The 2020 NFL draft gave us some long-needed sports content in the midst of this quarantine (please stay inside guys). Here at F6P, we decided to have a post-2020 NFL Draft Fantasy Football Roundtable to give some thoughts on the weekend.
Over three days of draft proceedings, it was almost enough to make me forget about this situation we're in.
Who knows how many months we'll have to analyze these picks before we actually see any NFL action.
Alongside Joe Bond (@F6P_Joe), Keith Lott (@WeTlkFntsySprts), Jonathan Chan (@JChan_811), Richard Savill (@RRSSavill), and Jon Witt (@JPW2542), we tackled some of the most pressing questions coming out of the draft.
2020 Post-NFL Draft F6P Fantasy Football Roundtable
What was your favorite player-team marriage of the draft for fantasy purposes?
Kevin Huo: I loved Clyde Edwards-Helaire going to the Kansas City Chiefs. For NFL purposes, this stinks since the rich get richer. But this is a perfect fit for one of the top three backs in this draft. Andy Reid compared Edwards-Helaire to a better version of Brian Westbrook and we saw what this offense looked like with the solid but unspectacular Damien Williams.
Joe Bond: I know CEH is going to be a favorite and I like it too, from an NFL scheme perspective and especially for dynasty league purposes. However, I'm going to be different here and say Cam Akers to the Los Angeles Rams. I think he finds himself as the no-doubt number one running back on the Rams this season. Akers didn't perform as well as he should have thanks to a really bad Florida State offensive line. But I think he thrives in the Rams offense in year one.
I love that they will join offenses as the WR2 on the depth chart and will avoid being covered by the opposing teams' best corners. Jeudy and Courtland Sutton will share just about all of Drew Lock’s pass attempts, while Justin Jefferson slides right into Stefon Diggs' role, opposite Adam Thielen. Jefferson’s fit is ideal with a veteran QB in Kirk Cousins.
Richard Savill: With mild exceptions, I really haven't found a favorite or even a true best fit from the 2020 draft. That said, I think the potential is there for Cam Akers RB of the Rams to get the bell-cow job. It's a long way to training camp and we have not gotten our usual coach amping up the media to get the hype train rolling. Akers fits well into the Rams offense for the style Sean McVay likes to run. Definitely a player who will grow on people when the off-season programs open up.
Jonathan Chan: The highest ceiling marriage is Clyde Edwards-Helaire to the Kansas City Chiefs. The KC backfield was a bit of a mess last season, with Damien Williams losing a lot of mid-season production to injury and the presence of LeSean McCoy.
Helaire was one of the most talented backs in college last season and is entering the NFL's best offense. His ability to make defenders miss (led all draft-eligible RB in broken tackles in 2019) automatically makes him one of Patrick Mahomes’ most dangerous weapons. If he’s able to earn at least half the backfield work alongside Williams, Edwards-Helaire will make an immediate impact.
Jon Witt: Jonathan Taylor was my RB1 going into the draft and I couldn't be happier he landed with Indianapolis. Indy has one of the best offensive lines in the league and Taylor should feast on that. Marlon Mack is often injured and is on the final year of his contract so there shouldn't be competition for carries. Lastly, with Philip Rivers at the helm, teams won't be able to stack the box against Taylor.
What player went to a less-than-ideal situation for their 2020 fantasy value?
Kevin: CeeDee Lamb to Dallas. Lamb, who some had projected as the WR1 in this draft, ended up falling to the Cowboys at pick 17. He slipped past a lot of teams who needed a clear WR1 and will instead line up in a loaded receiver corps that includes Amari Cooper and Michael Gallup.
The offense will have its weeks where it can sustain good numbers for all three of them. Unfortunately, Lamb doesn't have the consistent volume that he would have if he had landed with the Jets or Raiders.
Joe: Chase Claypool landed in a terrible spot. After JuJu Smith-Schuster, the Steelers already have James Washington and Diontae Washington who already young and looking to be growing into solid NFL Wide Receivers. I think Claypool has potential as a big-bodied receiver. But I'm not sure he can create enough separation to pass any of those three on the depth chart.
Keith: My choice here is Tee Higgins. This, of course, is only an issue if A.J. Green stays healthy and is not traded. Higgins will sit on the Bengals WR depth chart behind Green, Tyler Boyd, and John Ross. That added to a rookie QB playing under enormous pressure could spell for a disastrous rookie season for Higgins. Not to mention, the offense will lean heavily on RB Joe Mixon. I do love his value in dynasty as Green will be gone in 2021. He will become Burrow’s WR1 in the very near future.
Richard: Henry Ruggs to the Las Vegas Raiders. It is true the Raiders have potholes to fill in the receiving corps, but a talent like Ruggs I feel is a waste with Derek Carr. First of all, you need to hope Carr will deliver 100+ targets and connect on at least 67% of them. I wouldn't bank on that. Opportunity is the key here and whether Ruggs can break at least into usable WR3 territory is something that appears distant in the immediate aftermath of this draft.
Jonathan: J.K. Dobbins might have a tough time finding enough volume in Baltimore. One of the highest-rated running backs in the draft, the Ohio State product will need to compete with Mark Ingram, Gus Edwards, Justice Hill, and Lamar Jackson for carries.
While the Ravens certainly run enough to support multiple backs, this is a clear timeshare situation. The rookie could have trouble establishing a consistent role. Ingram has an out in his contract for 2021, but until then Dobbins will have a lot of competition for carries in his first season.
Jon W.: In his first season with Baltimore, J.K. Dobbins will have to fight for carries with Mark Ingram and a run-heavy QB in Lamar Jackson. Does his skill set fit the Ravens offense? Yes. Does Dobbins have long term value in Baltimore, big time? Yes. That being said, barring an injury, I do not see Dobbins holding significant value in 2020 on a loaded Baltimore team. There are just too many mouths to feed in that backfield.
