On August 17th, 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.
1 pt for every: 10 yds rushing, receiving, 20 yds passing, reception,
sack, FUM Rec, INT Ret
2 pts for every: safety, PAT rushed, PAT received, PAT thrown
3 pts for every: field goal
4 pts for every: TD thrown
6 pts for every: TD rushed, received, fumble returned, interception
returned, kick returned
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: My strategy for Round 1 was
simplified when I landed the first pick. Despite his injury-riddled
2020, I believe Christian McCaffrey is still head and shoulders
above the rest of the league when it comes to fantasy scoring potential.
His upside is over 400 fantasy points again, with his skill between
the tackles and his ability to catch the ball. For Round 2, I could
go lots of different directions. My most difficult decision was
between taking two receivers (as I did) and taking one plus Clyde
Edwards-Helaire. I might regret not taking CEH, and the main reason
I didn't is because in this format with starting three wide receivers
(plus two flex), I felt it was more important to begin building
depth at receiver.
What player(s) did you miss out on? The main player I
felt got snagged from me was D'Andre Swift. I thought he might
fall to me in the 4th, especially since this is only a 10-team
league, but I knew that was a lot to ask. I was two away from
landing him, and that hurt. I think Swift has the potential to
be a top-10 back this season if things fall right, particularly
because he showed excellent pass-catching ability in his rookie
Final thought: It's probably because I play in so many
dynasty leagues, but I was surprised by how long rookies lasted
in this draft. I ended up with six rookies because they kept being
at the top of my board whenever my turn was up. Guys like Javonte
Williams, DeVonta Smith, and Elijah Moore I just could not say
no to. So my season will likely be seriously impacted by how well
the rookies play.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I had a really hard call at
No.2. For a few days I waffled back and forth between Cook and Kamara,
but finally decided that I expect the Saints offense to take some
time to adjust with the loss of Brees and injury to Michael Thomas.
Kamara is probably in for some monster workloads early on, but carrying
the team on his back could be a bad thing for his long-term production
during the extended season. The goal in Round 2 was to nab another
back with 50+ reception potential (Ekeler) or a stud receiver that
may have fallen (Ridley), but those two guys were gone at 2.09,
so I went with the workhorse upside of Najee Harris.
player(s) did you miss out on? Tight end is a feast or famine
position, and I was looking at Round 6 to nab Hockenson or Andrews,
as I feel they both have top-5 upside, but they both went back-to-back
a few picks before me. I know it sounds silly, but I really wanted
Justin Fields in Round 14 as an upside backup. He looks eclectic
on the field, and Trubisky flashed at times in this offensive
scheme, he just lacked the tools to put it together consistently.
Fields has the potential to be a real fantasy asset as the season
rolls along and I would have been happy to stash him as a backup.
But I played myself, picking Irv Smith at 14.09, assuming I could
wait until 15.02 to get Fields. Whoops! Kevin Scott nabbed the
former Buckeye at 14.10.
Final thought: The precipitous fall of several players
was jarring. Barkley going 13th overall, Josh Jacobs in Round
7, and Melvin Gordon all the way in Round 13 goes to show you
just how quickly running backs can fall out of favor. Even D’Andre
Swift dropping to the end of Round 4 was something I didn’t
expect. There is a massive amount of receiver value out there,
so getting reliable runners early is important. Don’t get
cute or overthink the early picks!
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I went into Round 1 assuming
that I'd end up with Alvin Kamara at the three spot, and that's
exactly what happened. I was hoping that either McCaffrey or Cook
would somehow fall to three, but that was unlikely. As such, I was
between Kamara and Derrick Henry, both of whom I'm about equally
high on this season for different reasons. I decided to go with
Kamara because, despite the fact that he's potentially in a worse
offensive situation with Drew Brees being gone, there's also a chance
that Kamara is in a good spot to see a ton of touches this season
no matter who is behind center. Kamara is a super-stud player with
RB1 upside so I feel that he's an ideal combination of upside and
floor if you're picking at the No.3 spot.
