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Updated Rookie Rankings Analysis


Fantasy football season is just around the corner as teams are filing in for training camps. That means that preparations for drafts have to be taken up a notch. Player news drops at a moment's notice this time of the year and you have to be ready to adjust your rankings accordingly. Whether it be a player release or a season-ending injury, moves will need to be made to your ranks as the draft approaches. The more prep time that you put in can only add to the chances of a successful draft.

Rookies that are entering the NFL are highly debated among fantasy circles. They are the hot-button topic that provides a wide variety of value on the players as we enter into draft season. Some owners may have high expectations for a player while others steer clear at all costs. But who is to say who is right or wrong? The play on the field is what truly determines a player's value in fantasy football. Rookies such as Josh Jacobs, David Montgomery, and N'Keal Harry are all players that we thought highly of after the NFL Draft and none of that has changed. The change comes from players in lower tiers that we are seeing more defined roles for than what we previously imagined. Being in tune to these roles not only helps you in season-long leagues but in dynasty formats as well.

With the recent update to our rookie rankings, the RotoBaller dynasty staff is seeing a wide range of values up and down the board with some of this rookie class. With the update on our consensus rankings, we look to give you the leg up on your competition in 2019. In this article, I give you my take on the adjustments that have been made in the rankings and why certain players seem to be rising, and why others are falling. Our rookie rankings come courtesy of Pierre Camus, Justin Carter, Phil Clark, and myself.

 

Preseason Rookie Rankings (August)

