Written by: Alexander Amir
This week we have been drafting from pick #2 in our three different league types. In case you missed any of our previous installments, let me explain how we are organizing our Blitz mocks. Each week we will pick from a new draft position. Last week was with the first pick, this week is with the second pick, next week will be with the third pick, and so on. To further break it down for all those different league types out there, we’ll be releasing full mocks from each draft position for 12 team standard, 0.5 PPR, and 2QB standard leagues. These mocks were done using Fantasy Pros’ Mock Draft Wizard (https://draftwizard.fantasypros.com/football/mock-draft-simulator/settings/), and the roster settings are as follows: 1QB, 2RB, 3WR, 1TE, 1Flex (RB/WR/TE), D/ST (team defense), and K, and this article will be for 0.5 PPR scoring. Make sure to check out last week’s mocks, and stay tuned later in the week for more!
1.1 Le’Veon Bell, RB (PIT) 1.2 Antonio Brown, WR (PIT) 1.3 Todd Gurley, RB (LAR) 1.4 Alvin Kamara, RB (NO) 1.5 David Johnson, RB (ARI) 1.6 DeAndre Hopkins, WR (HOU) 1.7 Odell Beckham Jr., WR (NYG) 1.8 Ezekiel Elliott, RB (DAL) 1.9 Saquon Barkley, RB (NYG) 1.10 Julio Jones, WR (ATL) 1.11 Leonard Fournette, RB (JAX) 1.12 Michael Thomas, WR (NO)
Analysis: I decided to have some fun in this mock draft and deviate from my usual strategy by drafting Antonio Brown 2nd overall. Yes, I know, I was forgoing Todd Gurley, but I figured I could get solid running backs in the next couple of rounds, especially because this is a 0.5 PPR league where receivers go early. Also, receivers are much less of a sure thing in fantasy than running backs are. Aside from Brown and arguably DeAndre Hopkins, it is extremely hard to count on receiver production in fantasy. Just look at Mike Evans or Keenan Allen last year. Evans had 5 TDs all year after a season with 12, and Allen came back from an ACL tear to be the #3 PPR scorer in 2018. Antonio Brown’s yearly consistency automatically stabilizes my receiving corps.
2.1 Kareem Hunt, RB (KC) 2.2 A.J. Green, WR (CIN) 2.3 Melvin Gordon, RB (LAC) 2.4 Davante Adams, WR (GB) 2.5 Tyreek Hill, WR (KC) 2.6 Keenan Allen, WR (LAC) 2.7 Mike Evans, WR (TB) 2.8 Christian Mccaffrey, RB (CAR) 2.9 Stefon Diggs, WR (MIN) 2.10 LeSean McCoy, RB (BUF) 2.11 Dalvin Cook, RB (MIN) 2.12 Rob Gronkowski, TE (NE)
Analysis: Just as predicted, I got a viable RB1 with my 2nd round pick. Dalvin Cook had great production in the first 4 weeks of his rookie season, putting up 428 total yards and two touchdowns. Despite ACL injuries being known as career changing, especially to running backs, I expect Cook to rebound just fine given that he’s very young and has had almost a full season plus an offseason to recover. Replacements Jerick McKinnon and Latavius Murray thrived in relief of Cook, meaning Minnesota is a great place to be for a back. Draft Minnesota’s workhorse back confidently.
3.1 Doug Baldwin, WR (SEA) 3.2 Devonta Freeman, RB (ATL) 3.3 Adam Thielen, WR (MIN) 3.4 Jordan Howard, RB (CHI) 3.5 Zach Ertz, TE (PHI) 3.6 T.Y. Hilton, WR (IND) 3.7 Travis Kelce, TE (KC) 3.8 D.J. Moore, WR (CAR) 3.9 Josh Gordon, WR (CLE) 3.10 Jerick McKinnon, RB (SF) 3.11 Joe Mixon, RB (CIN) 3.12 Aaron Rodgers, QB (GB)
Analysis: This is one of my favorite value picks of the draft. Devonta Freeman has been a top 13 back since 2015. While he has ceded carries to Tevin Coleman recently, he is still a fringe RB1 candidate. His most notable attribute is his redzone production — per ESPN Fantasy Football, Freeman has 41 carries inside the opponent’s 5 yard line over the past 3 seasons, which is 2nd most in the league. Freeman has more than enough consistency and upside to be an excellent RB2.
Something very strange about this round is that Carolina wide receiver D.J. Moore was selected in the third round, despite being ranked WR57 by FantasyPros. I don’t know if this was a computer glitch or something, but just be aware NOT to pick D.J. Moore this early.
