These are guys I’m passing on in my fantasy football draft, based on their ESPN ranking.
1. Peyton Manning (#4), Aaron Rodgers (#9), and Drew Brees (#11).
I’m not spending my 1st pick on a QB with the position being so deep this year.
2. Arian Foster (#12)
1,077 carries over the past 4 years plus coming off herniated disk surgery. He could have a good year but no way I’m using my first pick on him.
3. C.J. Spiller (#43)
Watching him play in 2012 – when Fred Jackson went down – you could see Spiller’s tremendous talent, however I don’t think he’ll be utilized well enough to warrant being taken in the 4th round. I’d much rather take Jackson (#98) around the 8th round, who looks to be Buffalo’s red zone back.
4. Trent Richardson (#51)
It is literally laughable that ESPN has Richardson ranked this high after the abysmal season he had last year. Sure, Richardson could have just had a hard time adjusting to a new offense mid-season, but from what I saw he just plain looked bad. I wouldn’t even consider him until about the 8th round.
5. Seattle Seahawks D/ST (#53)
No argument they are the best D/ST here, but they’re still a D/ST. If you take them around their ranking that means you are spending your 5th pick on them, meaning you’re taking a defense before 3 of your other starters! That’s just not smart. To give some perspective, the highest scoring D/ST last year (Seattle) scored a total of 195 points. Every team that played the New York Giants scored a total of 211 points.
6. T. Y. Hilton (#65)
Hilton finished 20th in points among WRs in 2013, but that was after their #1 TE, Dwayne Allen, went down week 1, and #1 WR, Reggie Wayne, went down week 7 to injury. Not to mention, this offseason the Colts added WR Hakeem Nicks and drafted WR Donte Moncrief in the 3rd round. He’s a talented kid but there are too many mouths to feed in Indianapolis for him to be worth drafting in the 6th round.
7. Colin Kaepernick (#67)
The 49ers offense hasn’t looked good at all this preseason. Kaepernick gets to start the season with a healthy Michael Crabtree and newly acquired WR Stevie Johnson from the Bills, but those weapons still aren’t as nice as guys you can get later like Matt Ryan, Tom Brady, and Tony Romo.
8. Wes Welker (#79)
His ranking just went down this week after his THIRD concussion in 9 months, but even this low I’m not sure if I’m willing to spend a 6th-7th round pick on a guy that’s one big hit away from having to hang them up. You’re much better off taking guys like Marques Colston, Reggie Wayne, and Mike Wallace in this area.
9. Sammy Watkins (#85)
Let me start off by saying I believe Watkins will soon be a stud in this league, but it’s extremely rare for a rookie to put up big stats. Watkins also doesn’t have a great QB and is on a run first team. I’m all for taking rookies late, but at his ADP, I’ll pass.
10. Stephen Gostkowski (#93)
The difference between the #1 K last year, Gostkowski, and the #12 K, Jay Feely, was 38 points (176 & 138). That comes out to an average difference of 2.2 PPG. You really don’t need to draft a K until the last round.