Rob Grimwood’s Mock Draft 2.0

Now the madness of the free agency is mostly behind us and teams have bolstered their depth charts, we can take a more detailed and thorough look into what teams’ needs are and hopefully be a bit more accurate with predictions. With that in mind, here is my mock draft 2.0:

Pick 1: Cincinnati Bengals – Joe Burrow, QB – LSU

No change for the 1.01 pick. Burrow wanted A.J Green franchised tagged, and he got his wish. With trade chatter regarding Andy Dalton heating up too, it’s looking increasingly likely that Burrow will be the pick for Cinci


Pick 2 MOCK TRADE: Miami Dolphins via Washington – Tua Tagovailoa, QB – Alabama

Miami sends 5th overall, 26th overall and 70th overall

Previously I had Las Vegas trading up here to grab Chase Young, but I think Miami will want to move up in order to guarantee they get their guy. I stand by my opinion that Washington does not need to draft Young thanks to their existing D-Line of D’Ron Payne, Montez Sweat and Jonathan Allen. The price that is willing to be paid will prove more valuable to Washington to add better depth in more postions rather than adding to an area that does not need adding to.

Miami will get cold feet knowing that the Chargers and Jags have got trade-able assets to move here and it’s not beyond the realm for Tampa Bay, Indianapolis or New England to pull a rabbit out of the bag either… but it’s most likely Miami with their excess draft stock in the first round.


Pick 3: Detroit Lions – Chase Young, EDGE – Ohio State

Although probably hounded with offers to grab the best player in the draft, Detroit rub their hands together as they know they’ve hit the jackpot. Edge is a need, and Young is the answer for Matt Patricia to start building a better quality defense.


Pick 4: New York Giants – Mekhi Becton, OL – Louisville

Previous Pick Tristan Wirfs. OL, Iowa – however I think Gettleman prefers freak athletes, which Becton is basically the description of.

Offensive Line has been a glaring need for a few years now for the G-Men. At 6’7 and 364lbs, Becton is still one of the most athletic freaks in this class. He’ll be a game changer for Daniel Jones as they continue to want to help build around him and Saquon.


Pick 5 MOCK TRADE: Washington Redskins via Miami – Jeff Okudah, CB – Ohio State

Still available here for the Skins’ will be the best corner in the draft. They have a good defense but after passing on Young and opting for more depth picks, they replace last years’ stand out Quinton Dunbar who was the only stand out on the defensive secondary last season for them. They’ll need some quality back there


Pick 6: Los Angeles Chargers – Justin Herbert, QB – Oregon

The Chargers will be fighting an internal battle over this pick. They are still desperate for offensive line help and there are some gems in this draft class, yet their team is not a million miles away from being playoff worthy. However, to be that, they will need a replacement for Pip Rivers. Herbert ticks a lot of boxes. He was slated to go 1.01 last season before heading back to Oregon for another term and he impressed at the combine as expected. Herbert could be the answer Charger fans.


Pick 7: Carolina Panthers – Isaiah Simmons, LB – Clemson

Luke Kuechly is gone. He was one of the centrepieces of the organisation and Simmons will fit into Matt Rhules’ desire to build a formidable defense as Kuechly’s replacement. Can also play at Safety if the Panthers prioritise building their defensive secondary first. Could go Derrick Brown here as there are many different needs for Carolina.. but Simmons is a unicorn.


Pick 8: Arizona Cardinals – Tristan Wirfs, OL – Louisville

Offensive Line has been a glaring need for a few years now in Arizona. Wirfs was the stand out of the draft and cemented himself as a worthy top 10 pick. He’ll be a game changer for Kyler Murray as he searches for the next level.


Pick 9: Jacksonville Jaguars – Derrick Brown, DT – Auburn

Last year Josh Allen fell in their laps at pick 7 last year, and Brown is going to do the same this year for them. Defensive line is a need for Jacksonville and in a lesser talent-filled class, Brown would be considered a top 5 pick.


Pick 10: Cleveland Browns – Jedrick Wills, OL – Alabama

The Browns need a tackle. Their O-line has never lived up to the hype that it was supposed to be, and with the news of Greg Robinson’s arrest. they’ll need to sure the line up. Two stud O-lineman remain on the board, but I think Wills nudges it over Andrew Thomas down to a better showing in their Junior year. Jedrick Wills is an athletic tackle who has the strength to open up big running lanes which will help Nick Chubb continue on his improving production trajectory.


Pick 11: New York Jets – Andrew Thomas, OL – Georgia

The need for O-lineman in the NFL is plentiful. The Jets’ are in that conversation and will take the last remaining stud tackle in this first round. Andrew Thomas is an NFL ready tackle who will provide better protection for Sam Darnold. Good pick.


Pick 12: Las Vegas Raiders – C.J Henderson, CB – Florida

I originally has Vegas adopting a YOLO approach as the draft was on home soil and making a splash for Chase Young. However, with the draft now behind closed doors, and Miami likely able to offer more to go grab Tua, I think Mayock and Gruden take the best players available in their areas of need. Henderson is the second best CB in this draft and has been a weak point of the Raiders over the last couple of seasons. Bringing in Eli Apple and Jeff Heath isn’t the answer, Henderson may just be.


Pick 13: San Francisco 49ers – Jerry Jeudy, WR – Alabama

Jerry Jeudy is a stud receiver. With very few needs on their superbowl quality team, a replacement for the departed Emmanuel Sanders seems high on the priority list. He’s the most polished all-rounder and will fill that Sanders role perfectly.

A few slated Jeudy’s combine, however, his combine was still statistically better than those from DeAndre Hopkins, Michael Thomas and Davante Adams…and they turned out to be elite receivers… just sayin’


Pick 14: Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Xavier McKinney, S – Alabama

A close battle between McKinney and Delpit for the best Safety out of college this year. I’ve edged with Mckinney as he stood out in 2019 more than Delpit did. Both are first round talents, and both will be excellent in the pros. Tampa could use o-line help, but after the “elite 4” have gone in this scenario already, it’s too early to reach for the second tier of offensive lineman in my opinion. McKinney is a great pick.


Pick 15: Denver Broncos – CeeDee Lamb, WR – Oklahoma

Courtland Sutton is the up and coming receiver in Denver and it would be nice to pair him up with another stud on the opposite flank. Denver has a few other needs including o-line and cornerback, but personally I think Lamb is the best player available in those needed positions.


Pick 16: MOCK TRADE Jacksonville Jaguars via Atlanta Falcons – Jordan Love, QB – Utah State

Jags send 20th overall, 73rd overall and 118 overall to Atlanta who have a lot of holes to fill on o-line, d-line, linebacker and in the defensive secondary

Minshew mania was great while it lasted. But I think the NFL world realistically knows it probably won’t last. The Jags whiffed on Nick Foles last season and there going to want to get it right with a promising dual threat QB. He’s mouldable and the kind of character Jacksonville need leading the team as they look to re-build from the current ruins.


Pick 17: Dallas Cowboys –  K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE – LSU

I originally had Dallas down as picking up Kinlaw (DT) here, but since they gave Dontari Poe and Gerald McCoy healthy contracts, one would assume the orgnisation is happy with their veteran DT corps heading into the season.