4.1 Amari Cooper, WR (OAK) 4.2 Allen Robinson, WR (CHI) 4.3 Larry Fitzgerald, WR (ARI) 4.4 Evan Engram, TE (NYG) 4.5 Brandin Cooks, WR (LAR) 4.6 Jarvis Landry, WR (CLE) 4.7 Alshon Jeffery, WR (PHI) 4.8 Golden Tate, WR (DET) 4.9 JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR (PIT) 4.10 Julian Edelman, WR (NE) 4.11 Demaryius Thomas, WR (DEN) 4.12 Michael Crabtree, WR (BAL)
Analysis: At this point, my running back position was solid, so I knew I had to go receiver. I was aiming at Julian Edelman, but I just missed out. Demaryius Thomas is not bad consolation though, as he should see a large uptick in production with Case Keenum now at the helm in Denver. Despite the down year in 2018, Thomas was still ranked WR23. Newly drafted receiver Courtland Sutton won’t take too many targets away from him either as the Broncos will likely ease him into action, but even if he plays right away he should do more good than harm by keeping double teams off of Thomas.
5.1 Derrick Henry, RB (TEN) 5.2 Pierre Garcon, WR (SF) 5.3 Mark Ingram, RB (NO) 5.4 Delanie Walker, TE (TEN) 5.5 Jamison Crowder, WR (WAS) 5.6 Kenyan Drake, RB (MIA) 5.7 Alex Collins, RB (BAL) 5.8 Russell Wilson, QB (SEA) 5.9 Deshaun Watson, QB (HOU) 5.10 Greg Olsen, TE (CAR) 5.11 Jay Ajayi, RB (PHI) 5.12 Rashaad Penny, RB (SEA)
Analysis: This being a 3 receiver, 0.5 PPR league, I had to go receiver with this pick even though I wasn’t a huge fan of the guys available. It feels like Pierre Garcon has been playing forever, but he has still been able to maintain fantasy relevance with heavy volume. Indeed, in 8 games last season Garcon had 40 receptions for 500 yards, translating to 80 receptions and a thousand yards over a full season. And that was done with a combination of Brian Hoyer and C.J. Beathard at quarterback. Garcon will be new QB Jimmy Garoppolo’s top target and should be an excellent WR3 with WR2 potential in 0.5 PPR formats.
6.1 Marvin Jones, WR (DET) 6.2 Tom Brady, QB (NE) 6.3 Emmanuel Sanders, WR (DEN) 6.4 Royce Freeman, RB (DEN) 6.5 Rex Burkhead, RB (NE) 6.6 Dion Lewis, RB (TEN) 6.7 Jimmy Graham, TE (GB) 6.8 Kyle Rudolph, TE (MIN) 6.9 Carson Wentz, QB (PHI) 6.10 Robert Woods, WR (LAR) 6.11 Trey Burton, TE (CHI) 6.12 Cam Newton, QB (CAR)
Analysis: I REALLY would have loved Jimmy Graham here, but I was a few picks too late. The tight ends were going fast, so I settled on one with very high upside in a tight end friendly offense, Trey Burton. New head coach Matt Nagy used to call plays in Kansas City where tight end Travis Kelce thrived, and now the Bears have 2nd year QB Mitch Trubisky taking the reins in Chicago. New QBs always like to rely on their tight ends as safety blankets. And Burton flashed real playmaking ability when filling in for Zach Ertz in Philadelphia with 5 TDs on the season. Very high upside here.
7.1 Dez Bryant, WR (FA) 7.2 Devante Parker, WR (MIA) 7.3 Drew Brees, QB (NO) 7.4 Devin Funchess, WR (CAR) 7.5 Corey Davis, WR (TEN) 7.6 Derrius Guice, RB (WAS) 7.7 Sammy Watkins, WR (KC) 7.8 Michael Gallup, WR (DAL) 7.9 Will Fuller, WR (HOU) 7.10 Chris Hogan, WR (NE) 7.11 Randall Cobb, WR (GB) 7.12 Cooper Kupp, WR (LAR)
Analysis: Drew Brees was still available here and I was very tempted to take him, but I told myself to stick to my guns and wait longer for a QB. Wide receivers are too valuable in this league format to not have enough. While Devante Parker hasn’t lived up to his potential in Miami, former Dolphins receiver Jarvis Landry was moved this offseason, and his 161 targets went with him. The top receiver job is wide open, and Parker is entering an important year in his contract. If he fails to perform this season, Miami can cut him without owing him a penny and save the $9 million he’s scheduled to make in 2019. He knows he needs to step his game up this season, and I think he does so without Jarvis Landry to compete with.
