obvious to me that going “Old School” was the best strategy. I therefore prepared to go running back – running back in the first two rounds and kept with the plan by selecting Alvin Kamara with the fourth pick and Todd Gurley in the second round.

Kamara gets the nod over Dalvin Cook or Derrick Henry because this is a full PPR league and his elite ability coming out of the backfield as a receiver makes him the best choice. Gurley, while not what he once was, is still a solid option and a “touchdown maker” (double-digits the past three seasons) in a better offense than the remaining options. Those options - Leonard Fournette, rookies Cam Akers and Jonathan Taylor and injury prone guys like Chris Carson and James Conner all come with more flaws and blemishes than Gurley.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I got a little too greedy in the seventh round, grabbing a third running back (Raheem Mostert) instead of a starting quarterback and it came back to bite me when Matt Ryan was scooped up two picks later at No.78. Then hometown hero Carson Wentz also was chosen before I could claim him in the eighth round. I ended up with Matthew Stafford, which might not be bad, if he plays a full season. Extrapolating his eight games in 2019 to a full season would result in 4,998 passing yards, 38 touchdowns, just 10 interceptions and 25.7 FPts/G.

I also missed on Latavius Murray who went at No.106. With Kamara already on the roster, Murray would have fit nicely as both a handcuff and flex option, but the “keeper of backup running backs” a.k.a. the Mike “the Injury Vulture” Krueger, added Murray to his vast collection (also Chase Edmonds, Brian Hill, Justin Jackson) hoping for a chance that one or more of them will be elevated to starter status during the upcoming season.

Final thought: Last season’s winner chose the same two running backs I chose in the first two rounds (1.03, 2.10) and it worked for him … why not for me? The Clyde Edwards-Helaire hype train continued to chug along without regards to his rookie status or the little offseason practice he’ll get in a complex Andy Reid offense. Lamar Jackson at No.8 went a full round ahead of any ADP numbers I’ve seen which had both he and Patrick Mahomes as second-round options. Are they 3-to-4 rounds better than Dak Prescott (No.55) or Russell Wilson (No.59) is to-be-determined? Hayden Hurst might be the best value pick at tight end given the aforementioned Ryan’s love for his past tight ends Tony Gonzalez and Austin Hooper and considering 71 of his 321 career touchdown passes (22.1%) have gone to that position. What is this world coming to when Tom Brady is picked No.97, Drew Brees at No.112 and Aaron Rodgers goes of the board at No.114? I chastised myself for selecting socially repugnant Antonio Brown in the 16th round, but in my mind made up for my obvious “character flaw” by choosing 2016 NFL Man of the Year Larry Fitzgerald with my next pick. I’m not sure it works that way, but if Brown helps me dethrone 2019 champion Doug Orth, I’ll learn to live with it.

Pick #5 - Andy Swanson

 Andy Swanson - Pick No. 5
1.05 WR Michael Thomas NO
2.08 TE Travis Kelce KC
3.05 WR Allen Robinson CHI
4.08 RB Melvin Gordon DEN
5.05 RB Kareem Hunt CLE
6.08 WR Stefon Diggs BUF
7.05 QB Josh Allen BUF
8.08 RB Antonio Gibson WAS
9.05 RB Jordan Howard MIA
10.08 WR Deebo Samuel SF
11.05 DEF San Francisco 49ers SF
12.08 WR Michael Pittman Jr. IND
13.05 TE Austin Hooper CLE
14.08 RB Darrell Henderson LAR
15.05 QB Ryan Tannehill TEN
16.08 RB Darrel Williams KC
17.05 DEF New Orleans Saints NO
18.08 TE Eric Ebron PIT
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: As the fifth pick of the draft, I had to make the decision of Michael Thomas or Derrick Henry in the first round. Clyde Edwards-Helaire was also an option, as he is an enticing rookie who may end up being a stud player in his first year for the Chiefs. I also considered Miles Sanders or Dalvin Cook, but my choice ended up coming down between the top WR in the draft or a running back who is a standard league monster, but who’s lack of passing work limits his value in PPR formats.