I was initially expecting to go WR-WR with my second and third
round picks, but that ended up shifting when there was a bit of
a run on wide receivers in Round 2. Stefon Diggs, Calvin Ridley
and DeAndre Hopkins all went in a row, which allowed running back
Antonio Gibson to fall to me. I'm quite high on Gibson this season
and although I wasn't expecting to start my draft with two running
backs, I decided that the upside was worth it with two young all-purpose
backs like Kamara and Gibson. I was able to snag Vikings second-year
WR Justin Jefferson with my third round pick so I felt great about
What player(s) did you miss out on? The big miss for me
was in the eighth round when Dak Prescott unexpectedly flew off
the board to Kirk Hollis, who was also rostering Josh Allen. This
really took me out of my game as I was fully expecting to get
Prescott two picks later. Justin Herbert then went with the next
pick to Joseph Hutchins, so I was completely out at QB at that
point. I had felt very good about my draft, so this was a killer.
I would've definitely gone back in time and taken Prescott in
the 7th round if I could have.
Final thought: One of the things that surprised me about
this draft was how long some previously believed to be borderline
stud running backs stuck around on the board. Particularly Kirk's
pick of Josh Jacobs at 7.05 was shocking value to me. Obviously
the Raiders bringing in Kenyan Drake did bring some added competition
to the backfield, but Jacobs has been an RB1 or high-RB2 since
coming into the league and there's little reason to believe that
he won't far exceed this draft slot. Meanwhile, quarterbacks were
apparently at a premium in this draft, as almost every team in
the league drafted multiple quarterbacks, including multiple borderline
elite options for a few teams. Thankfully there are trades in
this league, so I'll probably end up making a move for a quarterback
at some point, but I'm currently banking a lot of my success on
my four-star running backs and my Cousins-to-Jefferson stack.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I can’t swear to it,
but I THINK this was my first 10-team draft ever. Oddly, it’s
the only draft in recent or distant memory I’ve gone RB-RB.
Part of that had to do with draft position (1.04), as I felt there
were exactly four game-changing backs and then everyone else. This
seemed to hold up as Davante Adams got drafted right behind my guy,
Derrick Henry, at 1.05. The other reason I ended up with only RBs
in Rounds 1 and 2 had more to do with who, specifically, was available
at 2.07. Frankly, I couldn’t believe Austin Ekeler fell to
me at that spot, especially considering my colleagues eschewed him
in favor of Joe Mixon and Saquon Barkley. Suffice it to say, I’m
not quite as high on those two as I am on Ekeler, especially in
a full PPR league. We’ll see how it plays out but I’m
pretty happy with the only guy in the league who can routinely handle
a huge workload (Henry) and a guy whose per-game workload was much
healthier than most think (Ekeler).
What player(s) did you
miss out on? Would I have drafted Antonio Gibson in the third
round to go RB-RB-RB? You bet your sweet bippy I would have! Gibson
was drafted immediately after Ekeler, meaning I probably had no
chance at a Henry-Ekeler-Gibson trio, but the only other back
drafted after those two and my next pick at 4.07 was Najee Harris,
so...who knows? I did get Terry McLaurin, WFT’s next best
weapon, so that was nice. I also grabbed Gibson’s running
mate, J.D. McKissic, later in the draft, though he’s not
really a handcuff (I don’t do handcuffs) and more a guy
whose role would increase should Gibson succumb to injury. All
told, I seemed to be cursing my FFToday compadres less than in
years past, though that could also have had to do with the fact
I was majorly distracted during our draft. Ha!
Final thought: I can’t think of a single good reason
to draft a QB early in a 10-team league. I felt like I was waiting
and waiting on the position, but I still ended up getting the
guy I wanted (Justin Herbert) late in Round 8. The last starter,
Taysom Hill, was actually drafted much later than that with pick
13.03. I should say “starter” because Hill, in particular,
seems like a very risky QB1 to me. Nevertheless, I could live
with many of the other slingers grabbed even later than that.
Simply put, it’s an incredibly deep position and we only
have to start one. If you’re in a similar league, be very
patient and load up on positions of scarcity instead (RB and TE,
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: This was a tough spot to be
in with respect to a PPR league draft. Had this not been a PPR league,
I would have taken a RB at 1.05, but as it was, I thought Adams
had more upside than the likes of Elliott and Aaron Jones. After
Adams, I wanted to go RB in Round 2 for sure, but found that the
RBs available at 2.06 weren’t really worthy of that pick.
So, I ended up being the only team in the first two rounds to go
WR-WR, not unlike what I did in a mock draft @ FFToday back in June.
I don’t think getting pigeonholed into a hard and fast plan
is the answer to having a great draft. That said, if you are going
WR-WR to start, two RBs have to come next… and they did (CEH-Montgomery).
