Tue Jul 16 4:14pm ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Brady is 18th quarterback selected
It is very early, but trends are starting to form in drafts. There have been a ton of drafts on our site already, giving us a pretty good indication of ADP. We thought it might be a good time to take a closer look at the ADP numbers and what it might mean to you.
First off, any of the big four running backs (Barkley, McCaffrey, Elliott or Kamara) are getting picked with the first four picks. But for now, Barkley is the consensus No. 1 overall pick, followed by McCaffrey, Elliott and Kamara. Either way, if you want one of these four backs, you better have a top-four pick.
The tight end position is an interesting one this year. The top three consensus tight ends are Travis Kelce, Zach Ertz and George Kittle. If you want one of these guys, you better act early. They are not lasting long. Kelce is even going in the first round in some drafts. He has an ADP of 14.94. Ertz is more of a second-round pick, having an ADP of 25.08. Kittle is a second or third round pick with an ADP of 30.47. The next tight end getting picked is O.J. Howard. His ADP is just 60.44, though, going 30 picks later than Kittle.
Patrick Mahomes is the clear No. 1 quarterback in early drafts. He has an ADP of 33.66. He goes well before the second quarterback selected, which is Andrew Luck at 58.61. So if you think Mahomes is going to repeat and have another huge season, you better act early to get him. He is going in the third or fourth round of most drafts.
The Baker Mayfield hype is in full effect. He is the fifth quarterback off the board with an ADP of 85.21. He is getting selected ahead of players like Matt Ryan, Russell Wilson and Drew Brees. Another young quarterback that is getting early love is Kyler Murray. He is the 12th quarterback off the board and has an ADP of 115.51. Murray is getting picked as a low-end No. 1, showing that a lot of fantasy owners have faith in him for a big first season.
Tom Brady might be the biggest surprise at quarterback right now. You never thought you would hear this, but he is currently the 18th quarterback getting selected in drafts. He has an ADP of 145.71 and is getting picked after guys like Mitch Trubisky, Dak Prescott and Kirk Cousins. It is a little surprising to see him falling, but Brady certainly has questions marks the year with his age and lack of depth at receiver and tight end for the Patriots.
Toddy Gurley is a big question mark for the coming year because of his knee issue, which limited him down the stretch last year. You just don’t know how he is going to respond this year and if he will get the workload of past seasons. But even with that said, his ADP is 16.43. Owners are still taking him the second round of drafts because of his past history and huge potential if healthy and playing at a high level.
Josh Jacobs is the first rookie running back getting selected and also the highest rookie overall. He has an ADP of 31.34. Jacobs is the unquestioned starter in Oakland and has little competition for carries, which is driving up his price tag for the coming year. The next rookie back off the board is David Montgomery. He has an ADP of 50.50. Montgomery has more question marks than Jacobs for the coming year, but certainly has potential for big things if he gets the work.
The receiver position has a few notable trends. First off, JuJu Smith-Schuster (15.12) is getting picked before Antonio Brown (20.26). Smith-Schuster is the clear No. 1 target for the Steelers with Brown gone. The move to Oakland has clearly hurt the value of Brown. We’ll see how it all plays out this coming season.
Larry Fitzgerald is an intriguing fantasy receiver. He is dirt cheap right now, having an ADP of 101.65. The veteran receiver isn’t getting any younger but hasn’t shown a ton of signs of slowing down in recent years. And now he gets to play in a wide open, pass-first offense with a promising rookie at the helm. He could be worth grabbing at his current price.
Amari Cooper is another somewhat polarizing fantasy figure. He can be huge one week but disappear the next. A move to Dallas is supposed to help stabilize his production. We’ll see. For now, you need to act pretty early to get the Cowboys early No. 1 receiver. Cooper has an ADP of 32.86, making him a third-round pick.
A couple injury and suspended players are worthing looking at too. Tyreek Hill is the big one. We aren’t sure how long or if he will be suspended at this point, causing him to be a huge fantasy question mark. Hill has an ADP of 52.98. This could end up being a wasted pick or a great one, depending on how the possible suspension plays out.
Josh Gordon is another player with suspension issues. He is currently suspended but could be reinstated at some point this year. If that happens, he could play a huge role in a passing game looking for options. Gordon has an ADP of 174.10, meaning he is getting picked near the end of drafts.
Cam Newton is returning from offseason shoulder surgery and is currently the ninth quarterback off the board. He has an ADP of 109.68. Newton missed two games last year because of injury and was still 14th overall in fantasy quarterback scoring. His shoulder is a concern going forward but his current ADP and the depth of the quarterback position make Newton a risk that might be worth taking because of his past success.
