2020 Fantasy Football: PPR mock draft exit survey looks at rookie redraft value


For the first time in the 2020 offseason, CBS Fantasy team did a 2020 mock draft that featured this year’s class of incoming rookies Tuesday. Jamey Eisenberg ran down all the key results, including where each rookie went and how many were selected. 

We’re also going to be doing a new feature for our mock drafts where we ask the participants key questions about their picks after the draft. On my end, this was a weird draft for me, as I started with running backs in each of the first three rounds, something I very rarely do. It’s not that I don’t think running backs are worthwhile, but that the elevated bust risk for running backs means building one team with so much dependency on that position compounds that risk. 

But in this draft, I got Alvin Kamara with the seventh pick, Joe Mixon at 2.06 and Jonathan Taylor as the first rookie off the board at 3.07. For me, Taylor is already a mid-second round redraft pick before learning his landing spot, and he has the potential to be a first-rounder if the landing spot is incredible. I would have taken him one pick after Mixon; he’s that good of a prospect, and concerns about his receiving ability are likely overblown. 

I was happy with how my team came together as I went heavy with some of my favorite mid-round wide receivers like Stefon Diggs, Tyler Boyd, Will Fuller and Christian Kirk and added Evan Engram and Matthew Stafford as later-round options at tight end and quarterback. I’ll be open to trying a running back heavy start again. 

I asked each of the 11 participants a question about their draft, which I’ve arranged in chronological order. Here are their responses: 

Heath Cummings, Senior Fantasy Writer: You’ve been high on Austin Ekeler all offseason, but No. 10 is the highest I’ve seen him go. How do you think the loss of Phillip Rivers will impact him relative to an expected larger role? 

“I have Ekeler projected for 12 fewer catches in 2020 but 32 more carries. I think it’s possible I’m a little high on the receptions, but low on the total touches. In four games without Melvin Gordon he was on pace for 320 touches. He has been the most efficient pass-catching back in the NFL since he’s entered the league and Gordon wasn’t near as good during that same stretch, so I believe the efficiency part was more Ekeler than Rivers.”

Andrew Baumhor, CBS Sports HQ Producer: Your Chris Godwin/Kenyan Drake start from the ninth pick felt bold in that you took Godwin over Tyreek Hill and DeAndre Hopkins and Drake over Nick Chubb and Joe Mixon. But both Godwin and Drake are exciting names for good reason. What did you like about that start?  

“I’m really high on Godwin this year especially in PPR. I think he can be Brady’s new Edelman in a better offense. I’m concerned about Hill’s durability and worried about Hopkins in a new system. 

I loved what I saw from Drake at the end of last season and don’t see why he can’t continue that this season. I’m excited for year two of the Kyler and Kliff show in Arizona.”

George Maselli, Fantasy Editor: You grabbed Cooper Kupp as the 11th wide receiver off the board at pick 3.01. Do you think he can build off his 94-1161-10 line from 2019 despite his production trailing off a bit toward the end of the season?   

“The Rams were the epitome of the Super Bowl Loser Syndrome last season, and they faded as a team against a tough second-half schedule. I believe in Kupp’s talent entering his age-27 season and his connection with Jared Goff. Plus he has a knack for scoring touchdowns, carrying a five-game scoring streak into 2020.”  

Jack Capotorto, CBS Sports HQ Producer: Quarterbacks often go a little later in our drafts, but I was still surprised to see you were able to land Lamar Jackson at pick 4.07. What is the earliest you would be comfortable taking him in 2020?

“Honestly, probably right around mid-fourth round. Always the question with durability and if he can keep playing at that high of a level. I would consider going down to late-third, early-fourth in leagues not with you guys.”

Chris Towers, Senior Editor, Fantasy: I really liked your wide receiver heavy start with Tyreek Hill, D.J. Moore and Courtland Sutton. What are your hopes for your first running back, David Johnson, who in the chat you said to “Just pencil him into (your) team in the 5th every time”?  

