2018-2019 Dynasty Rookie Draft Re-Do (top 25)
Using the rookies from the 2018 and 2019 drafts/seasons, I conducted a draft using a January 2020 mindset and using some of my computer models for valuation help (factoring in positional economics, etc.).
Here are the top 25 picks in this hypothetical rookie draft, about a pick day released throughout January…and after I’m done with the top 25, I’m going to start slotting in some of my early reads in the 2020 prospects just to start to get a feel for comparing and contrasting the new options – should you want to try to trade in or out (in general) of the 2020 rookie draft.
1.01) QB Lamar Jackson, BAL
I’m known to be pro-QB for fantasy, and some people do not like or agree with that stance, which is fine – there are several ways to build a dynasty/fantasy contender. Because of my pro-QB ways, my longer-time audience is probably not surprised to see Lamar here. However, I am.
Not only because I never thought I’d see the day where Lamar Jackson is a fantasy-god, but because I’ve been discounting my pro-QB ways in fantasy the last several weeks as the 2019 season was ending. High-end QBs are not the economic rare bird they used to be, not to me and my valuation models. Too many QBs are becoming top 10 scorer-types and the bottom tier of QB talent/output in the league is the best it has ever been. I’m not sure there is a ‘bad’ QB left starting in the NFL. The new-era QBs are flooding in and they are making the NFL look easy…because, in large part, it is…especially when you get the good matchups. Every QB is a potential star in the right matchup. It didn’t used to be that way.
So, why Lamar #1 over all the RB options?
Statistically speaking, Lamar was the 2nd-most dominant scorer at his particular position in 2019…behind only Christian McCaffrey. If I had CMC to choose from in this exercise, I’d take him…but I don’t, so Lamar looks most appealing.
Anecdotally speaking, I heard more “I got Lamar’d in the playoffs” than I did any other player (Lamar and McCaffrey). Lamar has power in fantasy.
Economically speaking, QBs have more long-term staying power and are least likely to get injured 1-2 games in a season compared to their RB brethren.
Really, there are two options at 1.01 re-doing 2018-19…Lamar Jackson or Saquon Barkley. I could make the argument for either. At this stage, I don’t know who the Giants new head coach will be…but I fear it won’t be a helpful one. Potentially, I’d switch Barkley to #1 if I knew the new head coach and O-C combo he’s going to be working with.
Lamar has become an unstoppable force for number production. Barkley needs help from his offensive line, QB play, and coaching staff…and that’s a lot of ‘ifs’ in the Giants case, today. Slight nudge to Lamar.
1.02) RB Saquon Barkley, NYG
I’m wondering if Saquon really should be the right call as the #1 in this re-do draft. Barkley certainly has talent. He plays at a position in high demand and economically the most scarce now (it used to be elite QB and TE were the most rare, but big picture we’re back to the RB-centric version of fantasy in 2020).
Further boosting Barkley’s value – everyone loves him and would have them as their #1 pick in this draft. His worldly value matters a lot.
In the 2018-2019 marketplace, QBs and WRs and TEs are flooding in from college football, but the RB classes have been on weaker side. Barkley is the clear king of the last two RB classes.
On the downside, as of this writing, we don’t know who the new NYG head coach will be. We don’t know if the Giants organization is headed to Cleveland levels of bad/mocked among the NFL…and thus a difficult time attracting free agents and beefing up this O-Line. Also, Daniel Jones is the guy defenses will make beat them…they will stack Barkley, and we have seen in the NFL that when you stack a main RB, you can wipe him out for higher output totals. Gurley 2016 was a disaster. David Johnson since his great 2016. Leonard Fournette every year in Jacksonville. Alvin Kamara’s big drop off scoring TDs in 2019. Teams can halt Barkley/a run game easier than trying to stop Lamar Jackson from doing his thing.
Longevity and sustainability favors a QB over an RB, in general…further tipping scales against Saquon v. Lamar.
You can’t go wrong with Barkley as the 1.01, but I’m going to put him slightly under Lamar. If you think it wiser to take the RB over the QB, I won’t stop you.
