Editor's Note: Recenlty
members of the FFToday Board completed their annual June Mock draft.
This mock will be played out in a best ball format, in a league
with no transactions, no free agent pickups, no trades in season...
properly named the "No-Hassle League." View the
round-by-round results here. Below is the commissioner's analysis
of each team.
Analysis: It's hard not to see the potential
that exists for this team given how balanced they are from top
to bottom and the fact that they're founded on a rushing attack
that includes the top player at the RB position and perhaps his
ideal running mate who surged last season once he was given the
clear-cut lead role. Throw in a host of proven WRs and a top 3-4
TE and you truly have a top contender here based on the proven
track record of nearly all its rostered players. Yes, a couple
of the "proven" wide-outs are playing on new teams this
season and that is always a cause for at least some concern, but
Dan likely only needs one of them to adapt adequately in order
to thrive, not both. And while there's not a "top" quarterback
on this team, Dan has employed the rare three-QBs-on the roster
technique which again, takes the pressure of any one QB to be
"the guy" all the time. Picking at the top of a draft
isn't a surefire ticket to success, but with an undisputed No.1
pick as a part of that package, this is where you want to be.
Key to No-Hassle Success: Taking three quarterbacks
in Dan's case meant only carrying four running backs into the
season. And, two of those aren't guaranteed carries, particularly
a rookie who is backing up the league's premier workhorse in Derrick
Henry. As such, McCaffrey and Drake must remain healthy to keep
this ship sailing properly as the "backups" aren't built
to carry much of a load. Additionally, DeVante Parker needs to
be the receiver he was last season rather than the receiver he
was every season prior to that. Dan has invested a lot in him
given his history, but his play from last season warrants that
sort of faith...sort of. Truth be told, this team is so loaded
with draft "steals" that health is probably the only
thing standing between them and contention.
Favorite Pick: There's no way an explosive player
in an explosive offense like Kenyan Drake should fall as far as
he did. Drake deserves consideration at the top of the second
round, much less the very bottom. Pairing McCaffrey and Drake
gives Dan the best 1-2 RB punch in the league. Add to that the
pitch-catch combo of Wentz and Ertz and getting Stefon Diggs with
the last pick in the sixth round, Dan was stealing players all
Least Favorite Pick: I'll admit that I have
Brandin Cooks fatigue at this point. He can't stay healthy. He'll
have a big game when he is healthy and then disappear for three.
I just thought there were better players available at the point
he was picked. Can't argue with much else.
Overall Outlook: I don't see how this team doesn't
contend for the whole enchilada. There are two quarterbacks capable
of sharing the load in a best-ball format and a third who could
fill in the gaps on occasion. Adam Thielen is as solid and safe
a pick at WR as there is and he'll anchor that group well even
as they don't have a true superstar in their midst at that position.
And, even though this is primarily a team of veterans aside from
Fant and Evans, these are veterans with upside. Parker could easily
be a top ten WR. So, too, could Diggs if he and Allen get on the
same page quickly. This team has a high floor AND a high ceiling
and the combination makes them tough to beat in so many respects.
Analysis: Not to be out-done by Dan in the RB department, Wonder
went out and grabbed not one, not two, but THREE consecutive running
backs to begin his draft. And while I'd opt for McCaffrey and
Drake over Barkley and Jones, the addition of Gurley might give
this group the overall edge. Picking three of any one position
to begin a draft generally makes the rest of your roster weak
in spots and that could be the case here. A couple of years ago,
having Odell Beckham Jr. and A.J. Green on the same team would
constitute the possession of a top-notch receiving corps. But,
this is 2020 and those aren't the same players they used to be...maybe.
Maybe Beckham still has the potential to be who he once was. And
maybe Green can bounce back from yet another injury and revitalize
his career. With two rookies serving as their "backups",
Wonder needs one of them to be great for sure as there's no Adam
Thielen on this team providing statistical stability. To his credit,
though, WW did add a sixth wide receiver to his team late, so
he recognizes the risk. Whatever happens, though, this rushing
attack is stout to say the least.