Robert Quinn has left for Chicago meaning there is a need at EDGE for the Cowboys. Dallas will be lucky if a player of Chaisson’s talent falls to 17.. but if the draft falls this way there might be a chance. Some analysts have the former LSU stud as a top 10 pick.


Pick 18: Miami Dolphins – Austin Jackson, OL – USC

Miami have a lot of needs so your guess is as good as mine for this pick. They could get some defensive secondary help here adding the next best CB like Arnette or Diggs, even Delpit at Safety could be in play. Will they want to add a weapon here for Tua in the form of Swift at running back? I think they know that the insde o-linemen the acquired in the free agency (Karras and Flowers) are fill in pieces and they will want to invest in some proper talent on that line to protect their franchise QB aka Tua Tagovailoa.

Jackson is the best of tier 2 in this talented offensive line class. He’s agile with quick feet and a very good overall athlete. A slight reach, but an important one.


Pick 19: Las Vegas Raiders – Henry Ruggs III, WR – Alabama

Raiders take the darling of the combine here. Receiver is a big need with only Hunter Renfrow worth anything worth talking about in that receiver room. They get an explosive, dynamic speed freak that Derek Carr/Marcus Mariota can rely on to get open behind the defense.


Pick 20 MOCK TRADE:  Atlanta Falcons via Jacksonville – Javon Kinlaw, DT – South Carolina

Atlanta can’t believe their luck when they see a top 15 prospect sitting here at 20. DT is a need, Kinlaw is a top class one. No brainer.


Pick 21: Philadelphia Eagles – Kenneth Murray, LB – Oklahoma

I originally had Philly down as improving their defensive secondary, but since then they signed Darius Slay meaning more pressing needs will need addressing. One of those needs is linebacker. Their defense is getting better, but they need better quality in the linebacker room. Murray fits the bill and was very impressive as Oklahoma’s record breaker for most tackles in one game (28).


Pick 22: Minnesota Vikings – Justin Jefferson, WR – LSU

The Vikes acquired this pick through giving Buffalo Stefon Diggs. So it makes sense that they are going to replace Diggs with a solid all rounder. He did himself a big favour with a good combine and has done enough to warrant a first rounder being spent on him.


Pick 23: New England Patriots – A.J Epenesa, EDGE – Iowa

Epenesa’s draft stock has taken a hit over the last few weeks due to a poor combine, but on his day he’s an exceptional talent – and getting the best out of a player is the kind of thing Belichick specialises in. They’ll know that Epenesa can be special after an impressive 2019 season, and with DE being a need, this will be the best option for them.

The next QB’s off the board will likely be Eason and Fromm, neither of which are a day 1 pick, and neither are TB12’s replacements. The other needs at receiver can be filled in day 2/3, don’t forget they wasted a first rounder on N’Keal Harry this time last year and won’t want to repeat that considering the top 3 WR’s are already off the board.


Pick 24 MOCK TRADE: Chicago Bears via New Orleans- Grant Delpit, S – LSU

Chicago give 43rd overall, 50th overall and a 2021 2nd

Yes, Chicago are prepared to go all in and give up what little ‘good’ draft capital they have left in 2020 along with dipping into next years’ stock.

With Prince Amukamara out and HaHa Clinton-Dix not returning, Matt Nagy’s stringent defense needs it’s holes blocking up. As we headed into the 2019 season, Delpit was on a lot of ‘Top 5 prospect’ lists. Admittedly he didn’t live up to that expectation throughout the season, but he still possesses raw talent which nurtured in the right group could still wind up to be an elite level. The trade leaves Chicago with a fourth, a fifth, two sixths and two sevenths… potentially a dart throw at a sleeper tackle or receiver – but the offense rebuild will have to wait a year, Nagy needs his defense in order first!


Pick 25: Minnesota Vikings – Damon Arnette, CB – Ohio State

With the receiver need addressed, the Vikings can concentrate on another pressing need – they lost their 3 most used CB’s this off-season (Trae Waynes, Xavier Rhodes and Mackensie Alexander) and they need to replenish. Luckily for the Vikes, the defensive secondary players are falling later in the first round thanks to plenty of o-line talent and the almost league-wide need for them.

Arnette is a versatile player that can play inside at nickel or on the outside with the ability to play man or zone. He ticks a lot of boxes and will help glue the defensive secondary in Minnesota together.


Pick 26 MOCK TRADE:  Washington Redskins via Miami – Tee Higgins, WR – Clemson

Washington need depth at receiver with only ‘Scary’ Terry McLaurin breaking out to be a household name last season. They have unknown talents in Kelvin Harmon and Trey Quinn, but they need a big hitter. Tee Higgins is just that. Another all round specimen who is a danger in the redzone. Redskins need that redzone target since Jordan Reed won’t be returning.

Since (mock) trading back from 2, the Skins have picked up an elite corner and a top WR prospect and still have a extra pick at 70. I’d say that’s a win for Washington.


Pick 27: Seattle Seahawks – Isaiah Wilson, OL – Georgia

Whilst Andrew Thomas took the plaudits of being the most pro-ready tackle out of Georgia, Isaiah Wilson didn’t go un-noticed either. He impressed at the combine and is more than capable as a pass protector. Exactly what Seattle and Russell Wilson needs after being the most pressured QB in football since entering the league. A bit of a reach but he, or anyone near his skill set won’t be around come their next pick at 59.


Pick 28: Baltimore Ravens – Patrick Queen, LB – LSU

The Ravens don’t have many needs as things stand with how they move the ball. They invested in wide receivers last year and have a stout defense. However, they would benefit from having a stronger linebacking corps. Especially seeing Josh Bynes leave for Cinci. Queen is a busy-body linebacker that zips around the field and is a dangerous blitzer. He’d fit this defensive scheme well.


Pick 29: Tennessee Titans – Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE – Penn State

The Titans improved all over the field in 2019 however their pass-rush left a alot to be desired. The only player with a pressure rate above 10% was Cameron Wake who walked out of the building this off season. Vic Beasley isn’t the answer either, so they’ll grab the next best DE in this class, Gross-Matos. He’s certainly a tier below those already taken, but his pass-rush did improve throughout his college career and he looks like he could continue those year on year improvements into the pros. 20 tackles for loss in 2019 certainly helps his draft stock


Pick 30: Green Bay Packers – Jalen Reagor, WR – TCU

Geronimo Allison, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, E.Q St Brown, Jake Kumerow and Allen Lazard. All average receivers that have had their spoils but ultimately aren’t trustworthy enough for Aaron Rodgers to use reliably. The Packers could thin that group down and take a receiver that could have been projected a lot higher had he had consistent QB play throughout his college career. Rodgers could make Reagor an elite weapon and the Packers could be back to the glory days of Nelson and Cobb. Unload the deadwood McCarthy brought in and restock with talent you choose, Matt LaFleur.


Pick 31 MOCK TRADE: Baltimore Ravens via San Francisco – D’Andre Swift, RB – Georgia

Baltimore send 55th, 60th, 106th and a 2021 4th rounder.