1.03) RB Josh Jacobs, OAK
This spot could be Nick Chubb instead…and it might be once we 100% know the Browns have moved on from Kareem Hunt (that they don’t match the RFA offers he’ll get) and we find out who their new head coach is.
What you get in Josh Jacobs – a highly drafted prospect (draft status) onto a team with a head coach who loves to ground-and-pound and is designing his offense/team around that mindset. Jacobs is going to get all the touches he can handle. He will be/is the apple of the coach’s eye, as most lead RBs seem to be these days. You think it’s a passing league…it’s not. We’re reverting back to the 1970s with old-school coaches wanting to dominate opponents via the run when they can (and throw only when down or in 2-minute drills).
Jacobs showed me he has the skills to be a lead back in his debut season. I was a bit worried that his measurables and lack of experience, and Jon Gruden’s offense could hold him back – but the Raiders are developing a nice run game personnel and Jacobs showed he’s a solid ‘B’ talent, not a ‘C’. A solid ‘B’ on a team that sees him as an ‘A’ and will treat him to touches like an ‘A’. If Dalvin Cook and Aaron Jones can tear up the NFL stat sheets, then Jacobs certainly can.
There will be RB prospects I think are more talented than Jacobs lower on than him on this ranking/list, but the talent gap is closed when considering the team’s mindset and structure to push THEIR RB…and Jacobs is in a near-perfect spot for that.
1.04a) QB Kyler Murray, ARI
I could argue Kyler to the top 3 on this ranking. I could also argue him closer to #10. The reason I lean towards a higher ranking is my current ‘pro’ side of the Kyler debate (in my head, and to study) this offseason…
‘Con’ with Kyler: This Air Raid offense didn’t impress me at all and what happens if Kingsbury is gone in 1-2 seasons, what does Murray do then? Pout? Go to baseball?
‘Pro’ with Kyler: He has all the makings of a fantasy force…an unbelievable skill throwing the ball and solid running skills. If he ever gets good to great O-Line play, he might have a Lamar Jackson 2019 type season as a weapon of mass destruction passing-running at QB.
There are only a few players in the NFL who I can look at and see the potential that they, in and of themselves, are special…capable of putting up surreal fantasy numbers. Murray is one of those rare birds. However, coming into his rookie season, I was 90% sure the Air Raid volume would make him a top 5 fantasy QB right away. Now, after watching a season of Kingsbury, I have 100% confidence in Kyler, and 50% confidence in the offense/coach/surroundings…and thus a 75% confidence in Kyler hitting the highest FF heights.
1.04b) RB Devin Singletary, BUF
I think Devin Singletary is one of the most talented RBs in the NFL today. A generic brand Barry Sanders of elusiveness with the legit speed/burst and terrific hands in the passing game. I loved his college tape at first glance. I hated his Combine/Pro Day numbers and feared he didn’t have the athleticism that matched his on-field visuals, but I was wrong. He’s even better than I thought. The analytic scouting is all wrong here. He’s an ‘A’ talent in my book.
The problem is – the Bills offense is troublesome, for fantasy output. I like that they want to play small ball…running and defense. I don’t like that Josh Allen doesn’t get them in scoring position often enough to take Singletary to the next level, with him cashing in on easy scores to push FF numbers…AND Allen will take rushing TDs for himself as well…AND Allen erratically throws passes to the RBs. One game 1-2 targets then next he’ll try to hit Singletary 5+ times.
If I felt better about the Bills’ offense…I could argue Singletary as the #1.02 here…I really feel that passionately and I’m trying to acquire him in dynasty cheaply all off season. One of the great undervalued talents of the 2020 offseason…if not THEE most undervalued.
Love-love-love this player and Sean McDermott loves him too. It’s going to be a beautiful relationship with the upside cap of the Josh Allen factor.
1.06) LB Darius Leonard, IND
For two seasons in a row, this guy has led all IDPs in scoring per game…and with distance. Do you realize how difficult it is to do that? One random IDP player gets a few fortuitous defensive scores to go with a nice tackle season and they could steal the top spot in any given season. An old-school J.J. Watt or Aaron Donald could have a ridiculous sack and TFL season and lead the way.