Key to No-Hassle Success: I am not sold on Josh Allen as a starting
fantasy QB as I think his rushing TDs are going to drop with a
true goal line back now in Buffalo. As such, I think Matthew Stafford
needs to be the quarterback he was prior to injury last season
for this team to be at its best. Further, the WR uncertainties
have already been noted, but there is great uncertainty at TE
as well. Maybe Rob Gronkowski will simply resume his role as the
best blocking TE in the league...and little else. Can he really
be counted on and if he can't, can Chris Herndon? This team is
going to lead the league in RB points, best-ball wise, on a number
of weeks. I happen to think Jones and Gurley were both the right
picks at the time they were picked. But, will they get enough
help from a talented, but enigmatic supporting cast? As of now
(June), the jury is still way out.
Favorite Pick: It took guts to take Todd Gurley, not only because
of his recent history, but also because Wonder already had Barkley
and Aaron Jones in the fold. But, it was a great pick. Gurley
is going to get carries on a team that gives their running backs
plenty of open running lanes. And Matt Ryan won't be stealing
any goal line carries. I also thought Stafford lasted too long
in this draft and Wonder got him at a bargain price.
Least Favorite Pick: I can't really quibble with any pick per
se. Beckham is on my personal "do not draft" list, but
how can you pass him up at 4.11? Heck, I might have broken my
rule for that. I would have also opted for a different starting
QB and one less rookie WR, but those aren't major beefs.
Overall Outlook: While I don't think this team is the "slam
dunk" that Dan's team is, it’s very strong in some
key areas, particularly in terms of having three work-horse, potential
RB1s. Beyond that, there are players with high risk-reward quotients
and several rookies who may contribute little to nothing until
later in the season. Still, how can you not get excited about
a team in which OBJ and Gronk aren't even being counted on to
be the primary scoring threats? Perhaps the one guy who steadies
the ship here is Calvin Ridley. Ridley's numbers are predictable
and if Atlanta gets their offense clicking, that symmetry would
really benefit Wonder with Gurley also in the fold. Success for
this group is uncertain, but it will be a fun ride.
Analysis: After two consecutive teams at the top of the draft
went RB-heavy with their approach, Remote implemented a WR-heavy
strategy netting three potential studs at that position with his
picks in Rounds 2-4. The move left him with Ezekiel Elliott and
a potential band of misfits at the RB position, but the addition
of Darrell Henderson in the tenth round was huge as it did secure
the likely two top runners on an offense still run by an offensive
genius. Knowing that, we can look at the strengths of this team
then without nit-picking its weaknesses too severely. Neither
A.J. Brown nor D.J. Moore has a QB who can feed them the ball
downfield on a consistent basis, but there's no denying the talent.
Particularly with Brown who looked like a young Julio Jones during
the second half of last season. Watson and Jones likewise appear
to be a duo made in best-ball heaven. They both represent inconsistent,
but often explosive options and if their explosive games can complement
each other, Remote will have his second position of strength in
tow. The bench is a good mix of youth and veteran presence.
Key to No-Hassle Success: I think this team is a "safe"
team in terms of volatility as its primary running back and wide
receivers are going to get results based on sheer volume of carries/targets.
I guess beyond that, the Rams just need to get their groove back
in the running game as offensive line woes last season really
decimated what was once one of the best rushing offenses in the
league. Assuming that happens, this team should do well, particularly
with the QB and TE positions nailed down alongside the obvious
wide receiver prowess. I guess it's possible that Malcolm Brown
becomes the lead runner in Los Angeles and Derrius Guice gets
upended by Antonio Gibson. Should that happen, Ezekiel Elliott
better stay both awesome and healthy because reinforcements will
be hard to find in such a doomsday scenario.
Favorite Pick: Sure, he may fade to irrelevance, but drafting
Henderson when Remote did made a lot of sense from a security
standpoint. I liked the pick as it gave Akers some cover. Also,
A.J. Brown passes the eye test for me. I watched him play in several
games last season and he looks the part of a future superstar
at that position. Thought that was a gutsy, but great pick given
his enormous upside.
Least Favorite Pick: I don't think DeShaun Watson's numbers will
be much, if any, better than the next half-dozen or so QBs picked
after him and as such, I thought he was taken too early. Also,
not sure what to think of Derrius Guice or the team he is playing
Overall Outlook: Watson and Elliott have high floors. Even in
an "off" year last season, Zeke was mostly effective
as a fantasy RB1 just as Mike Evans was as a WR1. That makes the
foundation of Watson, Elliott, and Evans a very stable base to
build off of. Throw in some upside players like Brown, Moore,
and Akers and you have a team that could grow into a long-term
contender based on the stability of the overall roster. The "starters"
for Remote are as strong/solid as any team in the league assuming
one of the TEs produces as expected. The "bench"? There
are question marks there given that Dillon and Pittman are guaranteed
nothing in terms of actual role. Still, I would be excited about
this team as a whole.
