Sunday morning, after the draft, I reached out to our staff of writers and analysts at Dynasty Happy Hour and asked everyone three questions:
What rookie landing spot did you really like?
Whose landing spot did you not like?
Are there any late draft sleepers you are excited for?
I was met with a litany of responses over the past few days- many different takes and opinions and I will break them down and share them with you here. It was a lot of fun to have this chat roundtable discussion, the chat went off on several tangents but it was great to hear so many different opinions.
The staff members that participated were the following:
Tim Keller @DHH_Tim Robby Jeffries@RobbyJeffries John Michael @JMicCheck MK @MDynasty17
Kurtis D. Goff @KurtisDGoff_DHH Chris Svoboda @TheSvobodaDHH Jacob Buettner @FFSkiBum
Byron Stern @FootballBry15 Cody Kutzer @CKutzer Clint Followell @DHH_Pastor Adam @DHH_Adam
Baker Mayfield is the new franchise QB and overall #1 pick- most everyone agreed that the Browns have a good future with the fiery young gunslinger. Kurtis said the following about Baker: “I would say he has the most talent surrounding him and Todd Haley as his OC is great news. With Tyrod being there he doesn’t have to start day 1 unless he wins the job. His supporting cast is shaping out nicely- Jarvis Landry, Josh Gordon, Corey Coleman, Antonio Callaway, David Njoku, Duke Johnson, Nick Chubb, Carlos Hyde….” Everyone in the group agreed and the chips are in place for him to be successful.
Sam Darnold also landed in a situation where he can be successful. “I think the offense will have a tough time with overall lack of playmakers. Josh McCown will likely start the first four or so games but I think they quickly unleash Darnold”, is Robby’s take on the situation. Hard to deny that Sam will get the keys and it will be his team to lead.
Lamar Jackson- there was a book written by John Michael regarding Lamar, obviously one of John’s favorite players coming out of the draft. Some excerpts follow: “He’s not ready to start day one. The beauty of it is, this affords Jackson the time needed to continue refining his footwork, which was much maligned and a source of his spotty accuracy at times.” “Rookie Scouting Portfolio creator Matt Waldman labeled the 2016 Heisman Winner as having the best pocket presence of ANY QB in this class.” “He’s one of the best in this class at delivering from the pocket while being an absurd threat upon take off. Sky is the limit (clichés be damned) for Jackson and his fantasy output will be worth the wait.” Well said John- That was about a third of what he said! The coaching staff in Baltimore will need to embrace Lamar’s creative style of play but the organization has been one of the most stable over the years.
Quick Hits- Josh Rosen, it was agreed amongst all that he will also be given the chance to take over in Arizona and he should be a good NFL quarterback there for many years. Not much was said about Josh Allen, the pre-draft process definitely said it all for the young quarterback.
Saquon Barkley wasn’t mentioned hardly at all. Everyone seems to think that could be a highly potent offense and Saquon will be a big piece of it. Not much to say about Saquon that hasn’t already been said.
Nick Chubb was surprisingly taken early in round two by the Cleveland Browns. MK has this to say regarding landing spot: “I love the landing spot. One of the first running backs taken in the draft, so he obviously is highly coveted by the Browns. He is running behind what should be a good offensive line and his only competition is a running back who has dealt with injuries throughout his career and will be 28 in September.” Chubb should rise out of the backfield and take over the starting role early and not let go.
Rashaad Penny was even more surprisingly grabbed late in the first round and the takes were polarizing amongst our analysts. Tim Keller says, “He is a dislike for me because of the lack of quality linemen and it could be a few years before he has quality blockers.” MK echoes similar dislike and stated, “I hate the landing spot. He is going to a team with a bad offensive line and he himself struggles in blocking.” But it wasn’t all hate- Jacob, who studies running backs, added this to the conversation: “He’s going to get plenty of work in an offense that should score points. Seattle did make efforts to bolster their offensive line play in the draft so it’s still hopeful that unit improves.” And Chris agrees as well and added this, “I love Penny still. Seahawks knew they didn’t have a great line, so they went out and got one of the best RBs at creating his own yards.” I think these sentiments are echoed in fantasy football circles and I have already seen him drafted as high as 1.03 and as low as 1.10.
Derrius Guice slipped like crazy yet still ended up in the second round with a team that many thought could have possibly taken him in the first round- the Washington Redskins. A team with need at running back- Adams says the following: " The Washington Redskins have an above average offensive line that suffered massive losses to injury in 2017; starting a historic number of different offensive line groups. Neither Perine nor Kelley stand any chance at holding Guice from the number one role. The best explanation for his drop in draft position was his immaturity. Well he’s a 20 year old who has suffered massive loss in his life so forgive him for being a bit light hearted. He now intends to run over the entire NFL “with a smile”." Well said Adam- I fully agree and I think he will be massively successful in the NFL.
Ronald Jones also got some serious love from John Michael, I got another book but not quite as detailed as Lamar’s. John says the following: “He went to arguably the best landing spot for opportunity. Boxes SHOULD be light against the Bucs running attack because of Mike Evan’s amazingness and DeSean Jackson’s speed. He wasn’t afforded many opportunities to catch the ball at USC but he doesn’t need a ton of room to take the ball to the house. Good vision, great lateral agility… its wheels up for RoJo.” Well said JMic, I think most agree that he landed in a great spot- let’s see what the young burner has.
Sony Michel landed in a polarizing spot – I have seen love and hate, it definitely was a shocking pick from an organization that is nearly impossible to figure out. But the draft capitol means a lot and he will get chances. Byron states, “He is far and away the most talented back on the team. Won’t be able to keep him off the field.” What about Jeremy Hill Byron??? Totally kidding- I wholehearted agree, Sony has a chance to be Dion Lewis plus more on the Patriots offense.
