First experts draft of the year!
Posted May. 13 at 09:23 PM
Had my first experts draft of the season last night, a tidy little 14-round affair for Lindy's preseason fantasy football magazine. Sharing the results of the entire draft is frowned upon, but we are allowed to talk about our own teams. So away we go....
1. Adrian Peterson
Drew the top pick and probably surprised many by taking Peterson over Chris Johnson. I won't go on at length about why I made the choice (Ian likely will in the magazine), but the gist is that Peterson's in a better overall offense and he's more likely to repeat his production from a year ago than Johnson is, both because of defensive focus and Tennessee's own likelihood of limiting Johnson. I'm not, by the way, worried about a holdout.
2. Drew Brees
3. Brandon Marshall
Brees at 24 overall seemed like a pretty easy choice. Picking at the end of a round, with 22 picks off the board before I'd pick again, not taking him would have closed me out of the top QBs, and I like to get one of those guys.
Marshall probably raised some eyebrows, especially considering Calvin Johnson was still there. Our rankings had Marshall higher, so I went with them. I'm with Ian on this one; I think he'll have a huge year.
4. Percy Harvin
5. C.J. Spiller
I like Spiller long-term, not so much this year. But 23 running backs were off the board at this point and the pickings were kind of slim. Harvin was a fairly easy choice; about the only wideout left who was close to him in our rankings was the guy I took two rounds later.
6. Jeremy Maclin
7. Jermichael Finley
I think Maclin was a steal at this point, about the 30th wideout taken. Three tight ends were off the board when I took Finley, and three more went in the next four picks.
8. Clinton Portis
9. Lee Evans
Not much pride out of these picks, unless I was making them 2 years ago. But at the end of the 8th round, Portis was clearly the best running back value left and I needed another starter at the position. I won't even try and defend the Evans pick, beyond noting he was about the 40th wideout drafted, he was my fourth player at the position and hey, somebody has to catch passes in Buffalo. Still, not a player I'm targeting this year.
10. Minnesota Vikings
11. Matthew Stafford
Some owners start reaching for rookie wideouts and backup running backs at this point. I like taking my top defense and (if the value is there) a backup quarterback.
12. Toby Gerhart
13. Nate Kaeding
14. Golden Tate
If you draft Peterson, I can't think of a good reason not to take Gerhart late in the draft. Unlike a lot of other top starters at the position, Peterson's handcuff is crystal clear and you may as well lock that player up if he's there in the 12th. We had to draft a kicker so I took Kaeding, and I was happy to make Tate the draft's Mr. Irrelevant.
All in all, I'd happily go into a season with this team (even though I won't have to). According to our early board, I have a top-3 player at every starting spot. That No. 2 running back might be a problem, but that's the way it goes when you take one of the elite QBs. It's a sacrifice I'm willing to make.
Full draft results will be in Lindy's preseason magazine, which you can purchase to complement your three copies of Fantasy Football Index. Want to praise or bash my choices? Feel free -- I can take it.
Posted by DAVID DIGREGORIO | May. 13 at 11:35 PM
Can you tell me where Kolb was drafted?
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | May. 13 at 11:42 PM
Sixth round - the 9th QB drafted. Good value for somebody. My experience is that QBs generally go later in these experts drafts than in others, although that seems about right for him to me.
Posted by DAVID DIGREGORIO | May. 14 at 12:42 AM
That was higher than I was hoping, as I have him targeted as a coveted sleeper with little downside. And it is worse because I'm in the Philadelphia area. Oh well.
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | May. 14 at 02:13 AM
Yeah...I don't know that Kolb will go much lower than that anywhere. Most people are pretty optimistic about him, maybe too much so. I don't have Ian's rankings in front of me but I don't think he has him that high.
Posted by DAVID GARRICK | May. 14 at 03:10 AM
It sounds like you and Ian are optimistic about Harvin. He went 48, which means about No. 15 overall for receivers? He seems like a tough player to predict because of the weird way he'll be used. Can you explain why you guys like him?
