I got to thinking about this situation a few years ago: what if only you knew the outcome of the NFL regular season? This would be amazing for some, boring for others, but something interesting to ponder for all. Now, when breaking down my “what if” team here, let’s make 2 things clear:
1. I’m keeping it simple- That means I’m not about to go look at how many points each player scored each week and find the best combination for the most balanced point spread for every week. Hell, I’m not even going to consider bye weeks. This is a fantasy about a fantasy game, let’s not get too worked up about this
2. I’m writing this part before I do the research, and I am excited to see what the team looks like. Could be amazing, could be less dominant than I’m predicting. I’ll be basing the draft on average draft position (ADP) on ESPN and it will be a 10 team league, with a snake draft.
Round 1, pick 9: Calvin Johnson- I’ve been obsessed with him all year, and he is by far the best WR in the league.
Round 2, pick12: Peyton Manning- Best QB in the league, scored the most points in fantasy so far this year.
Round 3, pick 29: Wes Welker- One of Peytons many targets, but he is racking up the TDs AND yards.
Round 4, pick 32: Reggie Bush- It was between him and Eddie Lacy, but Bush’s production has been a little more consistent, as I recall Lacy getting off to a slow start and getting concussion early in the season.
Round 5, pick 49: Jordy Nelson- He’s hurt and we don’t know his return date? Worth the risk ;). Jordy Nelson has been great so far this year.
Round 6, pick 52: Antonio Brown- Another WR? Your team is going to be terrible! only 1 RB?! This all leads to my theory of unpredictability of RBs, you are bound to find top performers later in rounds, just start drafting many of them later in your draft.
Round 7, pick 69: Desean Jackson- Jackson went quite the last couple of years, but the emergence of this new Eagles offense has let him return to greatness.
Round 8, pick 72: Giovani Bernard- The #12 scoring running back so far this year, he is on pace to be the offensive rookie of the year in the NFL.
Round 9, pick 89: T.Y. Hilton- With Wayne down, Hilton has emerged as a potential top-10 play going forward. Not that this roster is hurting at this position right now, though.
Round 10, pick 92: Le’Veon Bell- After he returned from his injury, Bell has been a great option for fantasy owners, even as a rookie.
Round 11, pick 109: Josh Gordon- This is where you start to really see the trend of people who miss the start of the season come back and be extremely effective. He is my 7th WR taken, and I should stop now…
Round 12, pick 112: Knowshon Moreno- I have this hunch he’s going to prove everyone wrong and win the job in Denver, then proceed to kick ass for the whole first 11 weeks of the season.
Round 13, pick 129: Fred Jackson- It was Jackson or a kicker, but I’m going to go into week 1 and try to package a couple players for an even better RB1. Besides, this team is winning every week even without rostering a kicker. I’ll survive.
Round 14, pick 132: Julius Thomas- Waited till the 2nd-to-last pick to take my TE, but I have this crazy feeling this Broncos offense is going to be legendary this year…
Round 15, pick 149: Kansas City Defense- The last pick of the draft always is a defense, and Kansas City has been by far the best fantasy defense this year so far. They have already won many owners a week or two just by themselves practically.
Roster (shows position rank through week 12):
QB: Peyton Manning (#1QB)
RB: Reggie Bush (#10RB), Giovani Bernard (#12RB), Le’Veon Bell (#22RB), Knowshon Moreno (#6RB), Fred Jackson (#11RB)
WR: Calvin Johnson (#1WR), Wes Welker (#10WR), Jordy Nelson (#6WR), Antonio Brown (#7WR), Desean Jackson (#3WR), T.Y Hilton (#16WR), Josh Gordon (#15WR)
TE: Julius Thomas (#2TE)
DEF: Kansas City (#1DEF)
Positives- I locked up the most dominate quarterback, wide-receiver, and defense, who each will put up stats in one or more given week that will give my opponent no chance to win. My wide-receiver depth is ridiculous, rostering 7 different receivers who all are in the top 16 so far this year in points scored. Picking which 3 to play each week won’t be as hard as you may think. Not because I know what they will do every week, but because the likes of T.Y Hilton, Josh Gordon, and Jordy Nelson all weren’t expected to be major contributors going into week one (Gordon suspended for 2 games, Nelson hurt, and Hilton more-or-less a late round flyer). Julius Thomas stands only with Jimmy Graham as the most productive tight-ends so far this year. though Rob Gronkowski deserves to be in the tier now that he is back healthy after missing the first 6 games of the year.
Negatives- I don’t have a kicker, which I don’t recommend doing when you haven’t purchased your time traveling device yet. I don’t have one of the top-5 running backs, making me question taking Calvin Johnson #1 when there was so many different options later on. Even without any of those first 5, I don’t think this team could be better when looking at this fantasy without thorough analysis. I could try to package a few players to get a better RB, thus opening a roster spot for a kicker.
This was actually very fun, and I encourage you guys to try it yourselves! Use the average draft position website to determine who went where, then go ahead and use ESPN’s standard scoring leaders database to reference who has done what so far this year. See if you can draft any better than me, I bet you can’t!