As the “real” drafting in fantasy football leagues will soon begin, 10 Cafe members signed up for a mock serpentine draft, and were given the opportunity to choose their draft spots with the intention of enabling them to practice their drafting skills in preparation for the all-important player selection process, as well as to assess the quality of the fantasy team they would end up with given their respective drafting strategies.
The roster requirements for this draft consisted of a starting lineup of one quarterback, two running backs, three wide receivers, one tight end, one kicker, one team defense, and six bench spots, with standard scoring.
Below are the results of the mock draft, and if you are curious to know the reasons why some drafters picked or passed on a certain player read on, as 3 of the drafters have provided their insights regarding these matters. These gentlemen were not merely drafting for the sake of doing a mock, but also to help them build a team of championship caliber in their “real” leagues.
|1.||Ladainian Tomlinson – RB, SD||1||Mad911|
|2.|| Steven Jackson – RB, STL||1||PMoney|
|3.|| Larry Johnson – RB, KC||1||TheRiver|
|4.|| Frank Gore – RB, SF||1||Indys|
|5.|| Shaun Alexander – RB, SEA||1||benb18a|
|6.|| Joseph Addai – RB, IND||1||Yianni|
|7.|| Brian Westbrook – RB, PHI||1||Hubarooski|
|8.|| Willie Parker – RB, PIT||1||BlueBandit|
|9.|| Reggie Bush – RB, NO||1||Treat24|
|10.|| Rudi Johnson – RB, CIN||1||Amazinz|
|11.|| Chad Johnson – WR, CIN||2||Amazinz|
|12.|| Peyton Manning – QB, IND||2||Treat24|
|13.|| Steve Smith – WR, CAR||2||BlueBandit|
|14.|| Torry Holt – WR, STL||2||Hubarooski|
|15.|| Marvin Harrison – WR, IND||2||Yianni|
|16.|| Reggie Wayne – WR, IND||2||benb18a|
|17.|| Clinton Portis – RB, WAS||2||Indys|
|18.|| Laurence Maroney – RB, NE||2||TheRiver|
|19.|| Willis McGahee – RB, BAL||2||PMoney|
|20.||Marshawn Lynch – RB, BUF||2||Mad911|
|21.||Larry Fitzgerald – WR, ARI||3||Mad911|
|22.|| Roy Williams – WR, DET||3||PMoney|
|23.|| Terrell Owens – WR, DAL||3||TheRiver|
|24.|| Marques Colston – WR, NO||3||Indys|
|25.|| Travis Henry – RB, DEN||3||benb18a|
|26.|| Ronnie Brown – RB, MIA||3||Yianni|
|27.|| Cedric Benson – RB, CHI||3||Hubarooski|
|28.|| Edgerrin James – RB, BUF||3||BlueBandit|
|29.|| Adrian Peterson – RB, MIN||3||Treat24|
|30.|| Maurice Jones-Drew – RB, JAC||3||Amazinz|
|31.|| Randy Moss – WR, NE||4||Amazinz|
|32.|| Antonio Gates – TE, SD||4||Treat24|
|33.|| TJ Houshmandzadeh – WR, CIN||4||BlueBandit|
|34.|| Anquan Boldin – WR, ARI||4||Hubarooski|
|35.|| Carson Palmer – QB, CIN||4||Yianni|
|36.|| Donald Driver – WR, GB||4||benb18a|
|37.|| Plaxico Burress – WR, NYG||4||Indys|
|38.|| Javon Walker – WR, DEN||4||TheRiver|
|39.|| Thomas Jones – RB, NYJ||4||PMoney|
|40.||Tom Brady – QB, NE||4||Mad911|
|41.||Calvin Johnson – WR, DET||5||Mad911|
|42.|| Andre Johnson – WR, HOU||5||PMoney|
|43.|| Drew Brees – QB, NO||5||TheRiver|
|44.|| Jamal Lewis – RB, CLE||5||Indys|
|45.|| Lee Evans – WR, BUF||5||benb18a|
|46.|| Tony Gonzalez – TE, KC||5||Yianni|
|47.|| Donovan McNabb – QB, PHI||5||Hubarooski|
|48.|| Deuce McAllister – RB, NO||5||BlueBandit|
|49.|| DeAngelo Williams – RB, CAR||5||Treat24|
|50.|| Cadillac Williams – RB, TB||5||Amazinz|
|51.|| Hines Ward – WR, PIT||6||Amazinz|
|52.|| Braylon Edwards – WR, CLE||6||Treat24|
|53.|| Marc Bulger – QB, STL||6||BlueBandit|
|54.|| Deion Branch – WR, SEA||6||Hubarooski|
|55.|| Darrell Jackson – WR, SF||6||Yianni|
|56.|| Marion Barber – RB, DAL||6||benb18a|
|57.|| Santana Moss – WR, WAS||6||Indys|
|58.|| Ahman Green – RB, GB||6||TheRiver|
|59.|| Vernon Davis – TE, SF||6||PMoney|
|60.||Brandon Jacobs – RB, NYG||6||Mad911|
