Myself and columnist Jon Sousa recently participated in 12-team mock draft. We were lucky to find ourselves in a super competitive draft, and overall, we were mostly happy with results. Jon had the fifth pick in the draft and I had the sixth, and here are our notes and observations from each round.
First Pick: Eddie Lacy, RB Green Bay Packers
Jon’s Thoughts: Lacy is the perfect combination of speed and power, and I expect him to get a heavy workload this season in Green Bay. Some might pin the return of Aaron Rodgers as a damper on Lacy’s potential, but I believe that Rodgers’ return only strengthens his value. Lacy had a very respectable 4.2 yards per carry average as a rookie, and he also totaled 1,220 rushing yards and 11 rushing touchdowns.
First Pick: Calvin Johnson, WR Detroit Lions
Jack’s Thoughts: With LeSean McCoy, Jamaal Charles, Matt Forte, Adrian Peterson and Eddie Lacy off of the board, things were looking a little thin at running back to say the least. I think Arian Foster is going to have a great season, but there was other players that were more valuable than Foster in my mind still on the board. I was thinking about picking Jimmy Graham at my position, but I don’t like the fact that he is having contract disputes. Graham is going to have a tremendous year, but football players are just like the rest of us. If you aren’t happy at your job, you probably aren’t going to perform at your highest level. Calvin Johnson now has some new teammates to take the pressure of off himself, and Matthew Stafford has reportedly improved on his mechanics this offseason. Johnson should find himself as the highest-scoring receiver in 2014.
Second Pick: Drew Brees, QB New Orleans Saints
Jack’s Thoughts: Manning was off of the board, and after this pick, I would to wait 10 more picks until I got to make another selection. That was too risky to wait for Brees or Aaron Rodgers, so I scooped up Brees. I want a top-three quarterback to lead my team at all times, and missing out on running backs and wide receivers is the price you pay.
Second Pick: Julio Jones, WR Atlanta Falcons
Jon’s Thoughts: Going back to the Week 9 bye, I took Jones and all of the assumed injury risk that comes with him. When he is healthy(he was on pace for almost 1,900 receiving yards before his foot injury last season), however, he is Matt Ryan’s favorite target. I think taking Jones is a huge risk, but the ceiling for him is pretty darn high.
Third Pick: C.J. Spiller, RB Buffalo Bills
Jon’s Thoughts: One of the more explosive backs to arrive on the scene in recent memory, Spiller’s potential is very intriguing due to his electric speed and steady hands. However, like Julio Jones, he struggles to stay off of the injury report each week and is in constant competition with Fred Jackson and Bryce Brown for touches. I believe that he is the most skilled of all of the Bills’ running backs, which merits his selection for me in the third round. Don’t be surprised if Spiller eclipses 1,500 total yards this season.
Third Pick: Andre Ellington, RB Arizona Cardinals
Jacks’ Thoughts: I would feel much more comfortable with Ellington as my RB2, but he is not a bad option to have leading my rushing attack. I like that head coach Bruce Arians stated that the Cardinals’ offense was going to be built around the young back, but we also heard that C.J. Spiller was going to rush the ball until he puked last year. Ellington did lead the rookie running back class in both yards per carry and yard per reception though, so I think he is a solid option to finish as a top-10 running back.
Fourth Pick: Vernon Davis, TE San Francisco 49ers
Jack’s Thoughts: Along with a dominant quarterback, I want a tight end that I can put in each week and not worry about. After Davis, things looked a little dicey, so I made sure to take him before he was gone. Drafting in the middle round will sometimes make you take players earlier than you will like, and you have to learn how to play defense and protect the players that you want. With San Francisco obsessed about pumping up its wide receiver depth and Frank Gore aging, I think the receivers for the 49ers should see an increase in targets this season.
Fourth Pick: Andrew Luck, QB Indianapolis Colts
Jon’s Thoughts: Luck has all of the tools around him to achieve fantasy success this season. A healthy Reggie Wayne, T.Y. Hilton and newcomer Hakeem NIcks provide Luck with a bevy of options down the field. Factor that with decent running ability and a pretty favorable schedule, and Luck could finish as a top-three quarterback this season.
Fifth Pick: Andre Johnson, WR Houston Texans
Jon’s Thoughts: To be honest, I don’t think you can go wrong getting Andre Johnson in the fifth round. He was third in the NFL in targets and catches(175 and 109, respectively) and seventh in the NFL in receiving yards(1,407). We probably won’t find out who is playing QB for the Texans a week before the season starts, but Johnson will have a great year no matter who is throwing passes to him.
Fifth Pick: Steven Jackson, RB Atlanta Falcons
Jack’s Thoughts: The options for running back in the fifth round were far and few between, so I settled with Jackson. He looked solid between weeks 12-14, averaging 72 rushing yards per game and racking up three rushing touchdowns, but his final few games left much to be desired. If he shows any signs of life in the first few weeks, I am putting him on the trading block without hesitation.
Sixth Pick: Torrey Smith, WR Baltimore Ravens
Jack’s Thoughts: I needed to find a WR2 at this point of the draft, and Torrey Smith will be a nice compliment to Calvin Johnson. Joe Flacco will have plenty of weapons at his disposal this year, and Smith should once again finish inside the top 20.
Sixth Pick: Jordan Cameron, TE Cleveland Browns
Jon’s Thoughts: I probably should have gone with the safer, more reliable Jason Witten here, but Cameron’s upside is undeniable. He is a great athlete and a matchup nightmare, but was the first half of his season just a fluke last year? Only time will tell. However, someone has to catch passes in Cleveland if Josh Gordon is going to be out, and something tells me that Miles Austin, Nate Burleson and Andrew Hawkins won’t be all that reliable.
Check back to see our final selections and how our rosters turned out. What do you think so far?
Categories: Fantasy Football