Tier Rank Player Name Pos Pierre Brandon Justin Phil
1 1 Josh Jacobs RB 3 1 1 1
1 2 David Montgomery RB 4 2 2 3
1 3 N'Keal Harry WR 2 4 3 2
1 4 Miles Sanders RB 6 3 4 4
1 5 D.K. Metcalf WR 1 12 5 5
1 6 Kyler Murray QB 5 8 8 8
2 7 J.J. Arcega-Whiteside WR 8 11 7 7
2 8 A.J. Brown WR 14 9 6 6
2 9 Darrell Henderson RB 17 6 12 11
2 10 Parris Campbell WR 16 5 15 10
2 11 Marquise Brown WR 10 13 13 15
2 12 Deebo Samuel WR 11 17 16 9
2 13 Damien Harris RB 7 16 18 14
2 14 Devin Singletary RB 18 10 10 18
3 15 Noah Fant TE 13 18 14 17
3 16 Justice Hill WR 25 7 19 12
3 17 Andy Isabella WR 19 19 11 16
3 18 T.J. Hockenson TE 29 14 9 13
3 19 Hakeem Butler WR 9 23 20 20
4 20 Dwayne Haskins QB 12 15 31 22
4 21 Mecole Hardman WR 28 20 17 19
4 22 Alexander Mattison RB 21 24 21 25
4 23 Diontae Johnson WR 23 21 25 23
4 24 Kelvin Harmon WR 15 32 40 21
4 25 Jalen Hurd WR 30 36 23 26
4 26 Benny Snell Jr. RB 26 30 24 39
4 27 Irv Smith Jr. TE 35 33 22 29
4 28 Terry McLaurin WR 20 45 27 27
5 29 Darwin Thompson RB 43 25 28 32
5 30 Miles Boykin WR 49 26 30 24
5 31 Jace Sternberger TE 48 34 26 28
5 32 Josh Oliver TE 36 27 29 46
5 33 Bryce Love RB 24 42 34 40
5 34 Drew Lock QB 31 29 42 41
5 35 Tony Pollard RB 34 38 45 30
6 36 Bruce Anderson RB 50 22 53 31
6 37 Qadree Ollison RB 37 49 35 35
6 38 Riley Ridley WR 40 51 33 34
6 39 Rodney Anderson RB 44 28 46 45
6 40 Ryquell Armstead RB 61 31 36 38
6 41 Dawson Knox TE 53 37 37 42
7 42 Dexter Williams RB 45 48 48 36
7 43 Trayveon Williams RB 22 41 55 61
7 44 Foster Moreau TE 32 52 51 49
7 45 Kahale Warring TE 51 54 39 43
7 46 Daniel Jones QB 58 43 41 47
7 47 Jordan Scarlett RB 41 67 44 37
7 48 Hunter Renfrow WR 57 40 43 50
7 49 Myles Gaskin RB 63 35 49 44
7 50 Mike Weber RB 42 50 #N/A 52
7 51 Gary Jennings WR 59 74 32 33
7 52 Keesean Johnson WR 33 58 56 51
7 53 Karan Higdon RB 52 39 #N/A 60
7 54 Preston Williams WR 46 47 #N/A 59
7 55 Travis Homer RB 27 66 57 57
7 56 Alex Barnes RB 38 63 52 56
7 57 Penny Hart WR #N/A #N/A #N/A 53
7 58 Jazz Ferguson WR 47 62 50 #N/A
7 59 Scott Miller WR #N/A #N/A 54 #N/A
8 60 Darius Slayton WR 39 81 47 54
8 61 Devine Ozigbo RB 71 44 #N/A 55
8 62 Will Grier QB 60 55 #N/A #N/A
8 63 Jakobi Myers WR #N/A #N/A #N/A 58
8 64 Elijah Holyfield RB 56 59 #N/A 62
8 65 Jarrett Stidham QB 54 64 #N/A #N/A
8 66 Travis Fulgham WR #N/A #N/A 59 63
8 67 Emmanuel Butler WR 66 68 38 73
8 68 Damarkus Lodge WR 80 46 #N/A #N/A
8 69 Gardner Minshew QB 65 65 #N/A #N/A
8 70 Emanuel Hall WR 70 60 #N/A 68
8 71 Caleb Wilson TE 74 56 #N/A 71
8 72 Drew Sample TE 55 89 58 #N/A
8 73 Stanley Morgan Jr. WR 75 83 #N/A 48
8 74 Ryan Finley QB 81 57 #N/A #N/A
8 75 Olamide Zaccheaus RB #N/A #N/A #N/A 70
8 76 Tyree Jackson QB 64 79 #N/A #N/A
8 77 Ashton Dulin WR 62 77 #N/A 76
8 78 Terry Godwin WR 68 73 #N/A 74
8 79 C.J. Conrad TE 76 69 #N/A #N/A
8 80 Dillon Mitchell WR 83 70 #N/A 65
8 81 Lil'jordan Humphrey WR 88 53 #N/A 81
8 82 Antoine Wesley WR 86 72 #N/A 66
8 83 Jalin Moore RB #N/A 75 #N/A #N/A
8 84 Keelan Doss WR 77 84 #N/A 64
8 85 David Sills WR 79 61 #N/A 87
9 86 Anthony Ratliff-Williams WR #N/A #N/A #N/A 77
9 87 Nick Brossette RB 69 #N/A #N/A 86
9 88 Isaac Nuata TE #N/A #N/A #N/A 78
9 89 Kaden Smith TE 89 78 #N/A 67
9 90 Dax Raymond TE 82 #N/A 75
9 91 Anthony Johnson WR 85 80 #N/A 72
9 92 Greg Dortch WR 84 71 #N/A 82
9 93 Jamal Custis WR #N/A #N/A #N/A 79
9 94 Tyre Brady WR 72 88 #N/A 80
9 95 Cody Thompson WR 67 92 #N/A 83
9 96 Easton Stick QB 78 86 #N/A #N/A
9 97 Trevon Wesco TE 93 94 60 #N/A
9 98 James Williams RB 98 #N/A #N/A 69
9 99 Ryan Davis WR #N/A #N/A #N/A 84
9 100 Darrin Hall RB 73 95 #N/A #N/A
9 101 Ty Johnson RB 92 76 #N/A #N/A
10 102 Brett Rypien QB 87 #N/A #N/A
10 103 Damarea Crockett RB 90 85 #N/A #N/A
10 104 Wes Hills RB 95 82 #N/A #N/A
10 105 LJ Scott RB 97 #N/A #N/A 85
10 106 Kerrith Whyte RB 91 91 #N/A #N/A
10 107 Isaac Nauta TE 96 87 #N/A #N/A
10 108 Alize Mack TE 94 90 #N/A #N/A
10 109 Clayton Thorson QB #N/A 93 #N/A #N/A

 

Top-Tier Rookies

At the top of my board, there has been seemingly no change to the top half of the first round. Josh Jacobs has been the constant at the top spot. His role in the Raiders offense has seen no change and most fantasy owners agree that he will be the first rookie to be drafted in any format.

Behind him is where I have had a small change with Montgomery moving into the second slot. Each passing day in camp there is a growing notion that he will be heavily featured in the Bears rushing attack. The expected volume is cause for some excitement and could lead to Montgomery becoming a low-end RB2 in seasonal leagues.

Both Miles Sanders and N'Keal Harry will be great options for years to come in dynasty but the usage in 2019 may be inconsistent for much of the year.

