5 rookies being drafted too early in fantasy football drafts
Recently, I wrote a column looking at five rookies who are being undervalued in fantasy football drafts this year. For every undervalued or under-drafted rookie there is one that is being overdrafted or thought too highly of entering their first NFL season.
Before the list is revealed let me preface it by saying this article is NOT saying to stay away from these rookies completely and remove them from your draft board—just don’t spend first round picks and overpay for these guys, drastically cutting into their value.
Here are the top five….
Players being drafted AFTER Fournette: Todd Gurley, Isaiah Crowell, Mark Ingram
Earliest drafted: Late 1st round
In some instances, late first round picks have been spent on the former LSU Tiger—and that is insane. Sure, Fournette was the 4th overall selection in the 2017 NFL Draft and has great upside, but he will not be the next Ezekiel Elliott on this years Jaguars roster.
Players being drafted AFTER Mixon: Spencer Ware, Carlos Hyde, Ty Montgomery
Earliest drafted: 3rd round
I like Joe Mixon a lot, and he will be a player I target this season–however, temper your expectations because Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard are still in the Bengals RB-rotation and will easily cut into Mixon’s touches. If there are players available who will not share the rock as much, you will want to target them before spending a high-round draft pick on Mixon.
Players being drafted AFTER Davis: Stefon Diggs, Devante Parker, Randall Cobb, Rishard Matthews, Corey Coleman, Marvin Jones
Earliest drafted: 6th round
Corey Davis was the first WR selected in the 2017 NFL Draft and will likely be the first one taken in fantasy football leagues as well. He will be in the starting lineup week one and with Marcus Mariota as QB you know he will get his fair share of targets. That being said, we debated this very topic on the latest My Fantasy Podcast and I said I would rather own Rishard Matthews this season instead of Davis (especially in PPR formats). Matthews already has a rapport with Mariota, is a red zone target despite his size and will be the true No.1 WR in Tennessee this season.
Players being drafted AFTER Howard: Eric Ebron, Jason Witten, Hunter Henry, Julius Thomas
Earliest drafted: 8th round
Just like Davis, Howard was the first player from his position to be drafted in the 2017 NFL Draft. The Bucs are loaded on offense which helps and hurts Howard at the same time. Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson, Chris Godwin, Cameron Brate etc. the list goes on—but there is only one football to go around and that will hurt Howard’s ultimate fantasy value. With guys like Eric Ebron and Hunter Henry being drafted AFTER Howard, they would provide more value this year based on the fact that they are guaranteed more targets than Howard right away.
Players being drafted AFTER Williams: Jeremy Hill, Dion Lewis, Duke Johnson, CJ Prosise
Earliest drafted: 8th round
A lot of fantasy owners are falling in love with Jamaal Williams and there is good reason to do so. As a fourth round pick, Williams faces little competition for touches out of the Green Bay backfield. They have Ty Montgomery, a converted wide receiver listed as the No.1 RB right now but in goal-line and short yardage situations he will not utilized—that is Williams role. My biggest question mark is Williams’ effectiveness and the Packers offense as a whole. Are they going to start running the ball this year? Not likely. To start off the year, I expect Williams to get 5-10 touches a game which doesn’t translate to an 8th round pick (where he has been drafted).