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | May. 14 at 03:23 AM
David -- Actually, he was 22nd among wideouts, and I want to say Ian had him ranked around 17th or 18th. After I took him the next three wideouts drafted were Santana Moss, Dwayne Bowe, and Wes Welker (none of whom I'd have taken ahead of Maclin, incidentally). Maybe Ian will weigh in; from my perspective, assuming Favre returns, Harvin should be the No. 2 option in a very good passing game, probably getting more looks than Berrian even if he doesn't start ahead of him, just because he's better. I think if we assume the Vikings will use a lot of sets with 3 WRs, Harvin should be very good even if they don't line him up in the backfield on occasion or whatever some of the talk has suggested.
Posted by IAN ALLAN | May. 14 at 06:35 AM
I'm not sure where Harvin will wind up on my board. I've done ballpark estimates for each player, but I'm in the process of going through and tweaking things, moving guys up a few spots and down a few spots. I have Harvin projected to score ~1.5 TDs on kick returns. That helps him. He finished with 60 catches for 790 yards and ran for 135 yards last year, and that was in 15 games.
Posted by Matthew Kenerly | May. 16 at 02:52 AM
I don't like the Spiller pick so much, I wonder if you were able to have your choice of the top TEs?
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | May. 16 at 03:43 AM
Matthew - at the time I took Spiller, only Gates was gone. Before my next pick (when I took Finley), Dallas Clark and Vernon Davis were drafted. I don't know if I would have taken either of those guys over Finley. Running backs I could have taken instead of Spiller included Addai and Ronnie Brown....probably Addai is the one I would (maybe should) have taken.
Posted by Matthew Kenerly | May. 17 at 11:35 AM
It does seem to me that the elite TEs seem to always come off the board at the beginning of the 5th round. I always make a point to grab one for myself because, at least from how I see it, there's a precipitous drop in production from the elite to the scrubs. For fun, I went back to look at the numbers accumulated in my league last year (4-pt pass TD, 6-pt rush/rec TD, 1-pt per 10 yd rush/rec & 20 yd pass, etc.) and examined the proportion of points scored by the #1 producer at each position compared to the #10 producer. If you're interested, here are the results. QB: Eli Manning produced 70.05% of #1 Aaron Rodgers (262 vs. 374) RB: Stephen Jackson produced 54.71% of #1 Chris Johnson (180 vs. 329; Johnson was so far out in front of everyone, though, for the sake of argument I'll mention that he was 67.92% of #2 Adrian Peterson, and the proportion in 2008 was 73.89%) WR: Brandon Marshall produced 80.98% of #1 Andre Johnson (166 vs. 205) TE: Greg Olsen produced 61.31% of #1 Vernon Davis (103 vs. 168) K: Jeff Reed produced 80.26% of #1 Nate Kaeding (122 vs. 152) DEF: Dallas produced 78.95% of #1 New York Jets (240 vs. 304) For depth purposes, I went back to 2008 as well and came up with 68.68% for QB, 73.81% for WR, 48.73% for TE, 86% for K and 72.31% for DEF. Granted, a simple proportion may not tell the whole story, but I think the argument can clearly be made that an elite TE could be the difference between winning and losing a couple of games and, following that line of thinking, could be the difference between an early offseason and a postseason run.
Posted by Matthew Kenerly | May. 17 at 11:38 AM
Also, just for fun, Jermichael Finley ranked 13th among TEs in my league and provided 53.57% of the aforementioned Davis's production. :) Of course, last year was last year and you could very well be right, but I personally don't like to take a lot of risks.
Posted by ANDY RICHARDSON | May. 17 at 08:31 PM
Nice work. I agree on the value of an elite TE, and often jump at guys like Dallas Clark. Keep in mind with Finley that he might be one of those elite guys right now. Last year after 9 games, 3 of which he missed, he had 17 catches. In the final 7 games, he caught 38 passes and went over 70 receiving yards in four of his last five. Then went for 159 yards in a playoff game. He's good. He should provide a lot more of Davis' percentage this year.
Posted by Matthew Kenerly | May. 18 at 08:20 AM
I also wonder what other kind of #3 RB options were available when you made the Portis pick in Round 8. I'd hit the jackpot with him back in 2008, but I'd recognized the proverbial wear on the tires and stayed away in '09 as I observed the Tomlinson-esque slow decline. And now, it's not as if he's still the unquestioned #1 guy in Washington, even given that Willie Parker and Larry Johnson aren't likely to set the world on fire anymore. I'm starting to believe that Washington is a stay-away team, in general.
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