Leonard is not piling up garbage tackle stats from favorable home-cooked statisticians…Leonard is doing everything – he pushes 10+ tackles a game often, he picked off 5 passes this year, had 7 PDs, returned one for a TD, had 5.0 sacks and 7.0 TFLs. He does it all. He’s the preeminent IDP player to own for fantasy (in most formats you play in) and that is powerful for those who play in IDP leagues.
1.07) RB Nick Chubb, CLE
In a few weeks, we might see Chubb at #3. We might also see him closer to the #10 spot.
We don’t know what coaching staff is coming in for 2020 (as of this writing). But even bigger than that, we don’t know about the X-factor…Kareem Hunt. Hunt is a restricted free agent now. Any team can offer him a deal, but ‘restricted’ means the Browns have the right to match the deal and keep Hunt. Will the Browns tie up money on Hunt with Chubb already in hand? I don’t think so, they’ll just take the nice compensation pick and book a ‘win’ for signing him cheap last year.
Once Chubb is free of Hunt risk…Chubb could be a nice RB talent in a very nice situation, the full franchise back for the Browns. If Hunt remains…then confusion rules over who starts and what the touch counts will be all depending on the coaching staff, which is not there yet.
At their core, I believe the Browns will want to make Chubb their lead punch on offense and the main three-down back. No more Hunt-Hilliard being a 3rd-down back too often, for FF vulture purposes.
I will update Chubb’s status as we know more of his surroundings.
1.08) RB Miles Sanders, PHI
I probably should’ve ranked/drafted him higher…
No, not because I like him as a player or that I am buying into the crap the Sanders-cult is selling on his strong finish. Actually, I am buying into that – just not like you might think. The Cult of Sanders thinks he finished 2019 strong and that he will be the top RB in Philly and fantasy gold will ensue.
Sanders had a couple good games late, Boston Scott was visibly better, but that’s splitting hairs…and all of it happened on accident because real starter Jordan Howard couldn’t get back on the field. I’ve said it for multiple years now, and about Sanders all last preseason, and I was right – Doug Pederson relies on no one RB. He’s an RBBC purist. Sanders will always be teamed up with other quality backs, and Sanders isn’t even that great a talent…he’s fine, but not like ‘wow’. If Philly didn’t deploy an RBBC, I’d join in on Sanders because I know the Eagles adore him…I just ‘know’ that RBBC is going to leave owners crying about him – his valuation vs. reality.
1.09a) WR Courtland Sutton, DEN
He’s fully become a #1 WR in the NFL…the only thing he’s lacking is the QB play to go with him. Sutton was bumping around as a top 15 WR in fantasy for a stretch midseason (Weeks 4-13) but ended up fading off as defenses doubled him and Brandon Allen faded off and Drew Lock took over.
Sutton has the skill and domination factor to be a true #1 WR and a top 5 fantasy producer but we have to worry about the QB situation/offense to make it happen. Drew Lock is shaky, but he did look solid in his 2019 debut games. I’m still very skeptical Lock can take Sutton to the promised land, but Sutton is so good…he’s the kinda ‘throw it up for grabs to him’ type of WR who can make numbers because he is a force of nature.
There are a lot of WRs about to show up on this list, and all could have a case to be here at/above Sutton but they all have some question marks, but above them all Sutton has shown that pure domination on tape, that #1 WR ‘it’ factor, so he’s ahead of them on the list for now.
1.09b) WR Diontae Johnson, PIT
I could argue Diontae should be the top WR on this re-do draft. For PPR, he very well chould be the top WR here. He is the new/next Antonio Brown-alike for the Steelers, but we have two problems getting too high on this…
a) Teams lean on their favorite thing and don’t change unless forced…and the Steelers passing game is built around JuJu Smith-Schuster. So, when Ben returns…it’s heavy targets to JuJu, we assume, and unknown how much they go to Diontae.
b) If the Steelers move more from JuJu to Diontae…Diontae can’t become a star unless Ben is back to being normal. Antonio Brown happened in part because of Ben. What if Ben’s elbow is not going to allow him to be the old ‘Big Ben’ we know and love? And the clock is ticking on Ben as it is. Who will Diontae be working with in 2021 or 2022?
