With the 2019 NFL Draft upon us, we wanted to take an early look at average draft position data and fire off some takes. We have a handful of questions that Kevin Steele, Anthony Pinzone, and myself set out to answer. For this exercise, we referenced Fantasy Football Calculator’s ADP data. Here are our early 2019 ADP thoughts. Enjoy!
Which player currently being drafted in the first round won’t be there in August?
-Kevin – I’m probably in the minority here, but James Conner has way too much uncertainty surrounding him to take him in the first round. That’s not even considering more proven commodities going after him (Michael Thomas, Julio Jones, and Odell Beckham). The Steelers offense is not nearly as explosive with Antonio Brown moving to Oakland and factor in the presence of Jaylen Samuels and you have the makings of a fantasy running back that is going a bit too high because of one year of production. Nah, fam. I’ll take the wide receiver at 1.11 and grab Joe Mixon or Dalvin Cook in the second.
-Anthony – I don’t like to agree with Kevin, but in this instance, I have to put my personal feelings for a player aside and consider what may actually happen. As the offseason progresses, I would not be shocked to see Pittsburgh add more talent in the backfield via the draft. On top of that, Jaylen Samuels did play well enough to see more snaps, so as this backfield picture becomes clearer, I see people being scared away from Conner as a first-round talent.
-Cody – I’m going Le’Veon Bell here and I’m a little surprised he’s going at 1.08 this early. There are too many questions surrounding his situation for me to draft him at this price. We haven’t seen Le’Veon Bell run behind anything less than a top-five offensive line. The Jets certainly don’t have the offensive weapons to take pressure off him as in Pittsburgh. I don’t think he should too much further, but I’d rather take a more “sure-thing” in the first.
Top 30 player going too high?
-Kevin – Every year we see a running back have a breakout second half of the season and fantasy gamers turnaround and overvalue them the next season. Damien Williams is currently the 22nd player off the board at 2.09. That’s insane for a player who has a very small sample size of production, even if he is in a Patrick Mahomes led offense. Over Williams final five games, he never had more than 13 carries in a game and only accounted for 51% of the teams carries and 11% of the total team targets over that span. While he seems to be a lock for the pass-catching duties in KC, I have my doubts that he receives true workhorse back touches.
Heading into 2019 the Chiefs have already signed Carlos Hyde to a one year deal and still could add another back through the draft. I understand the upside is definitely there for a 2019 breakout campaign, however, at his current ADP, I can’t see myself taking a player that could end up being the next CJ Spiller, Montee Ball, Zac Stacy, or Jay Ajayi.
-Anthony – Dalvin Cook at 17 is absolute insanity. I know we can’t assume injuries or whatever, but you better believe I’ll move a guy way down who can’t stay healthy. Two seasons in, and Cook has only managed to play in 15 games. I see the arguments for him, and I get that the talent is there, but I generally like to play it safer in the first two rounds, and I’d much rather grab a WR like Juju Smith-Schuster, Antonio Brown or Mike Evans who are all going in the 17 to 22 range.
-Cody – Adam Thielen coming off the board as the 25th player is a little too rich for me. I know he had a historic beginning to his year in 2018, but for two years in a row, he’s faded in the back half of the season. It’s a small sample size, but after the Vikings made their offensive coordinator switch after week 14, Thielen saw just 12 targets to Stefon Diggs’ 23.
Player being drafted outside of the top 50 that will finish in the top 40?
-Kevin – While 2018 was a bit of a disappoint for Allen Robinson who finished with 754 yards and four touchdowns (13 games) while leading the team with a 21% target share. However, there is certainly reason for optimism for Allen Robinson and the Bears offense in year two under Matt Nagy. With Mitchell Trubisky gaining more confidence and the team likely becoming more of a pass-heavy offense than the one we saw in 2018 that finished 27th in the league in pass attempts per game.
As for Allen Robinson, he is a perfect candidate to bounce back in 2019 as the teams WR1 and one that is an incredible value at pick 6.10 or the 29th WRs off the board according to Fantasy Football Calculator.
-Anthony- Chris Godwin down in Tampa is an intriguing prospect to me. New coach Bruce Arians has already started raving about him, and if everyone’s assumptions that Winston will do wonders under this system are correct, I think Godwin is the biggest beneficiary of that improvement. Going into year 3, Godwin improved from 34 to 59 receptions, 525 to 842 yards, and 1 to a whopping 7 touchdowns in his sophomore year. Following the same trends, under a better system, Godwin could be poised for 100 catches, 1,350 yards and 10+ touchdowns this season, easily higher than his current 62 overall ADP.
-Cody – D.J. Moore is someone who has grown on me throughout the offseason. He basically didn’t play the first three weeks (four targets) and still finished the season with nearly 800 reception yards. With Devin Funchess gone, Moore should be the top option in an offense with a healthy Cam Newton.
Player being drafted outside of the top 100 that has a chance to be a weekly starter by the end of the season?
-Kevin – After the Colts signed Devin Funchess to a one-year deal, I immediately started grabbing him in as many best ball drafts as I could. After the news broke, his ADP on FFC spiked, however, as of late we have seen it dip. There is a lot to like with this signing. He enters one of the best offenses in the league with Andrew Luck at the helm. There is also very little standing in his way to claim a sizable market share that currently features TY Hilton as the deep threat and Eric Ebron who broke out in his own right. While Funchess has yet to surpass the 1k receiving mark or double-digit touchdowns, he was on an offense that ranked 18th in pass attempts to a team that finished 2nd.
With all things considered, there is a lot to like for Funchess and his outlook for 2019 and at his current ADP (10.07 or WR46) he is a bargain that I would have no problem reaching when the opportunity presents itself.
-Anthony- Devin Funchess hasn’t been the most efficient player in his career so far. Despite 111 targets in 2017, he only pulled in 63 of them, but he did have 840 yards and 8 scores. Last year he saw his, and his quarterback’s, season shortened by injuries, leading to a major decline in production. Now that he’s in Indianapolis opposite a star like T.Y. Hilton and with a stud QB like Andrew Luck throwing the ball, I’d look for a major uptick in production. His current adp in the 10th round, 112th overall, could turn into an absolute steal. It wouldn’t shock me to see him record his first 1,000 yard, 10+ touchdown season.
-Cody – Maybe I’m buying too much into the “DeSean Jackson back in Philly” narrative, but that’s where I’m going with this one. DJax is going off the board at 122 and he fills a much-needed part of that offensive attack. Even at age 32, Jackson came in as a top-16 player in “Fastest Ball Carriers” last year, per NFL NextGen Stats. In 2017, when Carson Wentz was fully healthy, Wentz was tied for second in average completed air yards. It’s a match made in fantasy heaven.
That’ll wrap it up for our first look at early 2019 ADP! Let us know what your opinions are by dropping a comment or reaching out to us on Twitter!