2016 Fantasy Football Mock Draft: 12 teams, No. 8 pick
Practice is the key to doing anything well and that applies to drafting fantasy football teams as well.
Starting on May 31st, we began the process of drafting one fantasy football team per day using the 2016 Fantasy Football Mock Draft Simulator and we will continue to do so up until the start of the 2016 NFL season.
Each day, we will switch things up -- e.g., PPR vs. standard scoring, the number of teams, draft slot, 2-QB leagues, etc. For an easy way to keep track of our mocks, we will centralize the links to all of our daily fantasy football mock drafts here.
With that said, here are the results of today's mock draft:
1.08 - A.J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals: Averaging a career-low 8.25 targets per game, Green saw double-digit targets in only four of 16 games in 2015. Despite a relatively low volume of targets for an elite receiver, Green finished the season with 86 catches for 1,297 yards and 10 touchdowns. With a minimum stat line of 86/1,297/10 in three of his past four seasons, Green has plenty of upside given the team's free-agent departures at receiver.
2.05 - Devonta Freeman, RB, Atlanta Falcons: While few (read: nobody) saw it coming, no running back scored more fantasy points in 2015 than Freeman. Not only did Freeman rush for more than 1,000 yards, but he hauled in 73 catches, third-most among running backs, for 578 yards, and scored a league-leading 14 total touchdowns last season. Even if the Falcons want to lower Freeman's workload, he was the top-ranked player on my big board at this spot.
3.08 - T.Y. Hilton, WR, Indianapolis Colts: A top-10 fantasy receiver in 2014, Hilton disappointed fantasy owners with only 1,124 yards and five touchdowns, but Andrew Luck missed nine games. Through the first seven games, Hilton had 606 receiving yards -- only five wideouts had more. Provided Luck stays healthy, Hilton is poised for a bounce-back season and has top-10 upside.
4.05 - Jeremy Hill, RB, Cincinnati Bengals: After a disappointing season, the 235-pound Hill seems to have greater focus as he looks to bounce back in 2016. The Cincinnati Enquirer's Paul Dehner recently wrote of Hill: "His razor focus and desire to return to rookie form are very real this offseason."
5.08 - Donte Moncrief, WR, Indianapolis Colts: In his sophomore campaign, Moncrief doubled his reception total from 32 to 64 catches for 733 yards and six touchdowns. With an ideal combination of size (6-2, 222) and athleticism (4.40 forty, 39.5-inch vertical), the 23-year-old has plenty of breakout appeal heading into his third season.
6.05 - Melvin Gordon, RB, San Diego Chargers: Failing to score a touchdown on 217 touches and averaging just 3.48 YPC, Gordon disappointed fantasy owners as a rookie. Provided MG3 stays healthy, it shouldn't be difficult for things to go better for Gordon in year two. Even though he had offseason microfracture surgery, Gordon looked great this preseason -- 13/81/1 rushing (6.2 YPC) and 2/49/1 receiving.
7.08 - Zach Ertz, TE, Philadelphia Eagles: Setting career highs of 75 catches for 853 yards, Ertz was especially good over the final four games of the season (35/450/1). With the potential for more red-zone opportunities, Ertz appeared on my list of 12 Undervalued Players in 2016 Fantasy Football Drafts.
8.05 - Rashad Jennings, RB, New York Giants: For the first time in his career, Jennings played all 16 games and posted career highs in both carries (195) and rushing yards (863). Racking up 419 YFS -- no RB had more -- in the final three games of the season, Jennings ended the season on a positive note enters 2016 as the clear lead back. When healthy, he'll be a solid RB2 (as this team's RB4).
9.08 - Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans: Joining DeMarco Murray as the other half of their "exotic smashmouth" backfield, Henry possesses great speed for his size (6-3, 247). Murray is the lead back to start the season, but it wouldn't be a surprise if he took over the lead-back role at some point based on how he looked this preseason.
10.05 - Christine Michael, RB, Seattle Seahawks: Referring to Thomas Rawls and Michael, coach Carroll described the duo as a "little 1-2 punch that we are really excited about.'' Michael has always possessed elite physical tools, but it appears that his maturity and leadership are starting to catch up to his athleticism. There is little risk, but plenty of upside, as my RB6.
11.08 - Willie Snead, WR, New Orleans Saints: Starting opposite Brandin Cooks, Snead nearly reached the 1,000-yard mark with a 69/984/3 stat line. Snead didn't have many big games, but he had at least four receptions in 11 of 16 games. Based on my projections, Snead could give the Saints a pair of 1,000-yard wideouts in 2016.
12.05 - Philip Rivers, QB, San Diego Chargers: Through Week 8, the only quarterback that averaged more fantasy points per game than Rivers was Tom Brady. Why Week 8? Keenan Allen lacerated his kidney and missed the final eight games of the season. Rivers averaged 21.05 fantasy points per game with Allen; only 14.52/G without him. Assuming Allen stays healthy, Rivers is a huge bargain this late.
13.08 - Eli Manning, QB, New York Giants: For a second consecutive season, Manning finished as a top-10 fantasy quarterback. In both seasons, Manning threw 600-plus times and exceeded 4,400-plus yards while throwing a total of 65 touchdowns. With Odell Beckham entering his third season as Manning's go-to receiver, Eli could finish as a top-10 fantasy quarterback for a third straight season.
14.05 - Los Angeles Rams DST
15.08 - Rishard Matthews, WR, Tennessee Titans: Matthews missed the final five games last season due to injury. Through the first 10 games (before getting injured in his 11th), however, Matthews was on pace for 69/1,059/6. While I don't expect Matthews to reach the 1,000-yard milestone, both he and Tajae Sharpe should finish as top-50 fantasy receivers.
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