After personally participating in the first of many fantasy drafts over the weekend, I realized that I needed to revise my top-25 list. As usual, running backs dominate the first round - in this case nine of the first 13 picks. That is the price of position scarcity. Wide receivers and tight ends are just as valuable in today's pass-happy NFL.
Included in this mock are advices on various decisions, along with a couple of glaring omissions that I felt right to fade.
Jonathan Taylor (RB-IND) - The no-brainer selection, going No.1 in close to 100 percent of fantasy drafts. Want a negative? Pro Football Focus ranks Taylor only 15th in elusiveness.
Austin Ekeler - (RB-LAC) - There are arguments for several at No. 2, Ekeler gets this slot based on 2021 performance.
Cooper Kupp (WR-LAR) - Another runner-up for 2021 Fantasy MVP based on historic receiving numbers. Problem with taking a receiver this high is all the elite running backs will be gone towards the end of Round 2.
Christian McCaffrey (RB-CAR) - If you believe he makes it back after two injury-riddled seasons, CMC may even rank ahead of Ekeler based on his own PPR prowess.
Derrick Henry (RB-TN) - Has chance to again lead league in rushing yards after missing second-half of last season with injury.
Najee Harris (RB-PIT) - Second-year back’s appeal is his league-leading volume, including catches out of the backfield.
Dalvin Cook (RB-MN) - Do you take Cook or teammate Justin Jefferson? Vikings have a new coaching staff but durability has been a concern for Cook throughout his career.
Ja’Marr Chase (WR-CIN) - Chase and running back Joe Mixon is a critical draft day debate. I like the idea of drafting Chase and stacking with QB Joe Burrow a few rounds later.
Joe Mixon (RB-CIN) - Cross-referenced from Ja’Marr Chase - the Bengals spent big on offensive line in free agency.
Justin Jefferson (WR-MN) - With the usual first round run on running backs complete, this will be a good time to gain an advantage in receiving.
Javonte Williams (RB-DEN) - Yes, Williams remains in a time share with Melvin Gordon. That said, Williams must be selected high as he has a chance to be a top-five overall player.
Davante Adams (WR-LV) - Make Adams top-ten if you believe he can replicate his insane numbers of recent seasons in Green Bay.
Nick Chubb (RB-CLE) - With Deshaun Watson likely to be suspended for much (if not all) of the 2022 season, look for Cleveland to turn to the ground game with Chubb and Kareem Hunt.
Stefon Diggs (WR-BUF) - Even in 10-team leagues, quarterback Josh Allen may not be available by the time Round 3 rolls around.
Mark Andrews (TE-BAL) - Most have Travis Kelce projected around this point. My bold prediction is Andrews ahead of Kelce this year.
Leonard Fournette (RB-TB) - Look for possible career season with Ronald Jones out of the picture.
D’Andre Swift (RB-DET) - Scored three times from 40-plus yards out last year, two of those were on pass plays.
Aaron Jones (RB-GB) - His floor is high (although ceiling low) as he will be counted on more in the Packers pass game. Look for backfield mate AJ Dillon to go around pick No. 50.
Deebo Samuel (WR-SF) - Still ranks high despite QB change with Niners. Coming off 14-TD, 1,794 total yard season.
Tee Higgins (WR-CIN) - Higgins or Tyreek Hill? I see Tyreek as another who fades off the top 25 as Higgins ascends.
Alvin Kamara (RB-NO) - A ranking that can go up or down depending on how long he is suspended for his off-season legal matters.
CeeDee Lamb (WR-DAL) - His third year should result in a Pro-Bowl selection with Amari Cooper and others either departed or rehabbing from injury.
Mike Evans (WR-TB) - At 6’5”, 230, has caught 27 TD’s over the past two seasons from Tom Brady.
James Connor (RB-AZ) - Coming off an 18 touchdown season, he’s unlikely do that again but 10-12 scores seem reasonable.
Josh Allen (QB-BUF) - Look at the Bills December/January schedule before making this pick - At New England, home to Jets, home to Miami, at Chicago, at Cincinnati, home to New England. That is a lot of weather worries.
Can you stack teammates Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Joe Burrow on one fantasy roster?