- Running backs Saquon Barkley, Christian McCaffrey and Alvin Kamara were the top players off the board in the FullTime Fantasy Podcast Network's 10-team mock draft.
There are tons of different formats when it comes to fantasy football. Leagues vary by size, they have different scoring systems, different starting lineup requirements and much more. Here at Sports Illustrated, we want to prepare you for draft day, no matter the size of your league. This mock draft breakdown is a 10-team league. If you play in a 12- or 14-team league, don't worry. We'll have mock draft breakdowns for leagues of those sizes as well in the coming days.
This league’s format forces owners to start an 11-man lineup, consisting of one QB, two RB, three WR, one TE, two FLEX, one PK and one DEF. This 10-team mock draft was made up of members from the FullTime Fantasy Podcast Network. Check out the expert participants (listed in order of draft pick).
1. Rick Briggs, Co-Host of The Asylum Fantasy Sports Podcast
2. Brian Drake, Host of Fantasy Football Hustle Podcast
3. Matt Brandon, Managing Editor and Co-Director of FullTime Fantasy Podcast Network
4. John Bauer, SuperFlexology Podcast
5. Steve Toroni, Co-Host of The Fantasy Football Hot Take Podcast
6. Blake Sullivan, Co-Host of The Fantasy Football Hot Take Podcast
7. Dennis Bennett, Co-Host of Fantasy Football Roundtable
8. Frank Bonincontri, Host of The Purple Reign Fantasy Show
9. Rick Fleeger, Co-Host of The Assylum Fantasy Sports Podcast
10. Jim Day, FFChamps Co-Director and FullTime Fantasy Podcast Network Director
I usually like to draft top-notch wide receivers early, but I thought I would try something different with the first overall pick. Saquon Barkley was a no brainer. At the turn of the second and third rounds, I went with George Kittle and James Conner. This left me with the task of bolstering my wide receiver corps later in the draft. I felt confident because it is a deep position. I tried to maximize my value on those picks. Kenny Golladay, Tyler Boyd and Allen Robinson are all WR1s on their respective teams (I am counting on A.J. Green’s injury being pretty serious). In my mind, Aaron Rodgers is due for a banner year, which is why I selected him in the sixth round. I backed Rodgers up with 15th-round pick Drew Brees. I also have Hunter Henry, a spare tight end who I can plug in at one of my flex spots.
I took some chances, but Derrius Guice, Peyton Barber, Jaylen Samuels and a flier on Kareem Hunt makes me happy at the running back position. All in all, I think my lineup is solid with an elevated floor and a high ceiling. -- Rick Briggs
In a PPR league, I'm all about drafting pass-catching RBs. I wait on the quarterback position, get mid-round value at TE, and soak up value at WR.
My favorite personal pick was Dalvin Cook, an absolute steal with the ninth pick of the second round. Cook is a bell-cow back in an offense now influenced by Gary Kubiak. The Vikings are about to pound the rock with this phenom.
My least favorite pick was LeSean McCoy (13.02) due to the crowded house in the Bills’ backfield. However, this late in the draft, I'm getting a "starting" RB. With any luck, Shady will be traded or cut before landing with a better offense. -- Brian Drake
In my first mock draft of the fantasy football season, I was lucky enough to get the third pick. Due to Ezekiel Elliott’s holdout, I knew I would either get Christian McCaffrey or Alvin Kamara. I ran into a problem pretty quickly, as I was sniped in the second round. I would have preferred Mike Evans, Odell Beckham or Tyreek Hill rather than Antonio Brown, but if Brown’s production in Oakland equals 80% of what he did in Pittsburgh, I’ll be absolutely fine at the wide receiver position. Drafting T.Y. Hilton and Stefon Diggs in the following two rounds ensures my three starting wide receivers will all be studs.