Analysis: There is a great deal of non-convention that is injected
into this draft year in and year out courtesy of RLLD. Conventionally
speaking, Alvin Kamara is to be picked after Cook and Henry in
a non-PPR league. Amari Cooper is more of a third round pick than
a second. Aaron Rodgers is no longer considered to be the best
QB after the first half-dozen guys are off the board. None of
that stops Ray, though, from putting together the team that fits
his eye the best. That included two consecutive picks of Seahawk
players in addition to a trio of running backs buried deep on
their respective teams' depth charts. The first of the Seahawk
picks, though, may have been the steal of Ray's draft as Chris
Carson has shown that when healthy, production is his game. If
Kamara can regain form by way his own good health, the duo of
Kamara and Carson could challenge for best 1-2 punch in the league.
Also, I can't imagine a more ideal WR3 in fantasy football than
T.Y. Hilton. Hilton has long been too inconsistent to be a WR1,
but in a supportive role in best-ball, he will likely thrive.
So, there are some things to hang your hat on here.
Key to No-Hassle Success: A pedestrian WR unit to begin with,
Ray only drafted four players at the position and three of those
guys count for points every week. That leaves very little room
for error of judgment or injury and I think Ray might have been
better suited to acquire one less RB so that WR depth could exist.
As is, the foursome Ray does possess needs to shine and shine
big to keep this team in the hunt. Additionally, there is no guarantee
in my mind that Amari Cooper will out-play Michael Gallup and/or
CeeDee Lamb. As such, this group may lack a true WR1 alongside
the depth issue. So, the key for this team is a fairly no-brainer
proposition. Get production from WR...or else. The QB and TE positions
aren't strong enough to right the ship should that position be
a sink-hole at some point during the season.
Favorite Pick: Carson and Hilton. I questioned the early pick
of Kamara and then I really questioned the Cooper pick, so I was
ready to be down on this team from that point forward. But, loving
two of the next three picks changed some things for me as I think
Carson is an ideal RB2 and I feel the same about Hilton in terms
of the role Ray has in mind for him.
Least Favorite Pick: Cooper primarily, but to say much more about
that is overkill. Also, not a huge fan of Lockett that early or
Rodgers as the first QB taken after Kyler Murray. Finally, I would
have liked to have seen Ray grab a RB late who will actually get
carries from Week 1 on.
Overall Outlook: I look at this team and I see some holes. You
don't take your weakest position to begin with and then support
them with only one "bench" player. Your quarterback
has little upside and your RB depth is stuck behind runners who
don't come off the field all that much. But, then you remember
that this draft has twelve guys well versed in the construction
of fantasy football contenders and several of those guys see things
you don't. Ray has put together a starting lineup with this team
that is both balanced and capable. And while I am concerned about
best-ball ramifications for the group as a whole, the talent at
the front lines cannot be overlooked. Who needs convention anyway?
Analysis: The intent is to examine this team as if Dalvin Cook
is playing from Day One and that his hold-out affects nothing.
After all, it's June. Assuming that to be the case, this team
looks both balanced and stellar. The quarterbacks are long in
the tooth to be sure, but they also were able to hand-pick their
situations this season. Additionally, Mark Andrews was a big-time
steal at 5.05 just as Robinson was at the prior pick. All in all,
this team has everything you could ever want in a team. Stud RB...deep
wide receiver group with both stability and upside...stud TE...and
plenty of upside on the "bench". Yes, RB depth could
be an issue should Cook or Fournette miss time, but that's true
for nearly every team in this draft/league. When you look at a
team/roster and your first thought is "Man, I wouldn't complain
much if I had to trade my team for this one", that's a compliment
to how the team was put together. And, there's little to quibble
about here. The first six picks were pretty much spot-on in terms
of both getting the best player available and the position most
in need of addressing at that time.
Key to No-Hassle Success: Again, not going to make the Cook situation
the key to anything, so let's identify Fournette as a key instead.
It's hard to say just how much Jacksonville still has invested
in their projected starter and it's not crazy to foresee his season
falling apart for a number of reasons. That said, he has almost
no competition for carries on first and second down...or at the
goal line, so maybe he's ideal as a RB2 based on those factors.
