Hey guys, I would like to discuss some players to target in the early to middle rounds for this year’s drafts. I’m talking about rounds 5 to 9, where you don’t know if you should target a TE, a QB, build depth in a position or reach for a player you like. I believe draft bargains and sleepers can be found in these rounds.
A bunch of friends and I use the term “sexy pick” referring to a player considered to be an underdog that can actually win you a fantasy league. Some examples include:
2015 Brandon Marshall (Rd 5 ADP, ended up as WR3)
2015 Doug Baldwin (Rd 13 ADP, ended up as WR7)
2016 Melvin Gordon (Rd 5 ADP, ended up as RB8)
2016 LeGarrette Blount (Rd 8 ADP, ended up as RB7)
With this in mind, these are my sexy picks for 2017:
Adrian Peterson (Early Rd 5 ADP)
We all know what AP is able to do. The question is: can he remain healthy? Sean Peyton is not a big fan of Mark Ingram - we all saw that last year - and the Saints OL is looking pretty good. Taking into account the upside that All Day provides with his current ADP, I would even take him in the 4th.
Mike Gillislee (Late Rd 5 ADP)
Gillislee is one of the best signings of 2017. He averaged 5.7 ypc in 2016 ranking 1st among players with 100+ attempts (576 yds, 9 total TDs). I don’t expect him to keep those numbers, but even if he goes near that statline I think he could end up in the top 10 this year. Even better, word is said that Gillislee will have a similar role to Blount’s last year (he had 299 touches ).
Bilal Powell (Early Rd 6 ADP)
Powell was one of the best RBs towards the end of last season. He averaged 5.5 ypc and had 1000+ scrimmage yards. Look for him to gain more touches and more production overall as Matt Forte’s career declines. Side note, the jets RBs have one of the best calendars on paper this year.
Tyler Eifert (Early Rd 7 ADP)
We all know what Eifert is able to do in the Red Zone (TD machine). If he can stay healthy for most of the season, I think this guy can win you a fantasy title. This is the only case in which I would draft 2 TEs.
Jeremy Maclin (Late Rd 7 ADP)
I believe Maclin is 2015 Brandon Marshall. He is changing teams, underdog, not much competition in Baltimore, and a lot of targets just banished (Steve Smith and Dennis Pitta). It’s outrageous to me that Maclin is falling to late 7th. I would be REALLY comfortable having him as my FLEX. I’d expect Maclin’s ADP to rise as the season approaches.
Kyle Rudolph (Mid Rd 8 ADP)
This guy is my off-season crush. If I’m not able to get Kelce on the 4th or Eifert on the 8th I will undoubtedly get Rudolph as late as 8th round. Almost no injury risk and a very high floor.
Kirk Cousins (Early Rd 9 ADP)
Captain Kirk is a very good bet to round up your team in the late 8th or early 9th. I do not like drafting QBs early, so after I get my 8 guys (3-4 WRs, 3-4 RBs and 1 TE) Cousins is a pretty solid option to make your team look good as hell. Plus, he finished 5th among QBs last season and is ranked as the QB10 in this one.
Philip Rivers (Rd 10)
Mathew Stafford (Rd 10)
Mike Wallace (Rd 11)
Josh Doctson (Rd 12)
NOTE: Keep in mind I am using 12-team standard-scoring leagues for stats and ADP rankings. I used FantasyFootballCalculator as a source.