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Tag Archives: 2014 rookies

In my weekly column, we take a long look at impact fantasy football rookies.  I compare their performance to date against my original expectations of them.  Let’s continue this 2014 version of bishopthe series by looking at one of this class’ highest regarded running backs prior to the start of the season, Bishop Sankey.   I will look at some of his college production against his performance versus Jacksonville to discern his dynasty value.

Here are my thoughts after watching him in college: The young back received a lot of touches as a collegian and seems to be wearing him down somewhat.  Sankey runs mostly between zero and two gaps ( the two guards and center) with good leverage and seemingly enjoys the contact.  Sankey doesn’t go down with arm tackles and keeps his feet chopping trying to break tackles.  The runner has a  strong stiff-arm that helps him keep defenders away from him.  His fierceness sets him apart from the other backs in his draft class, but his speed and vision do not. Read More »

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In my weekly column, we take a long look at impact fantasy football rookies.  I compare their performance to date against my original expectations of them.  Let’s continue this 2014 version of the series by looking at one of the most overlooked oliverrookie running backs in Branden Oliver.  I will look at some of his college production against his performance versus the Broncos to dissect his dynasty value.

I reviewed three of Oliver’s Buffalo college games; keep in mind that most of his opponents were against fellow Mid-American Conference teams. The first thing that I noticed was his height (5′ 6 1/2″) and his big, powerful legs.  The back has quick feet, gets low in the hole, and possesses a highly developed center of gravity that keeps him upright when most runners would go down.  Oliver uses this balance to squirt through small openings on the line of scrimmage while hiding behind the offensive line to gain a tactical advantage.  It was difficult to see him at times, even on tape. Read More »

In my weekly column, we take a long look at impact fantasy football rookies.  I compare their performance to date against my original expectations of them.  Let’s continue this 2014 version of the series by looking at one of the top ten rookie Benjamin-mini-camppicks in Carolina’s Kelvin Benjamin.  While this huge weapon has a lot of pluses, I have some doubts, too.

Here is what I saw in college from Benjamin: On the majority of his college catches, the receiver traps the ball with his body.  This limits his chances to gain additional yardage after the catch as well as more difficult for him to secure the ball leaving him more open to fumbles or drops.  When he does try to catch the ball with his hands, Benjamin spends a lot of time double catching the pigskin.  I’m not sure if this is a concentration issue or just his lack of fluidity.  It seems that he runs his routes deeper than the quarterback anticipates which causes the ball to either be intercepted or fall short. Read More »

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:  http://football11.myfantasyleague.com/2014/options?L=48665&O=17.

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. Read More »

The Vikings decided to re-boot their defensive end spots causing the exodus of Jared Allen to Chicago.  One of their choices was third round pick Scott Crichton from Oregon State.  In a defensive end class that was short on play makers, crichtonCrichton is a solid contributor, who might make an impact this season for your dynasty fantasy squad.  I watched four of his 2014 games against California, Stanford, Boise State, and Oregon to get a better feel of the skill level and talent he brings to Minnesota.  In every IDP league, you need good pass rushers at the defensive end spot if you want to compete.  Read More »

Since most of us are in the middle of rookie drafts or we have just completed them, I am continuing my three-part weekly series (heck if it gets even more reads, I might add a fourth part) discussing the trends that are occurring in hillmyfantasyleague.com fantasy football rookie drafts.  The first article got based on 75 rookie drafts completed, and now we are over 400 rookie-only drafts!  When a trend isn’t really changing like Sammy Watkins and Mike Evans get drafted one and two in almost every single draft, then I will discuss other players unless their draft position is changing dramatically.  As always, my thoughts get based on dynasty PPR leagues with sacks being worth 2.5 times that a tackle is worth.

Some of these next selections may not be exciting per se, but these trends are important to note.  WR Odell Beckham, Jr, who got drafted by the Giants, has on average been selected sixth overall in fantasy rookie drafts.  Some people feel he is too much of a Victor Cruz clone and he will struggle to play on the outside.  One assumes risk with this pick because of the way the New York offense struggled last season.  Beckham is a safe, but unspectacular pick in the middle of the first round of dynasty fantasy rookie drafts.  I envision him to hold WR3-4 value this season. Read More »

This is the follow-up to yesterday’s article about the start-up dynasty draft.  We will now cover the highs and lows of the six round rookie draft that got held the week after the NFL Draft.  There were several trades that left a few of the teamsrichardson without picks for the first two to three rounds.  Keep in mind the starting lineups are as follows: 1-2 QBs, 2-3 RBs, 3-4 WRs, 1-2 TEs, 2-3 DLs, 2-3 DBs, and 3-4 LBs, so basically everyone starts one offensive flex (that could be a QB) and one defensive flex.  You can find the league here: http://www99.myfantasyleague.com/2014/home/63805#0