He is one of the draft's biggest wild cards. A top-12 season at
the position really gives Hawkeye something to build on. I also
think one of Lindsay, Moss, and Jackson needs to have a consistent
role from week-to-week to be an asset. Everything else here looks
solid to me, especially with a potential rookie of the year candidate
at WR alongside a "safe" veteran in Shepard.
Favorite Pick: I think Mark Andrews is a late fourth round value
at worst, so getting him nearly mid-fifth was tremendous from
my standpoint. I was hoping beyond hope that he would fall one
more spot to me. I also love Godwin's fit with Brady at QB. And,
Jarvis Landry is really a nice fit as well in the WR3 role given
how often he gets open in passing routes. So many picks I liked.
Picking directly before and after, I noticed how good this team
developed in real time.
Least Favorite Pick: I love watching Phillip Lindsay run. I just
don't trust that he's going to have anything close to the role
he enjoyed the last two seasons with Melvin Gordon now in town.
As such, I probably go a different direction in the seventh round.
Beyond that, not much to pick at.
Overall Outlook: I really like this team all the way around.
For me, assuming Cook is good to go, they are a balanced crew
with explosive potential all over the place courtesy of Cook,
Godwin, and Andrews alongside target/touch monsters in Robinson,
Fournette, and Landry. The selection of older QBs was offset by
taking a couple of exciting rookies in between. It's just hard
to see this team not contending aside from an unforeseen rash
of injuries making things unexpectedly difficult. I think the
spot is a good place to draft from as at least four times, Hawkeye
grabbed the guy that was going to be my very next pick. Contender
for a league title? Yes.
Analysis: In a similar fashion to the first two teams assembled
in this draft, this team was constructed on the shoulders of a
RB-RB foundation as Henry and Chubb look to continue the success
both achieved during the 2019 season. Beyond that, the selection
of another RB (Mostert) in Round Four cemented this team as being
a ground heavy unit with a lesser emphasis placed upon prowess
at the WR and TE positions. There is depth at the first of those
spots as Julian Edelman represents the quintessential WR3 and
Jerry Jeudy provides a fall-back option in case Courtland Sutton
gets hurt or regresses. Still, it's a team built on three punishing
RBs and the hope that Kenny Golladay and Kyler Murray take another
step forward in their production. Both represent players with
tremendous upside and that theme permeates throughout this team
even as players like Edelman, Coleman, and Tannehill were more
or less "safety" selections. With both tight ends trying
to learn new systems on new teams, there is an obvious, albeit
fairly minor team flaw here. When every tight end you target gets
stolen within a pick or two of you...that can be the end result.
Key to No-Hassle Success: Maybe the WR corps on this team surprises,
but ultimately I see them as quite average at best in relation
to the other teams in the league. Success then resides with Murray
emerging as an every-week top 5 QB and the RB trio of Henry, Chubb,
and Mostert staying healthy. The selection of Coleman late makes
losing Mostert the least costly of the three backs, but without
back-ups for the other two backs, there is risk in them missing
time. It's a smaller thing, but I do think one of the two tight
ends also needs to carve out a meaningful role in order for this
team to contend. Otherwise, the smash mouth running attack and
high-upside QB that make up the heart of the team will be dragged
back down to Earth. It would also help if Darius Slayton isn't
overshadowed by the two veteran receivers on his NFL team.
Favorite Pick: I was elated to grab Chubb, Golladay, Mostert,
and Murray when I did. I think all of them dropped much further
than their value dictates. I also liked the fact that Jeudy was
available when he was given that the situation in Denver as to
which WR will rise to the top is very much in question. I think
Chubb could produce first-round return on the investment, so feet
to the fire, that's my favorite pick.
Least Favorite Pick: Every pick after Murray felt conservative
and less than ideal. I am not excited about my tight end duo or
my backup QB or my depth at the RB position. There wasn't a "hated"
pick in the bunch, but not many that I was thrilled about, either.
Overall Outlook: This was kind of a tale of two drafts for me.
After the first six rounds, I probably wouldn't have traded my
team for anyone else's, but I really felt like my targets got
consistently sniped after that and I reacted in fairly conservative
fashion aside from maybe the selection of Slayton who could be
a huge bust all things considered. Still, having the lead runners
on three very good running teams bodes well for this season and
if the receivers can just be average in relation to other team's
corps, I do think this team can and will contend. There's just
no way to come out of this draft with a team that you like at
every single position. But, the positions I do like (QB, RB),
I like very much...so there's that.
