A Yahoo Not-Mock Draft

So while we’re posting and discussing mocks, I’m curious as to how the community views the first of my regular redraft drafts this year. This is a 10-team, 1/2ppr Yahoo public money league. And a little background: This draft was a parody of itself. 8 QBs and 6 TEs off the board by the first half of round 6. Two teams took backup QBs before I took mine. The first kicker went in round 8. And best of all, 1997 was drafting in the 10-spot, taking Russel Wilson with pick 1.10. That is not a typo.

So this became an exercise in “don’t follow the runs or the stupidness and take the great stuff they’re leaving for you.” Here we go, from the #2 pick. And I am one of those people who is off CMC (just to get that out of the way):

1.02: Austin Ekeler (could have been Jefferson here, but I made a roster construction call from the get-go)
2.11: CeeDee Lamb (he was still there)
3.02: Nick Chubb (Lost Jones on the turn taking Lamb. Safe floor pick.)
4.11: DJ Moore (upside, baby!)
5.02: Mike Williams (more upside, baby!)
6.11: Brandin Cooks (might have gotten a little carried away here but the most interesting choices at this point were all WRs, so I shrugged and picked one to get some floor.)
7.02: AJ Dillion (may be a bit of a reach, but they took all the crappy middling RBs and 8 QBs by this point…they were gonna stumble on the good ones eventually. Opportunity pick.)
8.11: Chase Edmonds (see Dillon, AJ above)
9.02: Rashod Bateman (this wasn’t necessary, but…value…)
10.11: Tom Brady (11 QBs were off the board at this point. Things were getting dicey.)
11.02: Zach Ertz (TE is a nuisance, but you have to fill it eventually. Weeks 1-6 should be good, then there is always streaming)
12.11: Darrell Henderson (what if McVay isn’t lying?)
13.02: Skyy Moore (There were several good choices, but why not a dart throw whose darts are being thrown by Mahomes?)
14.11: Cleveland Browns (first 4 weeks should be glorious DST matchups, then stream on…)
15.02: Rodrigo Blankenship (kicks mostly in domes and warm weather, team should move the ball well enough to give him opportunities)

I know I could have used 14 & 15 on more darts, and sometimes I do. But I actually do analysis to backup my DST & K streaming and it’s won me a number of matchups over the years, so if there’s options I really like available I take them in the draft. If not, more darts and switch before week 1.

Comments, questions, atta-boys, rebukes, scathing criticisms, or whatever welcome.

1.02 Should have been Derrick Henry. Looks like you’re cut out for this league.
2-3 Good picks
4.11 His QBs are Mayfield and Darnold, with no chance of Corral coming in to save the day. Probably better choices available at this point.
5.02 ok
6.11 Good pick
7.2 Again, probably better options available
8.11 See Dillon, AJ, although with more certainty.
9.02 Value
10.11 Good a time as any to take a QB
11.02 Outstanding pick at this point.
12.11 Can’t imagine you needed to go all speculative this early in a 10-teamer.
13.02 Again with the dart throws.
14-15 These should have been Henderson and Moore, your dart throws that you can drop for a K and a D.

Sounds like your league might be backward enough that you could still compete, but it’s not a draft I’d be proud of.

I already knew your answer for this if you responded…you are truly the biggest Henry stan on the planet. And I don’t totally disagree. I have Henry shares elsewhere at higher stakes. I like to diversify…don’t want a few key injuries taking down most or all of my portfolio. Overall profitability each year is the goal, after all, and at least a few leagues will inevitably get sacrificed in that process. I just don’t know which ones at the onset.

This is, admittedly, risky. I like Moore’s talent and I think Baker is serviceable when healthy. Moore might not need anything more than a serviceable QB to put up good numbers. We’ll see…and if I’m wrong, I have replacements.

AJ, Edmonds, Pollard, Hunt, Rhamondre, CEH, Patterson, Penny, Singletary…all available in that range this time. All guys you can make a good case for and a good case against. Not a whole lot of difference between them when you look at the evidence as a whole. Although I would tend to lean toward the first five and away from the others, all things considered. Next time in this range, I’ll probably pick two different ones because…diversification.

I’m actually surprised I got as many positive or positive-ish responses from you as I did. Interesting.

The most profitable strategy is a highly UN-diversified portfolio–when you are right.

And I’m Axe Elf, so…

Of those you listed, I probably would have gone with the two top 10 RBs from last season who remained in the same roles with the same teams and the same coaching staffs for this season, but that’s because I like winning.

I am assuming you meant a 12 team league? You mentioned the 2 and the 11 picks?

Anyway, my own review:

1.02: Decent, but unexciting. I would have taken Dalvin Cook or Najee Harris here. Even JJ would have been better. Ekeler isn’t getting 20 td’s again.

2.11: Good pick.

3.02: Like you said, Chubb is a safe floor pick. Or is he? If defenses try to stuff the run while Deshaun Watson is out for 11 weeks, the running efficiency of the Browns could suffer.

4.11: Baker Mayfield, baby! Still, Moore is a talented WR who will get his targets.

5.02: If Williams stays healthy, this could be your best WR in the draft.

