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FFL: Preseason | NFL: Week 1

Early ADP Trends

Tue Jul 16 4:14pm ET
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 Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.

Player Notes
Jonnu Smith Aug 19 4:00pm ET

Tennessee Titans tight end Jonnu Smith (knee) returned to practice Monday for the first time since he tore his MCL in Week 14 of the 2018 season. Smith, who was filling in for injured tight end Delanie Walker, delivered 214 yards and three touchdowns in his final 5 games of 2018 leading up to his injury. With Walker now recovered, expect Smith to return to his limited role as the team's second tight end. While Smith is unlikely to have enough opportunity to be relevant this season, he remains a solid dynasty stash with Walker's best years likely behind him.

From RotoBaller

Derrick Henry Aug 19 3:50pm ET

Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (calf) returned to practice today for the first time since the opening day of training camp. Although his Week 1 status was never in serious question, this is a good sign for Henry's 2019 fantasy stock. Henry will slide right back in as the feature back for new offensive coordinator Arthur Smith's offense entering his make-or-break contract year. Henry continues to be one of the most polarizing players for the 2019 fantasy season, but only time will tell if we are to get the Henry from the last four games of the regular season or the Henry from the first twelve. In reality, his upside will likely depend majorly on the ability of quarterback Marcus Mariota to produce more consistently in the passing game.

From RotoBaller

Russell Wilson Aug 19 3:40pm ET

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson took the field for the first time this season on Sunday, and he looked good against the Vikings. Wilson went 6-for-9 for 82 yards, and he just missed a big third down completion that would have padded those stats even more. An especially nice thing was the fact that Wilson went virtually untouched in the pocket, and while it's just the preseason, any positive that can be found in Seattle's offensive line is worth a mention. Wilson is a knock quantity at this point, and if his offensive line can give him more time in the pocket, he could easily be in the discussion for MVP as the season rolls on.

From RotoBaller

D.K. Metcalf Aug 19 3:30pm ET

Seattle Seahawks rookie wide receiver D.K. Metcalf is scheduled to have knee surgery on Tuesday, and his presence for the start of the season is now in jeopardy. Metcalf's injury was discovered last week in practice, but head coach Pete Carroll declined to go into specifics about the injury or the circumstances surrounding it. It isn't believed to be terribly serious since Carroll's already talking about how the team is optimistic that Metcalf will be back for the regular season opener, but for a player who depends on speed like Metcalf, that seems questionable. For now, he's at least out for the rest of the preseason, not a great thing for a rookie.

From RotoBaller

Bobby Wagner Aug 19 3:30pm ET

Seattle Seahawks rookie safety Marquise Blair was carted off the field in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings after suffering back spasms. Blair had been hyped coming into the game, but he was beat for a touchdown in the first half and eventually left with the injury. At this point, it's unclear how serious the injury is or how much time Blair will miss, but it's just another shot at Seattle's rookie class after first-round pick L.J. Collier has been sidelined with a high ankle sprain as well. With Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, and Shaquem Griffin also recovering from injuries, Seattle's defense is taking a serious beating to start the season.

From RotoBaller

Greg Olsen Aug 19 3:10pm ET

Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen will make his preseason debut on Thursday against the New England Patriots. The 34-year-old, who has played just 16 games over the last two seasons as a result of injury, was one of the most efficient fantasy tight ends, playing in each game over a nine-year span while eclipsing the 1,000 yard mark in three straight seasons during the 2014-2016 campaigns. If he can remain healthy, he could return to form and be a valuable asset in one of the weakest tight end fantasy classes in recent memory.

From RotoBaller

Tyler Boyd Aug 19 3:00pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tyler Boyd will have his number called more often this upcoming season. I run newer routes. Im on a lot of routes that I know once they call it, Im the first read, Boyd said before adding I know its me. I just have to win. The 24-year-old had 76 receptions (108 targets) for 1,028 yards and seven touchdowns in 2018. With A.J. Green (ankle) expected to miss some time, Boyd could easily surpass those numbers this upcoming season while serving as Andy Daltons top receiver.