 

Risers

 

Justice Hill (RB, BAL)

Hill is a player that I continue to see rise up the board and now have him firmly inside my Top 12. After OTAs and in the early stages of camp it is becoming clear that Hill will have a nice role carved out for himself in the Ravens backfield. Mark Ingram will hold down a majority of the running load, while Hill should become the third-down specialist and change of pace back. His elusiveness and ability out of the backfield could become a problem for opposing defenses and a great addition in PPR formats.

 

Darrell Henderson (RB, LAR)

Henderson has been the talk of the fantasy town during much of the summer with the uncertainty surrounding Todd Gurley. Owners have been drafting Henderson much earlier than expected in an after the uncover this season's version of James Conner. Sure, Henderson will be involved in the gameplan for the Rams, but to what extent? It all hinges on the usage of Gurley. I do expect to see Gurley's touches to be monitored throughout the season, giving Henderson a small number of touches each game. For the back that led all of college football in breakaway percentage in 2018, a small number of touches maybe all he needs to find success for fantasy owners.

 

Bruce Anderson (RB, TB)

A player that I continue to show my appreciation for. If Anderson puts forth a great camp, there is a very good chance that he can work his way into a Buccaneers backfield that is dying for a true lead back. The team has been talking up Ronald Jones during the offseason and we all know what Peyton Barber brings to the table. Anderson could give Bruce Arians the back that he needs to be successful in his offense. Anderson can make the first man miss, catches well out of the backfield, and has an extra burst in open space. He has the tools the be an every-down back for this team but must outwork the veterans in camp. He's just inside my Top 24 currently and is a nice late-round target in seasonal leagues.

 

Josh Oliver (TE, JAX)

I've never been the biggest proponent of rookie tight ends in fantasy. It generally takes a couple of years for them to acclimate to the speed of the pro game. But with Nick Foles in Jacksonville and a version of the Eagles passing game coming with him, Oliver could find himself in a very fruitful fantasy position in 2019. He's just outside my Top 24 currently among rookies, but a third-round grade seems to fit the bill. With the Jaguars receiving group being a mirky situation, Oliver could see a steady amount of targets throughout the season. He's a late-round target that could develop into a TE1 quicker than we thought possible given the mess that is the fantasy TE group.

 

Myles Gaskin (RB, MIA)

With the back and forth that we continue to hear about the Dolphins running back rotation between Kenyan Drake and Kalen Ballage, it could be Gaskin that swoops in by season's end for meaningful snaps. The highly utilized back from Washington knows what it takes to handle a heavy workload. In a year where the Dolphins are likely to be auditioning players for the rebuild, Gaskins could vault atop the depth chart. He has some late-round appeal in redraft formats and could potentially develop into a nice RB2 option in dynasty for several years.

 

Fallers

 

A.J. Brown (WR, TEN)

I was extremely high on Brown going into the pre-draft process. But his landing spot with the Titans was not ideal and is already battling soft tissue injuries in camp. Missing practice time early on in camp is a hindrance to his development. The passing game for the Titans is already considered one of the worst in the league, so finding his target share was already going to be difficult. He's not a player that I will target in redraft formats for 2019, but his dynasty stock is directly tied to whether or not Marcus Mariota is the Titans QB moving forward. If the Titans move on, I will be moving Brown up my dynasty rankings in the future.

 

Mecole Hardman (WR, KC)

Well, the bloom fell off the rose quickly for Hardman's dynasty stock. Once considered a first-rounder in rookie drafts, the Tyreek Hill suspension not happening killed that for fantasy owners. Hardman now finds himself at best fourth in line in the Chiefs passing game. His value in redraft formats has taken a massive hit for 2019, but he still has Top 24 appeal in my rookie rankings. The Chiefs should likely move on from Sammy Watkins next, freeing up targets for Hardman moving forward.

 

Irv Smith Jr. (TE, MIN)

After being drafted to the Vikings, many fantasy owners looked at Smith as the surefire starter for the team as early as 2019. But instead, the team decided to extend Kyle Rudolph's contract. Leaving Smith on the outside looking in at the starter's role. He quickly fell from a potential sleeper TE1 as early as 2019 to a guy that may be hard to draft as a TE2. He's fallen to 33 in my overall rookie rankings and not a player I would be targeting for the foreseeable future.

More Fantasy Football Analysis


Check out all of RotoBaller's fantasy football rankings. Staff rankings are updated regularly for all positions and include standard formats, PPR scoring, tiered rankings and dynasty leagues.




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