“My expectations aren’t super high for Johnson, but he’s gone right around the back end of the No. 2 running back group in nearly every draft — he was RB25 Tuesday — and that feels like a perfect spot for me to take him if I’m waiting on running back. Even if Johnson is as washed up as everyone seems to think, I have a hard time believing he’ll be worse than Carlos Hyde, who finished as the No. 28 RB in PPR. Even last season, Johnson was still a very viable receiver, so if he can replicate Hyde’s work on the ground and get even 50 targets at his career catch rate and 7.0 yards per target (which would be the second-lowest mark of his career), he would have been around the No. 15 RB in 2019. That feels like easy money at his cost.”

Meron Berkson, CBS Sports HQ Producer: You nabbed Kyler Murray at pick 5.12 as the third quarterback off the board. After adding DeAndre Hopkins, do you think Murray has the potential to contend with Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson as the overall QB1 in 2020?

“I do think Kyler can contend with Mahomes and Jackson. With the addition of Hopkins and his impressive rookie season behind him, Murray should only get better. Kliff Kingsbury said he expects his QB to take a big step this year and the offense should improve as well in Kingsbury’s second season. Now with the trio of Hopkins, Kirk and Fitzgerald, Kyler has the weapons and tools to become one of the best QBs in Fantasy next season.”

Ben Schragger, Podcast Producer: You grabbed CeeDee Lamb at 6.08 as the first rookie wide receiver off the board. What are your hopes for his landing spot and rookie season?

“I’m hoping he lands with the Jets or Eagles, although Philadelphia seems less realistic unless they trade up. The hope is that he could sneak into the top 24 as the WR1 in New York or Philly, with rookie production somewhere between A.J. Brown and Terry McClaurin. I like him as my WR3, as he has more upside than other WRs still on the board in the 6th, including Jarvis Landry, Deebo Samuel and Christian Kirk.”

Jamey Eisenberg, Senior Fantasy Writer: I thought you had two of the best values of the draft — J.K. Dobbins at 6.11 and Allen Lazard at 13.02. What are your thoughts on Dobbins among the rookie backs and whether we’re all sleeping on Lazard a bit? 

“The NFL Draft will determine just how good these picks are. For Dobbins, if he lands a starting job on Day 1 or a significant role — say in Miami or Tampa Bay — he’s going to be drafted prior to Round 6 and potentially in Round 3. And Lazard could see his value rise as well if the Packers don’t aggressively target a receiver in the NFL Draft. If Lazard can remain the starter opposite Davante Adams he could be drafted in the single-digit rounds and potentially in the top 100.”

Adam Aizer, Fantasy Football Today host: We’ve talked about N’Keal Harry as a potential 2020 sleeper on Fantasy Football Today, and you got him at 14.09 in this draft. Where do you think he’ll be drafted in August?

“I suspect he’ll be drafted after Round 12 and in many leagues he will be undrafted, and I think that will be a mistake. It is hard to judge him after an injury-plauged rookie season, and it is easy to forget he was a first round pick in 2019. He deserves a look this season.”

Dave Richard, Senior Fantasy Writer: Your last two non-kicker/defense picks were Hayden Hurst and T.J. Hockenson, two potential breakout tight ends. Do you like the idea of waiting at tight end? What do you like about those two?

“Well I like the price tag for starters. Two throwaway picks on two tight ends who both have a lot of upside? Dreamy! Both are also in pass-oriented offenses and they’ll never ever be double-covered as they share the field with alpha receivers who command red-zone double-teams. So at the very least, I can play the matchups with both until one stands out more than the other. At best, they both prove to be excellent for Fantasy and I can deal one off to help improve my roster. Honestly, I loved how this turned out and might keep doing this in every mock draft I do between now and when I draft for real.”

Tommy Tran, CBS Sports HQ Host: Before your kicker and DST picks, you closed out your draft with three straight rookies — Brandon Aiyuk, Anthony McFarland and Michael Pittman. What was your thought process behind that and what are your hopes for their rookie seasons?

“Obviously, it’s unknown which teams they’d be with right now, but I’m just hoping one of those pops for me. I saw the run on higher-rated prospects earlier in the mock and missed out/didn’t want to reach. Thought it was low risk in the later rounds after securing a solid starting roster.”





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