From RotoBaller

Curtis Samuel Aug 19 2:40pm ET

Carolina Panthers wide receiver Curtis Samuel continues to impress this preseason. After missing 10 games in his first two seasons as a result of various ailments, Samuel, along with D.J. Moore, are now the undisputed lead receivers in Carolina this season. Though it is unknown who will be Cam Newtons target of choice, both possess huge upsides, so much so that head coach Ron Rivera indicated that both young receivers dont have ceilings.

From RotoBaller

D.J. Moore Aug 19 2:30pm ET

Carolina Panthers wide receiver D.J. Moore continues to impress. When referencing Moore and fellow wide receiver Curtis Samuels progress, head coach Ron Rivera remarked I think those guys dont have ceilings. I think those guys can become really, really good players. While Samuel continues to be a popular sleeper pick, the 22-year-old shouldnt be ignored. Moore finished the 2018 season with 55 receptions (82 targets) for 788 yards and a pair of touchdowns. With Cam Newton seemingly healthy once again, that number is expected to climb this upcoming season.

From RotoBaller

Robert Davis Aug 19 2:20pm ET

Washington Redskins wide receiver Robert Davis has been targeted thrice in two preseason games thus far. He's hauled in two of them, and both resulted in touchdowns of 46 and 55 yards. As unsustainable a success rate as this is, no positive performance from a Redskins wideout should be dismissed by the coaching staff. Their WR depth chart is an abundance of question marks, and every potential possibility for production should be considered. That said, Davis will also need to factor into the equation on plays that don't result in 50-yard touchdowns if he's going to earn regular playing time. He's playing himself into a roster spot, but fantasy relevance is a different story.

From RotoBaller

Michael Badgley Aug 19 2:10pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers kicker Michael Badgley kept up the good work in the team's second preseason game as he drilled a pair of extra points and a 32-yard field goal. Badgley already has the job won and appears to be the answer to the Chargers' years-long kicking woes. He's also openly spoken to the media about the fact that even though it's his job with no other competition around, he continues to focus on improving because he doesn't want to let his renowned teammates down. Badgley should be a consistent performer on the kicking front this season as LA is expected to have a strong offense.

From RotoBaller

Joe Mixon Aug 19 2:10pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon will begin his third year in the league when the team takes on the Seattle Seahawks, but it will be his first season with new head coach Zac Taylor. Taylor spent a couple of seasons serving under current Rams head coach Sean McVay, during which time the Rams skyrocketed to first in the league in scoring in Taylors first season as an assistant, which was also the same season where Todd Gurley led the league in yards from scrimmage. With Mixon finishing with 1,168 yards and eight touchdowns in 2018, he could be poised for a breakout season under a new regime.

From RotoBaller

Uchenna Nwosu Aug 19 2:10pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers linebacker Uchenna Nwosu exited Sunday's game against the Saints in the third quarter and was wearing a wrap around his midsection afterwards. After the game, Nwosu told reporters that he felt a weird pain in his side when he was making a tackle, but he didn't seem to think it was very serious. The second-round pick from 2018 is slotted to be one of the team's starting linebackers, so everyone's hoping it's not too serious since the defense already lost Derwin James for upwards of three months. Updates are expected later in the week.

From RotoBaller

Kelvin Harmon Aug 19 2:00pm ET

Washington Redskins wide receiver Kelvin Harmon has been targeted five times in the team's first two exhibition contests, hauling in two of them for 17 yards. The Redskins were without both Trey Quinn and Terry McLaurin in the most recent outing, with Josh Doctson seeing minimal playing time as well, so it's at least a little bit odd that Harmon hasn't gotten more looks. Washington possesses one of the least inviting wideout groups of any team in the league from a fantasy perspective, and it could be viewed as frustrating that a rookie with unknown upside hasn't seen a measurable amount of work in the preseason. Harmon is outside the fantasy radar until this changes.