I chose to go with Thomas for two reasons. First, I believe he is the safest player in the first round based on past performance, injury concerns, and continuity in his system with the Saints. Secondly, in a full PPR format, his massive volume and his consistent play are too hard to pass up.

My hope was to pair Thomas with an RB in the second round. My hope was for Aaron Jones, Josh Jacobs, or Austin Ekeler to fall to me at pick 20. Unfortunately, there was a run of four-straight running backs leading up to my pick, leaving me with Todd Gurley as my best option. Instead of going with a running back I am not high on, I chose to go with the number one tight end, pairing Kelce with Thomas in rounds one and two.

I typically advocate going with two running backs or an RB/WR pairing to start the league, but sometimes you need to pivot and take what you can. I think there is excellent value in landing two top players at their respective positions, with the goal of trying to build around them with upside RBs later in the draft, which is precisely what I did with Kareem Hunt, Antonio Gibson, and Darrell Henderson to pair with more stable RBs like Melvin Gordon and Jordan Howard.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I was surprised to see Aaron Jones go 15th overall based on the threat of AJ Dillon eating into his workload and value. When choosing Thomas in the first, my goal was to nab Jones in the second, as I do not agree with the industry regarding Jones. I believe he will once again be a monster fantasy performer. Aaron Rodgers loves him, he has a leg up on pass protection and knows the system, and Jones is a steal in the second round.

Final thought: I was shocked to see Lamar Jackson go in the first round. It is not uncommon to see one or two QBs go in the first round of home leagues, but industry leagues tend to wait until the 2nd or 3rd round before QBs to go off the board. I was also surprised to see Kenyan Drake go in the first round. I have yet to participate in a league where the Cardinal RB went in the first 12 picks.

Pick #6 - Nick Caron

 Nick Caron - Pick No. 6
1.06 RB Derrick Henry TEN
2.07 RB Nick Chubb CLE
3.06 WR Mike Evans TB
4.07 WR D.J. Moore CAR
5.06 WR Keenan Allen LAC
6.07 WR Jarvis Landry CLE
7.06 QB Matt Ryan ATL
8.07 RB Adrian Peterson WAS
9.06 RB Marlon Mack IND
10.07 RB Ke'Shawn Vaughn TB
11.06 TE Rob Gronkowski TB
12.07 RB Sony Michel NE
13.06 QB Cam Newton NE
14.07 WR Brandon Aiyuk SF
15.06 TE Blake Jarwin DAL
16.07 DEF Kansas City Chiefs KC
17.06 RB Dare Ogunbowale TB
18.07 WR Tee Higgins CIN
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: The top five picks in fantasy football are mostly set in stone across the fantasy world, but the sixth pick is where things tend to veer in different directions – and the sixth pick is exactly where I landed in this draft. With the top four backs and Michael Thomas off the board, I opted to go with the 2019 rushing champion, Derrick Henry. While I’m not entirely convinced that Henry just suddenly became “unstoppable” once the second half of the 2019 season began, I am completely confident that the Titans view him as the core of their offense. Whether for better or for worse from an analytical standpoint, Henry is practically locked in to 300 touches as long as he remains healthy, and he’s one of the safest bets to remain healthy given his massive frame.

My second round pick is a player who plays a lot like Henry, and that was Nick Chubb. I had the opportunity to take one of the remaining “elite” wide receivers like DeAndre Hopkins or Chris Godwin, or even one of the two top tight ends, but I opted to double down on running back because I believe that there’s a substantial enough drop off at the position that I just cannot trust even the mid-round backs to be consistent producers in my lineup.

While they don’t excel in PPR formats, Henry and Chubb are on the short list of players who could lead the entire NFL in rushing this season and that makes them extremely valuable. Selecting these two cornerstone backs to start my draft then allowed me to smash the wide receiver position with four straight picks, wherein I landed four players who could all see 130 or more targets this season. I believe this to be the ideal structural start to the draft in a PPR league where we start three two running backs, three wide receivers, and two flex positions.