Analysis: At some point, somebody has to pick a non-RB and start
building their team on a different foundation and that is what
Shovel opted to do with last season's No.1 WR (Michael Thomas)
available for the taking. The next two rounds constituted two
picks that I thought could have been switched and I would have
been satisfied with the results. Austin Ekeler was massively undervalued
in this draft and even though the overall RB prowess of this team
is suspect, I think Ekeler will finish top-10 at the position
when all is said and done. Conversely, I think of Kittle as more
of a third round value, so that whole window was kind of a wash
for me. Beyond the first three picks, there were a few picks that
I liked, but also several that I questioned including Reagor,
Trautman, and McFarland who I think potentially provide little
functional depth. Further, there aren't many players on this team
with a proven track record of high level success, at least not
for an entire season. Will Fuller is, in fact, the poster child
for potential only realized over the course of a game or two.
In a best ball format, I am concerned that the few stars on this
team are going to have to really pull some weight.
Key to No-Hassle Success: First of all, Tyler Boyd is going to
have to become Joe Burrow's favorite receiver. Period. If that
is the case and IF Fuller can actually stay on the field, this
team has at least one additional strength to go alongside the
obvious one (tight end). Kittle is an asset to be sure, but there
is a price to pay for taking a tight end this early and this team
paid it in terms of top-shelf talent. Still, I think Kittle does
what he's projected to do and as such, just needs adequate support.
Brees to Thomas will be a reliable source of points as will Ekeler,
but there is uncertainty beyond that in the form of several rookies
and a player or three with undetermined roles out of the backfield
(Ingram, Mack, Jones). One of those running backs exceeding expectations
is also a critical part of Shovel finding himself in contention.
Favorite Pick: It's a no-brainer for me. Ekeler should not be
still on the board at 3.07 and if I hadn't taken two RBs with
my first two picks, he wouldn't have been. I think many forget
just how solid he's been when given opportunities over the past
two seasons. Also, Thomas was the correct pick at 1.07. Once the
first half-dozen RBs are gone, there is a drop-off in value and
Shovel correctly identified that.
Least Favorite Pick: I think this is too early for Ronald Jones,
plain and simple. He's in an explosive offense to be sure, and
as such, the upside makes the pick intriguing...but I don't trust
him. And, I thought Boyd was taken a bit early, too, but Shovel
loves his Bengals - this we all know.
Overall Outlook: You can't say you love every team or else your
words lack credibility, so I won't bother saying that I love this
one because I don't. Part of that has to do with draft position,
though, as I thought Shovel got put in some awkward spots at times
aside from absolutely stealing Ekeler in the third. I just don't
see enough firepower top to bottom unless one of the year's breakout
rookies comes from the trio of Reagor, McFarland, and Trautman
and/or if Jonathan Taylor falters in Indy such that Marlon Mack
enjoys one more good year. Every team in this draft can contend
and make some noise and this group is no different - it's just
not one of the units I like best initially. Time will ultimately
tell the tale.
Analysis: This and the next team review (Robb's) are going to
be constructed from a similar place as both guys opted to take
a quarterback early in the second round, making them the teams
relying most on the value gap that exists between Jackson/Mahomes
and everyone else at the position. When you don't choose a RB
until overall pick No.32, you're not likely to have one of the
top rushing teams in the league, but few would argue that a RB
in this draft has more upside than Clyde Edwards-Helaire. If you
ever owned Brian Westbrook during his prime, it's not hard to
envision the type of production that's possible with CEH. The
trio of Adams, Lamar Jackson, and him was, in fact, an impressive
haul given that each has the capacity for explosive production
on any given week. Beyond them came a series of picks in which
progression from current expectation is required. Montgomery showed
flashes last season, but was ultimately mediocre. Chark was dynamic
at times, but plays in a less than stellar offense. Ditto for
McLaurin. All in all, Matt picked a lot of players on bad NFL
offenses including multiple Dolphins and multiple Redskins and
multiple Bears. Hmmm...
Key to No-Hassle Success: I think Jackson will take a step back,
fantasy-wise, as teams better game plan for him, but I still think
he'll be a top-2 QB, so that pick is probably safe and secure.
Likewise, I have little doubt that Edwards-Helaire will make Matt
glad that he picked him when he did. Basically, this team needs
two players from rounds 4-10 to take a significant step forward
with respect to production. With so many players coming out of
suspect offensive units, this team is high risk for outright flopping.
