I had my first fantasy draft this past weekend. Last year I graded myself and I intend to do the same thing this year. My picks will be graded based on value, need and overall rank.

We have 12 teams. The scoring is standard fractional with the exception of .5 PPR as well as an IDP. We also have a second flex in the starting lineup.

The draft itself was a great time. We completed the beer pong game which was a lot of fun despite half of us not being able to hit the broad side of a barn. It officially kicked off the fantasy football season for me. I am feeling much more confident with my squad this year than I was last season.

Round 1 (6) – Odell Beckham Jr. WR New York Giants

Top 200 Rank – 4
My Grade – A+

I was surprised to have ODB fall in my lap at six. He would have not fallen past 4 if I were picking. Before my draft, my top 4 players were David Johnson, Antonio Brown, LeVeon Bell and ODB. Julio Jones and Ezekiel Elliott went fourth and fifth. Although a bit of an injury scare happened in the pre-season, you still don’t pass up ODB at six.

Round 2 (19) – Rob Gronkowski TE New England Patriots

Top 200 Rank – 24
My Grade – B

Richard and I discussed fantasy football on our last podcast. I talked about how late Gronk was going in most drafts. If I had a middle pick, I was taking him if he was there in the second round. It is basically having WR1 production at tight end. From a value standpoint, you can’t beat it. The problem is him being injury prone. The only person I was considering here was Todd Gurley.

Round 3 (30) – Keenan Allen WR Los Angeles Chargers

Top 200 Rank – 31
My Grade – A-

I am riding this wagon until the wheels fall off. Although he has sustained two freak injuries, he is still a clear WR1. Last season, he played two quarters and caught six passes for 60 yards. In all honesty, I wish I would have taken Christian McCaffrey. He was about 20 people down the draft list though. Thought I may be able to get him on the snake around. If Allen can stay healthy, I am good with it.

Round 4 (43) – Joe Mixon RB Cincinatti Bengals

Top 200 Rank – 53
My Grade – C+

There is a lot of uncertainty with this, but I am confident Jeremy Hill is taking a major back seat this year. I think he will get six or seven touchdowns. I am really worried about Gio Bernard more than I am Hill. Overall, I like getting Mixon because he would have been a top 10 pick had he not punched that girl. I needed a running back at this point. I felt more confident in Mixon than I did Ware, Peterson and Montgomery.

Round 5 (54) – Frank Gore RB Indianapolis Colts

Top 200 Rank – 59
My Grade – B-

In round five, not too shabby. Marlon Mack could eventually take over. Father time just doesn’t seem to be catching up to Gore. Maybe we can go for one more year.

Round 6 (67) – Legarrette Blount RB Philadelphia Eagles

Top 200 Rank – 82
My Grade – B+

Ameer Abdullah was far down the draft board at this point so I passed on him. I am pretty happy with Blount here although there are questions. Blount is coming off a great year, but it was with the Patriots. Bill Belichick is a mastermind. Will he repeat a great 2017?

Round 7 (78) – Brandon Marshall WR New York Giants

Top 200 Rank – 63
My Grade – A+

This was an absolute steal in the seventh. I realize I have ODB as well, but he kept free falling and I had to take him here. Considering the company at receiver taken at the same as him was Devante Parker, Donte Moncrief and Jordan Matthews, I will take that in a heartbeat. With everyone that I have, I don’t mind having Marshall in the flex.

Round 8 (91) – Eric Decker WR Tennessee Titans

Top 200 Rank – 79
My Grade – A-

Love love love this pick here. Decker is mr. consistent. A few years ago when he and Marshall were playing together in New York and both went ape shit, he was quietly better in fantasy than Marshall. Marshall had his duds where he had 3 or 4 points. Decker was 6 catches 80 yards and 1 touchdown week after week. I see him being that in Tennessee. Hello second flex.

Round 9 (102) – Luke Kuechly LB Carolina Panthers

Top IDP Rank – 1
My Grade – B+

Unless he deals with concussions, this is 18 points per game. I got the best IDP when healthy. Win.

Round 10 (115) – Jacquizz Rodgers RB Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Top 200 Rank – 113
My Grade – B-

There is some speculation that Rodgers could eventually become the starter if Doug Martin comes out and looks like shit again. With this being PPR, Rodgers could be a decent flex some weeks depending on the match up.

Round 11 (126) – Derek Carr QB Oakland Raiders

Top 200 Rank – 115
My Grade – A+

Love this pick. Carr is going to be a top 5 fantasy QB, mark it down. I got him in the 11th and he was the 8th QB taken in our draft.

Round 12 (139) – O.J. Howard TE Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Top 200 Rank – n/a
My Grade – C-

I took a flyer on this one since I have Gronk. I am hoping Howard turns into a star for Tampa. Defenses have a lot to deal with Jackson and Evans on the outside, so I am hoping that opens it up for Howard.

Round 13 (150) – Sterling Shepard WR New York Giants

Top 200 Rank – 118
My Grade – A-

Fuck it. I already have the other two. He also keeps free falling when he should have been gone in the 10th. If an injury happens, at least I have him stashed away.

Round 14 (163) – Rex Burkhead RB New England Patriots

Top 200 Rank – 146
My Grade – D+

Poo poo pick here. Needed a filler at running back and he is the highest paid Pats running back since Corey Dillon. Hopefully that means something.

Round 15 (174) – New England Patriots D/ST

Top 200 Rank – 151
My Grade – B-

They were the number one scoring defense last year. Hopefully they can continue that. Either way, I am not worried. If all else fails, play the match ups.

Round 16 (187) – Cairo Santos K Kansas City Chiefs

Top 200 Rank – 167
My Grade – B

I like kickers! Kickers are the toughest! I am happy with Santos. I love the fact Kansas City kicks a lot of field goals. It is the magic on Andy Reid.

Round 17 (198) – Carolina Panthers D/ST

Top 200 Rank – 157
My Grade – C+

I normally don’t take two defenses, but Carolina is intriguing. I see them having a bounce back year so hopefully this defense turns it up.

Round 18 (211) – Robert Woods WR Los Angeles Rams

Top 200 Rank – 139
My Grade – C-

Who cares? He will be on the waiver wire by week 2.

Round 19 (222) – Brandon Coleman WR New Orleans Saints

Top 200 Rank – n/a
My Grade – F

He might not even last into tomorrow. Typical for the last pick.

Overall Thoughts

I could see a few trades happening to make this team great, but I feel more confident in this year’s squad than last. I am pretty sure I looked at someone in the fourth round last season and said “I hate my team.”

My biggest worry with my roster is two of the first three picks are very injury prone. The value for their productions just seemed too much to pass on. I love what I have at every position except RB because of the uncertainty. Mixon, Gore and Blount could all rush for 1,000 yards this season or they could all take a seat on the bench. Kind of shaky. But overall, I think this has potential to be a solid playoff team barring injury.

My core is Beckham, Gronk, Allen, Marshall, Decker, Kuechly…I will take it.

FINAL GRADE: B

 

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