As we crawl closer and closer to the 2015 Fantasy Football season, the So-Called Fantasy Experts decided to duke it out in a no-holds-barred mock draft cage match!
Our motley crew is an interesting mix of veterans who have played and talked about Fantasy sports for over two decades, as well as some new and up-and-coming writers building their portfolios. So whether you like a conservative approach, or prefer to take a few risks, you will find that our staff’s strategies encompasses every type of drafting style.
If you’re just starting your Fantasy research, this is a great place to start. You can get an idea of where some of the most popular players are being drafted, and you can also see how each writer decides to build depth in the later part of the draft.We will only cover Rounds 1-5 in this article, but make sure you check back to see how the rest of the draft unfolded.
Let’s dive into Round 1 and see what went down.
|1.01||1||Team Lentz||Lacy, Eddie GBP RB|
|1.02||2||Team Anderson||Charles, Jamaal KCC RB|
|1.03||3||Team Lewis||Peterson, Adrian MIN RB|
|1.04||4||Team Pastore||Forte, Matt CHI RB|
|1.05||5||Team Bond||Bell, Le’Veon PIT RB|
|1.06||6||Team Daniel||Lynch, Marshawn SEA RB|
|1.07||7||Team Buck||Brown, Antonio PIT WR|
|1.08||8||Team Lung||Gronkowski, Rob NEP TE|
|1.09||9||Team Delaney||Bryant, Dez DAL WR|
|1.10||10||Team Gonos||McCoy, LeSean BUF RB|
|1.11||11||Team Taylor||Thomas, Demaryius DEN WR|
|1.12||12||Team Meyers||Jones, Julio ATL WR|
Round 1 Review
Running back is obviously king in the early stages of a standard scoring draft. Team Lentz selected Eddie Lacy to kick things off, which is becoming a more and more popular consensus as to who should be the first running back off the board. Team Anderson, Lewis, Pastore, Bond and Daniel all followed Lentz with running backs of their own.
We saw the first receiver off the board with the seventh pick, which is going to be a common occurrence in many drafts. As the running back pool gets more and more depleted in Round 1, Fantasy players will look toward consistent receivers as opposed to risky running backs. Team Buck gave Antonio Brown the honor as the first receiver off the board. Team Lung may have surprised a few people with his Rob Gronkowski selection with the eighth pick in Round 1, but he could have the last laugh as the owner of a tight end who puts up wide receiver numbers.
I followed Team Lung’s pick with Dez Bryant, which my Wide Receiver Rankings indicate that I was more than thrilled to give him a spot on my roster. Everyone knows Rex Ryan’s affinity of running the football, so Team Gonos went with the upside of LeSean McCoy. Team Taylor and Team Meyers selected Demaryius Thomas and Julio Jones respectively, capping off a pretty tame Round 1.
Let’s take a look into how Round 2 shaped up.
|2.01||13||Team Meyers||Foster, Arian HOU RB|
|2.02||14||Team Taylor||Beckham, Odell NYG WR|
|2.03||15||Team Gonos||Johnson, Calvin DET WR|
|2.04||16||Team Delaney||Cobb, Randall GBP WR|
|2.05||17||Team Lung||Nelson, Jordy GBP WR|
|2.06||18||Team Buck||Anderson, C.J. DEN RB|
|2.07||19||Team Daniel||Jeffery, Alshon CHI WR|
|2.08||20||Team Bond||Green, A.J. CIN WR|
|2.09||21||Team Pastore||Murray, DeMarco PHI RB|
|2.10||22||Team Lewis||Hilton, T.Y. IND WR|
|2.11||23||Team Anderson||Rodgers, Aaron GBP QB|
|2.12||24||Team Lentz||Hill, Jeremy CIN RB|
Round 2 Review
Team Meyers started Round 2 with Arian Foster. While he does have an extensive injury history, Foster is always a candidate to finish as a Top 5 running back if he can stay on the field. Team Meyers also benefited from Foster falling into Round 2. A small run on wide receivers took place as Team Taylor selected Odell Beckham Jr., Team Gonos went with Calvin Johnson, I landed Randall Cobb and Team Lung added Jordy Nelson. There was definitely scarcity at the running back position after Round 1, so the early picks in Round 2 focused on adding key wide receivers.
Some writers paired a receiver in Round 1 with a back in Round 2, and Team Buck drafted C.J. Anderson after drafting a wide receiver in Round 1. I was surprised that Alshon Jeffery fell as far as he did with the amount of receivers off the board, but he was a solid pick up by team Daniel in the back half of Round 2. Team Bond went with veteran A.J. Green, and Team Pastore decided enough was enough and grabbed the sliding DeMarco Murray.
The Indianapolis Colts will continue to be one of the premiere passing attacks in the NFL, and despite the addition of Andre Johnson and Phillip Dorsett, Team Lewis hopes that three- and four-wide receiver sets will continue to grow T.Y. Hilton’s Fantasy stats. Team Anderson added Aaron Rodgers, the first quarterback off the board, and Team Lentz jumped all over Jeremy Hill falling to the end of Round 2.