That said, if you watched Terry McLaurin last season, you know
what he's capable of if someone can just get him the ball. Chark
is in that same boat as well. There are too many unknowns on this
team to feel overly good or bad about it at this time. But, some
players are going to have to step up. That much is known.
Favorite Pick: Edwards-Helaire was the right pick at the right
time. When you have no RBs on your roster and the guys up for
grabs are largely retreads, why not gamble on a potential powder
keg? I also thought the selection of Burrow was terrific given
that a great QB was already in the fold. Burrow may be great down
the stretch as his experience increases about the time Jackson
is taking his foot off the gas. Nice duo there.
Least Favorite Pick: Mike Gesicki that early didn't make much
sense to me, but I do admire Matt securing a guy he feels confident
about. Overall, I just didn't like so many players on this team
being from subpar offenses...don't fault them individually, though.
Overall Outlook: There seems to be a clear disadvantage to picking
later in this draft...not only in terms of what's available in
Round 1, but also in Rounds 3 and 5. And, when you try to squeeze
an early QB pick in there, it makes things even more dicey. That
being said, there are elements to this team that I really like.
There are going to be big weeks as Jackson can produce at QB in
a way that his peers cannot. And, I'm sure the anemic offenses
of 2019 won't be hard and fast repeat offenders, particularly
in Miami where upgrades abound. So, while I was uncomfortable
with some of what Matt did and who he chose, I do not feel confident
in a downgrade of this team to non-contender status. Potential
and possibilities persist.
Analysis: All right...same plan as Matt here as Robb also took
a QB early in the second round by way of grabbing Patrick Mahomes
and then hanging on for dear life. The difference between Matt
and Robb, though, is that Robb built around Mahomes and the RB
position to the point of neglecting the WR position until Round
5. That said, here's the brilliance of this team - Robb was able
to get the top QB in this draft (arguably), fortify the RB position
early and often, and still get Keenan Allen and Robert Woods as
his two top WRs. Granted, neither WR represents WR1 value, but
they are terrific WR2s and will help stabilize this team alongside
the exciting young RBs and the stud QB. Further, Robb added upside
players at every position including tight end and appears to have
enough depth to contend even if the injury bug impacts a projected
starter or two. All in all, I think this was a masterful use of
the No.9 spot given that WR value was still present in Rounds
5 and 6. After Singletary was picked in Round 4, I wasn't certain
Robb would be able to conjure up much at that position, but I
think he took steps towards being competent there if nothing else.
Key to No-Hassle Success: Mixon and Conner needs to get out of
the gates faster and better than they did in 2019. Both disappointed
for much of the season and Robb will need them to resemble the
best of what they've shown at times over the past two seasons.
Additionally, John Brown and Mecole Hardman need to have well
defined roles in their respective offenses. Brown was terrific
last year and Hardman showed potential, but Stefon Diggs may cut
into Brown's role significantly and Watkins is still around in
Kansas City for now. Not taking a wide receiver until Round 5
is hardly a death sentence, but it also means that guys you're
counting on are not exactly the "cream of the crop"
at the position. Thus, the depth has to produce and the RB choices
have to pan out. It's not enough to grab three RBs in four rounds...they
must be the RIGHT running backs.
Favorite Pick: I thought the picks of Allen and Woods turned
this from an intriguing draft into a truly dynamic one. Not that
either is going to set the world on fire, mind you. But, both
are steady and represent high-end reliability. I'm o.k. with reaching
a bit on Mahomes if it means you can snag a few bargains later
on and I felt that Robb most definitely did that. I liked a lot
of the later round picks, too.
Least Favorite Pick: John Brown was terrific in 2019. No disputing
that. But, he and Stefon Diggs don't seem like complementary players
and I wonder what his role will ultimately be in an offense that
would prefer to keep things pretty vanilla. Likewise, Christian
Kirk may shrink in DeAndre Hopkins's shadow.
Overall Outlook: I've already said that picking from this and
similar spots is challenging, but ultimately I love what Robb
did with this team. He was able to acquire the back end of talent
tiers in his choices at both RB and WR such that you look at the
overall product and wonder how he found all that he did in the
midst of still taking a QB so early. I think the RB trio will
be excellent in the best ball format and I think Mahomes is going
to be the best QB to own bar none. Throw in a little production
at WR and some TEs with nowhere to go but up and you have a contending,
albeit somewhat unorthodox team. Like Ray, Robb is that kind of
drafter, and I think he's put something together that has staying
power. We shall see.