Before the trade with Indy that saw San Fran acquire the 13th overall pick, this was their only pick until the 157th in the 5th round. By getting an elite WR at 13, this free’s them up to trade back and grab a few more picks. On the other side, Baltimore know they almost have a complete squad. They need bolstering on the o-line and another receiver wouldn’t go amiss, they still have the 92nd and 129th to find depth there though.

Imagine having a swiss army knife like Swift in that offense. He and Jackson would be a dream combo on any fantasy roster and would be a great piece of business. Very Baltimore-like.


Pick 32: Kansas City Chiefs – Jonathan Taylor, RB – Wisconsin

Oh, i’ve just got your fantasy juices flowing, haven’t I… well have another. A superstar running back is heading to a team where the coach knows how to run the ball extremely well. It’s KC’s glaring hole in their elite offense, and I think Coach Reid will be licking his chops to get a talent like Taylor on his roster.

Fantasy: Free Agency Period – The Winners

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritBaller

It’s been a busy free agency for NFL teams over the last couple of weeks; but a much needed and welcome distraction to everything else that’s currently happening in the world.

But what do these moves mean for your fantasy teams in 2020? Over the next two articles, i’m going to break down the winners and the losers from all of the transactions that have taken place so far.


Kyler Murray


The Arizona Cardinals pulled of a move during the free agency that left everybody scratching their heads, wondering how they pulled off such a coup. That was, of course, the acquisition of superstar receiver DeAndre Hopkins from the Houston Texans.

Kyler Murray all of a sudden now has one of the most tantalising skill set offenses in the NFL. From Hopkins to legendary Hall of Fame receiver Larry Fitzgerald returning for one last year, and the emerging star of Christian Kirk alongside 2nd year hopefuls Andy Isabella, Hakeem Butler and KeeSean Johnson. The Kliff Kingsbury ‘air raid’ offense really has got no excuses to be raking up the air miles on the field in 2020.

Photo Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports

After a QB7 rookie campaign in fantasy last year, it’s hard to think Murray will be doing anything other than improving on that. Kenyan Drake made a good enough impression since his move from Miami that he’s earned another year on this offense too, yet another reliable, tried and trusted weapon for Kyler out of the backfield.

It’s exciting times for Cards fans and this ever-improving offense, fantasy fans should be sharing this excitement for Kyler Murray, there’s no such thing as too many weapons when it comes to fantasy QB’s


Amari Cooper


Staying in Dallas was one of the best places for Cooper to keep his fantasy value. He clearly loves it there in ‘Jerryworld’, and the feeling seems to be mutual between the fans and the other players.

In his 25 games for the Cowboys, Cooper has amassed 1,914 receiving yards with 14 touchdowns; that’s 77 yards per game and a touchdown every other game (0.56 TD’s per game). For context, that’s in the same vicinity as DeAndre Hopkins’ time in Houston (78 yards per game average with 0.49 TD’s per game) and Mike Evans in Tampa Bay (80 yards per game with 0.53 TD’s per game). Both of which will be within the top 2 wide receiver tiers for 2020.

Dez Bryant had many productive seasons as a WR1 in fantasy football from his time in Dallas with Tony Romo and Dak Prescott under centre. Now it is time for Amari to step up and continue being the reliable receiving option for the Cowboys and fantasy owners in turn for the next few years.


Indianapolis Colts’ Receivers


Indy is lacking in skill position depth, but those that are there have just received a significant bump up in fantasy value with the upgrade of quarterback to Philip Rivers. Jacoby Brissett was admirable, and was far from terrible, but he wasn’t the best at getting great receiving production out of anyone not named T.Y Hilton.

Photo Credit: SI .com

Rivers in an experienced veteran who finally has a competent offensive line ahead of him to give him enough protection to provide some actual time in the pocket rather than being constantly under pressure like he was for the Chargers, especially in recent years.

I expect Indy will add to their receiving corps through the upcoming draft; but for now, T.Y Hilton cements himself as a fringe WR1 for a likely cheap price of a 4th/5th round pick, and last year’s rookie Parris Campbell will likely be in the sleeper category for analysts as the season grows closer.

If Jack Doyle remains the only pass catching tight end in Indy too, expect his value to also rise in a treacherous tight end fantasy landscape as Rivers has always produced fantasy relevant TE’s with the likes of Antonio Gates and Hunter Henry in the past.

One of my favourite sleepers already also due to the Rivers’ upgrade, is running back Nyheim Hines. The swiss army knife is Indy’s version of Austin Ekeler (see later in article for Ekeler’s 2019 production), who should see plenty of work in the passing game out of the backfield.


Cleveland Brown’s Skill Players


One of the main contributing factors for the Browns’ miserable 2019 campaign was the offensive line, or lack-of, being unable to give Baker Mayfield time in the pocket.

Jack Conklin (former Titans OT) is a massive upgrade for that line and you can only imagine Cleveland will be taking whichever stud tackle is left with the 10th pick of the 2020 draft.

These pieces may well prove to be the difference for this offense which will open up the fantasy value for all of the keys players. Nick Chubb had a great season in 2019 and was third in the NFL for rushing yards (1,494) and has 18 combined touchdowns since becoming a Brown in 2017 so we can expect that to continue. As we can with Jarvis Landry, as he once again will benefit from OBJ taking the premier defense away, like in 2019. OBJ’s production might rise once again if Mayfield is able to improve and between David Njoku and newly acquired Austin Hooper, the tight ends’ should have their week to week match-up based values too.


Austin Ekeler


With all the running back moves this off-season, i don’t think any have won more so than Austin Ekeler has. Not only does he see Melvin Gordon move away (to the Denver Broncos) from the backfield and no significant replacement brought in, he finds himself in a passing offense that will be moving forward with someone new. Therefore, a bigger emphasis may be placed on the tried and trusted running game with Ekeler as the sole star.

Photo Credit: Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press

The beauty of the situation is- even if the Chargers do bring in another running back, they probably aren’t going to be the same quality as Melvin Gordon where Ekeler was still productive enough to see him finish as the RB4 in PPR scoring (RB8 in non-PPR) last season.

The new QB in LA will likely be a rookie in from the first round, if not the veteran Tyrod Taylor who served as Rivers’ backup last season. Either way, Ekeler is going to be hyper-targeted out of the backfield and should be a top 10 PPR running back once again in 2020.

Legal Tampering Period – The Winners

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritBaller

Thank God for Legal Tampering Day. How nice is it to get away from the insufferable drone of that dreaded plague and remember for once that sport still rules supreme. Certainly a few teams in the NFL seemed to be fed up with the same old news story anyway, as we saw some blockbuster trades and some important free agency agreements made.

Let’s take a look at the winners

1. Arizona pulls Houston’s pants downCardinals trade David Johnson, a 2020 2nd and 2021 4th: Receive DeAndre Hopkins and a 2020 4th.

Holy smokes, who saw this one coming? Arguably the best receiver in the league moves out to the desert to join the rising star and last years’ first overall pick Kyler Murray, as well as teaming up with future first ballot hall of famer Larry Fitzgerald and his young protege’s in Christian Kirk, Andy Isabella and Hakeem Butler.