Hunter Henry missed all of last season because of a torn ACL but his stock is pretty high despite returning from a major injury. He is the sixth tight end selected, having an ADP of 70.82. He seems to be an early target for all of those owners that passed on one of the big-three tight ends.
So with this all said, don’t use ADP as your rankings. These are a tool to help you come draft day. The ADP gives you an idea of where players are being selected. Either way, we always suggest targeting some players for the season and grabbing them. You might have to go a round or two earlier to get them but that is alright. Get the players you want on your roster. Good luck in all your drafts!
Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said that running back Jerick McKinnon (knee) and defensive end Dee Ford (knee) are on schedule to return to practice this week. McKinnon was a very popular fantasy pick last year, but he tore his ACL before the season even started and never played in 2018. Now he's behind Tevin Coleman and Matt Breida in the backfield and isn't even a lock to be ready for Week 1. That makes McKinnon as strictly a late-round flier in deeper leagues. Ford is looking to make an impact in his first year in San Fran after totaling 55 tackles and career-high 13 sacks with the Chiefs. He should help improve San Fran's defense overall. Their unit should be more interesting but can be ignored for fantasy purposes to begin the year.
New England Patriots wide receiver Josh Gordon is dressed in full pads on Sunday, which is an indication that he has been taken off the Non-Football Injury list. It puts Gordon on track to be ready for Week 1. The controversial wide receiver has had his fair share of problems off the field, but he proved in 2018 that he had great chemistry with quarterback Tom Brady late in the year. The 28-year-old finished with 40 receptions for 720 yards and three scores in his 11 games with the Pats, and he should be a top weapon through the air behind Julian Edelman. His return hurts Phillip Dorsett and rookie N'Keal Harry the most. Gordon, if healthy and active, has clear WR2 upside.
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver John Ross (hamstring) returned to practice on Sunday. Ross should be ready for Week 1 and could have an expanded role with A.J. Green out to begin the season, but fantasy owners still shouldn't place much trust in the 23-year-old speedster. Despite his physical talent and top-notch speed, Ross has only played in 16 games in his first two seasons and has 21 catches for only 210 yards and seven touchdowns. He'll only be a late-round flier in deeper leagues until he shows us that he can produce at the highest level.
Washington Redskins QB Case Keenum has been named the starter for Week 1, head coach Jay Gruden said Sunday, Aug. 25.
An MRI exam confirmed that Houston Texans running back Lamar Miller (knee) tore his ACL and is out for the entire year, according to a source. It stinks for Miller, the Texans and for anyone that already drafted the running back in fantasy. Houston will surely look outside the organization for another running back to help with their depth behind Duke Johnson, who will now handle as much work as he can in 2019. Johnson was underutilized in his time with Cleveland but still made for an RB3/flex option in PPR leagues. With a much larger workload expected, he now has RB2 upside and his fantasy value is up tremendously.
Cincinnati Bengals WR John Ross (hamstring) is participating in practice Sunday, Aug. 25.
Fantasy Spin: Ross has deep-threat ability in the passing game but has dealt with injuries since entering the NFL. Fantasy players probably can avoid him during fantasy drafts, but he could be a waiver wire option during the season.
The Miami Dolphins have yet to decide on who their starting quarterback will be between veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen. Head coach Brian Flores said on Sunday that he's not leaning a certain way. Fitzpatrick has been viewed as the favorite to win the job, but Rosen's play in the preseason might have given the team second thoughts. Rosen has a better completion percentage (62.2 to Fitz's 53.1), more yards per attempt (7.8 to 5.2) and more touchdown drives led (three to one). Fitzpatrick, Rosen and Jake Rudock could all play in Thursday's preseason finale. Rosen has more upside and long-term appeal, but neither he nor Fitzpatrick will be appealing in fantasy, even as a QB2.
Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden named quarterback Case Keenum the starting quarterback heading into the Week 1 matchup against the Eagles. This was expected to be the case with rookie Dwayne Haskins not quite ready to start in the NFL. Keenum is league average, at best, and will be operating behind a sketchy offensive line without many established weapons in the passing game. It probably won't be too long before Haskins gets his shot in 2019. Keenum offers very little upside for fantasy owners. You can do better with your QB2.
Miami Dolphins RB Kenyan Drake (foot) did not participate in practice Sunday, Aug. 25.
Fantasy Spin: The Dolphins are optimistic about Drake's status for Week 1, so fantasy players should monitor his status over the next few weeks. He likely will share playing time with Kalen Ballage this season and could be a No. 3 or No. 4 running back depending on his role.
