RotoBaller PPR Mock Draft Recap - Rounds 11-16

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Hopefully, by the time you reach the final rounds of your draft all of your starter positions will be solidified, and you will be able to focus on strengthening your team’s depth. For that reason, the double digit rounds present a great opportunity to take flyers on players that could end up putting up big numbers, but your team will remain in-tact even if they don’t.

It’s also a chance to look at guys that you feel could be more talented than the other players on their ream’s depth chart, and could realistically at some point force more playing time and even potentially usurp a starting role.

This thinking guided the majority of the picks in round 11-16, and some clear themes developed over the final rounds of RotoBaller’s 12-team PPR Mock.

Editor's note: Purchase any NFL Lineup Optimizer pass (including daily DFS cheat sheets), and you also get access to NBA and NHL Optimizers and DFS cheat sheets.

 

Rounds 11-16 Recap


Late Quarterback Picks

The 12th round saw the last of the starting quarterbacks go off of the board, and some of the QBs that were still left were a bit surprising. The hesitancy with Cam Newton is understandable, as he has yet to play in any of his team’s early action, and has been described as rusty at the halfway point of the preseason. The Carolina Panthers are confident he will be ready for the start of the season though, and with the added weapons around him and a new offensive philosophy, Newton has the ability to put up very solid numbers that could see him outperform his 11th round selection easily.

More surprising still was Dak Prescott not being taken until the second pick of the 12th round, even with the uncertainty that currently lies around Ezekiel Elliot’s situation. If Elliot does indeed miss any time, Prescott will likely be asked to do more to help the Dallas Cowboys win. The offensive line and the pair of thousand yard rushers that the Cowboys have rostered will undoubtedly pick up a great deal of the slack, but they won’t be able to completely take over a game the way Elliot could, and the team will almost certainly have to pass more in order to win games. The Cowboys might also have to rely on Prescott’s legs more, which will only boost an already solid statistical floor.

 

Taking a chance on young high upside receivers

With the addition of Jordan Matthews and the loss of Sammy Watkins, the Buffalo Bills wide receiver position remains fluid. With an aged Anquan Boldin as the only other receiving competition outside of Matthews, rookie Zay Jones could conceivably work his way into the number two receiving spot on the team, and is certainly talented enough to be the first option on a team that lacks any noteworthy depth at the position. Taking a chance on his upside in the middle of the 12th is a very solid pick, and you could easily end up with the Bills WR1 by seasons end.

As of late, the Kenny Golladay late buzz has been building, and he went in the 15th round in this mock. The Detroit Lions receiving group is very solid ahead of him, and with Theo Riddick’s presence in the passing game, there might not be much left for the rookie receiver. But with his aggressive 6-foot-4, 214-pound frame, he could be a part of the Lions red zone packages, especially since they had their struggles running the ball down in tight last season. Boldin, the team’s leading red zone receiving threat last year is gone to the Bills, and unless this is the year that tight end Eric Ebron finally puts it all together, somebody will have to make touchdown catches for this team to win.

Taylor Gabriel, taken in the 13th, might initially seem like he is more or less a boom or bust player, but he does have an outside shot at ending up as the Atlanta Falcon’s WR2. Mohamed Sanu has been steady-handed, but it doesn’t seem like he has developed into the number two option the team expected him to be, and the team’s new offensive coordinator might find Gabriel’s utility to be much more appealing. Don’t be surprised if Gabriel emerges as the Falcon’s second leading receiver, and third best receiving option on the team behind Julio Jones and the pass-game proficient backfield.

The same can be said for JJ Nelson in Arizona. With a bit of uncertainty surrounding John Brown’s future status as he continues to deal with sickle cell, the number two spot seems like it is still somewhat up for grabs. If you get Nelson in the 13th you are drafting him with absolutely no expectations, but could for some games have the Cardinals second receiver and third best option overall behind Larry Fitzgerald and David Johnson.

 

Potential running back starters?

To be clear, for these rookies to earn lead back roles on their respective teams a significant shift from the coaching staff would have to take place, as these teams have veteran running backs that they believe in. However, if for any reason the pendulum swung these young backs way, you could be looking at backend RB2 production in PPR formats, with the potential for much more.

The San Francisco 49ers backfield is crowded to say the least, and after briefly being dangled as trade bait, returning starter Carlos Hyde has had a solid camp and appears to have the starting job on lock. However, it has been widely speculated that new head coach Kyle Shanahan wants to replicate the Devonta Freeman/Tevin Coleman formula he created as offensive coordinator in Atlanta, and he could very well use one of the newly acquired backs to do that. It could be Matt Breida or even Tim Hightower, but many think it will be the team’s fourth round pick of the 2017 draft, Joe Williams. If Williams does end being chosen for this tandem and can manage to grab 10-15 touches a game, his 12th round selection makes him a great value.

On the outside looking in, D’Onta Foreman seems like he would have an easier track to take over lead back work, as Lamar Miller has been notably less than spectacular since his move to the Houston Texans. There is less congestion in this backfield, but the team will ride Miller’s consistency at that position, and he would have to play very poorly to completely lose his role. Still, it is also a real possibility that Foreman plays well enough that the team can’t keep him off the field, and he works his way into a DeMarco Murray/Derrick Henry split for the Texans backfield. He has played well this preseason, and taking a shot at him in the final round of the draft makes him expendable if things don’t go as planned, but an absolute steal if he works his way into the team’s weekly game plan.

 

Best Value

Thomas Rawls - With an eighth-round ADP, it was very surprising to see Thomas Rawls still on the board at the end of the draft. Although the Seattle Seahawks backfield is getting more crowded by the day, Rawls is practically free in the 15th round, and he could easily end up being the team’s leading rusher. The problem is that it is absolutely impossible to tell if that will happen at this stage, but Eddie Lacy hasn’t looked great in the preseason, and CJ Prosise has been hampered by a groin injury. This is anybody’s backfield to win, and if ends up being Rawls, the value he will return on this pick will be downright unfair.

 

Biggest Reach

Josh Gordon - Granted, the news that Josh Gordon is not close to being reinstated didn’t come out until after the 15th round pick was made in the mock, but it is still probably time to get off of this train. There were several viable players still left on the board at the time of the pick, including the likes of rookie Cooper Kupp and Thomas Rawls. Gordon could very well return to the NFL one day, but it won’t be any time in the near future. Even if he does make a return, it is unknown which team he would land on and how well he would mesh with that potential team.

 

For a recap of the beginning of the draft, check out the analysis for Round 1.

 

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