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Rookie Mock Draft Recap - Round 2

After a somewhat par-for-the-course first round of RotoBaller’s 2017 Rookie Mock Draft, the second round saw the predictability wear off, as our fantasy experts began picking more based on their intuition and less based on consensus thought.

As we take a deeper look into all 12 picks, those dynasty leaguers among us will get a fantastic early look into where our writers and staff are hedging their bets for the future. If you didn't catch part one, check out our analysis of Round 1.

Ed. Note: For continual coverage of NFL free agency news and its fantasy impact, keep tuned to RotoBaller!



Pick 2.1 - Chris Godwin (WR, TB)

Starting off the first round was Chris Godwin, a third round pick out of Penn State. While this may seem a bit surprising at first glance, as one looks further into the pick, the upside becomes clearer and quite enticing. While Godwin will come into his rookie season as the fourth receiving option in Tampa Bay at best, behind Mike Evans, DeSean Jackson, and OJ Howard/Cameron Brate, it’s worth noting that Jackson is getting older, and may soon lose a step. In addition, Mike Evans will be drawing special coverage for the foreseeable future, leaving Godwin in prime position to take advantage of subpar corners and safeties down the line. Godwin won’t be an immediate impact to your fantasy squad, but has great potential as a WR2 in the coming years.


Pick 2.2 - Deshaun Watson (QB, HOU)

With the second pick, the first, and arguably most safe, QB of the mock comes off the board in Deshaun Watson. Watson landed in the best spot of any QB in the draft, in regards to available weapons in the passing and rushing attack from day one. While it was consensus among experts that Watson has one of the lowest ceilings of any QBs in the class, finding himself with “QB-whisperer” Bill O'Brien ought to do wonders to help him continue his winning ways from Clemson. Watson excels in the short to intermediate pass game, complementing O’Brien’s system, and has the potential to be a back-end QB1.


Pick 2.3 - Zay Jones (WR, BUF)

With the Bills’ receiving corps as thin as it is behind Sammy Watkins, and Watkins' bones being as thin as the Bills’ receiving corps, Zay Jones has the opportunity to step immediately into a starting role and even take over as their eventual WR1, should the Bills lose Watkins in free agency in 2018. While Jones doesn’t have the elite talent of the Big Three receivers of the class, his situation couldn’t be better from a fantasy perspective.


Pick 2.4 Alvin Kamara (RB, NO)

This pick definitely seems a bit suspect, at least in this writer’s opinion, but the reasoning behind it is definitely solid. With the Saints losing Tim Hightower in free agency and the combination of Mark Ingram and Adrian Peterson not exactly defining “youth”, New Orleans went so far as to trade up for Kamara, showing their faith in the rookie’s potential. Kamara isn’t someone who’s going to contribute in the short term, as he’ll be buried on the depth chart by Ingram and Peterson unless the Saints decide to move Ingram, but as they continue to slow down, Kamara looks primed to step into the role Darren Sproles had with the team years ago.


Pick 2.5 Curtis Samuel (WR, CAR)

One of my favorite picks in the draft, both in real life and in our mock, was Samuel to the Panthers. For a team that’s lacked true speed and agility at WR since Ted Ginn’s departure, Carolina found a fantastic replacement in Curtis Samuel. Residing on the opposite side of the coin as Christian McCaffrey (wide receiver that plays some running back, McCaffrey vice-versa), Samuel can immediately slide into the slot receiver role for the team and, with Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess being somewhat disappointing up to this point in their respective careers, if Samuel can prove himself, he may eventually take over as their WR1. Of course, he may also only make his living as a WR3, slot-only player, but let’s focus on the upside, right?


Pick 2.6 Jeremy McNichols (RB, TB)

Considering Doug Martin’s shaky standing with the team and the NFL after his failed drug test and Charles Sims’ seeming incapability to command the bell-cow role, the Buccaneers needed to find another complementary back as an insurance policy. Enter Jeremy McNichols. McNichols isn’t going to blow anyone away with his talents, but is as solid an RB as one can ask for, which fits perfectly into what the Buccaneers ask of their RBs, especially considering Jameis’ revamped receiving corps. McNichols lacks a high ceiling, but presents a decently high floor, and with the position as up in the air as it is across the league, that’s all you can as for in fantasy.


Pick 2.7 - D’Onta Foreman (RB, HOU)

Foreman was a player that some draftniks had pegged as high as a late-first round pick in the real draft, so for the Texans to grab a player with such high upside is fantastic. While Lamar Miller is and will be their bell-cow for the next few years, he’s proven to be injury prone in the past, and with Alfred Blue being as mediocre as it gets, Foreman should be able to put himself in the position to take over when Miller goes down, and even move into the starting role when Miller’s contract expires.


Pick 2.8 - Patrick Mahomes (QB, KC)

With my pick, I decided to reach for the stars. Mahomes has an incredibly low floor and an incredibly high ceiling, but with Andy Reid as his developer and Alex Smith in place to keep him away from the starting lineup, Mahomes landed in the perfect spot to reach the latter. Assuming the Chiefs can continue to stockpile talent around him, he has as great a chance as anyone to be a future top-10 fantasy QB with his cannon of an arm and ability to do it all for his team.


Pick 2.9 - Kareem Hunt (RB, KC)

Keeping with the trend of Chiefs’ rookies, the next pick saw Kareem Hunt go off the board, a player who has intriguing long-term value. With Jamaal Charles’ tenure in Kansas City coming to an end this offseason and the duo of Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West being somewhat middling, the Chiefs need to find their next truly electric playmaker at the RB spot. Hunt has the capability to do that and more, and should the Ware/West pair fall off again towards the end of this season, Hunt could see his number called even sooner than expected.


Pick 2.10 Jamaal Williams (RB, GB)

Jamaal Williams has arguably the biggest disparity between his floor and ceiling as a fantasy prospect, as he has plenty of talent and landed on a team that desperately needs a true RB, but unfortunately, that team is the Packers. While Packers’ RBs have had success in the past, it’s been what feels like an eternity since any of of them has had any sustained success. Williams should start out in a timeshare with Ty Montgomery, but should he take over the majority of the carries, he could be a long-term RB2.


Pick 2.11 Dede Westbrook (WR, JAX)

One of the most surprising picks in the draft, Westbrook will have to firmly claim the slot receiver position in order to make an impact in his first season. However, with Marqise Lee and Allen Robinson’s contracts expiring after next season, the Jaguars could look to move on from one or both of them, depending on the prices they command. Westbrook has some of the best talent at the WR position in this draft class, but due to off-field issues fell in the draft. Should he be able to move past them and the Jaguars give him the opportunity to start, he could become a WR2 in a few years.


Pick 2.12 Carlos Henderson (DEN, WR)

Henderson’s value lies less in his capability to get on the field, as he should have no trouble taking over the slot role for the Broncos, but depends greatly on how one views the Broncos’ QB position. In its current state, neither Paxton Lynch nor Trevor Siemian seem like the types of QBs to support three WRs as viable fantasy options, and the Broncos have no real long-term solution outside of those two. However, if someone has enough faith in one or two of them, Henderson could be an immediate-impact WR3 with sustained value.


That wraps up Round 2! Thanks for reading, and be sure to look forward to our coming analysis of the following rounds!

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