What player(s) did you miss out on? Most fantasy analysts are accustomed to seeing quarterbacks stay on the draft board for much longer than they would in normal leagues, I think most of us were pretty surprised to still see Kyler Murray and Deshaun Watson still hanging around as late as they did. I was prepared to take either of them and was pretty confident that I’d get one as I looked at the draft board. Then both players came off the board within a handful of picks prior to my seventh round selection. This forced my hand a bit in selecting Matt Ryan, who I was not nearly as excited about even though I know that he’s a solid and safe choice, as I don’t believe he has No.1 QB upside like Murray and Watson do.

The only other pick that really had me tilting throughout the draft was when Mike Krueger took Chase Edmonds in Round 10. While Edmonds isn’t coveted by everyone, I believe that he has true RB1 upside in the event that Kenyan Drake gets injured or just isn’t able to pick up where he left off in 2019. Edmonds is a quietly explosive potential every-down back and the Arizona offense should be improved again this season so he has some league-winning upside. I was discouraged to see him go off the board quite a bit earlier than he has been going in most drafts.

Final thought: The youth movement was in full effect in this draft as quite a few owners took some serious risks early in the draft, passing up on proven talent for the hope that a young, unproven player will break out.

The first big example I saw of this was at pick 3.08 when Joseph Hutchins selected Rams rookie running back Cam Akers. Akers’ ADP is closer to a sixth round pick, but Joseph also knew that Akers was unlikely to fall that far in a league like this where his fellow owners tend to swing for upside. Fellow rookie back Jonathan Taylor came off the board with the following pick and while I personally believe that Taylor is an elite-level talent, it’s also true that neither Akers nor Taylor is locked in to an early season workload. With proven producers like Chris Carson and Melvin Gordon still on the board, it seemed like those picks were pretty risky, especially for Joseph who did not invest much in RB depth after his Akers selection.

Pick #7 - Antonio D'Arcangelis

 Antonio D'Arcangelis - Pick No. 7
1.07 RB Dalvin Cook MIN
2.06 WR Tyreek Hill KC
3.07 WR Amari Cooper DAL
4.06 RB Le'Veon Bell NYJ
5.07 QB Dak Prescott DAL
6.06 TE Darren Waller LV
7.07 RB James White NE
8.06 WR Darius Slayton NYG
9.07 WR Emmanuel Sanders NO
10.06 QB Aaron Rodgers GB
11.07 TE Noah Fant DEN
12.06 DEF Los Angeles Rams LAR
13.07 RB Anthony McFarland Jr. PIT
14.06 WR Antonio Gandy-Golden WAS
15.07 RB LeSean McCoy TB
16.06 WR Dede Westbrook JAC
17.07 RB Dion Lewis NYG
18.06 RB Darwin Thompson KC
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I hoped to get a top 5 running back but ended up with a middle spot (which I’m always uncomfortable with) and had to settle for Dalvin Cook, who is productive but yields carries to the other backs and is somewhat brittle. A case can be made for Cook being the No.5 RB in PPR leagues over Derrick Henry. On the way back, I had to settle again, this time with Tyreek Hill as my WR1. He got hurt the next day. Not a good start.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I really wanted Clyde Edwards-Helaire in Round 2, but he was long gone. And I was hoping Austin Ekeler fell to me at 2.06, but he was taken two spots ahead of me by Bill Anderson. Kenny Golladay was a round 3 target but he was nabbed a couple picks before I could take him. It’s a savvy league!

Final thought: My two-QB plan followed the Draft Buddy recommendations and I value drafted my backup – Aaron Rodgers – in round 10. He’ll be available for trade once somebody loses their QB1 and I can hopefully get a WR2 in return. I was very happy to get Emmanuel Sanders as my WR4 with two flex spots in this league and feel like he could have a monster season in the Saints offense. In general, I feel like my team has lots of potential if things go my way and a couple of guys hit their upside.

