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Today I’m reviewing the fantasy rookie draft connected with the 14 team league that I did a replacement owner draft (yesterday’s article).  The most interesting part of this draft is that only around half of the owners had picks in the first bridgewaterround.  There were two power player teams that were willing to trade out for a high price.  I took a few notes on some picks that either surprised me or were good value.  For inquiring minds, you can find the rookie draft here:

1.08 WR Marqise Lee, Jaguars

Despite being able to start five wide receivers, I found this selection to be quite high.  Will he be the WR1 or WR2 or WR3?  There are still some injury concerns floating around with him and this was the earliest I saw him drafted.

1.11 QB Teddy Bridgewater, Vikings

Here is my mistake.  I came out of the replacement owner draft with only Russell Wilson as a starting quarterback.  In a 14 teamer, quarterbacks tend to be hard to come by, so I traded away my 2015 first to make sure I had two starting signal callers.  I could not take Johnny Manziel because the Seahawks and Browns share a week four bye.  This was a reach by me with Manziel going soon after my Bridgewater selection, but Bortles and Carr went much later.  If I had to do it all over again, I would wait at quarterback.

2.02 LB Ryan Shazier, Steelers

This was the highest I have seen this rookie linebacker go.  Signs are encouraging that he will be slid over to play the more athletic inside linebacker role in the Steelers defense, but with the scoring being more big play focused, I would have taken a better pass rushing linebacker at this point in the draft.

2.11 RB Tre Mason, Rams

I thought this was great value as the 25th overall selection, especially since reports have come out stating that he will get a chance at the starting job, no matter how remote that happens year one.  Mason desperately needs to work on his pass blocking and get healthy.

3.03 RB Storm Johnson, Jaguars

Perhaps this is me as the bitter Toby Gerhart owner, but I thought this was too soon for the seventh rounder.  Johnson is a slasher, but does not have much traction to getting the starting job anytime soon.  Is he worth a selection, sure but not this early as the 31st overall pick.

3.11 WR Josh Huff, Eagles

This wide receiver seems to be overlooked in almost every draft I am in.  Huff played for Chip Kelly and is more explosive than Jeremy Maclin or any other Eagles receiver.  Sure he might start the season as a reserve player, but Huff should become the starter before Thanksgiving and never look back.

4.04 WR Jared Abbrederis, Packers

I love this wide receiver from what I saw against Roby in their game this season and in Mobile at the Senior Bowl practices.  His concussion history is concerning, but chances are he will become at least the WR3 in a Aaron Rodgers led offense in 2015 which is more than worth the 46th overall pick.

4.11 DE Damarcus Lawrence, Cowboys

After Clowney got drafted at outside linebacker, Lawrence became the most talented defensive end in the best scheme.  Dallas is starving for defensive talent with the injury to Sean Lee.  Lawrence isn’t the answer, but he will get plenty of chances to shine.

5.07 WR Jeremy Gallon, Patriots

The speedy, diminutive senior joins a team that needs healthy explosive receivers.  While Gallon might not start right away, he was a huge value at the 63rd player taken.  Maybe it’s my Michigan homer-ism, but I see the receiver making an impact by the end of the year.

Each rookie draft has a mind of its own.  Make sure you set your own tiers to decide where you should go.  When your team does not have a glaring weakness, always go talent over situation.  You and your teams will be better for it.

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