Regardless, the most talented route runner and hands combo in this draft is Diontae.
1.11) RB Philip Lindsay, DEN
Back-to-back 1,000+ yard seasons…it’s nothing to sneeze at. I love Lindsay, but I keep thinking the NFL powers will want to gravitate towards the power running game, as they do/love, and Lindsay is going to get undercut for touches by Royce Freeman – but it never happens. I feared a new coach in 2019 could make it happen, but then Fangio rolled with Lindsay as the main runner and used Freeman as the passing game back, which is confusing…because Lindsay might be top 3 in receiving hands among all RBs in the NFL.
Lindsay seems to be ‘the guy’. He is a talent. He has produced. He has Pro Bowl WR hands…that don’t get used near enough. Worse case, you get a lead RB here with Freeman getting a chunk of touches. Best case, Lindsay just gets used full throttle…15+ carries and then is made a real receiving game weapon and then is a sweet, top 10 PPR back. He can be a top fantasy back because he has all the skills…it’s just a matter of more use in the passing game and another improvement in the O-Line.
1.12) WR D.J. Chark, JAX
You could argue that Chark should be above Courtland Sutton here – because Chark established himself as a #1 WR for his team in 2019 too. For a while, Chark was running top 5-10 among WRs for fantasy in 2019 but faded off late as the Jags went into the tank…and Chark sprained his ankle.
I argued it in the preseason, and it went better than expected in the regular season – Chark has high-end #1 WR characteristics/abilities. If Gardner Minshew is now the franchise QB…then even better for Chark, because he and Minshew have a good thing going on.
O-C John DeFilippo gone…not good news for DJC.
1.13) TE Mark Andrews, BAL
I got three TEs options noted here…Andrews, Dallas Goedert, and Noah Fant. I like Fant and Goedert as talents 10x better, BUT…with Andrews I get a decent TE on the best offense in football, and his QB loves to use him in the passing game. What’s there to debate?
The old R.C. (the one way back in 2019 and prior) would have debated…
I’d want to be in on Noah Fant to make a genius call on big upside -- but I’m a smarter, more pragmatic R.C. in 2020. I want what works, not what should but doesn’t like I want/think it should and then I complain about it for the entire season. Evan Engram should be the best TE in fantasy, and Darren Waller with him…based on their freakish talent/athleticism at the position (and don’t forget about O.J. Howard) – but average athlete, great situation, good+ hands Travis Kelce and Zach Ertz rule the FF world over them.
I’ve always been a ‘QB makes the TE’ guy, but I’ve also been ‘look at the freaks, I want them’ guy as well. Choose what is working and doesn’t appear to have anything in its way from working next season. I’ll take Andrews here…and I’ll gamble on Fant and Goedert down the road as needed.
1.14) WR Parris Campbell, IND
You could consider this a reach, and in some respects, it is…I’m passing on A.J. Brown, Christian Kirk, Terry McLaurin, Deebo Samuel, Preston Williams among other top WR names still available. Why Campbell here?
Well, we’ll get to the flaws (and pros) of the other guys in their section but why I go with Campbell here is strictly a bet on three things converging…three things that might not happen, and/or might not happen in 2020 (and then this was a bad move ranking him this highly).
a) Parris Campbell, had he been healthy all season…we might have seen the great prospect and been more excited about his future. As it was, he was hurt (minor) a lot and we barely saw him. You put his speed + playing in a home dome/on turf – it could be fantasy magic at some point. We just didn’t see it in 2019 due to the injuries.
b) The Colts will eventually realize the home dome gives them a passing game advantage and they get their heads out of the rear and get a real QB in 2020 and give into a heavy passing game for the years to come.
c) T.Y. Hilton is not getting any younger or healthier. A new QB coming in, if it happens, wouldn’t be a BFF of TYH…like Luck-Brissett had the pleasure to do so. The new QB would start out with a clean slate and might find 4.31 running Campbell as ‘their guy’ to make numbers with.