Pick #8 - Joseph Hutchins

 Joseph Hutchins - Pick No. 8
1.08 QB Lamar Jackson BAL
2.05 RB Josh Jacobs LV
3.08 RB Cam Akers LAR
4.05 WR DK Metcalf SEA
5.08 RB Devin Singletary BUF
6.05 WR Christian Kirk ARI
7.08 WR Brandin Cooks HOU
8.05 TE Evan Engram NYG
9.08 RB Alexander Mattison MIN
10.05 WR Mike Williams LAC
11.08 RB AJ Dillon GB
12.05 QB Daniel Jones NYG
13.08 WR Greg Ward PHI
14.05 DEF Minnesota Vikings MIN
15.08 WR Hunter Renfrow LV
16.05 QB Justin Herbert LAC
17.08 TE Kyle Rudolph MIN
18.05 WR Mohamed Sanu NE
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: Conventional wisdom says to load up on positions of scarcity early and feast on positions of abundance late. I guess that makes my draft pretty unconventional, which the lads were only too eager to point out in the live chat and which is pretty on-brand for me. The question was this: Did I want RB7, WR2, or QB1 at the eighth spot after six backs and one wideout had already been selected? RB7 should have been Aaron Jones (four others ended up going sooner) and WR2 was Davante Adams, deepening the dilemma for this diehard Packer backer. In the end, I opted to nab the most scintillating fantasy asset of all, Lamar Jackson, despite the fact I could have waited many more rounds for a capable triggerman, especially in a one-QB league. Will Jackson be worth the opportunity cost? Well, he was more than a touchdown better PER GAME last year than Patty Mahomes, the richest player in the sport. Moreover, I ended up nabbing Josh Jacobs in Round 2, a guy I liked better than all six of the running backs I missed out on post-Jackson. Score one for Mr. Contrarian, I think.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I thought Odell Beckham Jr. might drop to me in the fourth round and I’d have been giddy to have him. Alas, the Commish snapped him up just a couple picks prior, meaning D.K. Metcalf, Seattle’s super soph, will be my WR1 heading into the season. I love the kid and think he’ll be Russ Wilson’s best target when all is said and done, but he was only WR25 last season. That makes my WR corps the most unproven in the league. I also wanted OBJ’s battery mate, Baker Mayfield, as my backup slinger, thinking he’s primed for a bounceback campaign with better protection and great offensive weapons. Again, Bill Anderson stole him right out from under me in Round 12, so I’ll ride with Daniel Jones as my QB2. Meh.

Final thought: I get why running backs go like hotcakes in the first couple rounds, but I also know that, at some point, you’re giving up the chance to draft game-changers at other positions in order to grab lineup fillers. I want those game-changers (read: Lamar) and trust that I’ll find RB value later in the draft or on the waiver wire when attrition inevitably hits. We already know it hits that position particularly hard. My other takeaway from this draft is very 2020-specific. Simply put, it can be very liberating to go into drafts with little to no preparation (totally guilty!). Just wing it, friends, and be a draft disruptor this year! It’s fun!

Pick #9 - Bill Anderson

 Bill Anderson - Pick No. 9
1.09 RB Miles Sanders PHI
2.04 RB Austin Ekeler LAC
3.09 RB Jonathan Taylor IND
4.04 TE Zach Ertz PHI
5.09 WR Terry McLaurin WAS
6.04 RB J.K. Dobbins BAL
7.09 WR Will Fuller HOU
8.04 WR CeeDee Lamb DAL
9.09 WR Jalen Reagor PHI
10.04 QB Drew Brees NO
11.09 WR Henry Ruggs III LV
12.04 QB Baker Mayfield CLE
13.09 RB Damien Harris NE
14.04 TE T.J. Hockenson DET
15.09 DEF Los Angeles Chargers LAC
16.04 WR Laviska Shenault Jr. JAC
17.09 RB Joshua Kelley LAC
18.04 DEF Indianapolis Colts IND
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: No matter what I was going RB-RB. I’ve done a ton of drafts and the running back position gets ugly FAST after the 3rd round. I’m very happy with Sanders and Ekeler, especially in PPR even though both come with some workload risk. Unless it’s superflex, I’m 100% coming away with 2 RBs in the first two rounds this year.

What player(s) did you miss out on? WRs went fast and furious here, I guess based on PPR scoring. It seemed at every step of the draft receivers were being taken a few picks before I targeted them. Early on it was OBJ one pick before me in round 4. Then it was Hardman and Perriman in the middle rounds, and finally Steven Sims near the end of the draft. Most of these guys may not be big names but they were guys I targeted for value and missing out on them caused me to draft 4 rookie receivers which is a very risky strategy, especially this season.

