Player’s values fluctuate every season. Due to injury, situation, general perception, strategy, or a number of other causes. Whatever the reason may be, players move around in the draft. In fact, almost every player will rise or fall before the end of this draft season, as you probably already know. So it leaves owners with one of two questions: “When is the hype too much?” or “Am I getting a steal right here, this late in the draft?”
They’re both good questions, but today we’re going to look at one, which was identified in the title. Today’s blog is going to discuss the player’s whose value has decreased in draft value since last season, and whether you’re getting a value at their current ADP, or just getting junk that no one else really wanted. Let’s take a look at few of those guys.
All Average Draft Position (ADP) numbers from come 12-team, non-PPR leagues on FF Calculator
Top Tier Quarterbacks
What in the world happened to these guys? The top three quarterbacks — Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, and Drew Brees –went 1.02, 1.05 and 1.07 in 2012. This season, there’s not a single quarterback whose ADP is in the first round. In fact, in ADP, the third quarterback — Peyton Manning — doesn’t come off of the board into 3.08. This is understandable, as it is consistent with value based drafting. Think about it this way: only 12 of 32 starting quarterbacks have to be started in fantasy football every week. 24/32 starting running backs are going to be started each week and more if we’re including the typical league’s flex spot. Running backs are more valuable because you have to start more. You can’t stream running backs or even grab ones that can be even half-way reliable later on in the draft. That’s why it’s important to get guys who you can rely on early in the draft.
Not to mention the depth at the quarterback position. There are 14 quarterbacks as my week-to-week starter this season. Then you have the QB2 position that has major upside in Ryan Tannehill, Sam Bradford, Jay Cutler, Josh Freeman among other this season. I mean even Mark Sanchez is being drafted late. Alright, the last one was a joke. But there are a lot of quarterbacks this season who will make noise, so don’t grab one early. Look for a guy like Tony Romo, currently going at an ADP of 8.03 and finishes inside the top 10 on a yearly basis.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis, RB, Cincinnati Bengals
There’s a cause and effect here. Cause: rookie Giovani Bernard, the most talented running back in this draft class according to most draftniks and myself. Effect: Green-Ellis plummets in draft because he is no longer seen as a work horse and will finally have to hold-off a very talented running back to keep his job. Chalk it up: Bernard will be this team’s starter by Week 6. It’s not going to take long. Don’t draft Green-Ellis at 6.05. Instead, go get Bernard, who is currently going at 6.11, if you want a Bengals running back. Or in the next couple of rounds you can grab Shane Vereen and Andre Brown. I like both more than “The Lawfirm”.
Fred Jackson, RB, Buffalo Bills
This one’s easy. Jackson has hit a wall with his old age, and dealt with injury all of last year, so it’s obvious that he was going to fall from his ADP of 2.08 last year. The reason for his fall is the emergence of his younger counterpart, C.J. Spiller. Spiller is going very high for my taste. While he is talented, Jackson could still eat up carries on the first two downs. Stay away from Jackson, even at 8.08. Johnathan Franklin, Ben Tate and Isaiah Pead are some names going right after Jackson that excite me.
Falcons Wide Receivers
An intriguing duo, Julio Jones and Roddy White simply don’t work for fantasy owners like they could individually. Jones worked his way all the way to 2.03 last season, the second wide receiver off the board behind only Calvin Johnson. That will be the highest his value reaches until White either substantially declines and is almost irrelevant, or White retires. Neither of those scenarios is going to happen to soon. It looks as if Jones will be stuck around his current ADP, 2.09 as it is now, for quite some time. White is a much better value at 3.10 if you can get him, but I’d rather take Cobb — who has an ADP of 3.07 — over either of them, regardless of ADP. I’ll be staying away from White and Jones because of their week-to-week unpredictability in general. The fact that you can’t judge their performance by their matchup as you can for most other receivers propels me from drafting them.
Jordy Nelson, WR, Green Bay Packers
Finally, someone’s falling value that I can get behind. Nelson’s 2011 touchdowns numbers weren’t sustainable in 2012, but he was being drafted like they were. Nelson was going at 3.11 in 2011, and in 2012 he’s going a round later at 4.12. It’s anyone’s guess as to why Nelson’s value dropped off. For one, Nelson should see more consistent targets in an offense that lost Greg Jennings. Jennings won’t be in and out of the lineup like he has been over the last two seasons. Secondly, Nelson was out because of pestering hamstring, foot and ankle injuries. He only player 10 full games, and in those games he had 48 receptions for 735 yards and seven touchdowns. Extrapolate those stats over 16 games and Nelson ends up with 76 receptions, 1,176 yards and 11 touchdowns. Lastly, James Jones’ 14 touchdowns just won’t happen again. Just like Nelson’s 15 touchdowns from 2011 did not duplicate. It’s a one-time thing. So why is this guy falling again? I’m not sure. His targets will be up, and he’ll likely be the number one target of the best quarterback in the game in 2013.
Thanks for reading. I was going to detail one tight end, but most tight ends I would want to write about are rising, not falling. There just weren’t many candidates there. I hope you all had a great Memorial Day weekend. Send me your blog suggestions to @CHardySports on Twitter. All suggestions are taken into account, in fact, this post was a suggestion from a reader.