The NFL Draft is officially in the books…Now can we talk fantasy football? Top rookie fantasy storylines round 1 edition.
Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams
The California Kid stays home opening up the new L.A franchise with the 2015 Offensive Rookie of the Year Todd Gurley in the backfield. Anyone who follows head coach Jeff Fisher, knows he likes to run the football and play tough defense. I believe Goff was the right pick for the Rams as he can take their franchise from a below average football team to a team that can fight for a playoff berth but for fantasy purposes temper your expectations early on. The Rams receiving core is not up to par as yet with Antwan Randle El like Tavon Austin the best WR on the roster. Goff will be a risky pick for yearly fantasy leagues but will be a great option to grab in your dynasty leagues as the Rams will soon find out that they need to add some quality wide outs.
Carson Wentz- Philadelphia Eagles
My counterparts at CPGM don’t believe Wentz will start early on for the Philadelphia Eagles but I sure think the number 2 pick will start sooner than anticipated. Yes, the Eagles want to sit him as long as they can to prepare their future franchise quarterback for success but the NFL stands for “Not For Long” and it won’t be long until the franchise feels the pressure of getting Wentz out on the field. Another guy you would like to target in your dynasty leagues due to the Eagles roster lacking offensive talent this season.
Ezekiel Elliot – Dallas Cowboys
The new Bell-Cow-Boy back for Big D makes for an obvious early round fantasy selection. But how early should you draft Zeke? I’ve heard people say definite Top 5 to late first round and I can’t really argue against that logic. The Cowboys don the best offensive line in football which two years ago helped NFL rush leader Demarco Murray rush for a ridiculous 1845 yards and last season catapulted Darren McFadden of all people for 1089 rushing yards with DMC only having 37 carries in the first 5 games. Looks to be a perfect marriage as Elliot will eat in the Dallas offense. But not so fast for me as I will let someone else select the rookie in the first round because after all shouldn’t there be some kind of rookie wall and he ain’t no Gurley. See here.
Corey Coleman – Cleveland Browns
Stop the presses!! The Browns actually selected a wide receiver early in the draft. With their first pick in the draft after trading down from 8 to 15 they select my number 1 WR in the class, Corey Coleman. I’m in love with the “CoCo” but his Baylor counterpart Robert Griffin, I’m not so sure. Can RGIII sit in the pocket and deliver passes on time to the raw Coleman? That remains a big question mark. Coleman is not the most polished receiver and still needs time to work on his craft. The good news though for Coleman is that there isn’t any other receiver on the roster that will command targets. Just by sheer volume coupled with the rookie receiver’s prowess in the open field I can see Coleman as a WR3 borderline WR2 in fantasy football.
Will Fuller – Houston Texans
The Texans had a direct mission this offseason to restructure the offensive side of the ball signing QB Brock Osweiler and RB Lamar Miller in free agency and drafting WR Will Fuller, WR Braxton Miller, and RB Tyler Ervin. Fuller will be the deep threat in the offense opposite Fantasy stud DeAndre Hopkins. The addition of Fuller will free up opportunities for Hopkins and vice versa for Fuller. The biggest question mark for Fuller’s fantasy future will be Osweiler, can the QB live up to his $75 million contract and evolve the Texans offense. If the answer is yes then you can safely draft Fuller as a high upside WR3.
Josh Doctson – Washington Redskins
While the division foe the Dallas Cowboys were bolstering their rushing attack, the Redskins drafted Doctson in the first round to bolster their passing arsenal. The options in the passing game for Kirk Cousins are among the best collections in the league with Jordan Reed, DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garçon, and the aforementioned Doctson. I believe Doctson is the best WR on the roster as he gives you the best of both worlds as a polished route runner and a deep threat who snags balls out of the air at the highest point. His fantasy value takes a bit of a hit though as there are too many mouths to feed in Washington. With that said I will still roll the dice on Doctson in yearly leagues and especially in dynasty leagues because in my opinion he will have the best career among the receivers this draft class.
Laquan Treadwell – Minnesota Vikings
Teddy Bridgewater finally gets a big receiver who can help him complete passes down the field due to Treadwell’s large catch radius. Treadwell is not a burner by any means but his physicality coupled with his leaping abilities will make Bridgewater a better quarterback. The Vikings’ new toy will become an instant red zone target and has 10+ touchdown potential as early as this season. If you know anything about fantasy you know TDs are gold. Draft Treadwell, he shouldn’t disappoint on your team.
Paxton Lynch – Denver Broncos
Yearly league fantasy owners can punt on Lynch in the draft as he will be developmental player this season. He may get a chance to start in 2016 but the Broncos will pacify him to the point he will not return solid fantasy numbers to be rosterable. Lynch has a very high upside if he can transition to the NFL’s pro style offense which should take time for a guy who didn’t have to drop back and progress through reads at Memphis. Dynasty league owners should keep him in their queues though as Lynch gets the advantage of playing in Gary Kubiak’s quarterback friendly offense.