REWIND – A Look Back At Our Top 25 Most Undervalued Fantasy Assets 2018 Preseason (#3-4 Christian McCaffrey and Evan Engram)
For the next two weeks, I am going to show and discuss two players per day from last year’s FFM Draft Guide report on ‘The Most Undervalued Players’ (for the then upcoming 2018 season). We’re looking back at the information from last year’s draft guide to see how it worked out and what we can learn for this season (if anything).
In general, if you were with us last year, it should’ve been a pretty good run. 2018 was the best in-season records and highest seasonal points scored in the near decade of draft guides and strategy reports in the summer/preseasons for subscribers. A lot of it due to the players we offered as undervalued because we not only talked about it – but we put a redraft/best ball (and dynasty) strategy built around grabbing these guys before others were even thinking about it. Some of you were mocked for who you took and when you took them – and then you started setting scoring records and shut them up (well, they never shut up…let that be a lesson to never worry about what the mainstream people are doing – we ‘play’ them like fiddles why they mock our moves, but who’s always one-step ahead in drafts, waivers, and trades?).
I’m going to republish two players per day starting with #27-28 on the list and go for 14 days to the end of June 2019. We’ll see if the concepts were smart or dumb…and what the lesson might be a year later. Our undervalued report is looking for lower cost, great ROI opportunities – not all will pan out but enough of them will…and some of them were ‘liked’ players by many but we considered undervalued because we projected them cornerstone players trading as ‘might be good’ for the masses in summer 2018.
It’s a review and learning series and also a pitch to show what info/intel you new folks to FFM in 2019 missed last season. We do it differently here…it will likely freak you out at first, make you say, “No one else is saying that…it can’t be right,” but that’s just your long-term fantasy-brainwashing talking. I know, I used to be captive as well.
Come walk the road less traveled with us…
Sure, now Christian McCaffrey is an obvious top 3-5 fantasy player, but that wasn’t the case last July-August. He was a 2nd-round guy for the longest time and then slid into the late 1st-round in some drafts late-August.
Our push for McCaffrey as our late 1st-round pick (and sometimes a bargain 2nd-round pick) in redrafts was critical…a hugely successful move, but it was set up in conjunction with our primary plan for Tyreek Hill in the 2nd/3rd round as a bargain there as well…and to then hook Patrick Mahomes with Tyreek later. Two of the best plays of fantasy 2018 (McCaffrey and Tyreek), we (and many of you FFM’ers reading this) took them #1-2 a lot…and after two rounds most of the ‘critics’ in your league were mocking you for daring take players half-to-a-full-round ahead of what the ESPNs of the world were telling you.
Our constantly critiqued by idiot league mates draft plans and the subsequent dopey post-draft grades of ‘D’ and ‘F’ from the various drafting platforms began, a lot of the time, with taking Christian McCaffrey ‘too early’ – and he went on to help us build the best single-season scoring we’ve experienced in the past decade for FFM-based/tracked teams.
Evan Engram was also a key planned play by us…we were taking him a round+ ahead of ADP too and he started out wobbly, but was OK, then got hurt very early in the season…became a split-role TE upon his return to the Giants, we had to drop him in many cases – then we had to-grab him later as he exploded to the finish. Engram ended up #7 among fantasy TEs in PPG PPR overall…but from Weeks 14-17 he was the #2 scoring TE in PPR (behind Kittle).
They had different paths, but McCaffrey and Engram were critical parts of our preseason redraft (and dynasty) plans for 2018 – and both paid dividends in some way, obviously CMC the most.
Here’s what we were pitching around this time last year:
Christian McCaffrey, Carolina
*FFM Rank in PPR: #5-7 range among RBs in June 2018…ADP range: #10-12*
I’ve spent most of the preseason thinking McCaffrey was fairly valued. #10-15 RB for most people, usually around #11-13 in PPR. Everyone respects his talent overall, and they love him as a receiver but question him a bit as a workhorse RB.
Then, the head coach came out wanting to push McCaffrey to 25+ touches in a game…and I was shocked. Coaches saying the want to get the ball to XYZ ‘as much as possible’ is what you say as a compliment and/or hoped intent…but nothing specific. However, when you come out and specifically say you want a guy most people don’t think is built for it to get 25+ touches a game – I take that seriously.
McCaffrey could be the Alvin Kamara of 2018 more than Alvin Kamara will be. All the good touches and probably an easy 5+ catches a game, and potentially leads all RBs in catches this season…possibly 100+ catches this year.
I have to wonder if Marvin Lewis really is going to give Joe Mixon a lot of touches. I don’t have any questions about that today with Ron Rivera and McCaffrey.
TE Evan Engram, NY Giants
*FFM Rank in PPR: #32-38 range among all players in June 2018…ADP range: #55-65 overall*
Much of the key to a successful redraft plans surrounds Evan Engram. In some senses, he’s the MVP of the 2018 redraft planning. The fact that you can get, arguably, the best fantasy TE in the game in the 4th-5th-round (12-team) is a game-changer. He’s trading as a 5th-rounder, so I’d be on him in the early 5th or more likely the 4th, just to be sure.
By locking down a top 20 asset, possibly a top 10 asset, at TE in the 4th+ allows you to hammer away at other spots with the first three picks. No worries about trying to fit Gronk into the plans or worrying about his health. You can get a shot at a ‘best in class’ asset at TE for a bargain ADP price.
If you walk out of a redraft with David Johnson, Tyreek Hill, Joe Mixon/Aaron Rodgers, and Evan Engram as your 1-2-3-4…you’re going to win a lot in 2018, I can feel it. Evan Engram’s lower ADP makes this possible.
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