|61.||Mark Clayton – WR, BAL||7||Mad911|
|62.|| Donte Stallworth – WR, NE||7||PMoney|
|63.|| Reggie Brown – WR, PHI||7||TheRiver|
|64.|| Warrick Dunn – WR, ATL||7||Indys|
|65.|| Todd Heap – TE, BAL||7||benb18a|
|66.|| Julius Jones – RB, DAL||7||Yianni|
|67.|| Jeremy Shockey – TE, NYG||7||Hubarooski|
|68.|| Laveranues Coles – WR, NYJ||7||BlueBandit|
|69.|| Jerious Norwood – RB, ATL||7||Treat24|
|70.|| Alge Crumpler – TE, ATL||7||Amazinz|
|71.|| Chris Chambers – WR, MIA||8||Amazinz|
|72.|| Chester Taylor – RB, MIN||8||Treat24|
|73.|| Ladell Betts – RB, WAS||8||BlueBandit|
|74.|| Vernand Morency – RB, GB||8||Hubarooski|
|75.|| Chicago Bears – DEF||8||Yianni|
|76.|| Matt Hasselbeck – QB, SEA||8||benb18a|
|77.|| Kellen Winslow – TE, CLE||8||Indys|
|78.|| Chris Cooley – TE, WAS||8||TheRiver|
|79.|| Matt Leinart – QB, ARI||8||PMoney|
|80.||Terry Glenn – WR, DAL||8||Mad911|
|81.||Baltimore Ravens – DEF||9||Mad911|
|82.|| Drew Bennett – WR, STL||9||PMoney|
|83.|| Joey Galloway – WR, TB||9||TheRiver|
|84.|| Santonio Holmes – WR, PIT||9||Indys|
|85.|| Jerricho Cotchery – WR, NYJ||9||benb18a|
|86.|| Vincent Jackson – WR, SD||9||Yianni|
|87.|| Greg Jennings – WR, GB||9||Hubarooski|
|88.|| Brandon Jackson – RB, GB||9||BlueBandit|
|89.|| Fred Taylor – RB, JAC||9||Treat24|
|90.|| Kevin Jones – RB, DET||9||Amazinz|
|91.|| Eli Manning – QB, NYG||10||Amazinz|
|92.|| Bernard Berrian – WR, CHI||10||Treat24|
|93.|| Jason Witten – TE, DAL||10||BlueBandit|
|94.|| D.J. Hackett – WR, SEA||10||Hubarooski|
|95.|| Chris Henry – RB, TEN||10||Yianni|
|96.|| Tatum Bell – RB, DET||10||benb18a|
|97.|| SD Chargers – DEF||10||Indys|
|98.|| NE Patriots – DEF||10||TheRiver|
|99.|| Jerry Porter – WR,OAK||10||PMoney|
|100.||Devery Henderson – WR, NO||10||Mad911|
|101.||Dallas Clark – TE, DAL||11||Mad911|
|102.|| Adrian Peterson – RB, MIN||11||PMoney|
|103.|| LaMont Jordan – RB, OAK||11||TheRiver|
|104.|| Vince Young – QB, TEN||11||Indys|
|105.|| Jon Kitna – QB, DET||11||benb18a|
|106.|| Phillip Rivers – QB, SD||11||Yianni|
|107.|| Jay Cutler – QB, DEN||11||Hubarooski|
|108.|| Robert Meachem – WR, NO||11||BlueBandit|
|109.|| Matt Jones – WR, JAC||11||Treat24|
|110.|| Jacksonville Jaguars – DEF||11||Amazinz|
|111.|| Adam Vinatieri – K, IND||12||Amazinz|
|112.|| Anthony Gonzalez – WR, IND||12||Treat24|
|113.|| Denver Broncos – DEF||12||BlueBandit|
|114.|| Michael Turner – RB, SD||12||Hubarooski|
|115.|| Kevin Curtis – WR, PHI||12||Yianni|
|116.|| Muhsin Muhammad – WR, CHI||12||benb18a|
|117.|| Rueben Droughns – RB, NYG||12||Indys|
|118.|| Tony Romo – QB, DAL||12||TheRiver|
|119.|| Philadelphia Eagles – DEF||12||PMoney|
|120.||Mike Bell – RB, DEN||12||Mad911|
|121.||Ben Roethlisberger – QB, PIT||13||Mad911|
|122.|| Shayne Graham – K, CIN||13||PMoney|
|123.|| Brandon Marshall – WR, DEN||13||TheRiver|
|124.|| Derrick Mason – WR, BAL||13||Indys|
|125.|| Maurice Morris – RB, SEA||13||benb18a|
|126.|| Nate Kaeding – K, SD||13||Yianni|
|127.|| Pittsburgh Steelers – DEF||13||Hubarooski|
|128.|| Ronald Curry – WR, OAK||13||BlueBandit|
|129.|| Troy Williamson – WR, MIN||13||Treat24|
|130.|| Lendale White – RB, TEN||13||Amazinz|
|131.|| Michael Vick – QB, ATL||14||Amazinz|
|132.|| Minnesota Vikings – DEF||14||Treat24|
|133.|| Kevan Barlow – RB, PIT||14||BlueBandit|
|134.|| Anthony Thomas – RB, BUF||14||Hubarooski|
|135.|| Chris Brown – RB, TEN||14||Yianni|
|136.|| Miami Dolphins – DEF||14||benb18a|
|137.|| Jake Delhomme – QB, CAR||14||Indys|
|138.|| Jeff Wilkins – K, STL||14||TheRiver|
|139.|| Steve McNair – QB, BAL||14||PMoney|
|140.||Dwayne Bowe – WR, KC||14||Mad911|
|141.||Robbie Gould – K, CHI||15||Mad911|