This move is monstrous in more ways than one for Arizona. Not only has Kyler got a deep, super talented plethora of receiving talent to throw to, the team can now focus on building that o-line and protecting Murray in this deep offensive lineman draft, and all of a sudden, with the right pieces – Arizona are challengers for the NFC West.

As for Houston… here’s a life lesson kids – if you ever own an NFL team, employ a general manager. First Clowney got shown no respect, now their best player is also out of the door. What are they thinking? For a team close to being considered a deep playoff contender, they certainly won’t get there by trading away all of of their best players… especially for peanuts!

An honourable mention for winners of today’s antics has to go to the defensive secondaries in Indianapolis, Tennessee and Jacksonville though. No more will they have to worry about being torn apart twice a year by a Nuke.

2. Indy finally get a DT – Indy trade away their 1.13 pick to San Francisco for pro bowl defensive tackle DeForest Buckner and then give him a $21m extension

A glaring need for Indianapolis for the last couple of season has been in the middle of the defensive line. They prioritised offensive line 2 off-seasons ago when Quenton Nelson and Braden Smith were drafted in the first two rounds to help protect the Quarterback, and 2019 saw the defensive secondary get a boost along with a pair of linebackers. Offensive skill position players is also a need this off season, but defensive line was arguably the priority.

The Colts have a tonne of cap to use up so bringing in a 25 year old 2 x pro-bowler and former 7th overall pick and giving him an extension immediately seems a masterstroke from Ballard and Reich at this point in time. Costing Indy their 13th overall pick from the upcoming draft would indicate the Colts are close to wrapping up Pip Rivers for the 2020 campaign and either looking for the long term solution at QB in day 2 of the draft, or waiting for 2021.

3. Cleveland reinvigorates it’s O-Line – Sought after Offensive Tackle Jack Conklin, formerly of the Titans, signs for the Browns on a $42m deal with $30m of it guaranteed.

They are trying, bless them. The Mayfield experiment was successful in 2018. Not so much in 2019 even though they brought in the infamous OBJ to pair with Jarvis Landry out wide. The downfall was mainly because Baker had no time in the pocket.

Since Joe Thomas retired and Greg Robinson never lived up to the hype, Conklin becomes an important cog in that line protecting Mayfield which could prove to be the difference between under performers and playoff hunters.

4. Hayden Hurst evolves from a Raven to a Falcon – Atlanta replace newly departed Austin Hooper with former first round pick in 2018.

It can’t have been easy for Hurst who was drafted to be a main target for the future of the Ravens signal caller Lamar Jackson, but instead getting outshone by a player drafted later in the same draft as you, Mark Andrews.

Hurst racked up just 512 yards and 3 TD’s in his time in Baltimore, but now he gets to spread his wings like a Falcon where he should be the only pass catching tight end in town. Matty Ice has a history of getting the best out of his tight ends too, so expect Hurst to level up in 2020.

5. Dolphins defense rebuild starts – Miami add CB Byron Jones and EDGE Shaq Lawson as the roster reconstruction officially gets underway.

The Dolphins started the day as the team with the most cap to spend and they didn’t disappoint. They dropped $10m a year on both O-Lineman Ereck Flowers and former Bills edge rusher Lawson whereas the highest rated corner in the free agency pool, Byron Jones, became the most expensive with a rumoured $18mil a year deal.

It’s a good start for a team that is in desperate need for talented stars.

Rob Grimwood’s Mock Draft 1.0

Now that the NFL combine has concluded and we have a better idea of what this class’ draft stock is, I thought i’d join the masses in predicting who will go where come April in the first round when the draft party descends on Las Vegas.

Pick 1: Cincinnati Bengals – Joe Burrow, QB – LSU

I wanted to go against the flow, i really did. For me, Chase Young is the best talent in this draft, but I think the Bengals need to rebuild from top to bottom, and that starts with a franchise QB. Burrow was the stand out player in College football in 2019, he’s done enough to prove himself a quality option for the NFL. Cinci need him, the re-build of the Bengals dynasty starts here.


Pick 2 MOCK TRADE: Las Vegas Raiders via Washington – Chase Young, EDGE – Ohio State

What a way to kick start their new identity as the Las Vegas Raiders than blowing Day 1 out of the water with a monster trade in front of their new home fans, right! With two first rounders and three third rounders in this years’ draft, I think the Raiders will put any stock necessary in order to pair Young up with last years’ first pick, Clelin Ferrell. Corner, Wide Receiver and QB needs can be addressed either in the free agency or later in the draft.

As previously mentioned, I believe Young is the best player in this player pool. With Washington not having a need at EDGE, the offer from another team, in this case Las Vegas, will be too big to turn down. The Skins will have opportunities to strengthen later down this list.


Pick 3 MOCK TRADE: Miami Dolphins via Detroit – Tua Tagovailoa, QB – Alabama

It’s bold predicting trades early on, i know! But i can see it happening. Detroit need secondary help above anything else with Darius Slay on the downturn and no obvious replacements currently on their roster. They will be able to grab the player they need back at pick 5 though, as well as gaining a sweetener extra pick later in the draft.

After seeing Burrow picked at 1, the Dolphins will be keen to get it over and done with before anyone else jumps in to this slot before them (sorry Charger fans). Tua has been destined for Miami ever since the ‘Tank for Tua’ slogan appeared early on at the beginning of last season when it looked inevitable that Miami would probably be picking first. Well, that wasn’t to be, however, with Tua’s unfortunate injury at the end of the 2019 campaign, his draft stock took a small dent too. Stars have aligned, Tua will still be a Dolphin.


Pick 4: New York Giants – Tristan Wirfs, OL – Iowa

After seemingly finding Eli’s replacement this time last year in Daniel Jones, the next logical step for the G-men is to get him protected. Wirfs was one of the stand-outs in this years’ combine which has probably justified his ‘Top 5’ value.


Pick 5 MOCK TRADE: Detroit Lions via Miami – Jeff Okudah, CB – Ohio State

Still available here for the Lions will be the best corner in the draft. Plug in and play alongside Slay in order to gain experience from him and replace him when his contract expires in 2021. It’s a no brainer, probably the best lock down corner through the draft since Jalen Ramsey and a big need for Detroit

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Pick 6: Los Angeles Chargers – Justin Herbert, QB – Oregon

The Chargers will be fighting an internal battle over this pick. They are still desperate for offensive line help and there are some gems in this draft class, yet their team is not a million miles away from being playoff worthy. However, to be that, they will need a replacement for Pip Rivers. Herbert ticks a lot of boxes. He was slated to go 1.01 last season before heading back to Oregon for another term and he impressed at the combine as expected. Herbert could be the answer Charger fans.


Pick 7: Carolina Panthers – Isaiah Simmons, LB – Clemson

Luke Kuechly is gone. He was one of the centrepieces of the organisation and Simmons will fit into Matt Rhules’ desire to build a formidable defense as Kuechly’s replacement. Can also play at Safety if the Panthers prioritise building their defensive secondary first


Pick 8: Arizona Cardinals – Mekhi Becton, OL – Louisville

Offensive Line has been a glaring need for a few years now in Arizona. At 6’7 and 364lbs, Becton is still one of the most athletic freaks in this class. He’ll be a game changer for Kyler Murray as he searches for the next level.