Final thought: One big thing that stood out to me was players not on my wish list who fell to amazing value positions. A guy like Deshaun Watson for example, falling to the 7th; I’m not super high on Watson but I’m kicking myself for not taking him. Same with JuJu at the end of the 3rd or Melvin Gordon in the late 4th or even Edelman at the very end of the 7th. These are all guys I’m not high on but at a certain point the value becomes too great to pass up. If you’re only doing one or two leagues then I totally get going after “your guys” but if you play in multiple leagues, mix it up and take some players you might not LOVE if they represent incredible value. It just may make all the difference in winning your league.

Pick #10 - Mike Krueger

 Mike Krueger - Pick No. 10
1.10 RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire KC
2.03 WR Julio Jones ATL
3.10 WR JuJu Smith-Schuster PIT
4.03 WR Odell Beckham Jr. CLE
5.10 RB Mark Ingram BAL
6.03 WR DeVante Parker MIA
7.10 QB Carson Wentz PHI
8.03 TE Hayden Hurst ATL
9.10 RB Latavius Murray NO
10.03 RB Chase Edmonds ARI
11.10 WR DeSean Jackson PHI
12.03 WR Sammy Watkins KC
13.10 QB Ben Roethlisberger PIT
14.03 TE Ian Thomas CAR
15.10 RB Justin Jackson LAC
16.03 DEF Philadelphia Eagles PHI
17.10 WR Josh Reynolds LAR
18.03 RB Brian Hill ATL
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: The available running backs in the back half of Round 1 will vary from league to league but expect one of Miles Sanders, Kenyan Drake, Joe Mixon or Clyde Edwards-Helaire to be available at No.10. I wanted to leave my first two picks with at least one RB and while I preferred Davante Adams over Julio Jones, I was willing to take a gamble on the rookie CEH in Round 1 and “settle” for Julio in Round 2. My Chiefs homerism may have had something to do with the CEH pick.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I definitely got sniped and yelled out a few expletives during this draft. Once I grabbed Julio, I was all set on attempting to stack Falcons with QB Matt Ryan and TE Hayden Hurst. I thought I could get Ryan in Round 7, but he went four picks in front of me. So much for that plan. Jalen Reagor was my target in Round 9 and RB Damien Harris in Round 13, but both times Mr. Bill Anderson was reading my mind. Thanks Bill.

Final thought: I continue to be surprised how early the D/ST position gets taken in drafts (SF went at 11.05). Since it’s such a difficult position to project and there’s an overabundance of supply, it screams waiting until the last couple rounds to make your move. Choose and D/ST that you believe has easy early-season schedule like the Eagles, who face @Washington, Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati the first three weeks of the season.

Pick #11 - Colby Cavaliere

 Colby Cavaliere - Pick No. 11
1.11 RB Kenyan Drake ARI
2.02 WR Davante Adams GB
3.11 RB Chris Carson SEA
4.02 TE Mark Andrews BAL
5.11 QB Russell Wilson SEA
6.02 WR T.Y. Hilton IND
7.11 WR Jamison Crowder NYJ
8.02 RB Phillip Lindsay DEN
9.11 RB Matt Breida MIA
10.02 RB Tevin Coleman SF
11.11 WR Justin Jefferson MIN
12.02 DEF Baltimore Ravens BAL
13.11 WR Bryan Edwards LV
14.02 QB Drew Lock DEN
15.11 TE Jace Sternberger GB
16.02 DEF Tennessee Titans TEN
17.11 RB Giovani Bernard CIN
18.02 TE O.J. Howard TB
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I’ve always hated getting stuck with a pick at the top or bottom of the 1st round, and of course I picked 11th. Selecting 11th and then 14th meant I was really hoping I could nab two top tier running backs, because I knew darn well that by the time I picked again in Round 3 I’d have no chance. I got Kenyon Drake with my 1st round pick but by the time Round 2 came around I found myself in a tough spot. With Josh Jacobs and Nick Chubb staring me in the face, I decided to pivot. In a standard league I’d probably have gone Jacobs, but this is a PPR league, and I just don’t think either of these guys will catch many passes. My well curated strategy went out the window 20 minutes in, and Davante Adams became the pick! I was left to hope a solid RB would fall to me in Round 3 and I was thrilled to click the “draft” button on Chris Carson’s name when the time came.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I was desperately targeting Brandin Cooks as the draft moved into the middle rounds. By the time round 7 came around I was looking for a WR3 and Cooks was still there! 7.03, still there. 7.05 still there! I was sure I’d get a chance to add a guy as my third receiver who has a legit shot to catch at least 80 passes. But alas the dream ended just four picks away at 7.08 when Hutchins scooped him up. I ended up picking Jamison Crowder (who I’m also very high on), but Cooks is in a much better offense and has a bigger upside. So close!

