Tales From The Mock Draft Simulator: Standard Pick 12
August 10, 2014 | Chet
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For this mock draft I’ll be using FantasyPros Mock Draft Simulator and I chose to start with the 12th pick with standard scoring and added a WR/RB/TE Flex Spot. That leaves me with two possible starting tight ends, four possible starting wide receivers and three possible running backs. If this were PPR I’d almost automatically grab a pass catcher out of the 12 hole with that lineup, but I’ll see who’s there for me.
The first round went fairly normally for a standard 12 team draft. The exceptions for me were Arian Foster and Peyton Manning, but this is nice to see a QB and a big name RB go in the first round. That is much closer to what you might see in your home leagues.
So I have the next two picks. Sometimes it feels nice to rattle off two of your favorite players here, but of course there is a long wait until I pick again and I need to be aware of that as we go along. My rankings tell me to go Jimmy Graham and Dez Bryant here. I love both and am happy to oblige, but I am forgoing my second and maybe even third tier of running backs. But Graham is going to kill most the other TEs in head to head matchups and Dez gets a play caller that helped Calvin Johnson set the record for most yards in a season and is playing on a team that will need to score a whole bunch of points to make up for their horrid defense.
Ok, we’re back. Thankfully since this is the mock draft simulator the 22 picks took a second instead of 22 minutes! In those 22 picks we saw 2 QBs, 9 RBs, 9 WRs, and 2 TEs go off the board, all reasonable picks. And now the #12/13 pick is far in my rearview mirror and the rest of my draft hangs in the balance with these two picks. If I grab two running backs just because I’m afraid of getting pure scrubs later, I worry that I’m doing it mainly out of fear instead of looking for value. So since I can sit here and think about this for as long as I damn well please, I think I will. My top running backs on the board are Toby Gerhart, Joique Bell and Rashad Jennings. I love Bell and feel fine about the other two. My top wide receivers are Andre Johnson, Michael Crabtree, Keenan Allen, Victor Cruz and a lot of guys in that same tier. And for quarterbacks we have Matthew Stafford and Cam Newton, which in this draft I have to think about since quarterbacks are being taken a little faster than other mocks I’ve been in this season. So I feel like the biggest drop off for me will be at running back. I can get wide receivers and a quarterback later that I don’t mind starting, but if I were to pass on running back here I will have trouble even getting a starting back, let alone guys of this caliber. So I’m going to roll with Mr. Gerhart, who is injured now, but I think they are holding him back because they know how much work he’s going to get per game and want him as fresh as possible. And that usage is why I want him here. Even if he doesn’t have huge games he should average 25 touches a game and that means fantasy points no matter how bad the rest of your team is.
And for my next pick I’m going with Bell. Jennings is probably the safer play, but I love Bell in Lombardi’s offense and as the goal line back. I can easily see 10 rushing touchdowns and 50-70 receptions.
Hello again. Since we last me there have been 2 QBs, 8 RBs, and 12 WRs taken and my team looks like this:
I usually like a wide receiver in my flex spot unless I happen to get really good value for a running back early. The top running backs are off the board, but there is a little value with Bishop Sankey and Pierre Thomas there, while wide receiver is looking good with Jeremy Maclin, Golden Tate, Mike Wallace, Eric Decker, Terrence Williams and Marques Colston. But I can’t forget tight ends since they can also fill the flex spot if needed and there is some good value still on the board with Jordan Cameron, Jordan Reed, Kyle Rudolph and Greg Olsen. And now after losing Stafford and Newton during that last pass I’m probably going to wait again because I don’t love Andrew Luck, Nick Foles and RG3, who are next on my rankings. For me one of these picks is a no-brainer. I love Cameron here because he should lead the Browns in receptions and touchdowns. Josh Gordon missed the first two weeks last year and Cameron was the main man in his stead. That will happen again this season. I also like thinning the top tight end pool out and owning a large share of the best guys.
I’m going to go with a wide receiver for my next pick, but there are a ton of decent options here. I really like Maclin and Tate this season. Maclin with DeSean Jackson gone should be the number one receiver for a very good offense in Philly, but he is also coming off knee surgery. Thankfully that was very early in training camp last season and he should be good for this year.
Long time no see. It looks like QBs were the pick du jour since we last met. Six QBs flew off the board, only 4 RBs, 9 WRs and 3 TEs. The QB situation is a bit worrisome, but thankfully Tony Romo is still on the board and he’s the last top-12 QB on my board. If he wasn’t there I would most likely keep waiting on QB and grab two later that I think would morph together to make one good QB. So Romo is my guy. I worry about his back, but everything else about this Cowboys team tells me they will throw the ball a record number of times this season.
And lo and behold, my man Golden Tate is still available. Doesn’t it feel good when you decide not to take someone and they come back to you? You know what they say, if it was meant to be they’ll return so you can mock draft them.
So that fills up my starters for this team. I’m going to finish this draft off, but just leave you with my final results and a few comments.
After I left you I went on a spree of picking “my guys.” Often these are players who have been doing well in camp or just need one injury to put them in a great situation. I find it much easier to draft “my guys” when I’m not in a league with 11 other people who live on Twitter. That doesn’t mean those picks are for the smart people and other picks for the dumb, but it’s just the way group think happens and I am just as much a part of that as anyone. I’d like to believe I am able to analyze and judge while disregarding hype, but you and I both know that isn’t the easiest thing to do.
So here we are. Let’s take a look at my bench.
Mark Ingram: Here’s some recency bias for you. Ingram looked great in his last preseason game so I took him.
Devonta Freeman: Freeman looks to be the better back between he and Jacquizz Rodgers and Steven Jackson is finding it quite difficult to stay on the field.
Rueben Randle: Randle should be the Giants best red zone threat and I like the new short passing, up tempo offense if they can ever figure out how to execute it.
Ahmad Bradshaw: Bradshaw will most likely see plenty of work on third downs and when Trent Richardson continues to be meh. I don’t love his upside, but he’s one of my few old timer safety picks.
James Starks: Starks looked great last season when Eddie Lacy went down and Lacy will be taking a beating with his hard nosed style of running this year. He makes for a great lottery ticket on your bench.
Johnny Manziel: Manziel has a ton of fantasy upside with his ability to run. If he can get that offense moving through the air and tack on some nice rushing yardage, his numbers could be top 10.
Ronnie Hillman: This is my fifth running back after my two starters earlier. I’d say this is often my default drafting strategy, to grab a couple running back starters and then wait and load up on upside backups. Running backs get hit and hurt often. And now that Hillman is running with the second team I want anyone who is next in line to be Peyton’s RB.
Andre Holmes: Holmes is that flier receiver who has all the measurables to be a WR1. He started showing signs last season and could very well make a big step this year. Of course he could also be waiver wire fodder.
Malcom Floyd: Instead of picking a defense I went with Floyd. I’ll be streaming defenses so I’ll drop someone later on. I may drop Floyd, but I do like his touchdown potential for the Chargers this season.
Dan Bailey: Kicker, southern/mostly enclosed roof, high scoring team.