We are always looking forward to the new wave of talent coming out of college. We have seen rookies come in and be impact players. We have also seen others struggle.
In this article, I am going to talk about 4 prospects that I think deserve a look in the early rounds of your rookie dynasty football draft. I will talk about 2 top running backs and 2 top wide receivers. I will go over their stats as college players, which team may potentially draft them, and where I think you should take each player in your 2020 rookie draft.
First, let’s talk about running backs.
Who Are The Running Backs?
These two running backs are probably the highest on every NFL draft board. Those running backs are D’Andre Swift and Jonathan Taylor. Let me tell you why I chose these two backs, but first, let’s talk about their college stats.
Swift was a two-year starter at the University of Georgia. His freshman year, he was behind an amazing group of backs who are now in the NFL and doing well. Maybe you’ve heard of them? Yes, Nick Chubb and Sony Michel. Swift still got some playing time that year rushing for 597 yards on 73 attempts while averaging 8.2 yards per carry. Those stats are pretty good for a freshman going against some of the best defenses in the SEC. His sophomore season, he split carries with Elijah Holyfield, rushing for 1,307 yards, 155 attempts, averaging 6.7 yards per carry. In his junior year, he was the starter and received an uptick in work with 195 rushing attempts for 1,216 rushing yards while averaging 6.2 yards per carry. Not to mention, he averaged 93.5 yards per game.
Taylor was a three-year starter at the University of Wisconsin. In his freshman year, he rushed for 1,847 yards on 273 attempts while averaging 6.8 yards per attempt. His sophomore year, he saw a slight uptick in his stats rushing for 1,989 yards on 280 attempts. He averaged 7.1 yards per attempt. He also averaged 165.8 yards per game. Crazy! His junior year, he saw his rushing attempts increase, almost seeing 300 touches and rushing for 1,909 yards while averaging 6.4 yards per carry.
On paper, Taylor looks like the better back out of the two. I would say stats don’t lie, but in my opinion, Swift saw tougher defenses playing in the SEC. Either way, these two backs are very talented and are going to be impactful players in the NFL.
Let’s take a look at the rookie wide receivers I have chosen.
Who Are The Wide Receivers?
These two wide receivers, in my opinion, are some of the most explosive playmakers in this year’s draft. They are Jerry Jeudy and CeeDee Lamb. Let’s take a look at some of their college stats.
Lamb, was one of the most explosive receivers last year. In 2019, Lamb had 58 receptions for 1,208 receiving yards while averaging 100.7 yards per game. He also averaged 20.8 yards per reception. He was known for his big play ability. All he needed was the ball in his hands and he could make something happen.
Jeudy had a fantastic 2019 season, as well. Though Alabama didn’t make it to the postseason and lost their star QB last year, Jeudy still put up some amazing stats. He had 77 receptions for 1,163 receiving yards while averaging 15.1 yards per reception. His production dipped a bit from his 2018 season, but I believe that had to do with the starting QB being out for a good portion of the year.
What Teams Might Draft These Four?
It’s still early and some things may change as we approach the NFL draft. Teams may address some of their needs in free agency, but based on early mock drafts, here are potential landing spots for these four.
The number one back coming off the board in most expert mock drafts has been D’Andre Swift going to the Dolphins. It makes a lot of sense given their poor lack of running game last year. Jonathan Taylor in mock drafts has been going to either the Titans or the Chiefs. Titans make the most sense.
As for the Chiefs, I am not 100% sold on them taking a running back with their first pick. They just won a Super Bowl with an undrafted running back. In my opinion, I don’t think they need to address an RB in early rounds of the draft, but if they did, that offense would be lethal.
For the wide receiver position, I have seen it go either way. Some expert mock drafts have Jerry Jeudy as the first WR off the board and others have CeeDee Lamb. It depends on the team and what the need is, but I think CeeDee Lamb is the better of the two. I have seen both of these guys alternate in mocks between the Raiders, Colts, and even the Jets. Those teams make sense.
The Raiders and the Jets need some offensive weapons. I think that the Colts, on the other hand, might pass on these two and address other needs. One thought I have seen floating out there is CeeDee Lamb dropping to the Cowboys. I don’t know how much I buy that just because the Cowboys need so much help on the defensive side of the ball. If he did drop I think the Eagles would trade up, and try to draft Lamb. The Eagles for sure are needing WR help.
Again, some of these landing spots may change if teams address these positions with veterans in free agency.
Where Should You Draft These Players In A Dynasty Format?
Before I jump into where you should draft these guys, let me say this. A lot has to do with where they go, but these 4 players are ones you are going to want on your dynasty teams. Also, take into account how your team is currently built. If you are starting a dynasty league this year, then these suggestions may look different for you.
Let me start with the first player I would take.
I am taking this from the approach that you have a dynasty team established and you have been playing in this league for the past 2-3 years.
I would take CeeDee Lamb as my first player out of these 4, especially in PPR (points per reception) leagues. I would either take him with my 1st or 2nd round pick. More than likely, you will need to use your first-round pick on either of these guys if you want them. I chose him because his run after the catch ability is insane. He took so many short passes for long gains. I want that kind of upside on my team for sure.
If I wasn’t able to get him, the next player I would target is Jerry Jeudy. He is worth reaching for, as well. If you had your eyes set on Lamb, he shows some great promise, and again, some experts have him as the number one WR, ahead of Lamb who I think is better.
When it comes to the RB position, you can typically wait on these guys. With my 2nd or 3rd round pick, the first RB I would take would be D’Andre Swift. He is a solid runner and can catch the ball out of the backfield. He was primarily used as a pass-catcher in his sophomore year, and not to mention, the University of George has produced great NFL running backs.
Jonathan Taylor would be the last player of these four that I would target. He is still worth an early-round pick, especially if you don’t get Swift. Could you still use your 2nd or 3rd round pick on him? Yes, but I wouldn’t take him over Swift. Depending on how your draft is going, you may need to reach higher for one of these players.
The number one prospect you should be targeting is CeeDee Lamb, then Jerry Jeudy, then D’Andre Swift, and finally Jonathan Taylor. I don’t think you will be disappointed with any of these players on your dynasty team, but if you reach for these guys, you may be able to land two of them.
Here are some of my final thoughts.
When it comes to fantasy football, especially in a dynasty format, I like to take risks. Sometimes the risks pay off and sometimes they come back to bite you. However, there is no greater reward in fantasy when you hit on a player and you get to reap the benefits for the next four to five years on that rookie player.
Keep an eye out for how the experts of the NFL mock drafts are projecting and see where these guys have the potential to land. Things always change and we never know what a team will do. A team may trade back or a team may come out of nowhere and trade up to get the player they want.
That is another reason why I would go with the WR position first this year. The position this year has incredible talent and the teams that are drafting early need a lot of help. You could take one of these top two guys and still get another good WR to partner with later in the draft. It depends on where you want your upside and how your team is built.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article. I look forward to talking more rookie outlooks as the draft and season approach. Stay blessed and remember if you have any questions or comments, we would love to hear from you.
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