Pick 9: Jacksonville Jaguars – Derrick Brown, DT – Auburn

Last year Josh Allen fell in their laps at pick 7 last year, and Brown is going to do the same this year for them. Defensive line is a need for Jacksonville and in a lesser talent-filled class, Brown would be considered a top 5 pick.


Pick 10: Cleveland Browns – Jedrick Wills, OL – Alabama

The Browns need a tackle. Their O-line has never lived up to the hype that it was supposed to be, and with the news of Greg Robinson’s arrest. they’ll need to sure the line up. Two stud O-lineman remain on the board, but I think Wills nudges it over Andrew Thomas down to a better showing in their Junior year.


Pick 11: New York Jets – Andrew Thomas, OL – Georgia

The need for O-lineman in the NFL is plentiful. The Jets’ are in that conversation and will take the last remaining stud tackle in this first round. Andrew Thomas is an NFL ready tackle who will provide better protection for Sam Darnold. Good pick.


Pick 12 MOCK TRADE: Washington Redskins via Las Vegas – C.J Henderson, CB – Florida

Henderson had a great combine and boosted his draft stock back into the top half of day one. Although Josh Norman hasn’t performed well over the last couple of years, he’ll still need replacing and it would be good if the skins could pair another stud corner with last years’ stand out Quinton Dunbar.

I have the Skins’ down for acquiring both Raider first rounders for the 2nd over all pick, other needs can be addressed later.


Pick 13: Indianapolis Colts – Jerry Jeudy, WR – Alabama

If Indy don’t acquire a QB in free agency, then Jordan Love/Jake Fromm could be in play here. However, Indy need better receiving options for whoever is slinging the rock in 2020. TY Hilton is the speed threat, Jeudy will be an all round threat. Remember Marvin Harrison and Reggie Wayne? Time for a repeat. A few slated Jeudy’s combine, however, his combine was still statistically better than those from DeAndre Hopkins, Michael Thomas and Davante Adams…and they turned out to be elite receivers… just sayin’

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Pick 14: Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jordan Love, QB – Utah State

Similarly to Indy, this pick is dependant on whether the Bucs address the QB position in the free agency. However, even if Jameis was to return, Jordan Love would be the type of QB the Bucs would like – a stronger, faster and dare I say less mistake prone version of famous Jameis. The Bucs already have a stellar offensive cast of characters, Love would be a great fit.


Pick 15: Denver Broncos – CeeDee Lamb, WR – Oklahoma

Courtland Sutton is the up and coming receiver in Denver and it would be nice to pair him up with another stud on the opposite flank. Denver has a few other needs including o-line and cornerback, but personally I think Lamb is the best player available in those needed positions.


Pick 16: Atlanta Falcons – K’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE – LSU

Offensive line, defensive secondary, tight end, (providing Hooper isn’t re-signed), running back are all big needs for Atlanta. None more so than on the Edge now Vic Beasley is out of town. Chaisson is the pick here to help provide some much needed quarterback pressure.


Pick 17: Dallas Cowboys – Javon Kinlaw, DT – South Carolina

If Kinlaw falls this far, it’ll certainly be a case of taking the best player available for the Cowboys. Defensive line is a need for them if Maliek Collins heads to free agency, so this pick should go down well with the Cowboys’ faithful, even if that means not replacing Byron Jones or Amari Cooper if they haven’t been re-signed either.


Pick 18: Miami Dolphins – Patrick Queen, LB – LSU

Pick a position (except QB as they now have Tua of course) and it’s a need for Miami. Queen had a good combine and as a result his draft stock has risen. He’s an explosive linebacker with a strong presence, just what Miami need on defense.


Pick 19 MOCK TRADE: Washington Redskins via Las Vegas – Josh Jones, OL – Houston

With Brandon Scherff likely off in free agency and an ageing tackle Donald Penn, the Skins need to bolster their offensive line. Some might think Jones is a reach at 19, but with all the ‘studs’ gone already, the next best will start to come into play around now. Washington will be happy if they walk out of day 1 with a stud cornerback and a potential elite offensive lineman. Tight end and receiving depth can be easily found on day 2


Pick 20: Jacksonville Jaguars – A.J Terrell, CB – Clemson

Corner seems to be a big need these days for Jacksonville, we’ve not had to say that for a while, have we. Terrell could be Jalen Ramsey’s true replacement and has all the traits and measurables to make it in the NFL too. No brainer Duval, let’s rebuild that defense this year and start from square one… again.


Pick 21: Philadelphia Eagles – Grant Delpit, S – LSU

LSU’s star DB is still on the board due to teams ahead prioritising other needs. Yes Philly need a field stretching receiver, yes there are still quality wide-outs on the board, but they also need defensive secondary help. Delpit is a talent far superior to anybody left on the board. Should be a top 20 pick.


Pick 22: Buffalo Bills – A.J Epenesa, EDGE – Iowa

Lorenzo Alexander has retired and Shaq Lawson looks set for free agency making an edge rusher one of the main needs for the Bills this off-season. Epenesa’s stock has fallen after a poor combine, but he has plenty of tape which will back any argument up for him to be a potential star at the next level. A bit of a gamble but plenty of upside.


Pick 23: New England Patriots – Henry Ruggs III, WR – Alabama

The combine superstar will wind up a Pat. They have a veteran route runner in Edelman and they have an all rounder in N’Keal Harry when he finally comes to fruition. What they need is a speed freak on the outside to give -insert here the QB that’s replacing Brady- a plethora of different style of receiver. Tight end comes in day 2 or 3

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Pick 24 MOCK TRADE: Chicago Bears via New Orleans- Austin Jackson, OL – USC

This is all assuming Brees is back. The Saints have no second round picks and no real pressing needs other than receiver depth and defensive secondary cover which they can get in the second round if needs be.

Chicago trades both of their second rounders to move up and grab the last of the ‘next best’ tackles in the draft. The Bears know the Vikes might go OL and the Dolphins are up again in a couple of picks and are likely wanting a piece of this o-line friendly first round too. Chicago needs o-line strengthening after a poor 25th PPF ranked finish when the 2019 season was over.


Pick 25: Minnesota Vikings – Tee Higgins, WR – Clemson

With the best of the offensive lineman off the board it becomes a ‘best player’ available in a position of need for the Vikings. They could look to strengthen their already stout defense and take Gross-Matos, Kristian Fulton or Trevon Diggs… but I think they lean on bolstering their offensive weapons and replace the underwhelming Laquon Treadwell. Tee Higgins is the receiver they wanted Treadwell to be.


Pick 26: Miami Dolphins – DeAndre Swift, RB – Georgia

As with Minnesota, it’s best player available. Again, they could go different routes, but why not break into a position that’s remained untapped thus far. Swift offers more than just rushing upside, he’ a Swiss army knife and will be a great compliment for Tua. Sorry fantasy fans.