What player(s) did you miss out on? To my delight, I actually
got who I was targeting in every round sans one, which is fairly
unheard of. I guess the other guys in the league were working
off of a different template. In the sixth round, (and this is
the sans one part), I was hoping either Mark Andrews or T.J. Hockenson
would fall to me - they ended up going a few picks before in back-to-back
fashion. I liked the TEs I got later (Gesicki, Higbee), but initially,
I was a little bummed about missing out on one of that duo at
Final thought: I know there is an expectation to explain
my selection of Dak Prescott in the 8th round when I had already
taken Josh Allen three rounds sooner. Despite accusations that
I was trying to ruin one of my fellow drafters with that pick,
it was made simply because I had Prescott valued a full round
ahead of every other player left on the board. It was a best player
available pick and figure out the details later. Is Prescott a
candidate for trade? Of course he is. In the meantime, he will
provide me with depth and insurance if Allen were to go down.
In general, I thought the draft through the middle of Round 8
was a contest for a few drafters to see who could pick a QB the
latest and get away with it. Dangerous game to play when you’ve
got an old school VBD guy looking for value wherever he may find
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I’ve drafted multiple
times from the middle in PPR leagues this summer and it’s
a very comfortable position to be in. Unless something unforeseen
happened there was a high likelihood that I would leave the first
two rounds with a RB-WR combo. I was happy to get Zeke with my first
pick at 1.06 as he was the last RB I considered before switching
positions to Davante Adams. With RB secured, there were plenty of
WRs I would be comfortable with in the middle of Round 2 including
Diggs, Hopkins or Ridley. I also would’ve been fine with Adams
in Round 1 and any one of Ekeler/Harris/Gibson in Round 2.
player(s) did you miss out on? I was contemplating CEH with
my third round pick (3.06) but with Kirk beginning WR/WR to start
his draft, I should’ve known the Chiefs RB would be taken
right before me… and he was. I was also eyeing Kareem Hunt
who plays well in PPR leagues (like this one) but made a tactical
error by taking a quarterback (Lamar Jackson) in Round 6 when
Hunt was still on the board. In hindsight, the fact that Dak Prescott
and Russell Wilson were still available in Round 8, is proof I
should’ve prioritized Hunt in Rd 6 and waited on a quarterback,
especially since I only had one RB on my roster at the time.
Final thought: We had three owners near the top of the
draft (and four total) begin with an RB-RB start – a little
easier to do in 10-team leagues, but more complicated to pull
off in 12-teamers and feel confident about your WR depth, especially
in PPR leagues with one or two Flex spots. Kirk’s pick of
his 2nd quarterback (Dak Prescott) in Round 8 was a bit surprising
(he already had Josh Allen) but my guess is he will be able to
flip Prescott for a solid WR at some point this season. David
Johnson checked in as the second-to-last pick in this draft. Not
sure what to say about that, but did find it noteworthy.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I was planning on going “old
school,” - expecting to choose two three-down, workhorse,
running backs with my first two picks, but it didn’t go exactly
as anticipated. I grabbed Aaron Jones with the first pick which
was very good, but I had been eyeing Joe Mixon for the second round
(because of his presumed larger role in the passing game with Giovani
Bernard gone), however he was scooped up two picks ahead of me and
then Saquon Barkley was chosen right in front of me. I thought it
would be a reach to select Austin Ekeler (does get enough rushing
attempts), Antonio Gibson (limited by J.D. McKissic in the passing
game) or rookie Najee Harris (questionable OL) so I pivoted with
Stefon Diggs, an excellent “consolation” prize.
player(s) did you miss out on? There was Mixon and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.
I was disappointed with CEH last season (though not a complete
bust he didn’t perform as expected after Week 1 as he only
crack 100 yards one more time all season), but think he’s
going to rebound nicely in 2021. I thought he would fall to me
in the third round.
Final thought: The disrespect for 2020 NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers
(4299 yards, 48 TD passes, three rushing TDs) was highly noticeable.
The eighth quarterback off the board? The emphasis appears to
be all toward the running quarterback in 2021 (after Patrick Mahomes,
of course). There must also have been some residual disinterest
after Rodgers’ offseason holdout and for that I am grateful
as I got him in the eighth round.
In the 1996 movie “Broken Arrow,” John Travolta’s
character Major Vic Deakins says “This is BATTLE! And battle
is a highly *fluid* situation.”