From RotoBaller

Christian McCaffrey Aug 19 1:50pm ET

Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey continues to sit behind New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley in pre-draft rankings. However, according to DraftKings NFL Analyst Greg Ehrenberg, he would select McCaffrey if he had the top pick in any of his fantasy drafts. I really think you cant go wrong here, but if I had the No. 1 overall pick, its Christian McCaffrey. The 23-year-old rushed for 1,098 yards and seven scores in addition to 107 receptions for 867 yards and six touchdowns. With McCaffrey eyeing both 1,000 yards on the ground and as a receiver, you cant go wrong if you are able to grab him in your draft.

From RotoBaller

Artavis Scott Aug 19 1:50pm ET

Though he didn't get a touchdown, Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Artavis Scott led the team in receiving yards on Sunday when facing the Saints. Scott also had the longest gain of the day when he hauled in a 31-yard pass from backup quarterback Easton Stick in the final minute of the game. Scott is one of a few wide receivers battling to be the team's fourth or fifth option on the outside, and he looks to be in the thick of the fight. It's not clear yet who will take the spots, but Scott should be considered one of the strongest competitors for the position. If he can make the squad, he could find himself getting a lot of looks with a set of injury-prone receivers in front of him.

From RotoBaller

Vernon Davis Aug 19 1:40pm ET

Washington Redskins tight end Vernon Davis might be getting up there in age, but he's still vying for a spot on the roster. That's not going to be a particularly fantasy-relevant roster spot, however, as the backup tight end in Washington will be used sparingly. If there is even a glimmer of fantasy potential for Davis, it's that he is a reliable pass-catcher on a team without many guys who can say that. He'd also be backing up Jordan Reed, who has had his fair share of injury troubles over the years. Still, Davis is best viewed as a player who will be targeted minimally throughout the season. He'll catch enough of those targets to reel off a productive day or two, but it's not going to be sustainable or predictable.

From RotoBaller

Jeremy Sprinkle Aug 19 1:20pm ET

Washington Redskins tight end Jeremy Sprinkle enters 2019 in a competition with Vernon Davis for the backup tight end role. He has seen four targets and caught two of them for 13 yards in the preseason. This role is highly unlikely to provide any fantasy value, as even first-string tight end Jordan Reed was largely held in check in 2018. The Redskins are likely to once again rely heavily on the run as they did last year, while asking for mistake-free football from their quarterback. There simply won't be enough targets to go around for the fringe pass-catchers on this team. Reed is being drafted as a bench player in 12-team PPR leagues, per Fantasy Football Calculator. There is no reason to think any differently about his understudies.

From RotoBaller

Trey Quinn Aug 19 1:10pm ET

Washington Redskins wide receiver Trey Quinn was held out of last week's preseason game, but he returned to practice on Sunday. Quinn will likely enter Week 1 as the Redskins' slot receiver, providing him with intriguing fantasy potential in PPR leagues. Regardless of who earns the starting QB job for Week 1, the Redskins don't figure to be an explosive passing offense. Without the presence of a proven big-play threat on the outside, it stands to reason that high-percentage plays to Quinn out of the slot will be a focal point as Washington tries to move the chains in chunks. That said, until we see clear evidence of this in game situations, Quinn falls outside the fantasy radar for now.

From RotoBaller

Detrez Newsome Aug 19 1:10pm ET

Los Angeles Chargers running back Detrez Newsome may be losing his spot in the pecking order. Coming into Sunday's game against the Saints, Newsome was slated to be the team's No. 3 running back after Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson, but he got jumped by Troymaine Pope when it came time to actually go into the game. To make matters worse, Newsome did nothing of importance while Pope took a punt to the house for the biggest play of the game. At this point, Newsome may be at real risk to be cut from the team. He'll need to step it up in practice this week to see much of a future in LA.

From RotoBaller