Pick 27: Seattle Seahawks – Trevon Diggs, CB – Alabama

The continuing theme throughout the back end of this draft is the same – these teams need offensive lineman! However, with the good ones, well, the first round worthy ones all gone, there’s too much talent left in other positions to turn down and reach for the next wave of o-lineman. Diggs is just this. A superb corner and will tick off one less need for Pete Carroll this off-season


Pick 28: Baltimore Ravens – Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE – Penn State

The Ravens don’t have many needs as things stand with how they move the ball. They invested in wide receivers last year and have a stout defense. However, they would benefit from having a stronger pass-rush. Tie this in with Gross-Matos being one of the best players left on the board and ‘voila’. Gross-Matos put up solid numbers in his junior season for a formidable Penn State defense, falling to 28 is a gift for Baltimore.


Pick 29: Tennessee Titans – Tyler Biadasz, C – Wisconsin

If Derrick Henry doesn’t return then this pick is Jonathan Taylor, however I believe Henry has proved his worth and will be back in Nashville in 2020. This opens the door up to improve at Centre by taking the best on the board in Tyler Biadasz. There always seems to be a Centre go day 1…so this is it!

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Pick 30: Green Bay Packers – Justin Jefferson, WR – LSU

Geronimo Allison, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, E.Q St Brown, Jake Kumerow and Allen Lazard. All average receivers that have had their spoils but ultimately aren’t trustworthy enough for Aaron Rodgers to use reliably. The Packers could thin that group down and take a versatile all round talent who turned heads at the combine, solidifying his worth as a first round prospect. Unload the deadwood McCarthy brought in and restock with talent you chose Matt LaFleur.


Pick 31: San Francisco 49ers – Xavier McKinney, S – Alabama

A close battle between McKinney and Delpit for the best Safety out of college this year. I’ve edged with Delpit, others with McKinney. Both are first round talents, both will be excellent in the pros. San Fran have very few holes either side of the ball, however with Jimmie Ward heading to free agency, Safety becomes a need.


Pick 32: Kansas City Chiefs – Jonathan Taylor, RB – Wisconsin

Fantasy fans rejoice. A superstar running back is heading to a team where the coach knows how to run the ball extremely well. It’s KC’s glaring hole in their elite offense, and I think Coach Reid will be licking his chops to get a talent like Taylor on his roster.


Who the Indianapolis Colts should be targeting in the Free Agency

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritBaller

Chris Ballard and Frank Reich have already become icons for Colts fans, despite only being with the franchise a combined five years. A large reason for this, is how this dynamic duo go about their business during the off-season. It’s usually calculated, well thought out with a big emphasis on getting the right character for the dressing room over stats or ability.

Indy haven’t hit the headlines for their flashy moves by over-spending on the free agency over the last couple of off-seasons, neither have they drafted the ‘big names’ when the opportunity was there to do so (Quenton Nelson being the exception). Yet, the scheme and thought process works, and that is why there is a healthy level of respect from the fans towards Ballard and Reich’s transaction decision making.

For these reasons, predicting who Indianapolis are likely targeting this off-season is a difficult challenge, but it’s always fun having to dig deeper than you might have to for other teams when you have to take into consideration players personal characteristics off the field as much as what they can do on it. So, to get in to the complex thought processes of the Colts backstaff, we need to breakdown their current roster and see what their more pressing needs are as we head into the free agent frenzy.

Current Roster Grades

QB – C+

RB – B

TE – B-

WR – C

T* – B-

G – B

C – A-

DT – B-

DE – C+

LB – B+

S* – B+

CB – B

*Assuming LT Anthony Castonzo and S Clayton Geathers will re-sign as rumoured, otherwise grade decreases significantly.

Needs – Major – QB, WR, DE, TE Minor – RG, DT, CB

Quarterback

Philip Rivers – I like this narrative and Indy needs a rebound. Let me explain. Jacoby Brissett is the ‘meh’ girlfriend. I mean she looks ok, she’s a nice person, you have a good time but she’s no wife material. The Brissett experiment is dead in the water now, thanks for the good times Jacoby, but we gotta move on. Pip Rivers is the rebound. The next girlfriend, the friend with benefits, the ‘let’s have some fun before I look to settle down’ kind of deal, you catch my drift i’m sure.

He’ll bring his experience, he’ll get to reunite with Frank Reich and OC Nick Sirianni and he’ll have a decent chance of providing a solid playoff run to the Colts faithful at Lucas Oil in 2020.

Photo Credit: Hayne Palmour IV / San Diego Union-Tribune

Rivers will be the perfect stop gap before Indy commit to either drafting a future franchise QB with this upcoming draft or in 2021, and if they make a move this draft season, sitting behind Philip Rivers and learning the trade would be very appealing for a newcomer, I’m sure.

Tom Brady – Two words. No, thanks. Ok, i get it, he’s the GOAT, he’s TB12… yeah, yeah. He’s also turning 43 before the season starts and will be leaving all former camaraderie and rapports from his career in Foxborough.

Don’t forget us Colts fans don’t particularly look at New England with any kind of awe about it. If Brady signs for Indy, let’s just say the fans would be left ‘deflated’ by the news. Hard pass, and I wish the rumour mill would stop turning.

Jameis Winston – Ah, you thought you’d get through an article by Rob Grimwood without me mentioning Jameis Winston. Think again, sucker. If Jameis ends up in Indy, I will probably explode. Yes, the 42 total turnovers last season wasn’t ideal… actually, that was pretty abysmal. However, have you not heard that Winston has had eye-surgery this winter?

It can’t possibly get any worse, and what we know about Jameis is that, despite the mistakes, he can throw as good as any other QB in the league and has the ability to move the sticks and make big plays. He can sustain a whole plethora of receivers and is fresh off a 5,109 yard and 33 TD season. He’s a franchise Quarterback who’s still only in his mid 20’s. Is he the answer for Indianapolis? Probably not, but holy hell it would be fun to watch.

Wide Receiver

Emmanuel Sanders – The Colts have T.Y Hilton and a couple of young talents further down the depth chart in Parris Campbell and Daurice Fountain. They don’t have a veteran who can efficiently run all routes who is a safe option. That is Sanders. He’ll be fairly cheap and will be the chain moving receiver Indy crave in this current squad. Whether it’s Brissett, Rivers or A.N Other throwing the rock this year, Sanders has very little downside for a team desperate for consistent depth pieces at wide receiver.

Breshad Perriman – He’s never quite hit the dizzy heights that people thought he may have when Baltimore drafted him in the 1st round of the 2015 draft. However, last season he attempted to resurrect his career with a stint in Tampa Bay and he was a minor success there, particularly down the stretch. The dropping issues that haunted him in Baltimore seems to be a thing of the past as he only dropped just one of 65 passes thrown his way as a Bucc.

Like with Sanders, it’s depth that Colts require, and in a skinny free agency at wide receiver, Indy may want to focus more intensive scouting for WR depth within the upcoming draft class.