We went through the standard selections you will see in most drafts, but Round 3 starts to open up some interesting outcomes.
|3.01||25||Team Lentz||Luck, Andrew IND QB|
|3.02||26||Team Anderson||Hopkins, DeAndre HOU WR|
|3.03||27||Team Lewis||Hyde, Carlos SFO RB|
|3.04||28||Team Pastore||Evans, Mike TBB WR|
|3.05||29||Team Bond||Forsett, Justin BAL RB|
|3.06||30||Team Daniel||Graham, Jimmy SEA TE|
|3.07||31||Team Buck||Sanders, Emmanuel DEN WR|
|3.08||32||Team Lung||Miller, Lamar MIA RB|
|3.09||33||Team Delaney||Cooks, Brandin NOS WR|
|3.10||34||Team Gonos||Gordon, Melvin SDC RB|
|3.11||35||Team Taylor||Gore, Frank IND RB|
|3.12||36||Team Meyers||Benjamin, Kelvin CAR WR|
Round 3 Review
With Team Anderson starting the party with the first quarterback off the board in Round 2, Team Lentz could not miss out on Andrew Luck in Round 3. Normally you will find Rodgers and Luck being drafted in the same round, but Fantasy writers are known for waiting on quarterbacks. Despite a sketchy quarterback situation, DeAndre Hopkins is now the premiere receiver in Houston, and Team Anderson offered him a roster spot. With Adrian Peterson already on her squad, Team Lewis decided to add a second running back by selecting Carlos Hyde.
Second-year receiver Mike Evans will look to capitalize on the potential talents of rookie quarterback Jameis Winston, and Team Pastore scooped him up with the fourth pick in the round. Justin Forsett fell to Team Bond at a normal spot in Round 3, but Jimmy Graham finally made an appearance right after Forsett. The Seattle Seahawks are not known for producing stud receivers or tight ends, and the team has not supplied a player with a 1,000-yard receiving season under Russell Wilson. Still, defenses will have their hands full with trying to stop Wilson, Lynch and Graham, and the new Seahawks’ tight end could still finish as the second-highest scoring tight end behind Gronk.
Team Gonos decided to roll the dice by selecting the first rookie of the draft (Melvin Gordon), and Team Meyers concluded Round 3 with an excellent pickup of Kelvin Benjamin.
Round 4 offered a few more risks.
|4.01||37||Team Meyers||Morris, Alfred WAS RB|
|4.02||38||Team Taylor||Spiller, C.J. NOS RB|
|4.03||39||Team Gonos||Matthews, Jordan PHI WR|
|4.04||40||Team Delaney||Ellington, Andre ARI RB|
|4.05||41||Team Lung||Bernard, Giovani CIN RB|
|4.06||42||Team Buck||Ingram, Mark NOS RB|
|4.07||43||Team Daniel||Watkins, Sammy BUF WR|
|4.08||44||Team Bond||Edelman, Julian NEP WR|
|4.09||45||Team Pastore||Wilson, Russell SEA QB|
|4.10||46||Team Lewis||Maclin, Jeremy KCC WR|
|4.11||47||Team Anderson||Allen, Keenan SDC WR|
|4.12||48||Team Lentz||Murray, Latavius OAK RB|
Round 4 Review
We saw two of the New Orleans Saints’ running backs selected in Round 4: Team Taylor selected C.J. Spiller, and Team Buck selected Mark Ingram. While Spiller thrives in open spaces and adds value as a pass-catching back, Ingram is a violent runner who can plow through a defense. The passing attack will not completely disappear in New Orleans, but with the departure of Graham and Kenny Stills, this team will run then the ball more.
Sammy Watkins was considered to be the best rookie receiver entering the 2014 season, but he was outproduced by a few members of his draft class. While the offense is focused on pounding the ball on the ground, Watkins is still the best receiver on the team. Will he become a savvy fourth-round selection for Team Daniel, or will Watkins struggle to find relevancy with Tyrod Taylor, E.J. Manuel or Matt Cassel as quarterback?
Although he had a career year in 2014, Jeremy Maclin is entering a system that has not shown much love to the wide receiver position. He has the benefit of linking back up with former coach Andy Reid, but will Alex Smith continue to focus on dumping the ball off to his tight ends and running backs? Team Lewis took a shot on him with the 10th pick. Latavius Murray appeared to have a bright future in Oakland, but the Raiders decided to bring in Roy Helu and Trent Richardson. Will Helu cut into Murray’s production as a pass-catching back? Can Richardson rise from the ashes and overthrow Murray? Team Lentz decided the risk was worth it with the last selection of the round.
|5.01||49||Team Lentz||Marshall, Brandon NYJ WR|
|5.02||50||Team Anderson||Gurley, Todd STL RB|
|5.03||51||Team Lewis||Tate, Golden DET WR|
|5.04||52||Team Pastore||Cooper, Amari OAK WR|
|5.05||53||Team Bond||Johnson, Andre IND WR|
|5.06||54||Team Daniel||Coleman, Tevin ATL RB|
|5.07||55||Team Buck||Stewart, Jonathan CAR RB|
|5.08||56||Team Lung||Landry, Jarvis MIA WR|
|5.09||57||Team Delaney||Mason, Tre STL RB|
|5.10||58||Team Gonos||Jackson, DeSean WAS WR|
|5.11||59||Team Taylor||Kelce, Travis KCC TE|
|5.12||60||Team Meyers||Robinson, Allen JAC WR|
Round 5 Review
Although he is going in Round 4 of many drafts, Team Anderson was able to scoop up rookie Todd Gurley with the second pick in Round 5. There is still not a timetable for his return, but Gurley has been touted as one of the best backs to enter the NFL in recent memory. He may be ready to go by midseason, but the Rams are not going to rush his return.
Team Pastore didn’t want to wait on Amari Cooper any longer, and he drafted one of the most NFL-ready wide receivers in the rookie class. The Atlanta Falcons will start the season with a committee approach at running back, but that didn’t scare Team Daniel away from drafting the explosive Tevin Coleman. The rookie looks like a fired cannon ball out of the backfield, and he adds a level of excitement to the ground game in Atlanta.
We will show how the rest of the draft played out in future posts, but this is an early look at the rosters the writers from the So-Called Fantasy Experts’ mock draft.
Who do you think had the best draft so far? Let us know!
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