Campbell is such a physical talent, built for number production, and with a home/dome advantage for his speed…it could be fantastic.
1.15) WR A.J. Brown, TEN
I could argue Brown into the top 10…I could argue him outside the top 15.
I’m not anti-A.J. Brown…I just never liked his landing spot. I thought the combination of working with Mariota and Vrabel would lead to little/no FF-action…and that was pretty true, but then Ryan Tannehill took over and things changed for Brown.
Brown is a terrific talent and will be great for FF if the offense plays to his strengths – he’s not a #1 WR. He’s a #2-3 slot type who you just dump short-medium passes to and let him do his best thing…yards after the catch. Why, YAC? Because he’s like a bruising RB after the catch…he’s not a normal WR. Safeties have a hard time tackling him one-on-one, as do linebackers.
As much as I respect his superpower – I fear that Tennessee using him all wrong too often, like late in the season when he had one catch in crucial games Week 16, and the first two rounds of the playoffs. He cannot be a #1 WR…he needs to be a weaponized underneath WR who also carries the ball 2-5x a game. Will Tennessee do that in 2020? I doubt it…that’s why I don’t have him top 10, but based on his talent/gift/superpower he possesses as a monster after the catch -- he’s a top 10 guy. If he were in Green Bay, for example, he’d be top 3-5 on this list.
1.16) WR Preston Williams, MIA
It’s possible that the definitive star WR of the entire 2019 NFL Draft class is undrafted WR Preston Williams. You saw ‘it’ in the preseason and then he quickly became the Miami go-to. Before DeVante Parker woke up to steal money from Miami with a late season push…a UDFA rookie had stolen his cheese as ‘the guy’. How does a rookie UDFA just blow past an experienced former 1st-round draft pick WR? It happened in Miami to start the 2019 season.
I’d have Williams #1 among WRs here IF he hadn’t torn his ACL midseason…now, we got a little concern to deal with. It also opened the door to Parker getting reestablished, so when Williams comes back he has that to deal with (but it might be a good thing, actually…and I’ll explain that deeper this offseason). We also do not know who the QB will be for Miami going forward. Fitzpatrick in 2020, maybe…with ___ rookie in the wings?
I love Williams’ talent. But, now, I’ve got a few things to worry about on him. It could be that he comes out of all of this smelling like a rose, but it’s a little bit of an unsure situation right now.
1.17) WR Terry McLaurin, WAS
Goes into the 2020 free agency and NFL Draft period as his team’s definitive #1 WR…and working with a QB that he was college BFF’s with. All great things that should warrant a top 5-10 listing on this ranking/mock draft. However, we have a big issue – Dwayne Haskins is not a great deliverer of the ball. What happens if Haskins really fails hard in 2020…or is just low-end mediocre? Can McLaurin get the ball enough to make FF numbers, because he really didn’t once Haskins took over?
The upside here is Washington changes QBs in 2020 under Ron Rivera…maybe, Alex Smith shocks back to a return or Case Keenum is the guy. I’ve become a big McLaurin fan…and he’s in a sweet spot to be ‘the man’ for Washington, but I just don’t know if I can bypass now and pick him up cheaper in-season when Haskins drags him down.
1.18) RB Kerryon Johnson, DET
Controversial pick here by me, but…
What am I going to do? Take another one of the thousand ‘good’ WRs? Gamble on Noah Fant breaking out but stuck with nothing if he's just a 4-5 target a game guy in 2020?
This is ‘controversial’ for me because I don’t like Kerryon Johnson, as a runner, one bit…never liked him like the scouting world did, and it feels like I was right about him. However, I crave RBs and the 2018-2019 drafts have not provided a deep pool. While I don’t love Kerryon, I know he has a run-first coach with a run-first-and-second O-C. If he’s the main RB in 2020, he might see 250+ carries. I can use that…or trade that.
This is not a pick for the long-term. This is a pick for me to trade hot in 2020 and get into something better that I want.
1.19) WR Deebo Samuel, SF
Samuel is a better receiver, lesser ‘power’ yards after catch (but still pretty powerful) version of A.J. Brown. AJB’s gift is getting the ball short and then is a monster-sized tailback with the ball in the open field. Samuel is a lesser version of that, but still pretty good/great.