EDGE

Arik Armstead – It’s very rare to find an elite edge rusher on the free agency as it’s one of those positions that teams just simply do not give up. Jadeveon Clowney is the exception to that rule, and might see free agency but will most likely re-sign for Seattle, meaning you have to look for the potential superstars in the free agency pool more than the already proven. Armstead is certainly in that category. He has the tools to become an elite edge rusher and certainly would tick alot of personality boxes in Reich’s locker room too along with fitting in with an already familiar 3-4 system.

Photo Credit: Icon Sportswire

Rumours have it though that Armstead wants to stay in California with the Niners and the Niners want him to stay so may be using the franchise tag in order to see him back for 2020. Should he fall onto the agency though, he should be high priority for Indy.

Bud Dupree – Dupree isn’t the long term answer for Indy at DE, but after a career year in 2019 for the Steelers where he recorded 11.5 sacks and a career high PFF pass-rush grade (76.3), he may be worth a small, short term investment if that kind of deal can be reached. He certainly would find himself high up on the current depth chart at the position, with Justin Houston being the only household name there currently. As with the wide receiver position, it’s depth that’s the key right now in Indy.

Tight End

Eric Ebron – I’d quite like to see Ebron return if I’m honest. He didn’t have the rapport in 2019 with Brissett that he did with Andrew Luck in 2018, however it’s hard to ignore the 16 TDs he’s provided in his short 2 year stint with Indy. His presence in the red zone has been key for the Colts over the past couple of years and whoever is under centre in 2020 would love a threat like him to target alongside Jack Doyle, i’m sure.

Austin Hooper – Stepped up in a big way in 2019 after a career best 787 yards and 6 TDs. Hooper will be a hot commodity for any tight end needy teams come March 18th, so Indy will have to fight the likes of New England, Green Bay and Chicago if Hooper is the chosen target to replace Ebron. With much forecasted interest, Hooper’s price tag may be out of reach if Ballard wants to stick to his current frugal system, despite the Colts having the second most cap space ($86m) behind Miami ($88m).

Right Guard

Brandon Scherff – If Washington can’t re-sign Scherff and they chose not to tag him, he will be a highly sought after player when the 2020 free agency opens. With Joe Thuney playing as a Left Guard and Graham Glasgow as a Centre, Scherff is by far and away the best Right Guard option on the free agent market. Has had an injury plagued career to date missing 15 games over his rookie contract, but, when he’s on the field he can play at an elite level. Indy’s o-line is good in general, but Scherff could make it the best in the league. However, with a good looking offensive line class coming through this years draft, it would probably be in Indianapolis’ best interests to throw money at other needs rather than needlessly paying over the odds for a good-not-great player in a skinny market.

Defensive Tackle

D.J Reader – Probably the top option on the market now Chris Jones has been tagged by the Chiefs. Reader is a talented nose tackle who would fit admirably into the Colts scheme under DC Matt Eberflus. On the field Reader has developed into a reliable defensive tackle that saw a career best last season for Houston where he accumulated 52 combined tackles (28 solo), along with 2.5 sacks, six tackles-for-loss and 13 quarterback hits. Off the field he was nominated for the Walter Payton Man of the Year award which speaks volumes about his personality, a big tick for the Colts backstaff.

Photo Credit: Godofredo A. Vásquez, Houston Chronicle

Javon Hargrave – After recently hiring super agent Drew Rosenhaus, it appears Hargrave wants to get paid this off-season. Hard to argue that he doesn’t deserve it either after a decent stint in Pittsburgh since being drafted in the 3rd round of the 2016 draft. Pittsburgh play in a similar scheme on defense to Indy so would be a decent fit for both sides, however, will Indy be prepared to overpay for a player not yet at elite level but the potential to reach it?

Shelby Harris – Could be a cheap fix to add depth to that uninspiring defensive line in Indy. Harris is a solid run stopper that has also improved in the pass rush too. Last season saw Harris gain 6 sacks, had 49 tackles (28 solo), and 8 tackles for loss – all career highs. Harris finds himself a little way down the list due to a decent number of defensive tackles available, but could prove to be a hidden gem for the team that picks him up. Indy should invest.

Cornerback

Javien Elliot – As with the offensive line, the 2020 draft is littered with good looking prospects at cornerback. So if Indy were to add depth to the likes of Pierre Desir, slot corner Kenny Moore and last years’ rookie Rock Ya-Sin, it should come in the way of a up and coming star like Javien Elliot before committing to the draft to add depth. He did well after joining the Panthers from the Buccs in June 2019 and surprisingly isn’t getting an extension from the Panthers it would seem, a tad baffling considering James Bradberry is likely off too.

Bradley Roby – Roby has had a flighty career. Played well in 2015, not so good in 2016.. bounced back in 2017, declined in 2018 but had a solid season last year. Maybe 2020 means it’s a down year for the former Bronco and first round pick, but maybe a change of scenery is what is required to keep playing to a high level. Can play both outside and in the Nickel, Roby would be a good all-round talent with experience to join the Colts’ DB’s and will help to nurture Rock Ya-Sin in his development.

Start ’em, Sit ’em – (IND@TB, WSH@GB, DET@MIN)

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritBaller

Congratulations to all of you that managed to secure a playoff berth in your fantasy leagues. But unfortunately the hard work has only just begun. What can you do to avoid being one and done? Check out my start/sits for this week:

Redskins @ Packers

Starts:

Derrius Guice – impressed last week with over 135 all purpose yards and a brace of touchdowns to pad the fantasy performance. Despite having a stout overall defense, the Packers do give up the 5th most fantasy points to opposing Running Backs. Guice has done enough over the last two weeks with his 23 total touches over that span to suggest the backfield ownership is trending in his direction as he takes the reins from future hall of famer, Adrian Peterson.

Image result for derrius guice td
Photo Credit: Jonathan Newton/The Washington Post

Jimmy Graham, Aaron Jones, Jeremy Sprinkle

Sits:

Terry McLaurin – Despite having an incredible rookie campaign, the start of the end of line came last week for the Redskins’ biggest success on offense in 2019. The Packers find themselves in the top 10 against opposing wide receivers and I think if the ‘Skins are going to get a result in Lambeau, it’s going to be a low scoring chess match won with running the ball, not through the air


Lions @ Vikings

Starts:

Alexander Mattison – This start is a logical pick. Dalvin Cook is questionable as things stand. If he plays, it will likely be on a snap count or a limited role at least, meaning Mattison will get a fair amount of carries. The Lions give up 22.33 fantasy points to RB’s every week (29th in the NFL), so with Mattison likely due for a bigger role this week, start him and win your week, the Vikes know how to run the ball with great success.

Photo Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn / AP photo

Honorable Mentions:

Kenny Golladay, Marvin Jones

Sits:

Kyle Rudolph – With the likely return of Adam Thielen this week, Rudolph’s recent purple patch may be coming to an end. When Thielen has been on the field, Rudolph averages 4.33 .5ppr points per game as oppose to 15.2 when he’s missing. Despite the Lions being a fairly decent matchup for fantasy tight ends, i personally think Rudolph will see a bigger role back on line duty with their main passing weapon back.