6.11:

There’s a reason for this: Most WR’s in this area produce similar stats, usually good stats, but rarely elite stats…

7.02: You might very well be starting Dillon before the end of this season. He is THAT good!

8.11: No, Chase, don’t see Dillon above. Chase is a glorified 3rd down back.

9.02: Did you learn the lesson of Marquise Brown? WR’s don’t thrive in Baltimore.

10.11: Getting the GOAT in redraft is a steal this late.

11.02: Ertz isn’t a great TE, but he fills the hole in the starting roster.

12.11: Henderson is risky. On the other hand, if Akers gets hurt again, you’ve got a valuable asset.

13.02: Skyy has good upside, but I’d prefer this pick if this were dynasty.

14.11: Remember, the Browns offense might be struggling during the enforced Jacoby Brissett era, which might in turn put pressure on the defense.

15.02: Good kicker.

I know the Elf will argue to fill the positions later, but I believe in filling all your starting positions in the draft, even if you wait until the very end to fill some of them.

Ertz has long been a sought-after TE in fantasy, and in the 11 games he played for the Cardinals last season (learning the playbook on the fly, mind you), Ertz was top 4 among TEs in targets, red zone targets, receptions, and most importantly, fantasy points per game. Hopkins is also out for the first six games. Most other top 4 TEs were probly snatched in the first five rounds. This is an AMAZING value at this point, especially in a 12 teamer.

The Cardinals didn’t draft Trey McBride in the second round to be a backup to Ertz. Either they move to a 12 formation or Ertz’s days are numbered. Either way, Ertz’s value is limited. If you see Ertz get off to a strong start, look to trade him for some value.

They probably are. He has something like 500 left, which will get him well into next year.

Don’t count on a rookie TE unseating an all-pro in his first season.

You’re just kind of rookie-happy in general. I get it, you play dynasty, you have to be super-sensitive to potential–but that potential is almost never realized in the first season–especially for TEs. So you have to gain a little perspective for redraft leagues, or you’ll be left with an 8th-place team full of potential.

The fact the Eagles were eager to move on from Ertz means nothing to you? Or is Dallas Goedert just that much better than Ertz? Considering Goedert finished behind Ertz last season, with only 8 catches and 1 td difference between the two statistically, what does that say? Adding the fact the Cards invested a 2nd round pick in a TE this year, tells me Ertz is at best a temporary solution. Temporary can be one game up to a season. I’ll let you gamble on which one is reality.

It means that Goedert will be a top 5 TE this season.

Certainly good enough to make the higher salary expendable.

Goedert’s efficiency ratings are off the charts. He had the 5th-most receiving yards by a TE last year (despite splitting with Ertz for a couple of months), while being 17th in targets per game. For reference, Dalton Schultz had 808 yards on 104 targets. Goedert had 830 yards on 76 targets.

It says what I said, that Ertz in the 11th is an amazing pick.

Yes, but this is a redraft league, so we’re only talking about this year.

With Axe Elf on your side, you never have to gamble. Betting against something that’s never happened before is usually a pretty safe bet–and a rookie TE has never come in to a team where a Pro Bowl TE was incumbent, and had a significant fantasy impact in their first season.

No…actually this is the first 10-teamer I’ve done all year after almost 35 12-team keepers and best balls. It never occurred to me when I was typing that the 02 would be paired with anything but the 11 going back. Habit. Oops.

On this and the Ertz debate that follows…to me, Ertz is a guy who will get a bunch of targets in the first 6 weeks at least, and the best of what was left at the time. I have him to hold down the fort until somebody else emerges from the lower ranks or I start streaming. Unless he’s legitimately good this year, in which case I just roll with him. I’ve started seasons with worse. Probably.

The only top-10 guy in this list from last year in this format on this platform is Patterson, and then only in total points not average. Next closest by total is Dillon. Next highest behind Patterson by average (but not close to top-10) is Hunt. I have the data right here in front of me.

I’ve turned profits several years straight, so that works for me. Also, as an aside, what you have is a set of prior probabilities in which you believe strongly. You cannot, by definition, be “right” at this point in time since the outcomes in question have not yet been realized. Unless you’re capable of time travel and you know what they are. In which case, if all you’re using that ability for is to win at fantasy football what the heck is wrong with you?

I get the argument both ways and I’ve done it both ways, and I really don’t think it’s ever actually mattered very much for any teams I’ve drafted. Not that it couldn’t. Although, I’m not one of those people constantly crying about DSTs and PKs…they score points so I pay attention to good streaming of them too. And I’ll win several matchups across my leagues every year largely on the strength of picking good DST and/or PK streamers. When hardly anyone else is paying attention, it opens up an opportunity you can exploit. That said, I should probably pay more attention to the darts in these shallower, non-FAAB leagues. In my deeper-bench 12-teamers almost all of the feasible darts are drafted anyway and there’s FAAB to go out and get what you want if somebody shows up out of nowhere. I like that setup better.

Fine, but wouldn’t you rather go with the guy who will eventually be right?

Devin Singletary was the RB7 over the second half of the season, and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue into 2022.

So yeah, Patterson and Singletary would have been much better picks than Dillon and especially Hunt, whose status with his own team is in question at this point in time.

Thanks Elf! Nice to know you want Bob to listen to me!