Samuel is a better pure WR – running routes, getting open, making tough catches. I really like what I see with Deebo and how much the 49ers seem to like/appreciate him…but my fear is the 49ers have so many weapons they don’t have to lean on one guy to make great FF-numbers. Like I mentioned on A.J. Brown…if Deebo were on the Packers or Browns or Chiefs, for example, he'd be an FF-superstar playing pitch and catch with high-end QBs. The 49ers haven’t shown the need/desire to lean on Deebo like that for FF explosions.
But I do like how much the 49ers are getting Samuel in at tailback and on jet sweeps – he’s running the ball 1-3x a game already. That’s a nice FF-boost factor that comes with Deebo’s skillset. Deebo could warrant being a top 10 name on here but how much the 49ers will lean on/demand from him is the question mark to wrestle with.
1.20) WR Christian Kirk, ARI
If the Arizona passing game starts to really breakout, starts to rise to ‘best in class’ then it means Andy Isabella starts making a difference, Hakeem Butler becomes a red zone threat…and it should mean Kyler’s most comfortable throw, like it was in 2019, will be Christian Kirk.
Kirk can matter on volume alone in PPR…he could lead the NFL in catches if this Arizona passing game goes to the next level. My concern is they don’t get the O-Line that they need and/or Kyler spreads it around to all his unique options and one guy isn’t so heavily leaned upon.
I’m more pro than con on a Kirk pop in 2020, but I don’t want to get ahead of myself…we need to see what Arizona does in free agency and in the draft. BUT…if this passing game hits warp speed in 2020 or 2021 – Kirk could be ridiculous with catch counts + everything else that goes with.
1.21) DB Jamal Adams, NYJ
How can you argue against a DB who was #1 in IDP scoring per game in 2018 and was back into the top five in 2019? He is given free range to do IDP things on the field by the coaching staff…rush the passer, try to cheat pass routes, etc. His game is perfect for IDP production…NFL-wise, they style is up for debate but it’s definitely great for IDP tallies, and he will have the same coaching staff/plan, etc., in 2020+ (unless he’s traded, which is possible).
1.22) TE Dallas Goedert, PHI
He could be top 5 on this list but I believe Philly will re-sign Zach Ertz, and Goedert be stuck in Philly with Ertz for another 1-2 seasons until his free agency of 2022…he could be 27 years old hitting free agency in 2022, and a lot of his useful life ruined in Philly.
He could also try to force his way out the next year or two and become a top 5-10 player on this list in his new digs. Radical upside exists…on a new team, which may not happen until 2021 or 2022.
1.23) TE Noah Fant, DEN
Fant may deserve a top 15 ranking here, but I fear the Denver passing game will not be able to make a star for a while…and he becomes more of an athletically gifted but disappointing with flashes of excitement O.J. Howard. Fant was starting to come on a bit late 2019 season and is a real talent, built for fantasy goodness at TE, but Drew Lock with new O-C Pat Shurmur…I cannot get too excited about it yet.
1.24) DE Nick Bosa, SF
Likely to be the best stat filing pass rusher of any player from the 2018-2019 drafts, and will definitely remain a ‘DE’ label and not get FF-undermined into a ‘LB’ label like some other top guys could face like Bradley Chubb or Josh Allen or Montez Sweat, etc., have or might have on changing coaches/schemes. Keeping that ‘DL’ classification/label is added value for many IDP leagues, and Bosa should retain that for his career.
1.25) QB Baker Mayfield, CLE
I wrestled with putting him on here, and where -- but of the players remaining to pick there were established players and producers…but at positions we have a million of (WR) or who don’t have the upside for stat production Baker has – if Baker is in the right spot, he can/will put up numbers, big numbers. He’s that kind of thrower. We remember the ‘bleh’ 2019 but forget in 2018 he set a rookie record for TD passes…he doesn’t suck. He also started to hum a bit 2nd-half of the season 2019…in a total cesspool offense/franchise.
