A fantasy football draft broke out in Philly last Thursday night. Eight of the first 12 picks were a QB, RB or WR. Things cooled off after that, with 3 TEs being the only skill-position guys to come off the board over the final 20 picks of the opening round.
We know where these guys land is important. Competition for touches, supporting cast and coaching staff all impact short- and long-term fantasy production.
But when a player is picked also matters. It gives us a glimpse into how the NFL values each prospect (the league is higher on Kenny Golladay, lower on Jeremy McNichols than we were). Plus, earlier picks are generally given a quicker and more extended opportunity to earn playing time.
So we took our Pre-Draft Rankings, factored in draft position and landing spot and settled on these Post-Draft Rankings for your dynasty rookie drafts.
Top 60 Overall
1. Corey Davis, WR, Titans
Arguably the easiest pick on the board. Davis left Western Michigan as FBS’ all-time leader in receiving yards and #2 TD catches. He shows Terrell Owens flashes after the catch, and displayed his ability to work multiple areas of the field with 15.9 yards per reception for his career. Tennessee clearly didn’t care about his minor ankle injury. Now we expect Davis to quickly become the top target for 3rd-year passer Marcus Mariota.
2. Christian McCaffrey, RB, Panthers
There’s not much difference between the 1st 2 backs on this list. McCaffrey gets the nod because he brings the highest receiving ceiling of any RB in the class. Plus, his inside running is good enough that GM Dave Gettleman compared him to former Patriot and Jet Curtis Martin—whom Gettleman called the best he’s seen in that area. With Jonathan Stewart repelling down his career cliff and nothing else worthwhile in the Carolina backfield, we should see quick return on this fantasy investment.
3. Leonard Fournette, RB, Jaguars
We wouldn’t fault you for favoring this guy, especially in a non-PPR format. The only knock on Fournette: He doesn’t match McCaffrey as a receiver. (Because no RB in this class does; heck few already in the league do.) But it’s clear from the #4 overall draft position and Tom Coughlin’s words – “I really don’t have any question if he can play all three downs.” – that Jacksonville plans to make Fournett the workhorse—and quickly.