Royce Freeman- I love the spot here as he will be given the chance to take over that backfield and was insanely productive at Oregon. He has pass catching chops, nose for the end zone, and is the best option in Denver. Jacob states- and I quote- “Royce Freeman to the Broncos gets me feeling like I’m going on a date with a girl who’s way too hot for me. Nervous, but the good kind, like it’s too good to be true but it’s not.” I’m no Dr. Phil but that sounds like a good thing!
Quick Hits- There wasn’t much said about any other running back other than John Kelly. Cody hates the spot, “He wasn’t drafted until the sixth round, and he’s now behind that Gurley guy. If you still can’t quit him, do yourself a favor and grab him for free off waivers.” Nobody mentioned Kalen Ballage but I think he has opportunity to create a niche in Miami, could be a spot start RB option in fantasy. Nyheim Hines is a sleeper for me- landed in Indianapolis and is an electric pass catching back. I am targeting him late in drafts.
DJ Moore was the first wide receiver taken and I have seen mixed analysis but most favor the landing spot in Carolina. Tim Keller says, “I don’t think it takes long for him to become Cam Newton’s favorite target.” I personally think it’s a matter of opportunity and a need for a true WR there that will lead to him being successful. Byron disagrees, “I wasn’t high on him to begin with and I don’t know if Cam can be accurate enough to make him relevant.” It’s a valid concern- but DJ was successful at Maryland with subpar quarterback play.
Christian Kirk landed in a spot where he should quickly become a factor and be successful for years to come. Chris Svoboda, aka The Svoboda, states, “The spot is nice. He will fit right in with Rosen, giving him a great slot guy for years. His stock has skyrocketed.” Amongst the writers and analysts, all agreed with that sentiment. Christian Kirk should learn from Larry Fitzgerald and be a factor immediately in the desert.
Anthony Miller got a lot of love- rightfully so. He is a bit older but his production in college was ridiculous. “Miller can be a nice chess piece for Chicago. Slot or outside. Win with deep routes or close to the line of scrimmage. He brings versatility out the wazoo,” from the mouth of John Michael. I totally agree- he will compliment Allen Robinson and be a versatile security blanket for the young Mitchell Trubisky.
Michael Gallup was a source of raves in the group as well and his rookie ADP has jumped quickly. Cody also laid on a lot of praise: “Gallup can play on any side of the field, makes play in the open field, and can go up and get the ball as well. He provides a huge boost to their ragged receiver room, will contribute immediately, and may be locked and loaded as their number one sooner rather than later.” Everyone agreed- Gallup should trot into the Dallas locker room and lay claim to being the top receiver. He will get the opportunity for sure.
We had a lot of sleepers here- guys drafted later that landed in good opportunities. MK has an eye out in Green Bay and says, “J’Mon Moore could have a good opportunity. They are looking for a guy to put opposite Devante Adams and I feel like he will be given the chance.” Clint also like a Green Bay prospect, “I do really like Equanimeous St. Brown but he has a lot to do to carve out a role.”
Tim Keller mentioned one I really like and a receiver that gained buzz in pre-draft process: “DeSean Hamilton isn’t a game breaker but will have a chance to learn behind two very good wideouts and is a solid 4th round selection. Will develop nicely in Denver.”
Two Colts receivers also were mentioned. First, Robby mentions this young player- “Daurice Fountain was productive and went to the Colts who have nothing behind TY Hilton really.” He was a productive red-zone threat and will get a shot in Indy. I also mentioned Deon Cain, he landed in Indianapolis and was thought to be an early round prospect but faltered last season at Clemson. He has the tools to be a good wide receiver.
Chris went for ‘Mr. Irrelevant’ and says, “Trey Quinn was a player Jay Gruden wanted to take rounds earlier. He’s going to get opportunity in the Redskins offense.” Lastly- Byron says, “A late round guy I liked is Cedrick Wilson. I enjoyed his tape and he jumps into the thin Cowboys WR room.”
Quick Hits: There wasn’t much mention of Calvin Ridley but the spot is juicy and the need for a receiver to compliment Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu was a big one. He is a great route runner and should fit in right away. Courtland Sutton should get time to learn in Denver and be a great long term fantasy asset.
Mike Gesicki landed in a great spot- Miami lost Jarvis Landry and have been seeking a tight end for years. He will likely start early and have growing pains- he will be a red-zone threat and mismatch for the Dolphins for a long time.
Hayden Hurst was the first tight end off the board and ended up in a great location- not much was said amongst our analysts but most thought Mark Andrews was the better long term option and Hurst the best fantasy option with the Ravens for the next 2-3 years.
Dallas Goedert had a lot of hype coming in- I read today that Philadelphia traded up to take Goedert before the Cowboys, that the talented young tight end was the Cowboys next target in the draft. Our staff all agreed that Goedert’s stock took a hit by landing on an offense featuring Zach Ertz.
Quick Hits- Clint showed some hate toward the Steelers’ pick of Jaylen Samuels, “I just don’t think they will be creative enough to use him.” I am actually intrigued by the spot- Jaylen is very versatile and could be the receiving tight end the Steelers have not had in a while. MK mentions Ian Thomas as his sleeper at tight end- “I like Ian Thomas in Carolina. He could be the future starting TE after Greg Olsen retires.”
Make sure you listen to the latest Dynasty Happy Hour podcast- Doug Eddy, Tim Keller, and Tyler Guenthner discuss the draft in depth.
And check out www.dynastyhappyhour.com for your dynasty articles and rankings!