Analysis: So, four teams ultimately took something other than
RB-RB or WR-RB or RB-WR in the first two rounds. The last of the
four comes in the form of ICEMAN's team that consisted of a second
round TE pick in Travis Kelce. Before going any further, it's
worth noting that I ran away with the title last season with Kelce
as my second round pick, so the strategy has precedent to be sure.
But, sandwiching that pick between two wide receivers left this
team as the weakest in the league at running back talent and production.
I won't even wait on talking about what's critical here - David
Johnson needs to revive his career in Houston for this team to
compete. Either that, or Kareem Hunt has to become the main back
in Cleveland due to a Nick Chubb injury. This backfield has the
potential to drag this team way down even as the quarterback and
tight positions are incredibly stable and the wide receiver position
has a strong nucleus to draw from. There's not a team in this
league I would be more afraid to own than this one. That being
said, what if David Johnson is resurgent? Or Hunt or Murray shine
as the backs ahead of them cope with injuries? High risk? Most
certainly. But rewards aren't out of reach.
Key to No-Hassle Success: Look no further than the picks in Rounds
4-6 as to what will determine this team's fate. You know what
you're getting in Julio Jones and Travis Kelce along with a healthy
Cooper Kupp. It's whether or not Johnson, Swift, and Hunt can
be anything resembling consistent productivity that will keep
an owner up nights. Johnson is the ultimate wild card of that
bunch. No one is certain as to what he has left in the tank after
two disappointing seasons in a row. A top 6-8 season for him and
this team is riding high most likely. But, anything resembling
the David Johnson of recent years past spells doom for this team.
There's not enough depth at WR or explosiveness at QB to overcome
a lead runner who's anything but and an overall RB group that
lacks anyone else resembling a stud. Is 2020 the year of the re-tread
Favorite Pick: Considering I'm not entirely sold on this team's
foundation, I have to admit that I liked quite a few of the later
round picks. Both QBs, Jared Cook, Latavius Murray, and Allen
Lazard all came at bargain prices considering their potential
production and I think this is one of the deeper teams in the
league in spite of not having front line players at RB.
Least Favorite Pick: Having to pick RBs in the Rounds 5 and 6
really boxed ICE in as the better value at those spots was at
other positions. But, when your only RB on the roster through
57 picks is David Johnson, you have to keep picking RBs in spite
of it all. I thought the Kupp pick needed to be a RB instead.
Overall Outlook: Will this team ultimately regret not picking
a RB at 3.10 to pair with Johnson and then either Swift or Hunt
later? Only the passage of time will answer that. But, while there
are pitfalls to having a less than "balanced" team top
to bottom with respect to roster, lots of those kind of teams
have risen up to be contenders over the years and this team could
achieve that status with only one or two IFs falling into place.
It's easy to look at spots of uncertainty and forget just how
rock solid guys like Julio, Kelce, and Matt Ryan are. And, on
weeks that Ryan and Julio hook up early and often, this team will
thrive. Don't count ICE out...just know that he'll have to hope
for a few breaks to come his way in order to feel ultimate confidence.
Analysis: And now, we return to teams built on the foundation
of either RB-WR or WR-RB. Worm is a new player in the June Mock
this season and he came out swinging by way of taking arguably
the most explosive player in all of fantasy football in the form
of Tyreek Hill. It's his next pick, though, that stirred up the
most controversy as he banked on Miles Sanders taking a major
step forward into RB1 territory. Hill's selection was not at all
questionable given who he is and where he plays, but Sanders could
be the make or break point for this team. Sure, Le'Veon Bell could
see improvement in New York, but most think his value is capped.
Ditto with Smith-Schuster who might need an Antonio Brown-level
player opposite him ultimately to be productive week in and week
out. This team was obviously well thought-out even with the Sanders
pick and there is so much to like in terms of balance. Balance
in terms of talent at each position. Balance in terms of younger
players vs. older veterans. There's little reason to think this
team won't be competitive. But, the young backs (Sanders and Taylor)
must rise to the challenge.
Key to No-Hassle Success: The thought in many people's mind is
that Jonathan Taylor is a superior back compared to Marlon Mack.
