My third and latest NFL.com mock draft resulted in my most silver and blue fantasy team yet! My first draft was conducted well before training camp, and the results can be seen here.
My second draft was performed on auto-pick, causing some surprising selections. Those results can be found here.
As you near draft day, here is where your favorite Cowboys are currently coming off the board…
Round 1, Pick 11 – Dez Bryant WR
Dez has been a first or second rounder in every draft, and it is honestly surprising to see him as low as eleventh this time around. (He only fell to the second round during the auto-draft, which can be considered an outlier for the purposes of this article).
His stock will be hard to pinpoint any more accurately before most leagues draft, and I advise players to look for Bryant if you are out of the running for a top name running back in the first round.
Your first round selection can make or break the season, and reaching for Bryant could lead to a long road to recovery at other positions. That said, if given the chance to put #88 on your side – take it!
Round 4, Pick 48 – Joseph Randle RB
In need of a compliment back to my first overall pick Eddie Lacy, I found no better value in the fourth round than our own Joseph Randle.
Randle went as high as the second round during the auto-draft and was a sixth-round pick amidst the uncertainty of training camp.
The fourth round seems to be a prime spot for Randle – maximizing his value while keeping a safety net in place.
Eyeing him in this round could guarantee his selection while giving you time to make sure you have other options at the position.
Round 6, Pick 68 – Tony Romo QB
Romo is projected as the seventh highest scoring QB this season, according to NFL.com.
While he likely won’t be in the first group of signal-callers selected, you can take a page from my draft strategy (I won’t tell, I swear) and grab steals at other positions while waiting on Romo to be Mr. Reliable.
Romo is fantasy gold, and the team will likely rely on him more in the red zone this season – boosting his value.
You can also pair him with Terrance Williams, who was my next selection, and use him to take points away from whoever owns Bryant in your league.
This is the lowest Williams has gone in the two mock drafts, being selected in the fifth round the previous two times.
It seems that every year fantasy players have a deep list of WRs that they view as “sleepers”.
The receiver position is where you will do the most manipulating in your lineup, and requires the most depth. Terrance Williams can help greatly in all of these areas.
T-Will can be considered a poor man’s Dez Bryant, as the Cowboys’ number two option – expected to take a big step up this season. With a far lesser price tag, Williams can establish himself as a legitimate weekly option if he shows consistency.
His big play ability will always make him a threat to do special things after the catch, and put up points that you won’t want to leave on the bench.
Round 9, Pick 97 – Dan Bailey K
Projecting kickers in fantasy football is next to impossible, and the usual strategy for drafting them is often times something along the lines of, “hey someone just drafted a kicker which reminds me I need one too”.
Dan Bailey may have proved why this strategy is viable when I selected him in the ninth round.
Bailey has been automatic from nearly any range for the Cowboys. However, a great kicker does not always make a great fantasy player.
The best kickers to own are the ones on teams that you would expect being forced to settle for long field goals, to get the most points. The best offenses will often time keep the drive alive and either score a TD – resulting in a one-point PAT – or kick a very short FG.
While the Cowboys expect to find the end zone with ease this season, Bailey’s range is formidable enough to expect a fair share of long field goals. You will also get solid point value out of the mid-range kicks that he converts.
So when everyone in the room is scrambling for kickers on draft day, calmly check if Dan Bailey is still on the board and watch him dominate the position.
Round 12, Pick 139 – Darren McFadden RB
Three installments into these mock drafts and still no clarity for the injury prone McFadden.
While he has ranged from the fourth to eighth and now twelfth rounds, my advice for McFadden stays the same – stay far away.
In most leagues where only a minimum of two running backs will crack the starting lineup, McFadden has little or no chance to fill that role. Even if he finds a role in this offense, I expect him to be wildly inconsistent and have weeks where he is all but invisible.
While I look forward to seeing McFadden on Sundays, he will not be a part of my fantasy teams this season.
Round 14, Pick 168 – Defense
Landed the Cowboys’ defense in the 14th round to round out my team with what should be a solid fantasy defense. The new look defense should be built around forcing turnovers, which bodes well for fantasy output.
While the top priority with a defense is to land one that won’t lose you points or give you virtually no production (by giving up large point totals), one that can hold it’s own and also help win you games is huge.
Fantasy points are awarded to a defense dominantly for sacks and turnovers, two things the Cowboys should improve on with the additions of Greg Hardy, Randy Gregory, and Byron Jones.
The Cowboys will also see the Jets, Bills, and Redskins to close out the season – which could make their defense a key to your fantasy playoff run.
Need fantasy advice? Reply below or tweet @ShoreSportsNJ for more!