The league has four first time dynasty owners and the rest of the league owners have three plus years of dynasty experience, but once the picks start flying all that is out the window.   Return yardage counts the same as rushing or receiving .1 points per yard, backs get .5 points per reception (PPR), wide receivers get 1 PPR, tight ends get 1.5 PPR, and all touchdowns are worth six points other than passing touchdowns (only worth five).  Let’s take a look at the six rookie draft rounds to see where you can find good values and not so good values, but keep in mind you can flex a quarterback (15 of them were in the top 25 scorers in 2013).

Round One

1.10 WR Brandin Cooks, Saints- The young receiver was great value here, but due to the quarterback flex aspect, players tend to slip a little.  Because this was my pick, I am more than overjoyed to brag about it. Read More »

The IDP scouting report gauntlet continues with new Lions linebacker Kyle Van Noy.  Linebackers in the NFC North need to be very versatile because they deal with great quarterbacks in Aaron Rodgers and Jay Cutler, but on the other van noyhand contend with fantastic runners in Eddie Lacy, Matt Forte, and Adrian Peterson.  I re-watched four of Van Noy’s 2013 games with Georgia Tech, Washington, Utah State, and Texas along with a review of my notes from the Senior Bowl week to get a good breakdown of the skills this young backer brings to the Motor City.  He certainly isn’t my top dynasty linebacker, but Van Noy could grow into a valuable LB3 quite quickly. Read More »

Since most of us are in the middle of rookie drafts or we have just completed them, I am continuing my three-part weekly series discussing the trends that are occurring in myfantasyleague.com fantasy football rookie drafts.  When a trend isn’t sankeyreally changing like Sammy Watkins and Mike Evans get drafted one and two in almost every single draft, then I will discuss other players unless their draft position is changing dramatically.  As always, my thoughts get based on dynasty PPR leagues with sacks being worth 2.5 times that a tackle is worth.

Although I did not mention this in my first article, newly minted Titans running back Bishop Sankey gets selected third overall in most fantasy rookie drafts.  While I do think he is a relatively safe rusher, this screams opportunity over talent.  There is little upside when an owner decides to go with Sankey over a more talented skill player like Saints Brandin Cooks.  Running backs are a dime a dozen in the NFL these days and I would rather have someone who could ascend, not just tread water. Read More »

Re-print of my Senior Bowl articles, I hope these will help you during your rookie drafts.
Well the long Senior Bowl week is almost over.  Most of the NFL coaches and scouts have gone back to their team headquarters.  The team meetings, practices, press conferences, and hospital visits are over.  Now is the time to
play.  Whoborland really stood out in real game conditions? I will break down my thoughts from the press box in alphabetical order:
Antonio Andrews, RB
The running back runs well behind his pads and can be a very effective power rusher and receiver.  He was a volume back in college so he tends to start slowly and work himself into the game.  This might be an issue as I’m not sure if there is an NFL that would be willing to start him right away.  Andrews might not be worth more than a fantasy flier.
Chris Borland, LB WISC
The athletic linebacker was everywhere in the game.  He covers potential receivers tightly out of the backfield and is a very hard hitter.  For a stretch of two quarters it seemed like he was a part of every single tackle as he is always around the ball. His size means nothing to me as Borland can flow to the ball, disengage blockers and hit.  If you are in tackle heavy leagues, he might be a LB2 this season!

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This is a re-print of my Senior Bowl experience and it might be helpful for your rookie drafts. 

Thursday was the final day that the media could view a semi-meaningful practice. The players were back to shells and helmets mostly ran plays at half speed. In yesterday’s article I ranked the offensive skill position players and the van noyimpressions they made.  Because there is not a lot more to gleam from walk-through practices, I will spend this article reviewing and ranking these defensive players by their positions.

Linebackers/defensive ends (mostly outside rushers, unless indicated)

1) Kyle Van Noy, BYU
This linebacker is the best defensive player here, just beating out the undersized DT Aaron Donald.  He flies to the ball with good vision and instinct.  Van Noy tackles with force, wraps his arms, and takes the ball carrier down hard. He sheds blockers out of his way quickly while rushing the quarterback or playing the run.  The linebacker is a leader and is better suited to play an outside linebacker spot, but can play inside backer as well.  Van Noy is in my top five rookie fantasy linebackers.

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