If the Browns move on from OBJ and rebuild with great, young WRs…Baker may shock again with a 2020 or 2021 course correction. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the Browns are a curse, a dark cloud that hovers over and kills off anything good…so, this might fail gloriously as well.
I think Baker Mayfield will not be a Brown in a few years, on top everything else – forcing his way out and into a place he’s wanted/better (just about anything is better)
I was going to keep it to the top 25 here/end January 31st, but I have five more names on my list of top 25 candidates I didn’t select…so, let’s just put them out here and make it a top 30.
1.26) WR Michael Gallup, DAL
Gallup slips ahead of guys like Calvin Ridley and D.J. Moore, because I think he’s as/more gifted than them but he has one potential quick pop in 2020 offseason – what if Amari Cooper is not retained/re-signed by Dallas? They would be wiser to sign Byron Jones and Dak Prescott than waste money on Amari in this booming WR economy…it could leave Gallup as Dak’s most familiar WR hand, a perfect scenario for FF numbers.
1.27) WR Calvin Ridley, ATL
Very solid WR2 performer…29 games played in his career, 17 TDs. I didn’t expect him to be such a TD producer, and I fear that it doesn’t hold up to higher levels and he’s just stuck more as a back end WR2 than a WR1.5 with WR1 hopes. 11 TDs in his last 25 games played…after exploding onto the scene with 6 TDs his first 4 games.
He’s settling into a 3-5 catch, 40-80 yards in a given week WR…that’s a lot of guys – but Ridley has a higher TD rate, but I do not love his TD dependency for higher end fantasy work. Two 100+ yard games in 2019…two 100+ yard games in his last 26 games played. He’s not showing much ‘radical’ tendencies…just is ‘good’ and ‘there’ -- which you can find all over the NFL/FF.
If Matt Ryan tails off with age, you’ve got an issue here. If Julio Jones wears down quicker with age and teams stop doubling+ him and can focus on Ridley more…you’ve got an issue here. Not that he’ll bust, just wondering how high his ceiling is. Is super-solid, secure…but future WR1? I haven't seen the ‘it’ there yet.
1.28) WR D.J. Moore, CAR
We don’t know how he’ll work with the new Carolina QB or who that QB will even be? Curtis Samuel could rise up. What will the new coach and O-C’s plan be? There are a lot of questions swirling around DJM right now…whereas a Calvin Ridley comparison, he has a predictable situation he goes back to in 2020. Moore is a talent, but not a great WR…he’s good. He could move towards great (for FF) with a better passing game, or just be ‘meh’ with a weaker passing game. He’s not a classic #1 WR type…he’s more of a weapon type WR asset, and his WR-mate Curtis Samuel is a different/better type of weapon at WR. Moore has competition for the #1 look from his QB in 2020+.
Moore had a terrific 2019 season catching the ball – 87 catches with mostly Kyle Allen. That’s great, but just 4 TDs. We don’t know if it will be a heavy target to DJM passing game with Matt Rhule and if it isn’t -- that could send Moore’s stock plummeting to a WR2.5 range…and that is a fear on the table. Maybe Rhule embraces a heavier passing game and DJM could rise up to be a WR1.5, a la a better Keenan Allen? There’s an upside and some worries/unknowns to deal with Moore.
1.29) LB Tremaine Edmunds, BUF
Back-to-back 115+ tackle seasons with 9 or more PDs each season. Edmunds is one of the fastest linebackers in the league – a guy who can chase tackles, drop into coverage and pick off passes, but also rush the QB if needed. He’s multi-talented working on one of the best defenses in the league…AND he’s just turning 22 years old in May, with two NFL seasons under his belt.
1.30) DB Derwin James, LAC
The #4 IDP DB in PPG in 2018, but got hurt and missed a ton of games in 2019…but when he came back in Week 13 he had one so-so stat/IDP total in his 2019 debut and then he got right back up to speed his final four games. He’s a legit potential to be the top DB in IDP for 2020. I used to worry he might drop into coverage too much and that would hurt his potential for sweet IDP/tackle numbers, but that hasn’t been the case. Anthony Lynn is still the head coach, so full steam ahead on James.