8.1 Jordy Nelson, WR (OAK) 8.2 Sony Michel, RB (NE) 8.3 Kirk Cousins, QB (MIN) 8.4 Lamar Miller, RB (HOU) 8.5 Marquise Goodwin, WR (SF) 8.6 Jimmy Garoppolo, QB (SF) 8.7 Matthew Stafford, QB (DET) 8.8 Jameis Winston, QB (TB) 8.9 Robby Anderson, WR (NYJ) 8.10 Chris Thompson, RB (WAS) 8.11 Ronald Jones II, RB (TB) 8.12 Sterling Shepard, WR (NYG)
Analysis: I’ve ended up with Ronald Jones in all of my mock drafts so far. He’s on an improved Tampa Bay team with full control of the starting running back job and has so much potential. However, the inconsistent play of Jameis Winston and the entire Bucs offense over the past couple of years gives some worry. The trick with Jones is his value. He is too volatile to be drafted as an RB2, but in the 8th round sitting on my bench? It’s a no brainer.
9.1 C.J. Anderson, RB (CAR) 9.2 Tevin Coleman, RB (ATL) 9.3 Marqise Lee, WR (JAX) 9.4 Marlon Mack, RB (IND) 9.5 Josh Doctson, WR (WAS) 9.6 Aaron Jones, RB (GB) 9.7 Tarik Cohen, RB (CHI) 9.8 Carlos Hyde, RB (CLE) 9.9 Anthony Miller, WR (CHI) 9.10 Marshawn Lynch, RB (OAK) 9.11 Duke Johnson, RB (CLE) 9.12 Kelvin Benjamin, WR (BUF)
Analysis: Tevin Coleman is basically a rich man’s handcuff. Despite playing behind Devonta Freeman, Coleman actually ranked 22 amongst running backs last season and played extremely well in Freeman’s injured games, accumulating 223 yards and 4 touchdowns in 3 games. Since Freeman is entrenched as my RB2, I knew I had to take Coleman here, as he will give almost equal production if Freeman were to get hurt. And in a pinch, I can even play the two of them together.
10.1 Danny Amendola, WR (MIA) 10.2 Jordan Reed, TE (WAS) 10.3 Isaiah Crowell, RB (NYJ) 10.4 Kerryon Johnson, RB (DET) 10.5 Peyton Barber, RB (TB) 10.6 Jamaal Williams, RB (GB) 10.7 Nick Chubb, RB (CLE) 10.8 D’Onta Foreman, RB (HOU) 10.9 Devontae Booker, RB (DEN) 10.10 Rishard Matthews, WR (TEN) 10.11 Philip Rivers, QB (LAC) 10.12 Ty Montgomery, RB (GB)
Analysis: Ahh, Philip Rivers. Always slept on in the draft, always surprises people in the end. Rivers has finished as a top 13 QB since 2013, and last season was ranked 8th overall amongst QBs. He has arguably his best offensive unit with him this season, and I expect a huge year from both him and the LA Chargers. This late in the draft, he will be a major steal. With players like Rivers, Andrew Luck, Jared Goff, and Matt Ryan still available, waiting on a QB is easier than ever.
11.1 DeSean Jackson, WR (TB) 11.2 Nelson Agholor, WR (PHI) 11.3 Mohamed Sanu, WR (ATL) 11.4 Corey Coleman, WR (CLE) 11.5 Chris Godwin, WR (TB) 11.6 Bilal Powell, RB (NYJ) 11.7 Theo Riddick, RB (DET) 11.8 Christian Kirk, WR (ARI) 11.9 Jordan Matthews, WR (NE) 11.10 Kenny Stills, WR (MIA) 11.11 Cameron Meredith, WR (NO) 11.12 Tyler Eifert, TE (CIN)
Analysis: Nelson Agholor probably hit his ceiling last year when he finished the season as fantasy’s WR22, and he likely will never truly breakout unless both Alshon Jeffery and Zach Ertz sustain injuries. However, Agholor is still in a high octane Eagles offense and has some weeks were he goes off. On heavy bye weeks and against good matchups, he is a WR3 or Flex consideration and gives good depth to my receiving corps.
12.1 James White, RB (NE) 12.2 Allen Hurns, WR (DAL) 12.3 Giovani Bernard, RB (CIN) 12.4 LeGarrette Blount, RB (DET) 12.5 Jack Doyle, TE (IND) 12.6 Andrew Luck, QB (IND) 12.7 Ben Roethlisberger, QB (PIT) 12.8 Darren Sproles, RB (PHI) 12.9 Samaje Perine, RB (WAS) 12.10 Ted Ginn, WR (NO) 12.11 Tyler Lockett, WR (SEA) 12.12 Frank Gore, RB (MIA)
Analysis: Depth, depth, depth. These later rounds are all about finding as many guys as you can that will be put in a position to succeed. While Tyler Lockett has been a solid real life receiver his fantasy numbers have been sub-par. However, Seattle’s receiving corps is Doug Baldwin and nobody else. Jimmy Graham and Paul Richardson both departed this offseason, leaving plenty of targets and touchdowns for Lockett to grab. While Seattle will probably try to lean on the run with the mobile Russell Wilson and newly drafted Rashaad Penny, Lockett will have his fair share of opportunity.