Miami Dolphins QBs Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen have been competing for the starting job during the preseason, and head coach Brian Flores said he is still not ready to name a starter at the position. Flores indicated both quarterbacks may play in the final preseason game.
Fantasy Spin: Both Fitzpatrick and Rosen have had their moments during training camp, but neither player has been the clear favorite for the job. Fitzpatrick probably would be the more valuable fantasy option, but fantasy players should avoid both quarterbacks.
Miami Dolphins safety Reshad Jones, linebacker Kiko Alonso and wide receiver Kenny Stills are among those available on the trade market, according to league sources. However, a high-ranking official said on Saturday that he doubts the Dolphins will find a taker for Alonso or Stills because other teams would wait for them to be cut. Jones isn't expected to have an every-down role anymore, and Alonso's playing time is also expected to diminish drastically. Stills can still have an impact in fantasy as a deep threat, but his boom-or-bust ways make him frustrating to own, especially with Miami's QB situation less than ideal. Stills could have more fantasy appeal as a WR4 if he were dealt to another team.
Miami Dolphins LB Kiko Alonso (undisclosed) participated in practice Sunday, Aug. 25.
New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell could be eased in early in the season after sitting out all of the 2018 campaign with Pittsburgh. Bell hasn't played a game in 20 months and isn't playing at all this preseason. He also hasn't practiced at all with the starting offensive line. There will be rust and timing issues, which is why Ty Montgomery could share the load with Bell to begin the season. Bell skipped training camp and preseason in 2017 and had only 180 rushing yards (3.5 average) over the first three games. There might be rust and more shared touches with Montgomery, but Bell remains a RB1 worth considering late in the first round or early in the second. Montgomery is a solid handcuff in the later rounds.
Buffalo Bills OG Quinton Spain (ankle) and CB Tre'Davious White (quadriceps) will not participate in practice Sunday, Aug. 25.
Houston Texans running back Duke Johnson has become the team's starter with Lamar Miller (knee) looking at missing the entire season. Johnson will get all the playing time he can handle in 2019 despite never functioning as a lead back in the NFL in his time with Cleveland. Mainly useful in PPR leagues as a pass-catcher in the past, Johnson will be a full-time player in Houston in Week 1, although the Texans will surely look for outside help to boost their depth. Houston's offensive line is a concern, but Johnson's increased role could put him in RB2 territory in a potent offense.
Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera said that quarterback Cam Newton (foot) is progressing and shed his walking boot on Sunday. There's a chance that Newton returns to practice as early as Monday, which would be a great sign that he'll be ready to suit up in Week 1 against the Rams, where he'd be in play as a QB1. Many fantasy owners were already skeptical of Newton after he had offseason surgery on his right shoulder for the second straight year, but reports in the preseason were positive about his throwing motion. There's certainly injury risk with his foot as well now, but Newton should be in play as a low-end QB1/high-end QB2 with upside. Keep a close eye on his status this week as the regular season approaches.
New England Patriots rookie wide receiver N'Keal Harry's (ankle, hamstring, toe) status for the Week 1 opener against the Steelers could be in question after he hobbled off the field in the Aug. 8 preseason opener. Since then, he hasn't practiced in full and has been jogging lightly when at practice. The rookie hasn't passed the eye test in terms of looking comfortable this preseason and could struggle in the early going. There also might not be much of a role for Harry to open the season behind Julian Edelman, Phillip Dorsett and Josh Gordon. He'll also have to compete with Demaryius Thomas for playing time. Consider Harry a late-round flier in redraft leagues.
Oakland Raiders RB DeAndre Washington has secured the No. 2 running back spot behind RB Josh Jacobs after Oakland released RB Doug Martin. RB Jalen Richard will remain a third-down back.
Fantasy Spin: Washington has dazzled this summer, and he offers a hint of upside as a last-ditch flier in huge leagues or best-ball setups. He would be the logical handcuff to Josh Jacobs, but there's not a lot of value in drafting him as such in traditional leagues.
Oakland Raiders RB Doug Martin (undisclosed) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Sunday, Aug. 25. The move, however, is a precursor to an injury settlement, which will make him an unrestricted free agent. The injury is not believed to be serious.
Fantasy Spin: Martin, provided this injury truly isn't significant, will have a late chance to catch on with another team. His fantasy value remains low due to injuries and diminished skills. That said, Houston, here he comes???
Green Bay Packers SS Josh Jones was released Sunday, Aug. 25.