May 9, 2011
I am working on a review of a 12-team mock draft that I did last week, but I figured I would post up another mock I did last week as well, since I can only post my team and it’s a much quicker write. The mock was for the Rotowire fantasy magazine, so I don’t want to publish the results until after it’s released.
But this was a damn good draft. 14-teams, non-PPR, and I picked 7th. Starting lineup is 1 QB, 2 RBs, 3 WRs, 1 RB/WR, 1 TE, 1 DT, and 1 PK.
1. Rashard Mendanhall, RB – Solid #1 RB, as long as you can look past his unwise comments from last week. As for my fantasy team, however, I couldn’t care less, as long as he produces.
2. Hakeem Nicks, WR – Some dude on facebook was critical of my pick of Nicks with the 5th pick in the 2nd round in the other mock. Um, he’s a young emerging stud in a good situation and he was #1 in points per game last year in his 13 games. He even came back nearly twice as fast as expected from a serious injury and not only that produced big time when he returned (#10 in PPG Weeks 14-16). He’ll also be needed more than ever with Steve Smith’s status up in the air. Yeah, that was a terrible pick.
3. Vincent Jackson, WR – I’ve been a big Jackson advocate for a long time, and I fully expect him to be the #1 WR in this great offense. Love the continuity here with the lockout messing a lot of other teams up.
4. Peyton Manning, QB – That’s how it goes in these Expert Drafts: the QBs stay on the board way too long. Peyton Manning in the 4th round of a 14-team league? Uh, I’ll take that. I’m all about playing it safe in an unstable environment, but I do love impact players. Manning’s got both covered.
5. Cedric Benson, RB – Considering the round drafted, not a bad #2 RB in a large league, one that is non-PPR. I fully expect him back in Cincy and they want to run the crap out of the ball.
6. James Starks, RB – When you’re feeling really good during a draft, you might tend to reach a little, especially when you have a positional need, which explains this pick. It’s a committee/clusterf__ck here potentially, but there is a chance Ryan Grant is released, albeit a slight one. If so, Starks will be a tremendous pick, even though Alex Green is very intriguing here.
7. Jimmy Graham, TE – This pick may have made my whole draft. The hype machine is about to get started on Graham this year, and while his ADP may rise to an uncomfortable level this summer, he was a really nice value in a 14-team league. By holding off a little on a TE and potentially getting a top-10 producer, my team greatly benefits.
8. Deion Branch, WR – I guess I’m alone on this one, but Branch was 19th in fantasy last year during his time with the Patriots. The Pats didn’t add a WR in the draft, so there’s a good chance Branch will be a key target again for Tom Brady in this good offense. I like him as a #3 WR in a deep league.
9. Mike Tolbert, RB – Nice pick as a backup option, one who could easily be worth starting each week in this larger league. There’s no doubt Ryan Mathews will get a healthier percentage of the touches, but Tolbert’s not going away, and he could still vulture 8-9 TDs from Mathews.
10. Mike Thomas, WR – It’s not a PPR, but this is a value in a 14-team league. The Jags are very high on him, and in fact, he’s the guy at WR for them. I don’t see anyone else stepping in here and getting more action than Thomas, assuming Mike Sims-Walker is gone as expected.
11. Kendall Hunter, RB – I don’t own Frankie Gore, but Hunter is a nice sleeper option for me just the same. If all goes well for him, I can see him getting 8-10 touches a game, and there’s also a chance he takes over for Gore if he gets hurt. Hunter is very highly-regarded.
12. Dustin Keller, TE – That’s a really nice backup TE, and if Braylon Edwards is gone, Keller could easily be not only a top-10 producer, but someone I can use all year if need be.
13. Vincent Brown, WR – Not only do we like Brown a lot on his own, but he can also serve as a handcuff of sorts for Vincent Jackson.
14. New England Patriots, DEF – They were the #1 fantasy defense last year. You can’t count on TDs as a general rule, but they did improve as the season wore on and they do have a good return game.
15. Garrett Hartley, K – Nice option now that he’s pretty much shown he can be relied on.
QB: Peyton Manning
RB: Rashard Mendenhall
RB: Cedric Benson
WR: Hakeem Nicks
WR: Vincent Jackson
WR: Deion Branch
Flex: James Starks/Mike Tolbert/Mike Thomas
TE: Jimmy Graham
PK: Garrett Hartley
DT: New England