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5 Impact Fantasy Rookies With a Post-Draft Bump

Ideal draft landing spots and a clear path to the starting lineup have given these five rookies a chance for immediate fantasy success.
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With the NFL Draft now completed, some rookies will enjoy a nice boost to their 2020 fantasy value thanks to landing in ideal situations. Let’s take a closer look at five of these players and see how they might help your fantasy team.

RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire, Kansas City Chiefs

No player saw his fantasy value rise post-draft more than Clyde Edwards-Helaire (CEH). He landed with the best offense in the NFL, and he has an inventive coach who knows how to use him properly. Speaking of such, Andy Reid sees CEH as a better version of his old Eagles running back, Brian Westbrook. That is enormous praise, indeed. If you have never seen Westbrook play, take a look here to see how tremendous he was. 

CEH should be the first overall pick in dynasty leagues, and I expect that he will go in late round two of redraft formats. 

RB Cam Akers, Los Angeles Rams

Akers rarely goes down on first contact (a trait that all great NFL running backs possess), and he was one of the most effective screen pass receivers in college football. He also shows great patience and vision and sees running lanes before they open.

With Akers in the fold, the Rams have three players who can run the football. Rams general manager Les Snead said in the off-season that he wants to use Darrell Henderson and Malcolm Brown with a third person (Akers) as part of a committee. I can guarantee you that Akers is the best runner in this committee and will see most of the touches. I am expecting about 12 rushes and 4-5 receptions per game from Akers as a rookie. 

The only downside is that he will most likely be removed at the goal-line, so his value is much lower in standard formats than in PPR leagues. Regardless, Sean McVay will have fun using Akers in multiple ways, and he should provide many terrific highlights for Rams fans.

WR Henry Ruggs III, Las Vegas Raiders

The NFL has always had the reputation of being a copycat league. Whether it is the wildcat offense or the cover two zone defense, coaches have found a way to copy the best things that their opponents do. Raiders head coach Jon Gruden has copied the Kansas City Chiefs by picking Ruggs, giving him a player that he can use much like the Chiefs use Tyreek Hill.

Ruggs gives the Raiders the vertical dimension that their offense has lacked for the past few seasons. He is a solid route runner who can line up in various places on the field, causing havoc to opposing defenses. Look for Ruggs to make an immediate impact with the Raiders as they will use him in multiple ways. He will bring a ton of excitement to the Vegas strip and his fantasy owners. 

WR Jerry Jeudy, Denver Broncos

The Broncos might have been the luckiest team in this draft as Jeudy fell to them when they picked at No. 15. Most draft experts thought that Jeudy would have been gone by the time the Broncos picked, but it turned out that they ended up with him falling right to them.

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Jeudy is a sensational receiver who will make an immediate impact in Denver. He not only has good size and length, but he is an adept route runner who creates separation with ease. Also, once he catches the ball, he can “take it to the house” due to his explosive speed. As the WR2 in Denver, Jeudy should see plenty of targets and will have significant fantasy production. 

WR Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings

In terms of playing time, perhaps no other drafted player walked into a situation as advantageous as Jefferson. The Vikings traded WR Stefon Diggs away this past offseason, creating a gaping hole at the wideout position opposite Adam Thielen. Enter Jefferson, who should be able to start in Week 1.

Jefferson is a polished receiver who knows how to work in the middle of the field. He is unquestionably tough and always seems to catch even the most difficult of passes. He should start in the slot and give Kirk Cousins a Cole Beasley-like type season with the possibility of more.


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