13.1 Jacksonville, DST 13.2 Latavius Murray, RB (MIN) 13.3 George Kittle, TE(SF) 13.4 Cameron Brate, TE (TB) 13.5 Calvin Ridley, WR (ATL) 13.6 Charles Clay, TE (BUF) 13.7 Philadelphia, DST 13.8 Mike Gesicki, TE (MIA) 13.9 Terrelle Pryor, WR (NYJ) 13.10 Patrick Mahomes, QB (KC) 13.11 David Njoku, TE (CLE) 13.12 Los Angeles Rams, DST
Analysis: One of the most rewarding fantasy strategies is finding late round handcuffs who have already proven they can be successful. With Dalvin Cook as my top running back, Latavius Murray is the perfect insurance policy. Murray had an excellent 2017 season, totaling 945 total yards and 8 touchdowns while essentially splitting time 50–50 with Jerick McKinnon. If Dalvin Cook were to go down with another injury I know Murray would easily replace him, and he would have even more success than last year with McKinnon’s departure.
14.1 Jonathan Stewart, RB (NYG) 14.2 Minnesota Vikings, DST 14.3 O.J. Howard, TE (TB) 14.4 Jared Goff, QB (LAR) 14.5 Nyheim Hines, RB (IND) 14.6 Martavis Bryant, WR (OAK) 14.7 Austin Ekeler, RB (LAC) 14.8 Doug Martin, RB (OAK) 14.9 Terrance Williams, WR (DAL) 14.10 Matt Breida, RB (SF) 14.11 Mike Williams, WR (LAC) 14.12 Dede Westbrook, JAX (WR)
Analysis: I spent a long time deliberating if I should take Matt Ryan here as my backup. If you’ve read any of my previous mock drafts you would know that I think he’s being severely undervalued. However, I decided to just keep adding that depth to my receiving corps, and took Mike Williams. Williams was picked 7th overall by the Chargers in 2017, but was hampered by a back injury throughout the year. This year, with TE Hunter Henry going down with injury, I expect the Chargers to run a lot of 3-receiver sets, giving Williams some opportunity in a high octane offense.
15.1 Matt Ryan, QB (ATL) 15.2 Denver Broncos, DST 15.3 Seattle Seahawks, DST 15.4 Los Angeles Chargers, DST 15.5 Houston Texans, DST 15.6 Baltimore Ravens, DST 15.7 Chris Carson, RB (SEA) 15.8 Kansas City Chiefs, DST 15.9 New England Patriots, DST 15.10 New Orleans Saints, DST 15.11 Kenny Golladay, WR (DET) 15.12 Corey Clement, RB (PHI)
16.1 Stephen Gostkowski, K (NE) 16.2 Justin Tucker, K (BAL) 16.3 Dan Bailey, K (DAL) 16.4 Greg Zuerlein, K (LAR) 16.5 Matt Bryant, K (ATL) 16.6 Wil Lutz, K (NO) 16.7 Matt Prater, K (DET) 16.8 Mason Crosby, K (GB) 16.9 Jake Elliott, K (PHI) 16.10 Harrison Butker, K (KC) 16.11 Chris Boswell, K (PIT) 16.12 Adam Vinatieri, K (IND)
Analysis: As usual, I waited until the last two rounds to take my defense and kicker. Some things never change. I chose the Denver DST because the Von Miller and Bradley Chubb combo should produce a hell of a lot of sacks, translating to easy fantasy points. Chris Boswell should be a nice kicker this year again in the high powered Steelers offense.
QB- Philip Rivers RB- Dalvin Cook RB- Devonta Freeman WR- Antonio Brown WR- Demaryius Thomas WR- Pierre Garcon TE- Trey Burton FLX- Devante Parker DST- Denver Broncos K- Chris Boswell
Bench: RB- Ronald Jones II RB- Tevin Coleman WR- Nelson Agholor WR- Tyler Lockett RB- Latavius Murray WR- Mike Williams
Final Thoughts: The biggest takeaway I got from this draft is if you draft Antonio Brown with a high pick, you have to find safe running backs with the next two. By the time you get past round 3 there are no safe #1 running backs left. If you play it right, you could end up with two potential RB1s. Cook and Freeman both should extremely consistent with a fair amount of upside, and I have both of their proven backups in case of injury. I’m extremely deep at WR, where I tried to stack my roster with players who should see tons of targets (Thomas, Garcon, Parker, Lockett) or are in high powered offenses (Agholor, Williams). If QB Philip Rivers or TE Trey Burton get injured I could run into a bit of trouble, but generally those positions are easy enough to find replacements for. This year especially is extremely deep at both positions. As always, look out for more mocks in the coming weeks!