While I rarely ever take a QB early, I believe Deshaun Watson will finish the season as the top quarterback. I pulled the trigger in the sixth round after solidifying my two starting running backs and three starting receivers. I waited on tight end, as I always do, and ended up with two players who could easily be top-10 players at their position. My two favorite picks were Diggs and Austin Ekeler. Overall, I think this team competes so long as I don’t have to rely too much on the late-round players I selected in the draft. -- Matt Brandon
Drawing the fourth overall pick looked like the spot to be in 2019 drafts for an early RB strategy. However, with an Ezekiel Elliott holdout looming, plans had to change. I targeted three reliable pass-catchers in my first four picks, selecting DeAndre Hopkins, Mike Evans and Julian Edelman. By building a strong WR corps, it allowed me to dig for RB values throughout the draft. My favorite pick by far was landing Mark Ingram in the fifth round. Despite heading to a new team with a new system, he is stepping into a role that perfectly fits his strengths. Of all RBs with at least 25 attempts in 2018, Ingram had the second-highest success rate (65%) when carrying the ball out of shotgun, something the Baltimore Ravens did more than any other team with Lamar Jackson under center. By heading to a team that ran the most offensive plays in the NFL in 2018 (1,135), Ingram is sure to return value as the RB20 off the board. -- John Bauer
With it being early August (and a mock draft), I felt fine taking Ezekiel Elliot at fifth overall. This may change in a few weeks pending his contract negotiations with the Cowboys. However, the way my draft turned out, I feel I have some solid insurance running backs in Toddy Gurley (3.05), Leonard Fournette (4.06), and David Montgomery (5.05). I normally draft receiver-heavy teams in PPR leagues, but felt like the running back value was too good to pass on throughout the draft. I took A.J. Green in the seventh round, which does not seem like a risk at that point in the draft. If he plays eight games, I am okay with that production (historically that of a WR1). I ended up selecting two wide receivers that I feel are being extremely undervalued in Larry Fitzgerald and Marvin Jones. If Kyler Murray is being touted so highly, we have to look at Fitzgerald as someone who will benefit in fantasy football. I wrapped up the draft by selecting my QB5 overall, Carson Wentz, in the 14th round. Waiting for a quarterback always pays off. -- Steve Toroni
I had the sixth pick in this mock draft. I don’t believe in having a set draft strategy because circumstances change quickly, and I need to be able to adjust accordingly. If I’m drafting in the top six picks, I typically try to take a running back. I picked David Johnson and feel like he will provide enough consistency and a high ceiling in an offense that I’m very bullish on heading into the 2019 season. I went a little bit heavier on running backs early on than I wanted, but I couldn’t pass on Melvin Gordon in the sixth round. His contract negotiations do make me somewhat nervous, but I don’t see him missing the whole year. A sixth-round pick with that much upside could be the difference between winning and losing a championship. The quarterback run happened slightly later as I expected with so many great experts in the draft. I feel very confident having Jared Goff as my QB1. I think I found enough late-round value at the WR position with guys like N’Keal Harry, Zay Jones and Albert Wilson to solidify that area of my roster. -- Blake Sullivan
Picking from the seventh spot, I was happy to see Davante Adams on the board and quickly scooped him up before selecting Joe Mixon in the second round. Buoyed by the possibility of Mixon getting used in the same fashion as Todd Gurley was for the Rams, I went with a healthier version.
Since this was a PPR draft, I rounded out my top three WRs with Amari Cooper and Brandin Cooks in the next two rounds. All Cooks does is put up 1,100-yard seasons. Going into his sixth season and second with the high-powered Rams offense, Cooks has shown himself to be a reliable producer. In the last three years, Cooks has finished as WR 13, 15 and 10 while playing with three different teams.
After missing on the big three tight ends, I usually wait and take a couple fliers late. In this draft, I decided to grab O.J. Howard and change the script a little bit. Howard is an elite talent at tight end but needs to prove he can stay healthy all season. In a revved-up Bruce Arians offense, Howard looks primed to break out in 2019. My biggest reach was taking Baker Mayfield in the seventh round. The Browns could implode under the weight of their personalities or they could capture lightning in a bottle. I’m betting on lighting!
Overall, the upside of my late-round picks such as Rashaad Penny, Christian Kirk, Courtland Sutton and D.K. Metcalf should lead to plenty of options at my two flex spots. I believe I stocked my bench well with volume-based receivers and pass-catching running backs. This team will compete. -- Dennis Bennett
My overall strategy was to take the best player available with an emphasis on upside. My favorite pick would have to be landing two tight ends that are great red-zone targets and consistent performers in Austin Hooper and Mark Andrews. My least favorite picks would be my dropoff at running back after selecting Kerryon Johnson. I was able to land great late value in Mohamed Sanu and Marquise Brown. Adding Aaron Jones’s handcuff Jamaal Williams could end up being one of the most valuable picks of my draft should Jones get injured. My final two picks landed the league's best kicker and a sleeper defense in the Packers. -- Frank Bonincontri
In a 10-team draft with this level of competition, every roster is going to be both strong and deep. My strategy was to start the draft by building a starting lineup with the best player available at each position. Then the goal is to fill out the roster with the highest upside depth possible. Getting Will Fuller and Anthony Miller in back-to-back rounds was exciting, as I believe both, if healthy, have the ability to be breakout stars at their position. While it played perfectly into my strategy, I do regret spending an early fourth-round pick on Patrick Mahomes. I think I probably could have waited another round before selecting the 2018 MVP. -- Rick Fleeger
I actually think picking last in a 10-team draft is a good position, and I like drafting from that spot. Since there is no special scoring or roster components, it makes it that much easier to not get caught on the bad side of a positional run that can happen in other formats such as superflex leagues.
Getting Julio Jones with the last pick of the first round is just a no-brainer decision. He is a safe pick with tremendous upside. I almost paired him with JuJu Smith-Schuster at the turn, but instead decided to grab the top TE, Travis Kelce.
In PPR scoring, I currently have Kelce projected for 50 more points than the second-best TE, George Kittle. You have to fall down to WR 16 to see that much of a dropoff, so the huge benefit I get from having that big of a difference at that position far outweighs the dropoff at any other position.
I was then able to get my two starting running backs in Marlon Mack and Aaron Jones. I feel strongly about both and have both ranked higher than where they went.
Overall, I feel I had a strong draft, but my favorite pick of the draft was getting Duke Johnson at the beginning of the 12th round. Now that Johnson is in Houston, I expect him to be a lot more relevant in the fantasy football landscape, much like he was in 2017. His ADP will start to rise quickly over the next month and by the start of the season, he will be getting drafted in the before the 10th round. -- Jim Day
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