|142.|| Ben Watson – TE, NE||15||PMoney|
|143.|| Randy McMichael – TE, STL||15||TheRiver|
|144.|| Neil Rackers – K, ARI||15||Indys|
|145.|| David Akers – K, PHI||15||benb18a|
|146.|| Kevin Walter – WR, HOU||15||Yianni|
|147.|| Jason Elam – K, DEN||15||Hubarooski|
|148.|| Mike Nugent – K, NYJ||15||BlueBandit|
|149.|| Matt Stover – K, BAL||15||Treat24|
|150.|| Isaac Bruce – WR, STL||15||Amazinz|
My two most difficult decisions were my first two picks of the draft. I was drafting from the precarious fifth position, which I think is the hardest spot in the draft because it comes right after the “big four”, who are the consensus top four picks. After that quartet the next several spots become extremely cloudy. I have seen Alexander, Addai, Westbrook, and Parker drafted and ranked at this spot, with no clear cut favorite. The choice for me came down to Alexander and Westbrook. Both have proven their ceilings can be pretty high, but both are also injury risks. The fact that there was no PPR played a big part in this decision, as so far as TDs and total yards are concerned I predict Alexander will have the better season. I’m not crazy about drafting young or unproven players this high, which eliminated Addai. I also liked how Alexander looked at the end of last season, and the fact that he plays in the worst defensive division in football.
With my second round pick I was faced with the decision of either grabbing an elite WR before they were all gone or getting a top-tier RB2. This was a difficult choice, as I had no idea if a wide receiver run might force me to settle for a WR2 as my WR1. A majority of fantasy players put RB depth as their number one priority on draft day, but I am part of the “starting roster first” camp, so I decided to draft all three of my starting wideouts before getting a RB3, since there were still some decent guys left in the sixth round. I am glad I made that choice, as Travis Henry fell to me in round three, giving me the possibility of having two potential top ten running backs and a top five wideout.
As far as having a drafting strategy, I don’t really employ a certain strategy every time, as all drafts look different after the first round is in the books. I go with the flow, and simply try to figure out who will be there the next round, what position has the best values, etc. This is why I drafted Lee Evans in the fifth round instead of Brandon Jacobs. I decided to give myself a very solid WR3 who has a ton of upside at that position over a running back who has never carried a full workload.
I tried to get an elite QB, but as you can see by the draft results those players were all drafted within three picks before mine, but I didn’t really place too much emphasis on it, as I try not to reach for anybody. I was content to wait until the middle rounds to pick up two quarterbacks to platoon. I am happy with Kitna and Hasselbeck, but not thrilled. They didn’t exactly impress me in 2006 so far as turnovers are concerned, especially if we consider their performance during the second half of last season, but they are capable of having big games and putting up top 10 seasons, so I feel I could use those two depending on their matchups.
I usually wait until the last two rounds to pick up a defense because I was able to use the WW matchup strategy last season with positive results. I ended up with Miami in the fourteenth round, which I was pleased with, as I think they have a decent chance of being a top five D/ST this season. I don’t feel the temptation to reach in the middle rounds for a defense, and I instead picked up some bench players that while not spectacular, weren’t unreliable either.