Final thought: This year has been like no other in my lifetime, and this season of football is going to be a confusing, wild, ride. I usually love to draft young guys that ooze upside, but with the offseason turmoil, I do think rookies are going to find it hard to adjust in the early going, especially any of young backs who struggle with pass protection, or receivers with inexperienced quarterbacks. I wanted to construct a roster of veteran players on offenses that have continuity and familiarity. I changed it up this year and made sure I had an “anchor” player at each of my positions. With Wilson, Drake, Adams, and Andrews, each of my positions has a high floor player on a great offense. I stayed away from rookies for the most part, at least until I had my main slots filled. I won’t blow the doors off of anyone, but I’m hoping that being able to field a consistent weekly lineup will be good enough to get me a playoff shot through this turbulent 2020 season!

Pick #12 - Mike Davis

 Mike Davis - Pick No. 12
1.12 RB Joe Mixon CIN
2.01 RB Aaron Jones GB
3.12 RB James Conner PIT
4.01 WR Robert Woods LAR
5.12 WR A.J. Green CIN
6.01 WR Tyler Boyd CIN
7.12 WR Julian Edelman NE
8.01 WR Golden Tate NYG
9.12 RB Tony Pollard DAL
10.01 WR Mecole Hardman KC
11.12 DEF Pittsburgh Steelers PIT
12.01 WR Allen Lazard GB
13.12 WR Robby Anderson CAR
14.01 WR N'Keal Harry NE
15.12 TE Greg Olsen SEA
16.01 TE Will Dissly SEA
17.12 QB Tyrod Taylor LAC
18.01 QB Ryan Fitzpatrick MIA
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: With picks 12 & 13, I expected to be able to land two out of the five RBs that typically go around the first turn in PPR leagues: Joe Mixon, Kenyan Drake, Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Miles Sanders, & Aaron Jones. Mixon was the one I wanted most, so I didn't mind settling for Jones (my least favorite) over the other 3--though I came within one pick of getting the Mixon-Drake combo that I would have considered ideal.

What player(s) did you miss out on? I missed out on both Houston receivers. I don't think they had any business sliding into the 7th, but as late as the middle of that round, I thought I was going to get both at 7.12 & 8.01. Instead, Joseph Hutchins sniped Brandin Cooks at 7.08, & Bill Anderson immediately scooped up Will Fuller at 7.09. I ended up with Julian Edelman & Golden Tate instead, who could both be fine--though neither presents the tantalizing prospects of Fuller & Cooks in an offense suddenly missing DeAndre Hopkins.

Final thought: My final thought is that sometimes even when you renounce your first instinct, you can't keep it from triumphing. As the time approached for me to make my 5.12 & 6.01 picks, I noticed that both A.J. Green and Tyler Boyd were available and thought, "Hmm, that could work." But then I remembered that Mixon was my first pick, & I didn't want to pin my hopes on the Bengals to that extent. So I decided to focus on the highest upside WR I could find on another team in that range: Terry McLaurin. When McLaurin was poached by Bill Anderson (you see this pattern of behavior from Bill, don't you?), I couldn't bring myself to contemplate any plan except the one I had already ruled out, so I ended up with Mixon, Green, & Boyd even though that was exactly what I had decided to eliminate from consideration.

Round by Round Results