So I realize the last two months or so have been all about the NFL Draft. And that is fine and all, but it is about time to get back to the good stuff: fantasy mock drafts.
Aaron Kadkhodai from The Microcosm joined me with the even-numbered picks in this mock draft. Take a second to head over to his blog for all kinds of content, mostly humorous. I even do a little side blogging over there with some Hell’s Kitchen recaps and other random goodies.
The last time I put out a mock, it felt a little rusty and off-the-mark. Now that free agency and the NFL Draft are behind us, I am feeling much better about this mock draft. See if you agree after the jump.
- LaDainian Tomlinson, RB, Chargers: No Michael Turner = more playing time for Tomlinson? Maybe not with the multi-talented Darren Sproles and the newly-acquired everyman Jacob Hester on the depth chart behind LT2. But you know LT2 will get his, as long as he can avoid injury.
- Adrian Peterson, RB, Vikings: I see no reason for a sophomore slump. I think he may exceed his numbers from last year and the Vikings are only getting better. He’s a hoss.
- Steven Jackson, RB, Rams: Dude was supposed to challenge LT2’s numbers last year. Got hurt, missed a lot of time, but came back and finished strong. If the Rams’ can improve the offensive line somehow, SJax should be able to roam free.
- Tom Brady, QB, Patriots: Even though in the past QBs have had stellar years and then tapered off, I don’t expect this from Brady. After losing the Super Bowl there should be the same intensity and fire in the Patriots’ eyes. I get the feeling they will maintain the same course as last year, with the exception of rather than trying to win them all, trying to perfect their team for postseason play. I think, though the numbers won’t be as great as last year, Brady will still be the top QB and I will make the rare QB first-round pick.
- Joseph Addai, RB, Colts: Somebodies injury history and propensity still concerns me despite a strong 2007 season, so Addai is the pick here. Still an up-and-coming star, Addai has been more than lucrative as the starting runningback for the high-powered Colts’ offense. Hopefully, someone in the AFC South will challenge Indy this year, which would keep Addai on the field through the fantasy playoffs.
- Jamal Lewis, RB, Browns: Last year, Jamal proved to me that he is back in the saddle again. He has finally shrugged off prison and is a quiet football star waiting for his moment. With the offensive talent that surrounds him at the receiver position, he should explode with a lot of stats. Nine TDs rushing last year, will become 12 + this year as defenses focus on the Browns’ significant passing game.
- Brain Westbrook, RB, Eagles: Value, value, value. If Westy falls this far in the first round, consider yourself a lucky man/woman/being. Yes, he does have the ever-popular injury concerns. But he started and played in 15 games last year and was a fantasy stud. The reward greatly outweighs the risk here at No. 7.
- Randy Moss, WR, Patriots: It looks like a winning combination. Although defenses try their best to stop Randy Dandy Moss, it just can’t happen against an offense with this kind of versatility. He will get at least 16 TDs and 1000 yards. That makes him a reliable starting receiver every week. It adds something special to a fantasy team to have a receiver that averages at least 80 yards a game with a TD (but I expect Moss’ numbers to be more like 100 yards with a TD).
- Larry Johnson, RB, Chiefs: So far, my picks have been pretty straight-forward and solid (Tomlinson, Jackson, Addai and Westbrook), but this may be my first risk. LJ was less than great after his lengthy hold-out on a bad football team. Did the Chiefs improve enough this offseason? That remains to be seen. High risk, high reward: It all hinges on that offensive line and Brodie Croyle.
- Marion Barber, RB, Dallas: This pick should be solid. As a No. 10, I don’t feel I am taking too much of a risk. He has been a resilient, powerful runner for a while and without Julius Jones in the backfield he should be able to emerge from the shadows and take a spot in the limelight. Dallas is going to be potent and Barber scores TDs and racks up yards at nearly 5 a carry. Could be similar numbers to last year if taking a full time starting role backfires, but I expect a strong performance to compliment the passing game.
- Peyton Manning, QB, Colts: Several good runners still are available at this point in the draft, and the person picking at No. 11 could scoop one up after the turn. So why not grab the guy who arguably is the best quarterback in the league year-after-year? Yes, Tom Brady did surpass him last year, but this Manning is the most consistent of all the quarterbacks available and will battle Brady et al for top dog again this season.
- Willis McGahee, RB, Ravens: I expect that the Ravens are going to have a re-emergent year. Maybe not stellar, but playoff possibilities. I look for Willis to have his strongest year to date. He is nearing that period in most running backs careers in which they shine the brightest. That point where youth and experience meet to form the best two or three years in a RBs career. Barring an injury, I see McGahee posting some strong numbers.
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