That prevailing thought must translate into reality for Worm as
he's banking on Taylor being more than just depth for this team
in a best ball format. Bell feels like he'll be a high-volume,
low-ceiling player again this season, so he's probably better
suited to be a fallback than a guy to be counted on for high-end
production. I think most people think Dak Prescott's fantasy numbers
will continue to rise and that he'll take Michael Gallup along
for the ride, so no worries there. In the end, it's just all about
how good Sanders and Taylor really are. The other pieces really
are situated neatly on a team that looks otherwise very solid.
Favorite Pick: I'm not sure I was in love with any pick, per
se, but I did find almost every pick to be very solid. Hill could
have been picked much sooner, so that's a mild steal and I really
like Gallup and Higbee back-to-back in Rounds 8 & 9. I just
thought the construction of this team made logical sense from
start to finish.
Least Favorite Pick: I could be dead wrong about this...we all
could be, but I think the Miles Sanders pick was too early. There
were other running backs there that I liked better including Nick
Chubb who I was certain at the time was going to be the pick.
Overall Outlook: Mike did a great job finding an addition to
this draft that fit right in with the draft's general spirit and
level of competency. Worm was sharp throughout the draft, seemingly,
in terms of putting together a team that has good, solid, proven
players at every turn to go alongside some upside guys like Taylor,
Gallup, and Higbee. Dallas Goedert is a guy to watch as well as
an injury to Zach Ertz would instantly make him a top-5 TE. While
I wouldn't put Worm in my top four teams coming out of the draft
in terms of likely contention, he wouldn't slip out of my top-six
either. And a great season out of Sanders, Taylor, or Bell and
all bets are off. The other stuff in place would make that a path
to being quite good if not even better than that.
Analysis: There was never any question what Vikings was going
to do in this draft or any other June Mock Draft. Take RBs and
WRs. Take them early and often. Wait on quarterback until a good
value presents itself and utilize the same strategy at tight end.
The result was the usual loaded receiving corps that is Vikes's
trademark alongside a RB group that lacks a true stud, but flashes
potential as long as Melvin Gordon finds Denver to be a soft and
accommodating landing spot. Even though Vikes generally waits
on QB and TE, it's hard to find fault in the ultimate selections
of Russell Wilson and Hunter Henry. In both cases, V4E obviously
felt the time was right to temporarily suspend the stockpiling
of RB/WR talent and obtain some balance. Not a pick in this draft
was wasted - everything seemed to have purpose and fit with the
overall strategy of having 16 players at the end of the day that
could contribute in a best ball format for the duration of a season.
Yes, there were a few players taken on questionable offenses as
with other guys in this draft, but nothing to scream about. All
in all, it was a Vikes-typical draft that feels like a contender
Key to No-Hassle Success: To say that Vikes invested HEAVILY
in second-year wide receivers would be a gross understatement.
Sometimes, there is a sophomore slump for a talented wide-out
prior to a breakout in Year 3. If that ends up being the case
for the majority of Vikes's guys, success in 2020 could be significantly
stymied. Additionally, DeAndre Hopkins needs to be everything
Arizona hoped he would be when they traded for him prior to the
NFL Draft. He and Gordon both represent old faces in new places
and sometimes that works out great...and sometimes it does not.
While I like the talent of this team, there are a number of uncertainties
to acknowledge and it begins with those sophomore receivers. Aside
from Wilson and Josh Jacobs, nothing else on this team feels certain.
Favorite Pick: There are so many that I liked, but few that I
truly loved. It was a good spot to get Wilson and I love the fact
that Vikes took Metcalf a little earlier than most have in other
mocks thus far as he believed in his ability to seize the top
role in Seattle. Hunter Henry at 10.01 was also stellar.
Least Favorite Pick: Hopkins. I just don't think he's 2.01 material.
In fact, there were players taken at the end of Round 2 that I
thought were better values at 2.01 than him. He's a big name and
still in the prime of his career...but something about him last
year didn't look right at times.
Overall Outlook: Vikings4Ever has been a contender in the No-Hassle
league year and year out for nearly two decades except on the
years that injuries mount uncontrollably. Who am I to suggest
he's anything but this time around especially since he found the
perfect time to add QB and TE without disrupting the steady flow
of talent acquisition. Picking at the back end of Round 1 can
be tricky as it is so long until you get to add to that initial
duo. That being said, Vikes may have used that reality to his
advantage by way of getting guys like Wilson and Gordon in such
good spots. This team is hardly a "sure thing" with
two key transfers and a host of second-year wide-outs...but the
potential is there and it will fascinating to see if the risks
mature into rewards.