Running Backs: With my first round pick (1.04) I selected Frank Gore, who I feel is due to mirror last season’s production for an improving team in San Francisco. At 2.07 I drafted Clinton Portis, as even though Portis will likely split time with Ladell Betts he could easily amass 1400 total yards with 10+ total touchdowns, and the timeshare actually makes Portis less of an injury risk since Betts will be taking some of the carries and punishment. For my backups I chose Jamal Lewis (5.04), Warrick Dunn (7.04), and Reuben Droughns (12.07). Jamal Lewis is a solid back who could top 1000 yards with 6+ TDs. Dunn might be near the end of his career, but in a redraft league he still has a fair amount of value. Finally, while Droughns might be #2 on the depth chart in New York for now, I have a feeling he will be the number 1 back for the Giants by midseason.
Quarterbacks: For my starting QB I went with Vince Young (11.04), who I feel is an explosive, fast, invigorating new talent who could easily throw for 2500 passing yards and 20 touchdowns along with and additional 700 rushing yards and 10 TDs. The fantasy points he adds to a roster with his legs are why Vince Young is poised to finish among the top 10 fantasy quarterbacks, and are what convinced me to pick him. Just in case the Madden Curse strikes again I chose a proven fantasy backup in Carolina’s Jake Delhomme at 14.07.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: In my Starting wide receivers, Marques Colston (3.04), Plaxico Burress (4.07), and Santana Moss (6.07) I have 3 primary receiving options for their teams, and a trio that should give me solid production. My reserve wideouts include a potential breakout player in Pittsburgh’s Santonio Holmes (9.04) and a seasoned veteran in Derrick Mason (13.04). My tight end, Kellen Winslow (8.07), is due to produce again like last year, and should once again finish in the top 5 at his position.
Defense/Kicker: At D/ST I took the Chargers (10.07), as I feel that an elite defense can be the difference between winning and losing some weeks. I finished up my draft by selecting a solid kicker in Neil Rackers (15.04).
Steal of the Draft: The biggest steal that I could see in this draft was likely the Brandon Jacobs pick at 6.10. Jacobs is, for now, considered the starting RB for the New York Giants, and could potentially produce 1000+ yards and 10+ TDs.
Sleepers: There are several “sleeper” picks that I like in this draft. Santonio Holmes, while the #2 wide receiver for the Pittsburgh Steelers, is quite capable in my opinion of gaining over 1000 yards with 7 touchdowns this season. Also, Anthony Thomas of Buffalo, at 14.04, fell very far for a redraft league. He could be a solid starter for most of the year and keep incoming rookie Marshawn Lynch behind him on the depth chart. In a year Lynch will probably have the starting spot, but for now the A-Train might be carrying the Buffalo Bills.
Round 1: Willie Parker – Parker was the last “stud” RB on the board, and when both he and Westbrook dropped past 1.06 I decided I would take whoever fell to 1.08. He provided a solid #1 back to build around.
Round 2: Steve Smith – With 3 starting wide receivers, taking an elite one seemed like a logical choice in Round 2, especially with plenty of serviceable RBs to be had in the 3rd.
Round 3: Edgerrin James – I felt the need to secure my 2nd running back. Arizona has made some changes that should benefit the running game, and Edge doesn’t have anyone who will compete with him for carries.
Round 4: T.J. Houshmandzadeh – “Housh” is one of the top #2 wideouts and his numbers have improved every year.
Round 5: Deuce McAllister – RB depth is extremely valuable and I see Deuce as having RB2 value. If this were a “real” league, Deuce would be great injury insurance or trade bait.
Round 6: Marc Bulger – With no other players that I really liked available in Round 6, I went with an elite quarterback to further strengthen my starting lineup.
Round 7: Laveranues Coles – Filled out my receiving corps with a very reliable player. Not a “sexy” pick, but I feel very comfortable with him as a WR3.
Round 8: Ladell Betts – I had good RB depth already, so I gambled with Betts. If Portis goes down, he immediately becomes extremely valuable. Even if Portis stays healthy Betts is a good RB4.
Round 9: Brandon Jackson – A high upside running back to provide additional depth.
Round 10: Jason Witten – Not a great tight end, but a serviceable one who fills my need at the position.
Round 11: Robert Meachem – I’ll admit I immediately regretted not taking Matt Jones, but if Meachem wins the #2 gig across from Colston in New Orleans he has excellent potential with Drew Brees at the helm.
Round 12: Denver Broncos D/ST – A Top 5 defense in my opinion, and I wanted to secure a elite unit at that position.
Round 13: Ronald Curry – Hoping that this sleeper receiver comes through as Oakland’s top wideout.
Round 14: Kevan Barlow – Simply a handcuff for Parker, nothing more.
Round 15: Mike Nugent – I never take a kicker before the last round. However, Nugent did lead all kickers in scoring in the 2nd half of 2006, so I’m hoping that carries over.
Special thanks to benb18a, Indys_Time, and BlueBandit24 for contributing commentary for this article.
Robert is an active Cafe member who resides in Asia and is considered one of the best "sig" designers at the Cafe. You can find him in the forums where he posts under the name madaslives911.
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