Editor’s Note: The guest post below was written by TJ Hernandez. You can follow him on Twitter @TJHernandez. He is an Associate Editor at 4for4. …
The first day of the best fantasy football tournament in the world is in the books, and, as expected, it’s been as unpredictable as a Tinder date. I found myself in the Leading Men Conference, and I will offer a few observations from Day 1 about the drafts in each division of my conference.
For the first time in Scott Fish Bowl history, we have actual ADP data to reference, so I will cross-check draft picks against #SFB480 mock ADP to look for reaches and values from the first day of the draft. Because this format offers no predominant strategy and draft flow will vary wildly across leagues, I will focus on positional ADP rather than overall ADP.
Whether you’re participating in the 2016 #SFB480 or not, please hit up @ScottFish24 on twitter and give him a shout-out for bringing the industry together in such an exciting way.
Biggest Positional Reach: Amari Cooper – Drafted WR9, ADP WR12
Best Positional Value: Jordy Nelson – Drafted WR13, ADP WR9
Biggest Surprise – Patience for QBs
Other than Aaron Rodgers coming off the board as the second QB in the first round, the Matt Damon division finished Day 1 without too many fireworks. Fan and former industry guru, Chris Heil, planted his flag by taking ARod 9th overall. In most drafts that I observed on the first day, Cam Newton and Russell Wilson seemed to be the consensus 1a/1b at QB, but Rodgers is a sneaky Konami Code play and if any quarterback can catch the field with their arm alone, it’s #12.
Biggest Positional Reach: Brandin Cooks – Drafted WR7, ADP WR13
Best Positional Value: Carson Palmer – Drafted QB11, ADP QB7
Biggest Surprise – How fast this draft is going
This isn’t the fastest draft in the tournament, but it’s up there, and luckily it’s my division. Since I’m here, I might as well give my take on how my draft is going through five picks.
Considering the scoring settings, I knew I’d be implementing a RB-heavy approach, but I didn’t know I’d select David Johnson at 1.03 until I was on the clock. To win this thing, you’re going to have to hit bingo in a couple spots and the Cardinals have the offense to support the overall RB1 in this format. If the consensus top backs stay healthy in 2016, we could easily see five or six RBs outpace the top WR, and I’m hoping to roster at least two of those RBs.
I was absolutely giddy to see Tyrod Taylor available at 4.10, as I had hoped. No QB gets a bigger boost from this format than the Bills’ signal caller.
When I’m hoping I don’t get sniped on Tyrod and I get him pic.twitter.com/9evSOeemdB
— TJ Hernandez (@TJHernandez) July 12, 2016
My team through five rounds: David Johnson, Doug Martin, Mark Ingram, Tyrod Taylor, Jay Ajayi
Biggest Positional Reach: Thomas Rawls – Drafted RB8, ADP RB18
Best Positional Value: Devonta Freeman – Drafted RB9, ADP RB7
Biggest Surprise – Watching Brandon Marshall fall
Outside of the Rawls pick, the Tom Hanks division played it pretty close to the vest, but fan entry, Cory Bruender, seems to have a plan. Bruender was set to load up on RBs, teaming Rawls up with another high volume back in Todd Gurley and arguably one of the highest upside backs of the year, Eddie Lacy.
There’s no reason to expect Brandon Marshall to slide down the WR ranks in 2016, regardless of who he’s catching balls from, but owners in the Hanks division opted for Mike Evans, Amari Cooper, Carlos Hyde, and Sammy Watkins over Marshall, who lasted until the 33rd pick in the draft.
Biggest Positional Reach: Carlos Hyde – Drafted RB10, ADP RB14
Best Positional Value: Six players drafted two spots after their positional ADP
Biggest Surprise – Jordan Reed at 3.06
You would think that if any division was gettin jiggy with it, it’d be this division, but that just wasn’t the case — except for fan, Sam Dougherty. With only nine RBs off the board in the third round, Sam took advantage of the bump that TEs get in this scoring system and drafted Jordan Reed, the only TE that outpaced Rob Gronkowski on a per game basis last season.
If we look at 2015 stats and plug in SFB480 scoring, four tight ends outscored AJ Green, so this strategy could ultimately pay off. With a ton of RB value still available and QBs being drafted at a reasonable pace, this is a great draft to take a shot at an early-round TE.
Biggest Positional Reach: Jarvis Landry – Drafted WR13, ADP WR18
Best Positional Value: Three players drafted two spots after their positional ADP
Biggest Surprise – Ezekiel Elliott at 1.01
Matt Wispe of RotoViz fame isn’t the only owner to take Zeke at 1.01, but it is a bold move, and one that I like. Similar to my thinking with DJ, Elliott is in a situation where not just the overall RB1, but the overall top scorer in this format, is within his range of outcomes. With Tony Romo and Dez Bryant on the field, Dallas will have as many scoring opportunities as any team in the league and it wouldn’t be a surprise if Zeke led all RBs in touches in 2016.
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