Which already rostered NFL player gained the most value due to the draft?
Kevin: I'm going with San Francisco running back Raheem Mostert. While Tevin Coleman and Jerrick McKinnon are still in the backfield, the Niners did not draft another running back and traded Matt Breida to the Dolphins. This lines up with Mostert cementing himself with multiple great performances towards the end of the year and the playoffs.
Joe: A few come to mind, but Austin Ekeler immediately jumps out to me. Yes, they drafted Joshua Kelley in Round 4, but he is not going to take much work over Ekeler. He will just be added depth along with Justin Jackson. Ekeler is a clear RB1 and I see him creeping into the Round 1 discussions later this summer.
Jonathan: The Falcons not spending a pick on a running back was great for Todd Gurley’s value. Some worried the Falcons, like the Rams last year, would draft a back to keep the former Offensive Player of the Year healthy.
Jon W.: No one is talking about the big uptick in value that Leonard Fournette has received post-draft. The Jaguars did not spend any of their draft capital on an RB or address the position in free agency. There are plenty of trade rumors swirling, but if Fournette remains in Jacksonville I think he will be the focal point of the offense.
Which already rostered NFL player lost the most value due to the draft?
Kevin: The Lions selecting De'Andre Swift signals the end of the short-lived Kerryon Johnson era in Detroit. Swift is a workhorse back who will at worst split touches 50/50 with Johnson. At best, he'll take over the role immediately. Johnson has had an opportunity to solidify his spot in 2019, but disappointed with both performance and injury issues.
Joe: There are so many, but Kerryon Johnson is the biggest loser, and not in a good way like the TV show. De'Andre Swift was my No. 1 rated running back coming into this draft and in my opinion, should have no issues taking over lead-back duties for the Lions. I guess the Lions - like many fans of the team - were tired of watching this running game do nothing. Swift will fix that.
Richard: The answer is clearly Kerryon Johnson. The Lions remain determined to get their running back star which they haven't really had going back 20 years to the Barry Sanders era. Kerryon Johnson dynasty owners can see the writing on the wall now. What's worse is that Johnson doesn't look at all like a commodity easily transferable to another team for nominal compensation. So it's a timeshare making both Swift and Johnson fantasy misfits.
Keith: Ronald Jones when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted Ke’Shawn Vaughn with the 12th pick in the third round. Jones was potentially looking at being a workhorse back on an offense that features Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Mike Evans, and Chris Godwin! However, with rush attempts expected to be limited in Bruce Arians aerial assault, it is highly likely that we see the rookie RB handle 40-50% of snaps, especially on passing downs. Jones rarely saw 50% of the Bucs snaps last season and Dare Ogunbowale led the team in targets by running backs.
Jonathan: Tyrell Williams will have plenty of competition with Henry Ruggs in Las Vegas. Williams scored most of his fantasy points in the first five weeks of 2019, catching a touchdown in each of the first five games. Following that run, he averaged just 4.25 targets per game with just one total touchdown.
The Raiders invested a lot in Ruggs, taking him with the 12th overall pick in the draft. Jon Gruden clearly believes in the speedster and will give him every opportunity to succeed. Derek Carr might not have the best deep ball, but Ruggs is talented enough to immediately take the WR1 role from Williams.
Who is a late-round pick are you keeping an eye out for whenever football starts again?
Kevin: It's an already loaded offense, but I'm looking out for wide receiver Tyler Johnson of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Outside of Justin Jefferson, he's the best pure slot receiver of the class. Pro Football Focus had him as their top-rated receiver in 2019. We all know Tom Brady's affinity for slot receivers, so this makes a ton of sense.
Tyler Johnson was the highest-graded WR this season pic.twitter.com/GTKdPlv4Rz
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) January 15, 2020
Hill will play primarily in the slot but is very good there. I've seen a few comparisons to Cooper Kupp and I completely agree considering the body control and explosion in and out of routes he has. Jennings is a big physical receiver on a team looking for anybody to help out Deebo Samuel, and Round 1 pick Brandon Aiyuk. Jennings is not fast but can find spaces in the zone and is hard to bring down after the catch.
Keith: Antonio Gandy-Golden is a big body possession type receiver that could be just what Dwayne Haskins needs as a comfort target. Terry McLaurin is the clear WR1 on the depth chart but after that, it will be a battle between Gandy-Golden & Kelvin Harmon.
Richard: There's a job for the taking in Tampa Bay at running back. Ronald Jones had a serious opportunity to wrest control of the backfield in 2019, but couldn't distance himself much, if at all, from Peyton Barber. Enter Ke'Shawn Vaughn from Vanderbilt. It may take some hard effort to overcome the experience that RoJo has, which counts well in Jones' favor. But if Vaughn has the capacity to take the bull by the horns in this Brady offense, it's there for him.
Jonathan: Maybe not a late-round pick, but Redskins third-rounder Antonio Gibson is someone I’ll be monitoring to start the season. Derrius Guice can’t stay healthy and Adrian Peterson looks to be on his last legs giving Gibson a small window of opportunity as the season rolls on.
Peyton Barber and J.D. McKissic are also on the roster but aren’t the best every-down option. Gibson’s previous experience as a receiver gives him a leg up on for third-down work. He could eventually work into early-down snaps if Guice or Peterson gets hurt.
Jon W.: In a normal year that isn't loaded at WR, Antonio Gandy-Golden could have easily gone in the second round. He landed on a wide receiver needy team in Washington and should immediately see snaps. Standing 6-Foot-4, he is a physical receiver who is not afraid to go up and get the ball. He is the perfect compliment opposite Terry McClaurin. The only thing that may hold him back is whether or not Haskins progresses at QB.