I'll admit it. The public league draft was unfair. Just think about how stupid the average person is, and then remember that half the people out there are stupider than that. I have a feeling at least 5 of the managers in my public league are not qualified to work at a Wendy's. Kickers went early and at least one manager in my league drafted three kickers, including the retired Jason Hanson (Hey, if he was good when Detroit sucked, imagine how good he would be when Detroit is just above sucky).
My second draft was a league with people I attended Carthage College with. I have been in this league for a few years now and have never won. I got to the championship league last year, but that's the closest I've gotten. The champion in this league last year was a female. In fact, she won my keeper league in its inaugural year and is one of the best Fantasy Football owners I know. Girls can play Fantasy Football, too.
The rules of this league are pretty common, with 6 points for passing TDs and 1 point for every 10 return yards being the only deviance from standard scoring. Also, there are 8 bench spots, so loading up on sleepers in the draft is quite easy. There are ten teams in this league, mostly owned by females. But remember, girls can manage, too. I selected 9th of 10 in this draft, which is actually where I'd like to draft this year. I want to draft at the end of a round (or at least close to it). This way I can take two players at once and not have to worry about reaching for someone I really want. Once again, before you read my draft results, remember that return yards count the same as rushing and receiving yards.
Round 1 - Marshawn Lynch (RB - SEA) - I was debating between Lynch and Charles at this spot before settling on Lynch. I just think that Andy Reid is going to want to throw a little more than KC has in the past. Remember, Reid used to enrage owners of LeSean McCoy. McCoy has incredible talent, but Andy Reid has always been a pass-first coach. This helped me decide to use my first round pick on Lynch and hope that Charles fell to me in the second round. If he didn't, then I would be fine taking another top tier running back,
Round 2 - Jamaal Charles (RB - KC) - Well, that was fortunate. The manager selecting 10th and 11th went QB and receiver (Not a bad choice, considering she got Brees and Megatron). I still think this year you need to grab as many elite runners you can, as it's a quick drop-off at the position. Charles is a YPC beast, and if he can get 15-20 touches per game, including increased work in the passing game, this pick can make me look really smart.
Round 3 - Julio Jones (WR - ATL) - Quarterbacks are going fast and furious, which is good for me. Remember, there are 12 starter-caliber QBs in the NFL and 10 teams in this league. Odds are I'm going to get one of them. Julio was the top WR available, and with my RB position taken care of, I felt good getting the top upside receiver in the ATL.
Round 4 - Demaryius Thomas (WR- DEN) - I now own him in two leagues, meaning I have just become a bigger fan of the Denver Broncos. I can understand Randall Cobb going before him in this league, as return yards are important, but I'm happy to get an elite WR in a pass-first offense with Peyton Manning holding the reigns.
Round 5 - Reggie Bush (RB - DET) - I was going to go to my third receiver and take Reggie Wayne, but the Colts veteran was picked right before I went. The result was me either reaching for a WR, QB, or TE, or to keep loading up at RB. I feel Reggie Bush may end up being the steal of the draft in the 5th round if he can play up to his potential. In Detroit's offense, he has top 10 RB upside, and I'll take that at the end of the 5th round any day.
Round 6 - Antonio Brown (WR - PIT) - I actually like Jordy Nelson and Wes Welker more than Brown this year, but with return yards in play in this league, I can't pass up the punt returner on a team with a great defense. If he runs a couple punts back this year, this pick will end up paying off. Even if he gets three chances to run back a punt per week, that should get me at least 2 more points. I can live with that.
Round 7 - Wes Welker (WR - DEN) - Even though I already had Thomas, Welker is far too good to pass up in the 7th round. My prediction: 108 catches, 1,274 yards, 6 TDs. I would have gone to Russell Wilson at QB, but he went a couple picks before my slot. This meant I was going to be waiting a long time for a QB.
Round 8 - T.Y. Hilton (WR- IND) - I've said it before, Hilton has tremendous talent and is in a really good situation. Plus, he gets return yards and was effective as a returner last year. I do believe in this league Hilton can be a top 20 WR, meaning scoring him in the 8th round is a huge win.
Round 9 - Tavon Austin (WR - STL) - Once again, my pick was stolen right off of my watch list, and Andrew Luck went one pick before me. I decided to take Tavon Austin because he should get me a ton of return yards and is a speedster at the receiver position. If he can develop into a Danny Amendola type receiver and a Percy Harvin type returner, Austin is a top 5 receiver in this league. Even if he doesn't, I still think he's a top 30 guy in this league.
Round 10 - DeMarco Murray (RB- DAL) - The other managers in this league seemed to be as aware as I was about Murray's injury history, as he fell all the way to the 10th round. I was about to go to my last remaining choice at QB in Tony Romo, but I felt Murray's talent was too good to pass on this late. If he stays healthy, he is a top 20 RB, which means he could be trade bait down the road.
Round 11 - Eli Manning (QB - NYG) - This was a reach. I missed out on Romo by taking Murray in the 10th round, and I didn't want to let my first choice of the #2 QBs to fall off the board. I knew I now had to take 2 QBs, and a guy who was once a top 10 fantasy QB isn't a bad place to start. He has the talent and the situation to get back to an elite fantasy level, but can he avoid the turnovers? We shall see.
Round 12 - Zach Sudfeld (TE - NE) - I'm all in on him this year.
Round 13 - Ben Tate (RB - HOU) - If Arian Foster gets hurt early, or if Tate starts week 1, this is instant trade bait. However, if Foster gets hurt and loses the starting job, Tate has top 5 RB talent. I can't lose with this pick.
Round 14 - Kenbrell Thompkins (WR - NE) - This guy is projected to be Tom Brady's #1 target in New England, so I can't pass on that in the 14th round. Once again, if he explodes early, I can either trade him or ride the wave to the playoffs.
Round 15 - Carson Palmer (QB - ARI) - Palmer will probably throw for 4,000 yards, so I don't mind having him as my backup to Eli Manning. He does have the same by week as Eli, so I have 8 weeks to find a suitable replacement for Palmer. I'm hoping to score a QB in a trade, and hopefully Carson Palmer will catch fire in the desert early so I can package him in a deal for an elite QB.
Round 16 - Browns (D/ST - CLE) - The Browns have a tough defense, and I don't feel bad about missing on a ton of other defenses. I plan on streaming my defenses in this league, anyway (and in most leagues, to be honest), so I'll see how Cleveland plays week 1 and likely just pick up whoever is playing against Jacksonville or the Jets.
Round 17 - Adam Vinatieri (K - IND) - Hey! I followed the fantasy rule of waiting 'til the last round to grab a defense and kicker! Who knows? Maybe the Colts offense sputters a couple times a game and Vinatieri kicks 30 field goals this season. I'll likely end up streaming kickers as well.
Yahoo was kind enough to give me a grade for this draft. I scored a C+ according to the scoring system, most likely due to my QB and bye week situation. I think I did a bit better, but let me know what you guys think in the comments below!
Draft 3 of 4 is tonight, with my keeper league drafting. Look for my results either tonight or tomorrow.