Colts @ Bucs

Start:

Zach Pascal – T.Y Hilton will likely miss out again this week. With Parris Campbell, Eric Ebron and Devin Funchess all on I.R, it’s a case of next man up, once again, for the main pass catching options in Indianapolis. The Bucs are stone last when giving fantasy points up to opposing wide receivers, and as Pascal is the main, and only household name out wide for Indy, meaning it’s a no brainer start. Pascal will be super cheap in DFS too this week, so keep your eyes peeled.

Honorable Mentions:

Jack Doyle, Jameis Winston, Jacoby Brissett

Sits:

ALL RB’S!! Both defenses in this match ups have very solid run defenses. Both are in the top 5 when talking least amount of fantasy points given up to running backs. There is no telling whether Peyton Barber or Ronald Jones will be the lead back for Tampa Bay, and if Marlon Mack misses again, will Jonathan Williams get another shot or will it be a three headed monster again between Williams, Nyheim Hines and Jordan Wilkins for Indy? Don’t let these messy backfields be a factor in an all-important playoff match-up for your fantasy teams.

Fantasy – Waiver Pick Ups – Week 7

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritBaller

How can we already be nearly half way through the fantasy season? Crazy, isn’t it. Nonetheless, as bye weeks hit full throttle with a plethora of elite fantasy talent ineligible for your week 7 rosters, waiver pick-ups over the next week or two are pivotal to maintaining winning weeks for your teams.

Let’s get to it…


Quarterback – Gardner Minshew II, Jacksonville Jaguars55% owned ESPN


With Jameis Winston and Baker Mayfield on bye in week 7 (should you somehow still be trusting these QB’s in your fantasy teams!) Minshew has a great match-up in Cincinnati, and will be a great plug and play this week for any owners that need QB help.

Despite only putting up 4 fantasy points in week 6, Minshew had given fantasy owners no less than 15 points per game since the beginning of the season. Look for a bounce-back here from currently the most popular man in the NFL, especially as the Bengals are leaking the 4th most points to opposing QB’s on a week to week basis.


Running Back – Benny Snell Jr, Pittsburgh Steelers2.1% owned ESPN


I could be telling you to pick up Adrian Peterson here like the majority of analysts will likely be doing this week. Peterson has a very hard schedule coming up, and one good week versus the hapless Dolphins does not sell me i’m afraid.

Yes, I know Benny Snell is on bye this upcoming week, but after the bye the Steelers face the aforementioned hapless Dolphins. With Jaylen Samuel still likely out and James Conner yet to break 55 rushing yards in a game this season, Snell could well be playing himself into a decent workload for Pittsburgh. 17 carries for 75 yards against the Chargers in week 6 says he’s ready to prove his worth.


Wide Receiver – Golden Tate, New York Giants 63.2% owned ESPN


I can’t believe Tate is still available in more than a third of leagues. You realise he is literally the only proven receiver in that organisation right now with Sheperd and Engram out, right?

With those pair still likely questionable at best in week 7, and with a favourable match-up against a Cardinals secondary that gives away 23 standard fantasy points to receivers on average each week, Tate is a solid pick up and play for the Godwin/Evans/Moore/Juju/OBJ owners.

It’s a mini bye-nado this week with all of those elite fantasy stars out on a bye week, so if you’re still on the hunt, also consider Dede Westbrook (70% owned) who faces the Bengals, Dante Pettis (26.2% owned) whose target share increased last week and faces the porous Redskins or John Brown (57% owned) who currently is a fringe WR2 in fantasy that has that juicy inter-division match-up against Miami in week 7.


Tight End – Jordan Akins, Houston Texans7.6% owned ESPN


It’s pretty skinny, as always on the Tight End waiver front. But Akins has been seeing his fair share of targets over the last 4 weeks including a breakout game against the Chargers (3 receptions for 73 yards and 2 TD’s) in week 3.

The schedule is the most intriguing factor behind this pickup. Indianapolis and Oakland both find themselves in the top 5 for most fantasy points given away to opposing tight ends so far this season. With the Colts coming to Houston next week and the Raiders being the Texans opposition in week 8, Akins could have some fantasy relevance.

Quick mention to Hunter Henry, who is some of the more casual leagues will be on your waivers. Make sure you invest a heavy dosage of FAAB on the Chargers’ tight end, especially if you are short in this position.

Eyes peeled.

FANTASY: Week 2 – Start ’em/Sit ’em

by Rob Grimwood – @FFBritballer

Just like that folks, week 1 is done and the new NFL season is well under way. I hope you all managed to get some better luck than I did in week 1… 4 teams losing by under 4 points in the Denver/Oakland game. Needless to say, I woke up the wrong side of bed Tuesday morning!

Luckily for me, it’s only week 1 , which means I have plenty of time to guide all 14 fantasy teams of mine to the playoffs! And it starts here, with the players I will be starting and sitting in week 2, my comeback week

Start ‘Em

QB – Jared Goff – L.A Rams vs New Orleans Saints

The most recent narrative surrounding the New Orleans Saints is that they are primed to always be involved in a shootout. Their 2018 schedule was full of them and if week 1 against the Texans was anything to go by, 2019 might just be the same.

With a high powered offense and a mediocre defense, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out why this is the case. Since 2018, the Rams and Saints have met one another on 7 occasions and the average combined score in these matches is 57… fantasy juiciness.

Look for Goff to capitalize with this match-up, fully utilizing his plethora of elite receiving talent with Cooper Kupp, Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods. You want a Quarterback involved in a shoot out in your starting lineups, and Goff offers plenty of upside this week.

RB – Sony Michel – New England Patriots @ Miami Dolphins

Talking of narratives, here’s another – start any players facing Miami this season. Especially players that are looking to bounce back from a disappointing week 1.

Photo Credit: Matt Stone/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald

Michel has a real opportunity to rush for over 100 yards this week and produce the kind of form we saw in his rookie season. The Pats should be comfortably ahead in this game to allow Michel plenty of time on the ball to run out the clock.

WR – Michael Gallup – Dallas Cowboys @ Washington Redskins

Gallup was probably the most impressive player for me in week 1. He really has stepped up this off season and looks as if he will be an integral part of what looks like the best Cowboys team since the 90’s.

Washington gave up plenty of fantasy points to the likes of DeSean Jackson and Alshon Jeffrey last week in Philadelphia, so Gallup could see similar production to last week’s 7 receptions for 158 yards.

TE – Darren Waller – Oakland Raiders vs Kansas City Chiefs

One of the success stories of the 2019 off-season continues to impress for the Raiders. Week 1 saw Waller see 7 receptions for 70 yards, which I think will be somewhat of a baseline for him this year as he steps into the successful Jared Cook role from last season.

Kansas City, like New Orleans, have a high powered offence but are poor defensively. Rookie Gardner Minshew had a comfortable time last week for the Jags when he was forced to fill in for the injured Nick Foles.

The Raiders will likely be playing from behind in this one and the passing game may need to be lent on. As the 2nd receiving target on the team, Waller should be in for a nice fantasy day.

Sit ‘Em

QB – Kyler Murray – Arizona Cardinals @ Baltimore Ravens

RB – Phillip Lindsay – Denver Broncos vs Chicago Bears 

WR – Sterling Sheperd – New York Giants vs Buffalo Bills