You make a draft plan and in the execution of that plan you need
to prepare for contingencies because nothing is ever going to
go perfectly. Don’t panic. Be flexible and adjust with the
flow of the draft. You’ll be fine.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I’m all about early
running back this year as I feel wide receiver is very deep and
the talent as RB1’s drops off a cliff after about RB18. Unless
Kelce fell to me with my 2nd pick, I was going RB-RB all the way.
I’m higher on Taylor than most and was ecstatic to get him
at No.8. While Barkley certainly has some concerns, namely injury
related, his upside is simply too high to pass on in the early 2nd
round. Simply put, I love my first two picks.
did you miss out on? Every single WR1 haha. Receivers went
fast and furious and before I knew it every one of my personal
top 12 was gone. Luckily I loaded up at TE with both Kittle and
Hockenson so maybe I can pull off a trade. Other than WR, I was
targeting both Bryan Edwards and Trey Lance late but they got
taken before me.
Final thought: The run on WR’s could’ve forced
me to reach for the position early if I would have panicked but
instead I pivoted to other positions even if they weren’t
a big need (TE and QB). A much younger me would’ve panicked
and taken best WR available but in most cases you are going to
waste so much value by jumping on at the end of a positional run.
There’s nothing wrong with adding onto a strength you already
have, whether it be for trade bait or simply to take advantage
of value. Panicking and reaching should be avoided at all costs.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: I still love the Chiefs offense
and what they offer as a baseline each week, so getting some of
the key players from them was a priority. Bye week? SCHMY WEEK.
I like corner spots because you can plan well for tiers and positional
runs and start them up instead of getting the end byproducts. I
dig what Joe Mixon does for that Bengals offense so I was happy
to land him with my second pick.
What player(s) did you miss out on? I really wanted Robert
Woods, because I love his PPR floor week-to-week and the upside
he offers, but drafting from the corners means giving up the opportunity
to draft certain players because of ADP. I was also thinking about
Darren Waller or George Kittle at 3.09 but decided to reach for
Patrick Mahomes to complete the Tyreek-Mahomes mini stack. Kirk
took CEH or he would have been my 4th pick instead of Gaskin.
Final thought: 10 team drafts are a lot of fun because
you can take big risk/reward chances in the middle rounds and
not worry about perfecting value as much. I have my doubts about
some RBs and WRs taken earlier in the draft (Dobbins, McLaurin
went sooner than I anticipated) but this is a knowledgeable group
of drafters so I keep all the perceived "reaches" in
the back of my mind for future drafts.
Strategy for Rounds 1 & 2: In a 10-team league, I would
argue that gaining a significant positional advantage is even more
than it usually is in 12- or 14-teamers since most teams should
have a stacked lineup - even in a league with two flex spots such
as this one. Thus, I definitely wanted Kelce with one of my two
picks on the turn since he provides high-end WR1 production from
the tight end spot. I felt as though I would be choosing between
Chubb or Austin Ekeler - my RB3 and RB6, respectively - with my
other selection. I did strongly consider going RB-RB when it was
my turn to pick, but I ultimately opted in favor of the positional
advantage Kelce should provide once again.
What player(s) did you miss out on? I think the picks that
stung the most were the selections of Tom Brady and Ryan Tannehill
just a few spots ahead of me in the 11th round. Every fantasy manager
has their own reason for going in a particular direction, but it
doesn't make a lot of sense to me why several managers in this league
decided to burn two selections inside the top 110 on quarterbacks
after spending a premium pick on one a few rounds earlier. There's
a case to be made that a manager with a high-end elite QB1 is better
served by not carrying a backup and using the extra roster spot
to chase upside at another position. Instead, 30 percent of the
league left this draft with three quarterbacks!
Final thought: The hoarding of quarterbacks was odd, and
I would argue that managers in 10-team leagues don't need to open
the season with multiple team DSTs (three did) unless they REALLY
like how they complement each other throughout the season. Roster
spots are just too important. I think the thing that stuck out the
most to me was the extended runs at receiver (five straight from
2.10 to 3.04, eight of 10 from 4.04 to 5.03, six of nine from 5.09
to 6.07). Combined with the 10-team format, these runs pushed potential
RB2s such as Darrell Henderson (6.10), Kareem Hunt (7.04), Josh
Jacobs (7.05), Chase Edmonds (7.06), Raheem Mostert (8.02), Trey
Sermon (8.05), Michael Carter (8.09) and James Robinson (9.05) back
about a round or two after they are typically drafted.